Packaging EPR was front and center around the globe in 2022. In the United States, legislation snowballed: Of the 62 EPR bills in 18 states that legislators considered last year, 33 were packaging EPR bills, two of which were enacted into law – in Colorado and California. Most American laws and legislation focus on municipal reimbursement that maintains existing waste management systems. But in Canada, Ontario is moving towards full producer responsibility – meaning manufacturers pay for and manage collection and recycling services – within the context of a country-wide plastics reduction strategy: In 2022, Canada’s Single-use Plastic Prohibition Regulations (SUPPR) were published, amending the Canadian Environmental Protection Act of 1999 (CEPA) and banning five single-use plastic products, which directly impacted existing packaging EPR programs in five regions.
And in Europe, where packaging EPR laws have been in place for decades, the European Commission released its final proposal for updated packaging and packaging waste regulations (PPWD) last year, amending previous directives, which addresses the EU’s goal to make all packaging reusable or recyclable by 2030. Argentina, Brazil, and Chile have attempted to pass packaging EPR laws in South America. Last year, Venezuelan producers experienced their first year of compliance with a packaging EPR law that came into effect in January 2021, and producers and recyclers met a 2022 deadline to submit individual or collective management plans as part of that country’s packing EPR decree.
These are just a few examples and there are different estimates as to where packaging EPR hotspots will next emerge. And with the existing laws, variations abound — from the definition of recycling to overseeing bodies to marketing and labeling requirements. In this webinar presented by EXPRA, a PSI Partner, we will gather an international group of experts to discuss how global trends will affect implementation and management of packaging EPR laws in 2023.