Recycling plastic is a vital task for the sustainability of the planet. Its environmental impact is devastating, given that a large part of its materials is not biodegradable and are also polluting. As for landfills, in many of them plastic contributes to the release into the atmosphere of methane, a gas as destructive as carbon dioxide. According to data from the United Nations (UN), each kilogram of recycled plastic avoids the emission into the atmosphere of around 1.5 kilograms of CO2.
Although this data alone would already serve to justify why it is necessary to bet globally on plastic recycling, there are other very important benefits, such as reducing the negative impact on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, saving in electricity consumption and of non-renewable fossil origin, or, from the economic point of view, savings in households, since recycled plastic can allow many products to have a significantly lower final cost for consumers.
What is PET for?
Not all types of plastics can be recycled or pollute the same way. For example, most polystyrenes, which are used for packaging or in the automotive industry, are today impossible to recycle, while polyvinyl chloride, used in cables and bottles, is considered one of the most dangerous for the planet. Possibly the most widely used worldwide is polyethylene terephthalate (PET), common in different packaging of beverages and textile products.
The most used type of plastic is polyethylene terephthalate (PET), especially in food and textiles
One of the most important characteristics of PET is that it is fully recyclable. This type of plastic can be recycled through different types of procedures, although mechanical recycling is the most used. After being recycled, it gives rise to a material called rPET that has multiple applications in sectors such as food and beverages or the pharmaceutical segment.
RepetCo, through its own patented and environmentally friendly system, works with PET/PE multilayer food containers of post-consumer origin. Through a unique process, rPET pellets and rPE are generated that can be used again in the food industry with trays and containers made of multilayer PET/PE sheets; in bottles for soft drinks or detergents, and in fibers for the textile and automobile industry.
Advantages of PET containers
The use of PET entails a series of benefits, both from an economic point of view and associated with the material itself. On this second point, it should be noted:
- They are more resistant to external agents.
- They have a higher chemical and thermal resistance
- As a rule, they are lighter than other materials, which makes them easy to transport and thus reduces energy consumption.
- They allow the consumer to see what’s inside by being transparent.
- They have a high resistance to abrasion.
- They are highly flexible and have good resistance to breakage.
From an economic perspective, PET has a lower production cost than other products and, being easily cleanable, causes less water consumption. Thanks to the fact that it is completely recyclable, it offers the possibility of generating a high number of jobs for its production, recovery and recycling processes destined for its transformation and recovery.
PET has a low production cost, is recyclable and favors lower water and energy consumption
In fact, the new circular economy model that the European Union and other regions of the planet are betting on is contributing both to generating new professional profiles related to recycling and to the creation and growth of companies related to this industry, either for its exploitation or for initiatives related to innovation.
According to the forecasts of the International Labor Organization (ILO), the circular economy will generate 24 million jobs around the world until the year 2030. Within it, this body indicates that the industry with the greatest potential will be that of waste management.
Other news of interest: The Circular Economy could generate up to 160,000 jobs if recycling is increased