Particularly important to the European Green Deal is the Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP), which specifically focuses on many markets in which tapes are used, e.g. the packaging, plastics, electronics and construction arenas.
Announced on 11 March 2020 just as COVID-19 disruption was leading to lockdowns in most European countries, the Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP) is aimed at improving the circularity of the E.U. economy by increasing product durability, reusability, upgradability and repairability—basically preventing products from becoming waste earlier than necessary—and at the same time restricting single-use and disposable products.
The CEAP will promote recycling by requiring the incorporation of secondary raw materials into various products while increasing the quality of the recyclates that come out of treating the waste. The purpose is to reward sustainable products and/or penalise non-sustainable ones using, for example, the “polluter pays” principle.
Areas of focus relevant to tapes:
- Electronics: longer product lifetimes including easier repairability, and improved collection and treatment, so that ultimately the development of tape products for electronics will keep the tapes relevant.
- Batteries and vehicles: new regulatory framework for batteries, a boost in circular potential, so that batteries will have to be improved.
- Packaging: new mandatory requirements on what is allowed on the E.U. market, including the reduction of (over)packaging; extended producer responsibility (EPR) fee harmonisation across Europe.
- Plastics: new mandatory requirements for recycled content improvement and special attention for microplastics generation, as well as requirements for biobased and biodegradable plastics inclusion in the future.
- Construction and buildings: Strategy for Sustainable Built Environment promoting circularity of materials used for construction purposes.