VinyLoopSolvay and VinyLoop have been working on methods to increase plastic recycling, to reduce the use of Virgin Plastic Materials. The focus of these companies is the ‘environmental footprint’ of plastics. Solvay sponsored the study to discover the possible methods to help reduce this environmental footprint.

The environmental footprint is a measure of the environmental impacts arising from the life of a product. A typical Life Cycle concludes the extraction of raw materials, production, use, end of life phase. In the case of Recycling, the material is re-entering the new life cycle and avoids incineration or land filling.

VinyLoop® reduces the global warming potential by 40% and primary energy demand by 47%. Recycling not only saves primary resources, but also avoids the incineration of plastic waste. In October 2013 an Update of the study was released to assure most accuracy possible, download the new version here.

The methodology used for the VinyLoop® Eco-Footprint Study has been critically reviewed by the independent testing organization DEKRA Industrial GmbH, which confirmed its compliance with the ISO standards 14040-44 for Life Cycle Assessment.

Life-cycle assessment (LCA) is a scientific tool to assess environmental impacts associated with all the stages of a product’s life. It includes the cycle from cradle-to-grave i.e., from raw material extraction through materials processing, manufacture, distribution, use, repair and maintenance, and disposal or recycling. LCA can help to broadly assess all environmental concerns, it compiles an inventory of relevant energy and material inputs and environmental releases, evaluates the potential impacts associated with inputs and releases, and interpret the results to help make a more informed decision.

The Life Cycle of Plastic Products

The procedures of life cycle assessment are part of the ISO 14000 environmental management standards: in ISO 14040:2006 and 14044:2006.

In order to evaluate the environmental benefits of the VinyLoop® R-PVC an Eco-Footprint Study has been conducted, comparing the environmental burden and benefits of 1 kg of PVC compound produced in the conventional route with the production of 1 kg of PVC compound via the VinyLoop® process.

The results of the Eco-Footprint study show that the Primary Energy Demand (PED) of the VinyLoop® R-PVC is 47% lower if compared to virgin PVC compound produced by conventional route; the Global Warming Potential (GWP 100a) is 40% lower and the Water Consumption is reduced by 76%.

With its environmental benefits, VinyLoop® R-PVC is an important resource to produce a lower environmental footprint and High technical/quality performance products.

Solvay Plastics sponsored this report with VinyLoop