A circular economy for plastics: Insights from research and innovation to inform policy and funding decisions | EU publications



The current plastics system demands change in which research and innovation, enabled and reinforced by policymaking, play a crucial role. Moving towards a circular economy, we can harness the benefits of plastics, while achieving better economic, environmental and social outcomes. This report aims to inform policy and funding decisions on a circular economy for plastics by providing research and innovation insights from EU-funded projects and the wider scientific community. The report covers the entire plastics value chain, highlighting a broad range of challenges and opportunities. Based on scientific evidence, the insights presented contribute to the transition towards plastic production from renewable feedstock and product design for use, reuse, repair, and mechanical, chemical, or organic recycling. In addition, the report explains how this systemic change can be supported by innovation in business models, collection systems, and sorting and recycling technologies. In this way, plastics could circulate through our society with full transparency at high-value usage, while minimising the risks to human health and the environment.

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