Reporting Grantees Show Ninefold Increase in Polypropylene Capture
WASHINGTON, D.C. (June 29, 2023) – The Recycling Partnership (“The Partnership”) today reported on the progress of the Polypropylene Recycling Coalition (“Coalition”) and provided insights into the changing landscape of polypropylene recovery.
Including the latest round of grants awarded this month, the Coalition has provided $10.3 million in grant funding to 41 materials recovery facilities (MRFs) to support new and improved polypropylene capture and recycling community education to residents. The Partnership estimates that once MRFs can install and operationalize new equipment, these investments will result in more than 42 million new pounds of polypropylene recovered annually for processing in growing U.S. markets, and ultimately give this material another life as it gets incorporated into new products. As a result of the Coalition’s investment, 34.2 million people in the U.S. will have new or improved ability to recycle polypropylene as part of their recycling programs, keeping valuable recyclables out of landfills.
With 41 grantees at varying stages of their projects, ranging from ordering of their new equipment to installation and operation, one-third of grantees have had their equipment in place long enough to provide sufficient data on the impact of the grants . The reporting facilities collectively captured 1.3 million pounds of polypropylene annually pre-grant; post-grant they are capturing 11 million pounds of polypropylene annually — a ninefold increase. Translated into recycling rates, this represents an estimated increase from 1.2% pre-grant to 10% post-grant.
“In the last few years, there has been notable investment in polypropylene recycling,” said Brittany LaValley, Senior Director of Materials Advancement at The Partnership. “While polypropylene is undoubtedly making progress as a recyclable material through the Coalition’s support and other meaningful investment, much more work and investment will be needed to make it a universally accepted recyclable material,” she noted.
Polypropylene’s popularity as a material used in product packaging has fueled both an increase in the amount of it generated by U.S. households and a surge in demand for post-consumer recycled polypropylene. According to The Partnership, single-family households in the United States are estimated to generate more than 2 billion pounds of polypropylene each year.
To view the full blog post report, please visit The Recycling Partnership at recyclingpartnership.org/three-year-impact
About The Recycling Partnership
At The Recycling Partnership, we are solving for circularity. As a mission-driven NGO, we are committed to advancing a circular economy by building a better recycling system. We mobilize people, data, and solutions across the value chain to reduce waste and our impact on the environment while also unlocking economic benefits. We work on the ground with thousands of communities to transform underperforming recycling programs; we partner with companies to achieve packaging circularity, increase access to recycled materials, and meet sustainability commitments; and we work with government to develop policy solutions to address the systemic needs of our residential recycling system and advance a circular economy. We foster public-private partnerships and drive positive change at every step of the recycling and circularity process. Since 2014, we have diverted 770 million pounds of new recyclables from landfills, avoided more than 670,000 metric tons of greenhouse gases, and driven significant reductions in targeted contamination rates. Learn more at recyclingpartnership.org.