Circular plastic value chains require integrated approach

If the demand for plastics follows its current trajectory, global plastic waste volumes will grow from 260 million tonnes per year in 2016 to 460 million tonnes by 2030. In Europe, still, only around 30% of all plastic waste is collected for recycling. This proportion must increase, but limited EPR schemes, fragmented waste management systems, and contradictory legislation and policies impede progress. At the same time, the quality of the collected waste must also increase. High-quality recycling relies on effective separate waste collection and sorting techniques.

Plastics and the environment are on a collision course: from rising greenhouse gas emissions to plastic ocean waste, the proof is piling up on a daily basis. It is increasingly clear that incremental steps are not enough to tackle this major global challenge: to truly turn the tide, we need game-changing innovations and policies.

The Dutch Sustainable Growth Coalition (DSGC) was founded based on the shared conviction that companies have a social responsibility to offer solutions to the major sustainability issues of our time. As such, we are committed to supporting and accelerating the transition to a circular economy for plastics.

The benefits of this will be immense. In a circular economy, plastics will be kept within an open, semi-open or closed loop, significantly reducing leakage into the environment. Energy and water usage and CO2 emissions will also be substantially reduced. In this way, landfill waste will be minimized, and the incineration of recyclable plastics will be replaced with innovative technologies that keep materials and value within the economy.

Thanks to its excellent infrastructure, strong knowledge base, and sustainability-focused business community, the Netherlands is particularly well-positioned to become an internationally recognized hotspot for circularity and game-changing innovation.

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