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Circular economy: EU proposals on the theme of circularity and eco-design

On March 30, the European Commission published the Circular Economy Package, a package that includes a series of regulations to accelerate the transformation towards a circular economy at the European level. Among these there is also the Sustainable Products Initiative, renamed Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation (ESPR) which aims to offer European consumers more sustainable products and promote business models more suited to the circular economy.

 

Eco-friendly product design

The Sustainable Products Initiative, inspired by the Ecodesign directive, aims at the complete recyclability of the products placed on the market, or of their components, with the minimization of the production of emissions and waste, the elimination of squanderings, maximum energy savings throughout the cycle of life.

The measures concern the eco-compatible design of products, with the introduction of a series of requirements to be respected and new mandatory information to be provided by producers to consumers in order to know precisely what they are buying, also in terms of duration and repairability. of products. These new eco-sustainability requirements and standards will apply to all products entering the EU single market, even imported ones.

By the end of 2022, the European Commission will launch a public consultation on the categories of products to be selected that will be the subject of the first Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation working plan: the priority list includes furniture and mattresses along with textiles, tires, detergents and others.

 

Eco-design not only for energy efficiency

The sustainability criteria will therefore be defined not only with regard to energy efficiency, but also for the circularity and for an overall reduction of the environmental and climatic footprint of the products. The requirements of the new Eco-design will aim to make products more durable, reliable, reusable, upgradeable, repairable, easier to maintain, renew and recycle, and energy and resource efficient.

Furthermore, the first indications are introduced on the Digital Products Passport (DPP) which will facilitate the traceability of the substances used along the supply chain and will facilitate the repair or recycling of the products themselves.