A study from trade body Plastics Recyclers Europe has said that a 62 per cent target for plastic recycling is achievable by 2020.
Plastics Recyclers Europe said that the study shows that a higher recycling rate for plastics will create benefits for the European Union environment, economy and resource efficiency.
In its vision for resource efficiency, Plastics Recyclers Europe wants to see efficient use of all plastic waste generated leading to 11 million tonnes of material being placed on the market.
It also wants to see 24 million tonnes of plastic diverted from landfill and by substituting recycled plastic for virgin materials make savings of €4.5 billion (£3.76 billion).
Plastics Recyclers Europe president Ton Emans said: “This study, commissioned by Bio Intelligence Service, aims to put forward the most suitable scenario in order to further improve the sustainability of plastics via recycling in Europe in the period to 2020.
“Enhancing plastics recycling will save scarce resources, create jobs and reduce environmental impacts.
“The current plastics recycling situation is no longer acceptable. In the long run, economic growth, demographic changes and growing scarcity of raw materials will not allow Europe the luxury of wasting 76 per cent of all plastic materials used.
“Urgent measures are needed in order to increase recycling rates for plastics. This study proposes crucial measures that should be taken in order to achieve this.”