European Commissioner Janez Potočnik has called for a “revolution” to bring about a resource efficient economy.
In a video address to WRAP’s annual conference, the Commissioner said that major changes would be required to bring about a circular economy.
He said: “Massive global pressures on demand for materials, rising costs, Europe’s import dependency, and the environmental impact of our use of materials call for nothing short of a revolution in our mind-sets and behaviour towards a resource efficient circular economy and society. An economy based on virtuous cycles, that promotes reuse, repair and recyclability, and where one industry’s waste becomes another’s raw material.”
The Commissioner added that the private sector must deliver this change, but with frameworks set by policy makers.
He said: “It is pretty obvious that the private sector must be at the centre of any transition to a resource efficient and circular economy. It is companies’ creativity and innovation that determine what technologies and systems we will use tomorrow; companies’ product design choices that determine the features of the products.
“But much depends on us, policymakers too. We must create the right framework conditions and confidence to drive investment in the right direction. We must make sustainability profitable and reward the front-runners in the marketplace. And this is the direction we have been working in.”