Policy papers

Speeding up the green transition of the EU’s economy

16 July 2020

By 2050, two-thirds of the global population will live in cities. Under the current ‘take-make-waste’ economy, cities consume over 75% of natural resources, produce over 50% of global waste, and emit between 60-80% of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG).

EUROCITIES new paper on the Circular Economy Action Plan highlights this and shares the following key messages:

  1. An EU target to halve the amount of residual (non-recycled) municipal waste by 2030 should be combined with adequate binding targets for industrial and commercial waste, together with clear and transparent calculation methods.
  2. The European Commission should incentivise the use of recycled materials, especially construction materials, plastics, and textiles, to stimulate demand for and support functioning secondary markets for raw materials.
  3. All levels of government must work together in policy design and development of guidance on how to efficiently transition from ‘take-make-waste’ to a circular economy.
  4. Building upon the circular indicators identified by the Urban Agenda Partnership for Circular Economy, the European Commission should develop EU level indicators and help cities unlock their purchasing power potential through sustainable public procurement.
  5. The EU must invest more in improving circular public procurement, jobs and business creation to harvest the positive impact of circular economy in cities.
  6. Cities need financial and technical support to replicate and scale up successful circular economy projects, which in turn will generate EU added value.

EUROCITIES policy statement CEAP


Louise Coffineau Policy Advisor (Water, Circular Economy, Climate)