Written by Vivienne Halleux (4th edition, updated on 17.6.2019),
Most of the plastic in our oceans originates from land-based sources. On European beaches, plastics make up 80-85 % of marine litter, which is considered a major threat to marine and coastal biodiversity. Marine litter also costs the European Union economy an estimated €259 million to €695 million per year.
In May 2018, the European Commission put forward a legislative proposal seeking to address the issue of marine litter from plastics. The proposal would introduce a series of measures regarding the top 10 single-use plastics found on European beaches, as well as fishing gear, with a view to reducing their impact on the environment and ensuring a functional internal market.
After completion of the legislative procedure, the final act was signed by the presidents of the co-legislators (European Parliament and Council) on 5 June 2019, and published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 12 June 2019. Member States have two years (i.e. until 3 July 2021) to transpose the new directive into national law.
|Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the reduction of the impact of certain plastic products on the environment|
|Committee responsible:||Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI)||COM(2018) 340, 28.5.2018
Ordinary legislative procedure (COD) (Parliament and Council on equal footing – formerly ‘co-decision’)
|Rapporteur:||Frédérique Ries (ALDE, Belgium)|
|Shadow rapporteurs:||Karl-Heinz Florenz (EPP, Germany)
Massimo Paolucci (S&D, Italy)
Mark Demesmaeker (ECR, Belgium)
Lynn Boylan (GUE/NGL, Ireland)
Margrete Auken (Greens/EFA, Denmark)
Piernicola Pedicini (EFDD, Italy)
|Procedure completed.||Directive (EU) 2019/904
OJ L 155, 12.6.2019, pp. 1–19