Materials Science

SABIC signs up to UK Plastics Pact

SABIC, a global leader in the chemical industry, has signed up to the UK Plastics Pact, a world-first initiative which aims to transform the plastic packaging system in the UK and keep plastic in the economy and out of the environment.

The UK Plastics Pact is a unique collaboration bringing together businesses from across the entire plastics value chain with UK governments and NGO’s to tackle the issue of plastic waste.

Led by sustainability experts WRAP, the Initiative was launched in London on Thursday 26 April 2018, at an official ceremony attended by The Secretary of State for the Environment Rt Hon Michael Gove.

At present, 42 major businesses have committed to the Pact, including major food, drink and non-food brands, plastic reprocessors and packaging suppliers. Alongside SABIC, household names such as M&S, Tesco, Nestle and Unilever have committed to reach a series of ambitious targets by 2025 to eliminate avoidable plastic waste.

These targets include eliminating unnecessary single-use plastic packaging through redesign, innovation or alternative delivery models and ensuring that all plastic packaging produced is reusable, recyclable or compostable. The partnership will also help build a stronger recycling system and with the support of the Government will ensure that consistent UK recycling is met.

The UK Plastics Pact is the first of its kind in the world, led by WRAP which is a not for profit organisation. The Pact will be replicated in other countries to form a powerful global movement as part of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy Initiative.

SABIC is delighted to be a founding member of this initiative. Leon Jacobs, Sustainability Lead for Europe, said: “Plastics should not end up in the environment, landfills or the oceans. At SABIC, we are planning to scale up high-quality recycling processes for chemical recycling of mixed plastic waste to the original polymer. SABIC has the know-how, the resources and the resolve to help reduce the waste-stream.

This project contributes to SABIC’s ambition to create Chemistry that Matters. As there is still a long road ahead for plastic recycling towards a circular economy, the company believes that chemical recycling is fundamental to closing the loop of plastic waste in addition to other initiatives such as waste reduction, reuse and mechanical recycling.

“Plastics are valuable and have many benefits. We believe that with the steps we take today, we will directly affect the world, the economy and the quality of life in decades to come”, said Paul Davidson, Market Development and Support Engineer, SABIC.