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Circular Economy Law

The Closed Substance Cycle Waste Management Act has been in force since 1 June 2012. Its purpose is to conserve natural resources and protect people and the environment in the generation and management of waste. In 2020, this goal was this goal expanded with a new Waste Framework Directive. The focus is now to foster a circular economy through prevention and, particularly, through increased recycling of waste.

Furthermore, the already familiar system of product responsibility expanded to include due diligence. The duty of care requires that products remain usable for as long as possible and that disposal is considered last resort. Besides, there is an obligation of transparency that can be enforced based on a legal ordinance. For this reason, reports on the handling of surplus goods, returns, or measures to preserve products can be required.

Also, federal authorities and institutions in Germany are obliged in the future to give preference in procurement to products that conserve raw materials, are low-waste, repairable, low-pollutant, and recyclable, if they can be expected to bear the additional costs.