Dutch plastic pact sets targets for plastic use and recycling

Less plastic, more recycling. Seventy-five companies
and environmental organisations have signed onto
the Netherlands' new plastic pact.
25.02.2019 − 

Dutch companies have entered a new “Plastic Pact” under which they commit to less plastic use and more plastic recycling. The agreement was signed on Thursday by 75 companies and environmental organisations as well as by the environment ministry.

Secretary of state Stientje Van Veldhoven explained that the pact included a commitment to reduce plastic consumption by 20 per cent by 2025, to recycle more plastic waste and to ensure that new plastic products are 100 recyclable. Ultimately the goal of the plan is to see that less plastic waste winds up in the oceans.

“The entire chain is addressing the problem together”

The signatories include numerous grocery chains, retailers, packaging manufacturers, plastic recyclers and environmental organisations. “Plastic is a useful and versatile material, but it doesn’t belong in the environment. With the plastic pact, we want to get more done with less plastic,” said Ms van Veldhoven. She considers the pact a good extension to existing regulation.

Marjolein Demmers, director of the environment group Natuur & Milieu sees the wide range of interests and industries supporting the agreement as the deal’s strong point. “From packaging companies, to manufacturers and from supermarkets to waste management companies, the entire chain is addressing the problem together,” she said.

The pact’s signatories commit to four goals which are to be achieved by 2025. Firstly, all plastic products and packaging will be made out 100 per cent recyclable plastic. Secondly, the signatories agree to use 20 per cent less plastic in 2025 than they did in 2017. Thirdly, by 2025 at least 70 per cent of the single-use plastic products and packaging disposed of in the Netherlands will undergo high quality recycling, and finally all plastic single-use items placed on the market will have a recycled content of at least 35 per cent.

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