(EUROPE)

Two voluntary schemes targeted at encouraging consumers and businesses in Europe to support circular economy practices are to be made more robust.

The European Union’s Ecolabel (EU Ecolabel) – launched 25 years ago – is assigned to products to give consumers confidence they meet the highest environmental standards; while the The EU Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) is a ‘management instrument’ – created by the European Commission – which companies and other bodies can use to gauge and improve their environmental credentials.

It was agreed by the European Commission today that a strategy would be implemented to better promote both of them in member states.

Europe’s Environment Commissioner, Karmenu Vella said: “The EU Ecolabel is a green brand you can trust. The scheme has just been rechecked and is fit for purpose. Environmentally minded consumers can look forward to another 25 years of quality green choices.”

Efforts to increase the impact of the EU Ecolabel will include streamlining the product categorisations and ditching others, as well as aligning it more to national and local standards. With EMAS the Commission wants to give more value to those who sign up for it, which will include ‘greater regulatory relief’.