EuRIC calls for state support with energy prices

The European Recycling Industries’ Confederation (EuRIC) has called for government support to help mitigate the “substantial” challenge facing European recycling industries due to high energy prices.

EuRIC says "major" European recycling companies and SMEs have already "significantly reduced or entirely suspended" production due to high energy costs (picture: Shutterstock)

EuRIC says “major” European recycling companies and SMEs have already “significantly reduced or entirely suspended” production due to the financial pressures.

These concerns echo those recently expressed by Plastic Recyclers Europe (PRE) (see letsrecycle.com story).

According to EuRIC, policymakers need to enact immediate financial aid “to prevent significant long-term damage to European recycling”.

Olivier François, EuRIC’s president, pointed out that the recycling process operates uninterrupted seven days a week. “We cannot simply turn our production on and off like a light switch,” he said.

He continued: “Europe’s recyclers are unable to cope with soaring energy costs and this poses a direct threat to Europe’s climate neutral and circular economy ambitions and to green local jobs we sustain.”

Reversed

According to EuRIC, the European recycling industry is said to have grown steadily, “driven by entrepreneurship and incentives to use more recycled materials in products.”

EuRIC has called for government support for the sector due to soaring energy prices

Nevertheless, only 12% of materials used in production in the EU are from recycled material, they said.

This progress is now in danger of being reversed due to the soaring energy prices, EuRIC claims.

Stressing the importance of recycling in saving carbon emissions, EuRIC urged European policymakers “to act coherently to incentivise the use of recycled materials through implementation of carbon credits, green public procurement and binding recycled content targets.”

‘Further help’

EuRIC is an umbrella organisation of national and continental associations representing the European recycling sector. In the UK, its members include the British Metals Recycling Association and The Recycling Association, among others.

Alan Wheeler, CEO of the Textile Recycling Association

Providing a perspective from the UK, Alan Wheeler, CEO of the Textile Recycling Association, said: “As EuRIC members, the Textile Recycling Association fully backs this statement. The soaring costs of energy are very worrying.

“We welcome the promise from the UK government to cap energy prices for businesses for the next six months.

“However, if we are to help the UK deliver its obligations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and deliver other sustainable development goals, we will need further help.

“The Government has said that it will continue to support vulnerable sectors and we would like members of the Textile Recycling Association to be given that support.”

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