GO CIRCULAR 2023
Go Circular is a business-focused conference where participants have discussions around the main plastics circularity challenges and is the perfect place to start building plastic circularity collaborations.
It covers the entire plastics circular value chain, starting from petrochemical companies to brand owners.
The 4th edition of Go Circular took place in Rotterdam in partnership with the Port of Rotterdam, the largest port in Europe.
Mattia Pellerini, Head of Unit at European Commission in his presentation addressed the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation, focusing on 5 key elements of the legal proposal.
One of the core measures he mentioned was “As of 2030 all packaging items have to be recyclable, and to that end meet the design for recycling (DfR) criteria, to be established in
Hilde van Dujin, Head of Global Value Chains at Circle Economy, shared the unexpected outcome of the Circularity Gap Report they have been producing since 2018. Hilde shared that “The global situation is getting worse year on year—driven by rising material extraction
Rising material extraction has shrunk global circularity: from 9.1% in 2018, to 8.6% 2020, and now 7.2% in 2023. This leaves a huge Circularity Gap: the globe almost exclusively relies on new (virgin) materials.”
On the UN treaty to end plastic pollution a representative of the Business Coalition for a Global Plastics Treaty representative, Venetia Spencer outlined in her presentation “Global rules are important for businesses. We cannot rely on national action plans alone.
A legally binding treaty must help governments create a level playing field for a globally operating industry and prevent a patchwork of disconnected national solutions.
Because of the international trade of plastics products, packaging and waste, the treaty provisions must be based on common definitions and metrics as well as on harmonised standards. Businesses struggle to comply with different rules in 193 countries around the world.”
The second day of the conference started focusing on unlocking plastic waste feedstock.
Pranav Goenka, Senior Advisor & Co-Chair, Recycling Solutions at the Alliance to End Plastic Waste outlined three challenges, need to improve availability of feedstock at affordable price, need to improve quality of recyclates and need to invest in recycling capacity.
To address these challenges, there is a need for economic incentives and broad collaboration across stakeholders and shared Alliance’s approach through creating a value chain pull.
Joe Papineschi, Chairperson at Eunomia Research & Consulting, in his presentation focusing on recycling technology comparison overview & market readiness.
Among the key takeaways from his presentation was energy and material intensity may become key determinants of winning technologies, and Europe still lacks a clear vision for the roles of
different recycling technologies.
Throughout the conference agenda, participants discussed different circularity gaps and how to address them. In his presentation, Joachim Amland, SVP Head of TOMRA Recycling Feedstock mentioned the quantity gap.
Addressing the quantity gap is very important because, in Europe alone, 12 million tonnes of plastics are lost to incineration and 7 million tonnes to landfill. Also, waste collection and sorting remain inconsistent and fragmented, with significant investment required in
developing and improving infrastructure.
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