Development of Guidance on Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR)

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Development of Guidance on Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR)

Guiding principles and recommendations

The report outlines the range of current issues faced by stakeholders with respect to Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) implementation and the status of 36 cases in 16 EU Member States for six product categories: batteries, electrical and electronic equipment (EEE), light vehicles, packaging, graphic paper and oils. The reports provides an EPR sector performance analysis and several guidelines to improve and harmonize EPR implementation in Europe.

Key results and recommendations:

  • Clarify the concept of Extended Producer Responsibility and its objectives at the European level. The general terms used by the Waste Framework Directive, or Directive 2008/98, present diffculties regarding the ERP concept’s interpretation and implementation. A specific definition accompanied by core objectives that are clear and mesurable are now vital if EPR is to be applied consistently throughout EU countries.
  • Clearly define the categorization and sharing of operational and financial responsibilities for all the value chain players. Responsibility is not solely incurred by product manufacturers and importers, since other stakeholders are also involved (owners of industrial or household waste sites, local authorities, private collection and treatment service providers, etc.).
  • Design EPR sectors so as to cover all management costs for separely collected waste. The contributions paid by producers to producer responsibility organizations vary considerably from one country to another (where such organizations exist), even for an identical product category. However, a model with maximum effectiveness and efficiency has yet to emerge; specifically, no correlation has been found between a model’s satisfactory perfomance and a high cost.