Aware of the fact the plastics industry conveys the negative image of a waste generator, the Plastics Industry Federation made the decision to significantly improve its recycling capabilities to correct the situation. Therefore, the plastics industry has decided to comply with the prohibition of plastics disposal to be enforced in 2025, and took advantage of Workshop 7 of the Assises to assert its leads.
One strong possibility consists in boosting the demand for recycled raw material to balance the market and lead the industry in the right direction. The Association Alliance Chimie Recyclage (2ACR – Chemistry-Recycling Alliance Association) has carried out a study on the various instruments available worldwide to develop the use of recycled material. Among the instruments worthy of attention the following solutions mentioning should be discussed: lower VAT for products or goods that contain recycled materials or monetization of the carbon value. Since the environmental impact of recycled materials is lower than that of new raw materials, this advantage could be utilized in addition to the existing instruments.
Some of the restrictions on the use of recycled plastics must be lifted, especially the unrealistic fears associated with these materials. Too many plastics professionals still consider that the recycled product quality is insufficient to incorporate such materials in a fabrication process. There is a need for coordination and dialogue within the plastics industry.
The widening of plastics sorting instructions has been the topic of many discussions, yet it is necessary to go beyond packaging materials and to consider other sources of landfilled plastics such as the automotive industry, the building industry, etc. Within this framework, increasing the General Tax on Polluting Activities (TGAP), could foster the recycling of currently-landfilled plastics.
Features such as recyclability, lightening, utilization of plastics must be integrated as early as possible in the design phase. Landfilling should no longer be an option when designing or producing objects made of plastics.
This evolution of the plastics industry and its strong integration of recycling will naturally create jobs. Today, plastics recycling in France corresponds to 3,200 jobs for a recycling rate of 22%. Increasing recycling to 50% would create 4,200 new jobs calling for varied and often high competence and skills.
> Please also read the summary of the Workshop drawn up during the Assises.