GENEVA, April 22 (Xinhua) -- A total of 56 countries have made a "united call" for a circular economy during a session of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), a UN official said on Thursday.
"We have to find a new balance between prosperity and environmental preservation, but we have a long way to go, as currently only 8.6 percent of economic activity around the globe is circular," said UNECE Executive Secretary Olga Algayerova during the 69th session of the international institute.
The member states said in a joint statement that "in a world being shaken by the multiple impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, regional cooperation has acquired an increased importance to manage risks, reduce uncertainty and foster economic dynamism."
Some UNECE members announced measures for a circular economy during the session.
Russia pledged to construct 220 waste treatment, disposal and recycling complexes by 2030 to ensure 100 percent sorting of waste and halving the amount of waste sent to landfills.
Israel declared that it would phase out energy generating from coal by 2025 and produce 70 percent of its energy with natural gas and 30 percent from renewables by 2030.
The United Kingdom pledged to invest 30 million pounds (41.5 million U.S. dollars) in circular economy research centers while Germany vowed to grant 20 million euro (24 million U.S. dollars) for an energy efficiency project in the UNECE region.
Azerbaijan said the country will plant four million trees by 2023 and Belarus voiced its decision to increase by 2025 the share of the secondary use of solid municipal wastes to at least 35 percent of total volume of generated waste.