Products, Good Design, & Plastics

We promote the redesign of products to make them durable, reusable, repairable, recyclable and toxic-free

If a product cannot be reused, repaired, disassembled, remanufactured, recycled or composted it should be redesigned or progressively phased out from the market.

The current throw-away linear economy is based on products that are designed deliberately to be non-repairable, very often toxic, and not compatible with a circular economy. For instance, plastic pollution caused by excessive single-use packaging, microbeads present in cosmetic products and microfibres coming from washing synthetic clothes are contaminating the environment and poisoning the food chain. Since it is impossible to clean all plastic out there the only possible option is to redesign materials, products and processes in order to stop plastic from entering the environment in the first place.

Good product design is a prerequisite to make zero waste a reality; it allows embodied energy to stay in the system for longer effectively preserving the value of materials and allowing for a circular economy that is resilient, creates local jobs and does not harm people.

Zero Waste Europe engages with citizens and municipalities to identify problematic design and mobilises designers, researchers, companies and policy-makers in order to find appropriate alternatives.

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