On 5 July, the European Commission published rules to make producers responsible for the full lifecycle of textile products and to support the sustainable management of textile waste across the EU. These rules are part of the EU Strategy for Sustainable and Circular Textiles and come in the form of a targeted amendment to the Waste Framework Directive.
The amendment is proposing to introduce mandatory and harmonised Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) schemes for textiles in all EU Member States.
In order to incentivise producers to reduce waste, the proposal makes producers responsible to cover the costs of management of textile waste, with the aim of eventually designing better and more circular products from the start. The contributions by the producers will finance investments into collecting, sorting and recycling capacities.
Moreover, Member States will be required to set up separate collection of textiles by 1 January 2025. They must also ensure that used textiles are sorted for reuse, and what cannot be reused is directed to recycling.
Lastly, in line with the Waste Shipments Regulation, the proposal also addresses the issue of illegal exports of textile waste to third countries. The new law would clarify what entails waste and what is considered reusable textiles.
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