Legislation Measures

Policy Policy

The reuse quota should be set at national level in order to create a level playing field within a Member State and to accommodate for different national contexts across the EU. Policies should install a framework and certification for waste management in aquaculture companies (e.g. Including key performance indicators - KPI’s). Decomissioning should be harmonised to avoid unfair competition between Baltic Sea Region countries. Facilitate cross-border partnerships to save costs – for instance to deal with waste of fishing and aquaculture gear. Cross-border activities could result in joint efforts to install a recycling plant for gear and buoys between two or three neighbouring countries or to avoid patchwork approaches of different Member States. Worn out gear and other requipement collection and recycling services should be better promoted, upcycling and repurposing should be financially encouraged by governements. Apply recycling rebates and pay farmers levy when purchasing new nets and get money back when recycling. Encourage farmers to set short, medium objectives to help them reach the “Zero Waste" goal or a positive footprint. The SUPD has to be implemented into national law until 2021: Producers will be responsible to bear the cost for the collection, transport and treatment of gear containing plastic. The costs have to be transparent and reasonable and could be shared in so called PROs. Develop national / Federal State recommendations with clear definitions of a producer; when developing a national / Federal State law to implement the SUPD provisions clearly define who is addressed by the law and differentiate between small and large-scale fisheries. The revision of the PRFD does not focus specifically on ALDFG and there are no direct incentives for fishermen to return ghost gear. In addition, Member States are free to design their national cost-recovery systems. Therefore the discrepancy and confusion of the fishermen has to end. Producers and retailers who want to create new products or plastic granulate from the recycled product have an interest in predictable material flow and qualities for their calculation. Producer could already be interested in implementing a deposit scheme simply related to the material value of the gear. Due to the complexity of active aquaculture/fishing gear like nets (many kinds of materials, individual adaptations during production), the option of a multi-use deposit system seems reasonable only. As active aquaculture gear is assembled, sewed and many times patched by farmers according their needs during many years, a deposit system seems to be practical if the aspect of long-term use has been included – this is also relevant for an ecological assessment. In some areas e.g. for recreational fishing, privately organized deposit systems are already existing and basically conceivable at the local level. Assess whether a deposit scheme or simple return system is better to implement. Tax benefits for reusable systems would also support goals, such as waste prevention, resource conservation, reducing cleaning costs and avoiding the pollution of coasts and beaches regardless of the type of packaging and thus avoid potential conflicts of interest. This could be also achieved by a graded taxation of SUP items or the aquaculture sector although so far this approach is only applied for some kind of food packages. Return systems without deposit collection organized by the business community have already proven themselves in other countries like Iceland. Also, Japan has had established take-back and recycling systems for decades. Introduce a tax on less environmentally friendly aquaculture equipment, ideally at EU level, to create incentives for avoiding SUP items. Organise awareness campaigns to gain public understanding and support. All tax money collected has to be used to invest in the aquaculture sector, for example to stimulate innovation to invent new materials/gear and reducing the price of sustainable materials. To avoid a lack of understanding or even resistance, appropriate information campaigns or e.g. informal consultation should be offered by the government to explain the reason for taxing. Introducing a tax provides financial incentives to sellers of SUP items used in the sector to switch to reusable items in order to avoid price increases associated with the taxed cords, clips or boxes. Farmers might not be willing to pay increased prices for single-use items and hence might reduce their consumption of them. This could also send signals up the supply chain to producers of plastic items to design and produce them differently, Introducing tax at point of sale means that all domestically produced as well as all imported single-use plastic items used for aquaculture would be taxed. Tax reductions could be granted to sellers of SUP items when they use single-use cords etc. that prove a certain recycled plastic content.While still being single-use these items could foster the secondary plastic/polymers market. Tax money could be also spent to subsidice sustainable gear or gear made of recycled materials as they are and will be more expensive and will have problems to find their place on the market. Measures such as product bans or design requirements are best established at EU level while for reduction targets for aquaculture products it is better to give Member States some choice on the measures, including the use of economic instruments. Reduction targets (e.g. 30% by 2025, 50% by 2030 for cords) would set legally binding reductions in consumption from a base year. Data related to the consumption of relevant items should be reported to the national governments. Incentives: Member States have to establish EPR schemes as soon as possible (much before 2024), and ensure they are set in a proper way, including with eco-modulation fees, taking into account the durability, reparability, re-usability and recyclability, hereby taking a life-cycle approach. Incentives for producers are needed to shift towards a pro-active search for these new alternatives. Modulation of fees is essential to incentivise better product design and better use of materials, as well as the reduction and elimination of hazardous substances in plastics. This approach also shares the burden with especially small ports and fishing operators who might be disproportionality affected by the development of new port reception facilities (PRF) and could benefit form less material and/or better re-usable material. Cooperations between ports / fishermen and recycling companies who take back the material and pay small incentives like a fee or discount. Install a mass-balance system in which the farmers are paying for what they leave offshore, and/or are rewarded for additional litter they bring on land. Assure clarity and legal certainty for businesses to enable the development of new markets and alternative materials. Incorporate the European Directive 2019/904 on the reduction of the impact of certain plastic products on the environment into all Member State's regulation. Develop specific decrees for the aquaculture Extended Producer Responsibility scheme. Put in place new legislation that favours a national strategy with local waste collection and waste managers for specific type of litter Top-down (legal) approaches are necessary to forbid easy to lose single-use plastic items, such as gloves, plastic cable ties, etc. These have to be replaced by biodegradable material. Plastic Management Policy: The integration of the management of plastic waste in the company’s policy on reduction of plastic waste is essential (incl. KPIs for implementation)