Sustainable Solutions

Recycling

Mechanical recycling process

Mechanical recycling of plastics is a process that involves recycling plastics waste into raw materials without significantly changing its chemical structure. In Europe, mechanical recycling currently makes up 99 percent of all recycling processes. Plastics that cannot be mechanically recycled may be a valuable resource for feedstock/chemical recycling or energy recovery.

FAQ: Mechanical recycling process

Plastic waste streams that produce one type of plastic in a large quantity are ideal for mechanical recycling. A single type of clean plastic yields greater environmental and financial benefits, especially when factoring in the costs required to collect, sort and transport multiple types.

Feedstock & chemical recycling process

Feedstock recycling, also called chemical recycling, involves changing the chemical structure of plastic waste to break it down into smaller molecules so it can be used for new chemical reactions.
 Feedstock recycling contributes to sustainability as it prevents certain plastic waste from going to a landfill when it is unable to be mechanically recycled.

FAQ: Feedstock/chemical recycling process 

Laminated and composite plastics, low-quality mixed plastics and contaminated plastics are a few examples of plastics that could be candidates for feedstock recycling.

Energy recovery recycling

For some plastics, energy recovery is the most resource-efficient form of recycling and an alternative when waste cannot be sustainably recycled. Energy recycling combines plastic waste with other materials to produce energy for power plants and related industries. Energy recovery processes use technology to ensure they are as efficient and environmentally responsible as possible.

FAQ: Energy recovery recycling

Combined heat and power recovery plants (CHP plants) can use energy recovery processes to create heat and power. Thermal power plants, as well as cement and lime kilns, may use solid recovered fuel (SRF), which contains plastic waste, reducing the use of fossil fuels and decreasing carbon emissions.