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Tomra: ‘Now is the time for bold action’

Around 40% of all plastic packaging produced worldwide will be collected for recycling by 2030, according to Stefan Ranstrand, president and ceo of sorting solutions provider Tomra.

Ranstrand announced the company’s commitment to supporting that 40% goal at the Our Ocean conference, held recently in Oslo, Norway. Here, government officials, businesses and civil society and research institutions came together to identify solutions for cleaner oceans.

Huge upgrade share

Tomra estimates that its equipment will sort more than eight million tonnes of plastic per year from waste streams globally by 2025. The company also believes it will upgrade two million tonnes of plastic to the quality of virgin material. Ranstrand notes Tomra’s reverse vending machines already collect 40 billion used beverage containers every year.

Currently, only 14% of plastics packaging is recycled worldwide and only 2% goes into a ‘closed loop’ so it can be used again for the same purpose without being downgraded to a lower quality polymer.

‘Be optimistic’

‘A circular economy for plastics is achievable and there is every reason to be optimistic about the future,’ said Ranstrand. ‘However, it requires investment from industry, governments, and consumers. Tomra has been enabling this change through our technology and expertise for more than 45 years: we challenge others to join us and act now.’

Ranstrand insisted that ‘now is the time for bold action’ on plastics pollution. ‘To solve the crisis in our oceans, we must focus on how plastics are produced and handled on land. There is clear evidence that recycling infrastructure such as container deposit schemes drive huge improvements in recycling rates, consumer behaviour and reducing pollution’, he argued.

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