The European Commission has released a new action plan on critical raw materials, looking at current and future challenges, while offering solutions to reduce Europe’s dependency on third countries. The plan will help to diversify supply from primary and secondary sources, while improving efficiencies, circularity and responsible sourcing, accelerating the transition towards a green, circular and digital economy.
In parallel, the European Council recently announced its support for the Commission’s Circular Economy Action Plan and has called on the authority to take action on it without delay. In addition, the Council supported the Commission’s plan to present a circular electronics initiative to address the environmental impact of consumer electrical and electronic equipment.
It also welcomed the proposal for a new regulatory framework for batteries, incentivizing the use of rechargeable batteries, as well as for packaging with a view to ensuring that all packaging is reusable or recyclable in an economically feasible manner by 2030.
The Commission has meanwhile appointed a new head of the Directorate-General for Environment: Florika Fink-Hooijer. The 58-year-old German, who was previously Head of the Directorate-General for Interpretation, succeeds the Spaniard Daniel Celleja Crespo, who held the post since 2015 and is now Head of the Commission’s Legal Service.