Europe’s political leaders are stepping up efforts to reduce waste and grow the circular economy.

Members of the European Parliament have agreed to make waste reduction targets binding and promote the reuse of products, in a raft of proposals that will be voted on by the European Council in the early part of next year, including a ‘common EU target for recycling 75% of packaging waste by 2030′.

“In the EU, nearly a third of municipal waste is landfilled, with a limited share of the total being recycled. With this agreement, EU member states are committing to clear EU targets on reuse, recycling and landfilling and rules to improve the management of different waste streams. This will help accelerate our transition towards a circular economy and minimise our impact on the planet. I want to sincerely thank the previous Council presidencies, the Parliament and the Commission for their dedication to this file. I hope the member states can now endorse this well-balanced and thoroughly negotiated compromise,” said Siim Kiisler, Minister for the Environment of the Republic of Estonia.

Europe is very much committed to becoming the circular continent. In October Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, outlined €30 billion of research and innovation funding, which included €1 billion to advance the circular economy.