Why chemical recycling?

Classical (Mechanical) recycling only addresses a very small part of all plastic waste. Hover over the image to understand the current plastic value chain

With the help of chemical recycling more plastic can be recycled:

Isn’t it a shame that most of our plastic is burned or ends up in the ocean, while we could use it to make new plastic or even other useful products. Did you know that scientists have already been working on technologies, which could avoid using fossil fuels for plastic production? Instead, plastic waste can be utilized, stopping the waste mountain from growing further. This so-called chemical recycling is the key element in achieving a circular economy. With this, the amount of products made from recycled plastic could be boosted from currently only 13% to achieve the ambitious recycling targets set by the European Union and the Dutch government. In addition, using plastic waste as a resource could generate a profit-pool growth of as much as $60 billion.

Scientists can already make new products from 100% recycled material, that have even better properties than the initial products and can be used for food-grade applications. In addition, plastic waste that we cannot recycle at the moment can be recycled this way. And even toxic additives that are banned nowadays and passed on to the recycled product with classical (mechanical) recycling methods, could be removed and recovered.

Read our review article

published in Angewandte Chemie:
Beyond Mechanical Recycling: Giving New Life to Plastic Waste