Technological watch

Monthly news from the Renewable Carbon Initiative (RCI), May 2023

1) Publication of RCI’s Position on the Commission Proposal for a Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR)The RCI published the PPWR position paper on 15 May 2023 highlighting chances for the EU to lead the way to a sustainable packaging industry and to promote innovation.

In November 2022, the Commission adopted the Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on packaging and packaging waste, amending Regulation (EU) 2019/1020 and Directive (EU) 2019/904, and repealing Directive 94/62/EC. The proposed regulation includes several rules that would – if implemented – push for a much stronger circular economy in the packaging sector, due to higher re-use and refill quotas, higher use of recycled materials and mandatory composting of certain hard-to-recycle products.

The Renewable Carbon Initiative (RCI) welcomes this proposal and wants to offer several suggestions to strengthen it further and get implementation closer to the market realities of Europe.

  • Set ambitious targets for all types of renewable content:
    A complementary renewable content target should be added to the proposal promoting the use of bio- and CO2-based feedstocks in packaging similar to recycling.
  • Keep Article 8 as it is – scientific evidence shows that these products offer true environmental benefits from being compostable
    The proposal, following scientific evidence, requires that certain types of tea and coffee packaging, sticky labels attached to fruit and vegetables as well as very lightweight plastic carrier bags shall be compostable in industrially controlled conditions in bio-waste treatment facilities.
  • Support the market uptake of all state-of-the-art recycling technologies
    To actually achieve the ambitious recycling quotas and recycled content targets, technologies will have to evolve. Advanced recycling technologies (i.e., depolymerisation) are key.
  • The PPWR position paper was also recognized by the German newspaper “K-Zeitung” and by Packaging Europe

    Find out more at:

    4) RCI-Webinar with a focus on recent activities and positions of the RCIThe next RCI webinar will be held on 21 June 2023 from 14:00 to 15:30 CEST, explaining the renewable carbon concept, the Renewable Carbon Initiative, and focusing on recent activities and positions of the RCI. 

    Find out more at: 

    5) Welcoming our newest RCI memberFibenol (EE) produces novel biomaterials at its demonstration plant in Imavere, Estonia. Fibenol is using cutting-edge processes to develop a new generation of sugars, high purity hydrolysis lignin, and unique microcrystalline cellulose from hardwood. Its work is enabling a new era of biomaterials and bioproducts, helping industries do more with less.

    Publication date: 30/05/2023

    Author: Marion Kupfer

    Bio-based News

    This project has been co-funded with the support of the LIFE financial instrument of the European Union [LIFE17 ENV/ES/000438] Life programme

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    Last update: 2022-01-31