Rethinking the process: recovering value from waste plastics

Posted on Posted on 12 Nov 2021

On 17th November 2021, the Sustainable Materials Innovation Hub (SMI Hub) hosted a workshop with UK Circular Plastics Network (UKCPN), to work through the challenges reprocessors and recyclers face in dealing with plastic waste.

At end-of-life, plastics are typically recycled, incinerated or discarded. In the UK, just under half of plastic waste is sent to incineration facilities, 37% is recycled domestically or exported for recycling elsewhere and 17% is sent to landfill. Incineration uses significant energy, and only returns a fraction of this, and although landfill generates the least emissions, it produces no added value. Mechanical recycling recovers the most value in the current technological landscape.

Following introductions to the UKCPN and the SMI Hub, the workshop worked through some of the challenges faced in processing end-of-life plastics, such as contamination, and solutions to increase efficiency, followed by a drop in surgery.

Find out more:

  • Free support available from the SMI Hub for Greater Manchester businesses looking to process plastics more sustainably, including our state-of-the-art research facilities.
  • Free consultations for Greater Manchester based participants with a plastics challenge, tailored to business needs.
  • Sign Up to the SMI Hub Mailing List here

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