ACC advises congress on creating a circular economy for plastics

According to a press release from the American Chemistry Council (ACC), Washington, leading plastics companies have presented Congress with five steps lawmakers can take to promote the circular economy for plastics.

The strategy includes a national standard for plastic packaging that should contain at least 30 percent recycled plastic by 2030, the development of an appropriate regulatory system that enables advanced recycling to scale up quickly, and a US-designed manufacturer responsibility system for packaging, the critical means for improvement Recycling brings up access, collection, and education for all materials, says the ACC.

According to a study conducted by BWC, 78 percent of voters support a national program that requires plastic packaging to contain 30 percent recycled plastic by 2030. The ACC adds that the Independent Commodity Intelligence Service estimates that by 2030 it will take 13 billion pounds of recycled plastic to achieve this.

ACC’s vice president of plastics, Joshua Baca, says that advanced recycling, or chemical recycling, will be critical to providing adequate supplies of recycled content as it allows more amounts and types of plastics to be recycled than can be done with the current procedure is possible. “These technologies and capabilities can help 400+ global brands that are committed to using more recycled plastics in their packaging meet their circular business goals,” he says. “Advanced recycling will also make it possible to use recycled plastics in more demanding applications such as: B. Packaging for food, pharmaceutical and medical products, which are currently limited. “

Advanced recycling technologies will help meet two of the plastics industry’s circular economy goals: to make 100 percent of U.S. plastic packaging recyclable or recoverable by 2030, and to ensure that 100 percent of plastic packaging is reused, recycled, or recycled by 2040.

“It is time to accelerate the circular economy for plastic packaging,” says Baca. “We need Congress to have a comprehensive national strategy that captures the value of used plastic by engaging the entire plastics value chain, from plastics manufacturers to brand names to all Americans.

“We propose a new way of looking at plastic waste that will lead to a circular economy where plastics are routinely reused. These guidelines will divert plastic waste from landfills and our oceans, conserve natural resources and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. “

In addition to suggestions for the recycled content, regulations to support chemical recycling, and manufacturer responsibility legislation, the ACC urges Congress to direct the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Energy (DOE) to merge the value of plastics chain and communities to develop a national plastics recycling framework and commission the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study that compares the effects of raw materials and uses the results as a basis for future strategies.

According to the company, ACC supports “a manufacturer responsibility system for consumer packaging developed in the USA that strengthens environmental protection and is dedicated to financing infrastructure development”. The organization adds: “A US-developed producer responsibility system, focused primarily on modernizing and expanding access, collection and consumer education, would help provide important resources that support the development of a more circular economy for consumer packaging are dedicated. In addition, the implementation of clear national recycling standards, which encompass all economically and environmentally sustainable forms of advanced and mechanical recycling, will be a decisive factor for any producer responsibility system. A well-designed program and clear national standards should provide the right incentives and deterrents to avoid waste, discourage landfills and encourage recycling in line with the recycling partnership and EPA waste management hierarchy. “

According to the ACC, such a system would improve the overall recycling system by improving access and modernizing the collection of all recyclables; Providing funds to improve the access, collection, sorting and reach of recycling by reinvesting all money collected through consumer packaging fees back into the system; consider and incentivize the use of packaging materials with better environmental performance; Supporting innovation in recycling technologies by the private and public sectors to ensure that more used plastic is reused and not treated as waste; and maintain and promote a competitive, market-based approach to strengthen manufacturing supply chains and develop recycling infrastructure and new circular markets for recycled plastics through appropriate collaboration across the plastics value chain.

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