Posts Tagged ‘plastics’

PET Recycling Growth in South Africa

Posted by GlobalPSC at 8:36 pm, April 30th, 2017Comments0

 

PETCO, the organization responsible for fulfilling the South African PET plastic industry’s role of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), recently announced their annual PET recycling rate had increased from 52% of post-consumer bottle PET in 2015 to 55% in 2016, exceeding their expected target for the second consecutive year.

PETCO recycled an additional 22% of post-consumer bottles in comparison to the previous year, with the total PET market growing by 14.8% to 241,269 tonnes.

“PETCO is delighted with the latest figures,” says PETCO’s CEO Cheri Scholtz. “Through the remarkable network of people, companies and organisations we work with, 2 billion PET bottles were collected for recycling across South Africa during the course of 2016, creating some 62,000 income opportunities for small and micro-collectors, and changing their lives and those of their families in immeasurable ways.”

The voluntary recycling fee paid annually by PETCO members on every tonne of raw material purchased has enabled the payment of a total of R1.9 billion (~ 130 million or ~US$142 million) by contracted recyclers to collectors for baled bottles since the inception of PETCO in 2004, ensuring the collection of PET bottles for recycling is sustained, and resulting in almost 800,000 tonnes of carbon and over 3 million m3 of landfill space saved to date.

PETCO reports that South Africa’s 55% post-consumer PET recycling rate compares well with international PET recycling rates of ~ 30% in the US and European average rates of ~ 59%. However, PETCO also notes that considerable work is being done globally to understand these statistics, as the bases differ substantially and a direct comparison cannot be assumed.

Information and graphic supplied by PETCO.

 

CleanFARMS Expands Programming to Seed and Pesticide Bags

Posted by GlobalPSC at 9:26 am, October 28th, 2015Comments1

Canada’s leading agricultural stewardship organization, CleanFARMS, is expanding its stewardship programming. Starting in 2016, Eastern Canadian farmers will have access to a seed and pesticide bag collection program that will help keep these bags out of municipal landfills.

This program draws its roots in the Maritimes where farmers, ag-retailers and stewards have been working together to collect and safely dispose of empty pesticide bags since 2006. The program then moved west to Ontario and Quebec where it was offered on a pilot basis in select regions from 2012 – 2015.

The program will collect both small pesticide and seed bags (typically under 30 kilograms) and bigger bulk bags. The small bags are generally made of multi-walled paper though some manufacturers are using other materials such as plastic and plastic laminates. Most bulk bags (mainly 500 kg and 1000 kg) bags are made of woven poly-propylene plastic.

Empty bags will be accepted back at the point of purchase which gives farmers easily accessible collection points. They are then disposed of through waste to energy incineration facilities. As the program grows, CleanFARMS hopes to move higher up on the 3Rs hierarchy by recycling of the bags. The key to recycling some of these bags will be to ensure a consistent and adequate supply of the bags.

CleanFARMS and its predecessor CropLife Canada, on behalf of the agricultural industry, have been operating extended producer responsibility (EPR) programs for over 25 years. This new program shows that the agricultural industry embraces EPR and incorporates the practice as normal business practice.

In 2014, 197,000 bags were collected through the program. This is in addition to the 4.5 million containers that came through CleanFARMS’ award-winning empty pesticide and fertilizer container recycling program. To round off 2014, 224,000 kilograms of obsolete pesticides and 5,000 kilograms of obsolete livestock medication were collected and safely destroyed.

CleanFARMS now joins agricultural stewardship organizations around the world offering EPR programs on a voluntary basis with results rivalling most regulated programs.

Visit here for more information.

Photo supplied by CleanFARMS.

 

Guest Blog – Dutch Sustainability Plans for Packaging

Posted by GlobalPSC at 1:24 pm, August 13th, 2015Comments2

The Global Product Stewardship Council periodically invites thought leaders on product stewardship and producer responsibility to contribute guest blogs. Our guest blogger for this post is Gill Bevington, Policy Analyst, Packaging for Perchards.

 

 

The packaging sustainability institute, KIDV, KIDV has published an overview in English about the progress of the sustainability plans which industry undertook to develop as part of its commitments in the Framework Agreement on Packaging.

KIDV reports that sectoral sustainability plans covering 80% of the weight of packaging on the market have now been submitted. This first set of plans sets out objectives and measures to achieve them by 2018 and further plans will be developed with objectives for 2022.

Since the Framework Agreement was signed, the Packaging Decree has been revised. The revised Decree, which was adopted in 2014, gives the Minister powers to impose statutory sustainability requirements on packaging. These new powers are seen as fall back powers if the plans now being developed do not deliver the results the Dutch authorities are hoping for. It is important therefore that Dutch industry supports and implements the plans.

KIDV’s methodology for the plans is to identify the front runners in each sector, and then aim to bring all companies in that sector up to the same level. Targets for the sector are based on the best in class. The plans were assessed by an independent review committee established by KIDV and consisting of four experts from different universities.

As KIDV’s approach was innovative, it was challenging to get the sectors involved in the development of the plans. Some showed reluctance at first, comments KIDV, but because the approach was unfamiliar, not through lack of interest. KIDV warns that the process will take time, depending on the level of investment needed to implement the plans and because the scientific knowledge needed to set targets was not available in all cases.

Each sectoral plan sets out the measures to be taken by producers in order to increase the sustainability of product-pack combinations within their sector, both measures to be taken by 2018 and then by 2022. Each sector is responsible for implementing its plan. The focus is currently on the product-pack combinations with the greatest potential environmental benefit.

The first plans to be developed cover the fruit and vegetables, food (including animal feed) and e-commerce sectors. A sub-plan for rPET 2018-2022 has been submitted by the Dutch association for soft drinks, waters and juices.

The main focus of the first plans to be submitted is:

  • greater use of sustainably managed and certified raw materials, such as FSC;
  • increase in the proportion of secondary raw materials in packaging, such as in plastic bottles and pots, tubs and trays (PTT)s;
  • decrease in the quantity of materials used, through optimisation and source reduction;
  • increasing the recyclability of packaging, through the use of mono-materials;
  • use of recycling logos on packaging to enable consumers to sort their packaging better.

There is nothing new about policy-makers encouraging producers to improve the environmental performance of their packaging. Industry bodies throughout Europe have for years published good practice examples of optimised packaging, including source reduction, improved recyclability etc, which aim both to encourage other producers and to demonstrate to policy-makers the efforts being made.

It has always been up to each producer to decide whether and how to optimise its packaging. Even in countries like Belgium and Spain, where producers have to submit prevention plans to the authorities, the producers set their own targets in their plans. But the new Dutch approach is different – it seeks to identify which are the best product-pack combinations in a sector under different headings and then to bring all producers in that sector up to that standard. With the threat of legislation if the plans do not yield as much as expected, sectoral trade associations will be working hard to encourage their members to participate in the process.

But it raises some questions:

  • What happens if the front runner is in that enviable position because of a unique set of circumstances which other producers in the sector cannot emulate?
  • How much pressure will individual companies be under to improve their sustainability in order to meet the targets in the plan? There may be sound reasons why a producer cannot match the best in class. Plans are being implemented by the sectors so individual companies will be judged by their peers (competitors) who will understand the constraints. But if it looks as though the objectives in a plan will not be met, which could have implications for all producers in the sector, what then?
  • What about imported products, for which the importer will have to persuade its foreign suppliers to make the necessary changes? That might not be possible or desirable because of the longer transport distances and/or because the preferred packaging type is not available in the country of production. Individual Dutch importers are of course free to set their own product/packaging specifications, but if those specifications are set out in a formal plan, could they represent a barrier to trade to suppliers in other EU member states?
  • Could there be problems with commercial confidentiality? Some front runners may be happy to be named and to provide information about their packaging. But others may prefer to keep the data confidential because their optimised packaging helps to give them their competitive edge. And will the laggards be named and shamed, even if there are sound reasons why they cannot match the best in class?

What happens if the results in 2018 are not as good as expected, even if the sectors have worked hard to improve the sustainability of their packaging? How will Dutch policy-makers respond? Will they acknowledge that the achievements are as good as they possibly can be and that, using the methodology, performance will continue to improve in future? Or will they conclude that this “voluntary” action is insufficient and that legislation is necessary? It remains to be seen whether this new Dutch approach is just rhetoric or whether it will deliver real improvements.

The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the Global Product Stewardship Council. 

Gill Bevington joined Perchards in 1991 and currently serves as Policy Analyst, Packaging. She monitors, analyses and reports on European legislative developments on packaging (and industry response to them) at national and EU level, and is an expert on national packaging waste management initiatives across Europe. Gill has carried out many tailor-made studies for clients on aspects of the packaging legislation in place in various European countries and speaks regularly at conferences on the subject. 

 

PVC Stewardship Program 2014 Results

Posted by GlobalPSC at 10:40 am, June 18th, 2015Comments1

PVCSshipVertLogoColGradCMYK0615The PVC Product Stewardship Program is a voluntary initiative  launched by the Vinyl Council of Australia in 2002. The 2014 Annual Report recently released for the Program shows increased commitment from signatories and a 50 percent increase in the number of companies in the Australian vinyl industry reporting actions to improve energy efficiencies on site, monitoring carbon emission or setting targets to reduce energy consumption.

The Program aims to improve the sustainability of vinyl, or PVC, products by delivering change across the life cycle of PVC. Signatories include local manufacturers and importers of a wide range of products – pipes, conduit, cable, flooring, windows, building profiles, flexible packaging, fabrics and medical products – as well as suppliers of raw materials and intermediates.

The Program is structured around five specific aspects of the life cycle of PVC products: best practice manufacturing, safe and sustainable use of additives, energy and greenhouse gas management, resource efficiency, and transparency and engagement.

According to the report, more than two thirds of signatory companies are now complying with the industry’s ‘Energy Efficiency & Greenhouse Gas Charter’. The Charter, introduced into the industry’s long-running PVC Stewardship Program three years ago, formally commits businesses to improve energy efficiency at the warehouse, distribution and manufacturing level, and to reduce the carbon footprint of their operations, and ultimately, their products.

 

Africa’s First Bottle-to-Bottle Recycling Plant Opens

Posted by GlobalPSC at 2:04 pm, May 29th, 2015Comments1

Africa Wadeville 3 Bagging stationAfrica’s first bottle-to-bottle recycling plant was officially opened this May by Minister of Environmental Affairs Edna Molewa in Wadeville, Johannesburg. The plant is the first in Africa to use a Coca-Cola approved technology for carbonated soft drink bottles, thus enabling closing the loop in the biggest sector of the beverage market.

The 3,000 square metre PhoenixPET plant installed by Extrupet will supply an additional 14,000 tonnes of PET resin per year to the PET packaging industry. It will eventually divert an additional 22,000 tonnes of post-consumer PET bottles from landfills. The plant involves investment of R75 million.

Minister Molewa was joined at the opening ceremony by notable guests from government and the PET industry including (L-R): Ravi Chanrai (Extrupet), Therese Gearhart (Coca-Cola Southern Africa), Laju Chanrai (Extrupet), Minister of Environmental Affairs Edna Molewa, Her Excellency Ruchi Ghanashyam (Indian High Commission), Cheri Scholtz (CEO of PETCO and GlobalPSC Advisory Group member), Vijay Naidoo (Extrupet), Randhir Jaiswal (Indian High Commission) and Chandru Wadhwani (Extrupet).

Wadeville Opening

PETCO CEO Cheri Scholtz notes, ‘The cooperation within the PET industry to reach a common goal of integrating recycling into product life cycles is showing very notable results: we have reached a point where 49% of all post-consumer PET bottles are currently recycled – no less than 1.5 billion bottles were recycled in 2014, supporting 44,000 informal income opportunities in PET collection’.

 

GlobalPSC Corporate Member – Dell

Posted by GlobalPSC at 1:38 pm, August 21st, 2014Comments7

Dell was founded in 1984 by Michael Dell from his dorm room at the University of Texas in Austin, and today he is the longest-tenured executive to lead a company in the computer industry. Dell is a premier provider of products and services worldwide that enable customers to build their information technology and Internet infrastructures. Dell offers a broad range of products in the following categories: desktop computer systems, servers and networking products, mobility products, software and peripherals and services.

Dell Inc. is currently headquartered in Round Rock, Texas, United States of America. Dell Inc. operates worldwide and its subsidiaries develop, design, manufacture, market and sell computers and services, software and peripherals to customers worldwide. The company sells its technology to a variety of customers – consumers, public customers, large enterprises and small- and medium-sized businesses. In 2014, Dell launched a new closed-loop process where plastics for new product manufacturing are sourced by waste electronics collected from customers. By keeping the plastics within the ‘closed-loop,’ Dell puts them back to work, fueling the circular economy for IT. By doing this Dell helps to drive a “circular economy”.

Dell was honored with the 2015 Accenture Award for “Circular Economy Pioneer” at the Circular Awards during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The award recognizes established organizations demonstrating existing business innovation that supports a circular economy, which aims to decouple economic growth from the use of natural resources and ecosystems by using resources more effectively.

 

GlobalPSC Member – CleanFARMS Inc.

Posted by GlobalPSC at 3:57 am, July 8th, 2014Comments4

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CleanFARMS Inc. is Canada’s leading agricultural industry stewardship organisation, best known for its empty pesticide and fertilizer container recycling program and obsolete pesticide collection campaign. CleanFARMS is currently expanding its stewardship programming to include other types of agricultural waste such as seed and pesticide bags, obsolete equine & livestock medications and other ag-waste plastics and packaging generated on the farm. CleanFARMS’ long term goal is to develop new programs for reclaiming and recycling a wider variety of ag-waste packaging.

CleanFARMS is proud to have the support of the Canadian crop protection and fertilizer industries who make up the majority of its members. Its member companies are seen as world leaders who incorporate extended producer responsibility into their core business planning and who make significant contributions to sustainable agriculture. Other partners include volunteer collection sites, grower groups, the animal health industry, the Canadian product stewardship community and, most importantly, Canadian farmers who are its front line stewards.

2013 was a significant year for the organization when the empty pesticide and fertiliser container program, which has been operating since 1989, collected its 100th million container. This program boasts a return rate of 60 – 65% and is regarded as one of Canada’s highest performing voluntary stewardship programs.

Starting in 2016, Eastern Canadian farmers will have access to a seed and pesticide bag collection program that will help keep these bags out of municipal landfills.

Learn more here.

 

Mobile Australia: A report into how we use and recycle our mobiles – MobileMuster Annual Report

Posted by GlobalPSC at 4:58 pm, December 10th, 2013Comments1

MobileMuster, the official product stewardship program of the Australian mobile phone industry, has released their  latest annual report titled Mobile Australia: A report into how we use and recycle our mobiles’.

 

The aim of this report is to provide a snapshot of mobile phone recycling attitudes and behaviours in Australia and how the industry is leading the effort to ensure responsibility is being taken for their products.

Increasing awareness of the MobileMuster is a continual focus for the program. MobileMuster works with retailers, local governments, schools, workplaces, resellers and other recycling programs to ensure that everyone in Australia can help us keep their old mobile phones and accessories out of landfill and recycling them in a safe, secure and ethical way.

Independent market research conducted by MobileMuster reveals that whilst the community awareness of mobile phone recycling has reached 83%, people’s desire to keep their old mobile phones, instead of recycling them, only dropped slightly from 40% to 37% of people that have two or more unused mobiles at home. As a result the estimated number of handsets in storage at home or work has grown from 22 million to 23 million. On the upside, the percentage of people throwing their mobiles away remained low at 3%.

The duration consumers are owning their mobile phone has increased, now being at its highest level with 25% of Australians owning their mobile for 2+ years. The research shows that it’s the non-smartphone users that are more likely to keep their mobile  phones for an extended period, 2 years or more.

Optisimising resource recovery and recycling materials properly is a high priority for MobileMuster.  MobileMuster’s recycling rate (recovered materials) has increased three points to 96%. It complies with the Australia and New Zealand Standard for the collection, storage, transport and treatment of end-of-life electrical and electronic equipment (AS/NZS 5377:2013) and has been independently assured by PwC. As a result, in 2012-13 the materials recovered replaced the need to mine at least 2,270 tonnes of precious metal ores (such as gold, silver and copper).

The program’s diversion rate from landfill has reached 99% in the last financial year, with more than 199 kgs of cadmium and 226 kgs of lead being diverted from landfill. MobileMuster has recovered over 5.78 tonnes of plastic, 58 kgs of precious metals, 1.27 tonnes of aluminium, 1.78 tonnes of steel, 4.26 tonnes of copper and over 0.54 tonne of cobalt as raw materials.

MobileMuster is a unique product stewardship program that brings manufacturers and carriers together in what is considered to be a world-class voluntary and not-for profit program.  It is managed by the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) on behalf of its members – Nokia, Samsung, Motorola, HTC, Huawei, ZTE, Telstra, Optus, Vodafone, Virgin Mobile and Force Technology.

Members not only fund the program but continue to actively support MobileMuster in-kind by promoting the program to their customers and staff online, through sales material and retail outlets.

Currently, there are over 4,000 drop-off points around Australia for consumers to recycle their old mobile phone, battery and accessories, alongside a free post back recycling satchel available from any Australia Post or a reply-paid downloadable label online at mobilemuster.com.au.  The program also offers free collection and recycling services to workplaces, schools, universities and other businesses

AMTA measures the performance of MobileMuster against nine key indicators measuring changes in consumer behaviour, industry involvement, collection and recycling rates and diversion from landfill. The full report and media release can be viewed online.

Content provided by Rose Read, Recycling Manager for MobileMuster and Treasurer for the Global Product Stewardship Council. MobileMuster is a founding corporate member of the GlobalPSC.

GlobalPSC Member Profile – Plasback

Posted by GlobalPSC at 6:10 pm, August 21st, 2012Comments2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are pleased to announce the latest Corporate Member of the Global Product Stewardship Council, Plasback.

Tapex are a Sydney-based plastics manufacturer and a major supplier of fodder conservation plastic to the rural sector in Australia and New Zealand.

Tapex are committed to successfully manage for a better environment, add business value through sustainable practices and to accepting producer responsibility for their products even after they leave Tapex’s premises.

In 2006, Tapex (through its subsidiary Agpac) launched a voluntary product stewardship program for silage wrap in New Zealand. The scheme now collects over 1000 tonnes a year of plastics for reprocessing.

In 2010 Tapex launched the Plasback product stewardship program in Australia and the New Zealand program was rebranded Plasback.

In April 2010 Plasback became the first government accredited rural product stewardship scheme in New Zealand.

Plasback in both countries collects and recycles a range of farm plastics, not just their own but all brands. They can achieve this through the support of government, industry and the rural community.

Tapex are a participant in the NSW government Sustainability Advantage program and the PACIA (Plastics and Chemicals Industries Association) Sustainability Leadership Framework.

www.plasback.co.nz      www.plasback.com.au

Sydney & Melbourne Round Tables on Sustainable Packaging

Posted by GlobalPSC at 3:12 pm, June 21st, 2012Comments2

 

 

 

 

 

The Global Product Stewardship Council and Sustainable Packaging Alliance (SPA) are hosting a series of Round Tables on Sustainable Packaging in Sydney and Melbourne.

The Round Tables are designed to give industry and stakeholders the opportunity to learn of new developments and discuss issues affecting the packaging sector.

Australian Packaging Covenant (APC) signatories receive a $100 discount off event registrations.

A second series of Round Tables, focussed on Flexible Plastics will be held in Sydney (October 24th) and Melbourne (October 26th).  The SPA Roundtables align directly with the AFGC Future of Packaging White Paper, which is aimed at driving more strategic and tangible action on packaging sustainability. A full copy of the white paper can be found at the AFGC’s website.

The APC invests in projects that support the achievement of the APC’s vision. One of the challenges identified by the APC is the recovery of flexible plastics.  Presentations will be provided on some of the current flexible plastics recovery projects the APC is supporting at the Round Tables.

Speakers vary depending on location but include:

  • Tanya Barden, Director, Sustainability Trade and Innovation, AFGC
  • Angela McClowry, Sustainability Policy Analyst, AFGC
  • Richard Smith, General Manager Technical, Amcor Flexibles Asia Pacific ANZ
  • Liz Kasell, Director of Development, RED Group
  • Peter Allan, Director, Sustainable Resource Use
  • Rowan Williams, President, Australasian Bioplastics Association
  • Peter Paterson, National Business Development Manager, Replas
  • Mark Jacobson, General Manager, Replas
  • Peter Bury, Director, Strategy & Innovation, Plastics and Chemicals Industries Association
  • Jason Campbell, Director, Waste Enterprises
  • Ed George, Retail Brands Manager, Tapex
  • John Lawson, General Manager Development, Global Renewables

A flyer containing full program and registration details is available here.

The first round of events held in Sydney and Melbourne focused on ‘Design for Sustainability”. A diverse set of speakers and organsiations were secured for the events including:

  • Dr Helen Lewis of Helen Lewis Research
  • Brett Giddings, Membership Services Manager of the Australian Packaging Covenant
  • Mark Solari, Packaging & Materials Handling Manager of ASSA-ABLOY (Melbourne only)
  • Kane Hardingham, Woolworths (Sydney only)
  • Steve Bourke, Director Environment, Health and Safety of O-I Oceania
  • Wendy Favorito, Director & Consumer Representative of Arthritis Australia
  • Geoff Aitkin, Sales Manager, Food of Ardagh Group (Melbourne only)
  • Carmen Rechbauer, Manager Shared Business Services of NSW Health (Sydney only)
  • Jacky Nordsvan, Packaging Specialist of Nestlé Australia (Sydney only)

The Australian Round Tables are complemented by the Auckland Round Table on Drivers for Packaging Product Stewardship, which was held 10 July and hosted by the GlobalPSC and SPA in conjunction with the Packaging Council of New Zealand.

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