The European Union has led the world since the 1970s in thought and action on how to responsibly prevent and manage waste.

The EU economy as a whole still wastes a great deal, however – spending money to discard resources as waste and then spending more on extracting and importing new resources to replace what has been thrown away.

The current revision of the Waste Framework Directive, which has guided EU policy in this area since 1975, offers an opportunity to design a coherent and consistent policy framework for a circular economy.

Unlocking this potential requires a policy landscape that will create the opportunities, incentives, and confidence necessary for businesses to innovate and invest in the new business models that will break the link between material consumption and prosperity.

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