The objective of this report is to support policymaking on single-use plastic products using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) as a tool to complement evidence-based decision-making. It presents a range of actions already undertaken by Member States to address plastic pollution with a particular emphasis on actions that have been informed by lifecycle thinking, as well as the results of eight meta-studies on LCA of single-use plastic products and their alternatives.
A critical finding of this work is that “single-use” is more problematic than “plastic”. Member States are encouraged to support, promote and incentivize actions that lead to keeping resources in the economy at their highest value for as long as possible, by replacing single-use plastic products with reusable products as part of a circular economy approach. This will require systems change.