AREME works to improve small aluminium packaging and items recycling in Belgium. Recycling  Aluminium is both environmentally and economically sound. The properties of aluminium make it a material of choice for the circular economy. Aluminium can be indefinitely recycled without losing any of its physical and chemical properties. And recycling aluminium saves 95% of the energy (and reduces greenhouse gas emissions to the same extent) as compared to its primary production.

CHALLENGE:

Today, small and light aluminium packaging often end up incinerated. These types of packaging are either not accepted in the blue PMD recycling bags, or people are not aware that they can be put in the PMD recycling bags, or too small to be sorted by the existing sorting centres.

CONTEXT:

As part of its Circular Economy Package, the European Union adopted ambitious recycling targets for packaging waste recycling.

This package provides the basis for accelerating the transition to a true circular economy by proposing separate recycling targets for packaging made of ferrous metals and  those made of aluminium, therefore allowing a better monitoring and evaluation of aluminium packaging waste recycling in the EU.

The new legislation sets a target of 50% aluminium packaging recycling  by 2025 and 60% by 2030. This ambitious target will push Members States to implement innovative projects aiming at more efficient recycling practices.

Solution:

To enhance aluminium recycling, AREME proposes a multi-fold solution:

  • Extending/improving communication regarding the list of items that are accepted in the blue PMD recycling bags (lids, closures, aluminium coffee capsules, medicine blisters, individual portion wrappers, tea candles, etc.).
  • Optimising the technical installations in sorting centres in order to ensure that all metal packaging, even those of small size, can be recycled.

AREME provides support and guidance to all actors committed in developing solutions. We build upon the successful experiences of sorting and recycling small aluminium fractions implemented in Germany and France.

If sorting instructions are extended and if the necessary investments in the sorting centres are done, Belgium will succeed in increasing its aluminium recycling rate and will secure its leading position in terms of packaging waste recycling.

The new stream of material that our project will allow to sort, will be sold to recyclers and will get a second life!