On 30 March 2022, the Commission adopted a package of measures to make sustainable products the norm in the EU. The proposals are central to achieve the objectives of the European Green Deal, Europe’s growth strategy to transform the EU into a fairer and more prosperous society and to implementing key strands of the 2020 Circular Economy Action Plan. They will contribute to reaching the EU’s environmental and climate goals, doubling the circularity rate of material use and achieving energy efficiency targets by 2030.

The current economic model is still based on “take-make-replace.” It depletes our resources, pollutes our environment, and damages biodiversity and climate. It also makes Europe dependent on resources from elsewhere. To address these problems, the EU aims to move to a more circular economy model based on more sustainable products.

Addressing the environmental impact of products throughout their life-cycle and extending their lifetime will lead to more sustainable, circular and more resource-efficient products in the EU. More sustainable products such as electronics, furniture and textiles will contribute to the resilience of the EU economy.

Objectives

The Commission’s initiatives on sustainable products aim to ensure that by 2030

  • a significant part of the products on the EU market are designed to be more durable and energy- and resource efficient, reparable, recyclable, and with preference for recycled materials
  • companies from all over the world are able to compete on a level playing field without being undercut by others that leave society to deal with their environmental damage
  • consumers have access to the information they need to make more sustainable choices, are better protected against practices harmful to the green transition and have longer-lasting products
  • companies can access the data they need to ensure environmental sustainability and circularity of their products and business models

Actions

Key EU actions for circular and sustainable products

  • design to reduce products’ environmental impact
  • improve product sustainability information for consumers and supply chain actors
  • prevent destruction of unsold consumer products
  • promote more sustainable business models
  • increase green public procurement

The proposed Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation is the cornerstone of the Commission’s approach to more environmentally sustainable and circular products. It is based on, and will replace, the current Ecodesign Directive 2009/125/EC, which has drived improvements in energy efficiency and circularity of energy-related products for over a decade. Until this happens, the existing directive will continue to operate, including by implementing the new Ecodesign and Energy Labelling Working Plan 2022-2024, also adopted on 30 March 2022.