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Navigating the new PPWR: Key Takeaways from Borealis’ webinar

What is the PPWR?


The EU Packaging, Packaging Waste Regulation. It aims to drive circular economy practices. Its' key changes include design for recyclabiliy, mandatory recycled content, and waste minimazation targets. It also includes bans on certain packaging formats and requirements for transport packaging reuse are also part of the regulation.


Borealis’ circular economy experts—Venetia Spencer and Geert Van Ballaer—explained in a recent webinar how the landscape of packaging products is set to undergo this significant transformation.


Key takeaways:


Recyclability and Design for Recycling (DFR):


By 2030, all packaging must be designed for recyclability. DFR rules will be set by material and format (e.g. polyethylene flexible, polypropylene rigid).Recyclability assessment involves ABCD categorization.


Recycled Content:


Specific requirements for recycled content apply to polyolefins (10% for contact-sensitive, 35% for non-contact-sensitive). Post-consumer recycled content must meet defined standards.


Exemptions and Derogations:


Exemptions exist for medical applications, infant food, and certain plastic parts. The review clause allows for assessing derogations to 2030 targets based on availability.


Chemical Recycling:


Chemical recycling is not explicitly included in the mandatory recycled content targets. It remains an area of ongoing research and development.


Bio-Based Materials:


Bio-based plastics may be a future target for sustainability. A report on bio-based criteria and targets is expected in three years.


Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR):


EPR now applies to all involved parties, eliminating the concept of free riders. Non-payment of EPR fees is considered an infringement of the law. Fees are calculated consistently across countries, factoring in collection, sorting, recycling costs, waste bin labeling, and waste analysis. Some countries may also include litter cleanup costs in the EPR fee. Learn more about EPR.


Harmonization Across EU Countries:


The new regulation ensures consistent rules across all 27 EU countries, promoting a more effective single market. It covers aspects like design for recycling and mandatory materials. Harmonized labeling between packaging and waste collection receptacles simplifies waste separation for consumers.


Future Prospects:


Chemical recycling could play a significant role in achieving circularity goals. Continued research, investment, and collaboration are essential to advance chemical recycling technologies. Industry stakeholders, including Borealis, are closely monitoring developments and exploring opportunities.


Remember that the landscape may evolve over time, and chemical recycling’s role could become more prominent as technology matures and regulatory frameworks adapt.


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Circular Economy

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