Department of Energy Recycling Initiative Applauded for its Initiative


The Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS) expressed its support for U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) plans to provide over $27 million in funding for projects supporting the development of advanced plastics recycling technologies and new plastics that are recyclable-by-design.

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“This forward-thinking move from the Department of Energy will be key to realizing the potential of some great recycling research and development going on across the country,” said President and CEO, Tony Radoszewski. He added, “Plastics are at the center of life in the 21st Century. We all enjoy their benefits every day. Efforts like this, part of DOE’s outstanding Plastics Innovation Challenge, will help us all to enjoy those many benefits with greater confidence about the effect we’re having on the environment.”

In addition to the many plastic products Americans use every day, plastics—the 8th largest industry in the U.S.— supports over one million U.S. jobs and a half-trillion dollars in domestic economic value, according to PLASTICS’ recent 2020 Size & Impact report. Plastic itself is an energy-efficient material, crucial to light-weighting automobiles and airplanes, reducing fuel costs and preventing food waste.

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PLASTICS has long been involved in efforts to further advancements in such areas as advanced recycling, improving traditional mechanical recycling, bioplastics, and repurposing of plastics as fuel. Radoszewski emphasized the importance of such efforts in his remarks today: “The plastics industry shares the concerns people have about our products ending up where they shouldn’t. An all-of-the-above recycling strategy is an important part of the solution.”

At next week’s Global Plastics Summit 2020 (GPS 2020), hosted by PLASTICS and market intelligence firm IHS Markit, recycling and sustainability will be major topics.

Among the speakers are U.S. Senators Dan Sullivan (R-AK) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), bipartisan co-sponsors of legislation addressing global marine debris. Their Save Our Seas 2.0 Act would boost the federal government’s domestic and international response to ocean waste.