Plastic recycling news from the world of waste in July
It is time for the next instalment of our news round-up blog series, bringing you the latest interesting developments from the waste and recycling industry.
July has been another innovative month for the world of waste, with some exciting new developments and innovations to help combat the plastic materials shortage, and flexible plastic recycling schemes taking shape. There’s a lot to catch-up on….
After a successful initial trail in just 50 of its stores, Co-op aimed to roll out its new flexible-plastic recycling scheme in 1,500 shops by the end of last month, with a goal to increase this to 2,300 sites by the end of November this year.
Under the new scheme, customers will be encouraged to bring back their used plastic bags and food packaging waste, that will then be turned into pellets. The pellets will be used to produce bin liners, plastic products such as buckets, and construction materials.
Following on from the start of the scheme, 85% of shoppers said they would continue to recycle their plastic waste in their local Co-op store.
Did you know there is a world sand shortage? With countries such as Vietnam, Cambodia, and China introducing a ban on dredging their rivers in recent years – due to the environmental damage it causes – there has been supply issues in those countries experiencing ‘construction booms’.
With 40-50bn tonnes of sand being used annually in the building and construction sector alone, a sustainable alternative was needed. Research conducted by Cambridge University lecturer, Dr John Orr, found that plastic waste can be recycled, cleaned, shredded, and crushed into a sand alternative, that can then be used in concrete – taking a huge strain off the world’s natural resources.
The Environment Agency (EA) has outlined that companies operating within the waste and construction industries ned to ‘deal with plastic properly’, to help put a stop to illicit exports.
This news comes after the EA has become ‘increasingly aware’ of an increase in plastic film and wrap being shipped overseas illegally. As such, this will now see the EA working closely with organisations within the construction and demolition sector to help them operate compliantly and to combat further contaminated shipments.
After 72 years of trading, LEGO has finally found a sustainable solution to produce its ever-famous bricks. With 110 billion bricks manufactured by LEGO in 2020 alone, the goal to produce bricks from sustainable polyethylene comes as a welcomed success.
The toy manufacturer aims to be 100% sustainable by 2030 – with the initial aim to replace its most popular 2X4 brick into a recycled plastic version. Once the company has found a
sustainable replacement, the remaining bricks LEGO produces, will also be swapped for eco-friendlier materials.