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How ‘future-proof’ is the PVC recycling industry?

Europe – More than 3 million tonnes of PVC has been recycled in Europe thanks to the voluntary VinylPlus programme since 2000. Its latest annual report cites a total of 514 913 tonnes of PVC waste were recycled within the framework in 2015.

The windows and profiles sector continued to drive recycling volumes, accounting for around 45% of material processed. Some 10% represented cables, and another 10% were flexible applications such as roofing and flooring.

The recycling results for 2015 increased 7% compared to the previous year, VinylPlus reports. This recycling score also contributed to the creation of more than 1000 direct jobs in recycling plants.

VinylPlus adds that a ‘significant increase’ of recycled PVC was registered in Italy, thanks to reinforcement of the Recovinyl network. Overall, progress has been made to ‘future-proof’ the industry.

One of the objectives of VinylPlus is to recycle 800 000 tonnes of PVC waste per year by 2020. This includes 100 000 tonnes of difficult-to-recycle PVC through innovative recycling technologies.

Additionally, the European Plastics Converters (EuPC) has created the independent VFSE association, whose mission is to represent the interest of European suppliers of plastics sheets, films and foils. The VFSE will focus on R&D to solve recycling issues as well as carry out studies relating to the industry.

‘The sector group aims to deepen collaboration of vinyl films and sheet manufacturers in Europe,’ comments Roberto Bozzi, Vulcaflex and VFSE president. ‘Raising the visibility of the economic and practical value of vinyl films and sheets is a further purpose of our formation.’

The Vinyl Films and Sheets Europe Association is open to all companies active in the vinyl films and sheets business in Europe and already ‘closely collaborates’ with Vinyl Plus.

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