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PED panel at IFAT: Recycling complex plastic waste

At IFAT in Munich, plastics producers, recyclers, start-ups, NGOs and associations discussed solutions for complex plastic waste.

During IFAT 2024, the world's leading trade fair for environmental technology, current challenges and solutions for the recycling of complex plastic waste were discussed on the panel of Plastics Europe Deutschland (PED), the association of plastics producers, on Friday, 17 May. A number of new approaches and recycling processes were presented, which should help to ensure that less plastic waste ends up in incineration at the end of its utilisation phase. According to Plastics Europe, only a good third of all plastic waste in Germany is recycled to date, as many plastic wastes cannot be collected and processed separately, or only at great expense. The solution requires a mix of technologies, explained Alexander Kronimus, Managing Director of Plastics Europe. ‘Circular product design, digital product passports, AI-supported sorting technologies and new additives that facilitate mechanical recycling can open up completely new waste streams,’ continued Kronimus. In addition, chemical recycling processes enable the recycling of many plastics that previously ended up in waste incineration plants.
From left to right: Henning Schmidt (PlasticsEurope Deutschland e.V.), Dr habil. Thomas Probst (bvse), Nicola Lelli, (Alliance to End Plastic Waste), Christian Haupts (Carboliq), Johannes Laier (WeSort.AI), Johanna Wiechen (Germanwatch)

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