Circular economy

The EU Green Deal

All the previous communications and actions towards Circular Economy of the EU were updated with the release of the Green Deal.

The EU Green Deal, presented in December 11, 2019, is a roadmap with a diverse set of actions in multiple sectors.

It includes a gobal approach to Cirular Economy, but it is much more that just that.


The new EU Circular Economy Action Plan (2020)

As part of the EU Green Deal, a new action plan for Circular Economy was publisehd by the European Union in March 11th, 2020:


Key documents


The EU Circular Economy package (2015)

The European Commission adopted an ambitious Circular Economy Package, which includes revised legislative proposals on waste to stimulate Europe’s transition towards a circular economy which will boost global competitiveness, foster sustainable economic growth and generate new jobs.

The Circular Economy Package consists of an EU Action Plan for the Circular Economy that establishes a concrete and ambitious program of action, with measures covering the whole cycle: from production and consumption to waste management and the market for secondary raw materials.

The annex to the action plan sets out the timeline when the actions will be completed.

The proposed actions will contribute to “closing the loop” of product lifecycles through greater recycling and re-use and bring benefits for both the environment and the economy.

The revised legislative proposals on waste set clear targets for the reduction of waste and establish an ambitious and credible long-term path for waste management and recycling. Key elements of the revised waste proposal include:

  • A common EU target for recycling 65% of municipal waste by 2030;
  • A common EU target for recycling 75% of packaging waste by 2030;
  • A binding landfill target to reduce landfill to a maximum of 10% of all waste by 2030;
  • A ban on landfilling of separately collected waste;
  • Promotion of economic instruments to discourage landfilling;
  • Simplified and improved definitions and harmonized calculation methods for recycling rates throughout the EU;
  • Concrete measures to promote re-use and stimulate industrial symbiosis – turning one industry’s by-product into another industry’s raw material;

Economic incentives for producers to put greener products on the market and support recovery and recycling schemes (e.g. for packaging, batteries, electric and electronic equipment, vehicles).

The following legislative proposals on waste have been adopted:


For more information:

Circular Economy Package: Press release and questions & answers

  • Factsheet: Closing the Loop: Helping consumers choose sustainable products and services
  • Factsheet: Closing the Loop: The Production Phase of the Circular Economy
  • Factsheet: Closing the Loop: Clear Targets and Tools for Better Waste Management
  • Factsheet: Closing the Loop: From Waste to Resources

See also: Circular Economy Missions



As part of the process to develop this new circular economy package, the Commission organized a circular economy conference in Brussels on 25 June 2015, attended by around 700 stakeholders. Participation in this conference was open to all stakeholders wishing to contribute to shaping European economic policymaking.

Split-up sessions key messages and speeches F.TimmermansK. VellaJ. Katainen

Recordings from the conference: Plenary and sessions 2 and 6, sessions 1 and 4, sessions 3 and 5

The conference followed a twelve-week public consultation from 28 May to 20 August 2015 which received around 1500 contributions. Contributions to the public consultation are now available.

In December 2014, the Commission decided to withdraw its legislative proposal on waste, but Commission committed at the same time to use its new horizontal working methods to present a new package by the end of 2015 which would cover the full economic cycle, not just waste reduction targets, drawing on the expertise of all the Commission’s services.

Previous proposal on the circular economy: