The plastics industry needs to work harder at turning waste into a valuable resource, be it through recycling or energy recovery, according to PlasticsEurope.
The latest data shows that with a ‘business as usual' approach, zero plastics to landfill would only be reached by the year 2037, said PlasticsEurope. Achieving the 2020 objective would prevent an estimated 80 million tonnes of plastic waste from going to landfill – an amount representing about 1 billion barrels of oil or around £63bn.
This conclusion was reached on the basis of the findings in "Plastics – the Facts 2012”, a report published by PlasticsEurope with the backing and support of EuPC, EuPR and EPRO.
However, the report is not all gloom and doom – some progress has been made in capturing the value of plastic waste. In EU-27, 4.8% more post-consumer plastic waste was recovered in 2011 compared with 2010.
The amount of plastic waste ending up in landfill decreased by a similar level.