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Parliamentary questions
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21 June 2018
Question for written answer E-003390-18
to the Commission
Rule 130
Igor Šoltes (Verts/ALE)

 Subject:  Zero Waste sustainable practices
 Answer in writing 

Plastics and packaging are increasingly becoming the main destroyer of our planet. Between 5 and 13 million tonnes of plastic ends up in the sea every year, and plastics are expected to outweigh fish in the oceans by 2050.

The figures reveal an extremely worrying situation and action urgently needs to be taken. The key actions should include so-called soft measures focusing on raising public awareness and changing day-to-day behaviour.

The Zero Waste movement, which encourages the redesign of resource life cycles so that all products are reused, is becoming increasingly influential. The goal is for no waste to be sent to landfills or incinerators. A good example is New Zealand, where more than half of the local communities have adopted Zero Waste as their waste management method, and New Zealand has become the first country in the world to adopt it as a national strategy, showing that change is possible.

In the EU, too, there is growing awareness of this approach, but unfortunately it is happening too slowly. Zero Waste sustainable business practices, such as Zero Waste shops and hotels, are proving to be a good solution in tackling the packaging problem. Such practices have a positive impact on the behaviour of individuals and can significantly reduce the environmental burden of packaging and plastics.

Does the Commission intend to take action to help promote such Zero Waste sustainable practices, particularly in the form of financial incentives, which would help new sustainable businesses to grow?

Original language of question: SL 
Last updated: 5 July 2018Legal notice