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sustainability@plasticsindustry.org

The Recycling Committee represents Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS) members across the association’s four councils, bringing equipment makers, brand owners, processors and material suppliers together to align their efforts to put recycling at the forefront of their businesses. 

PLASTICS is uniquely positioned in the recycling discussion, as we represent the entire plastics supply chain. The PLASTICS Recycling Committee works to enhance the management of plastic waste through efforts such as advocating for increased collection, sortation, and recycling infrastructure, ensuring the definition of “recycling” includes advanced recycling, educating people within and outside of the plastics industry about plastics recycling and much more.
 

  • Key Committee Activities

    The Recycling Committee has a number of exciting activities underway, including:

    • Innovative demonstration projects for recovering new streams of plastics

         - Pacific Northwest Secondary Sorting Project

         - New End Market Opportunities (NEMO) Projects

    • Industry sustainability benchmarking

         - Sustainability Benchmarking Tool

    • Zero Net Waste recognition program
    • Ongoing collaboration and partnership with external organizations, such as The Recycling Partnership
    • Valuable informational webinars
    • 2020 Re|focus Virtual Webinar Series
    • Upcoming 2021 Practical GUide to Susdtainability in the Plastics Industry

    Other projects and programs supported by stakeholders from across the plastics supply chain.

  • Recycling Committee – Subcommittees
    Advanced Recycling

    The subcommittee represents the advanced polymer recycling technologies industry by identifying and promoting emerging technologies, trends, and challenges. Focus areas include:

    • Developing and promoting feed stream availability and infrastructure to support advanced recycling.
    • Educating the industry about the advantages of advanced recycling through participating in New End Market Opportunities (NEMO) projects, as well as participating in outside organization’s advanced recycling initiatives.
    • Informing the industry about emerging policy and recycling standards pertinent to advanced recycling.
    • Identifying case studies around new advanced recycling technologies and material streams.
    Advocacy & Communications 

    This subcommittee provides insights and information to the PLASTICS Communications team relating to the recycling and recovery of plastics and to the PLASTICS Advocacy team on key issues and policy developments related to recycling. Focus areas include:

    • identifying case studies, topics and issues that the Communications team may want to explore and promote.
    • providing content and messaging for industry events such as Earth Day and America Recycles Day.
    • serving as a group of industry experts that the Communications team may call upon for quotes or information.
    • assisting with the development and/or modification of policy statements related to recycling and recovery issues.
    • providing comments to the Advocacy team on recycling and recovery related legislation.
    Events & Education

    This subcommittee provides insights and information to the PLASTICS teams who develop education and networking opportunities for the industry. Focus areas include:

    • identifying topics and speakers for webinars related to recycling and recovery.
    • identifying speakers that can provide thought leadership on recovery for Council and Committee meetings.
    • serving as a steering committee for PLASTICS annual event, Re|focus Sustainability and Recycling Summit.
    • serving as a steering committee for recycling-related elements of NPE, PLASTICS triennial trade show for the plastics industry.
    New End Market Opportunities (NEMO

    This subcommittee seeks to find new end markets for hard to recycle plastics.  The projects aim to involve the entirety of the plastics supply chain to analyze, test, and implement new material streams into industry. Read more here. Focus areas include:

    • working across the supply chain, including PLASTICS members, partnering trade associations and their members, academics and other contributing experts.
    • addressing technical or logistical challenges via data generation/collection as well as proof-of-concept demonstration projects.
    • presenting results in publication of reports, case studies, best practices, etc. for use by the industry.
    Technology & Equipment

    The subcommittee provides insights and information to PLASTICS committees as needed and/or manages their own projects which may serve to fill an information gap or refute misconceptions about the recycling and recovery of plastics. Focus areas include:

    • serving as a group of industry experts that PLASTICS various end-market committees may call upon for quotes or technical guidance.
    • identifying case studies involving the use of technology and equipment in new recycling markets.
    • assisting New End Market Opportunities (NEMO) projects with material trials and testing.  Proving feasibility with new equipment and material handling techniques.

    This group receives in-depth industry updates on emerging policy and standards from PLASTICS staff, as well as direction on how to get engaged with these efforts.

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