Best Practices in Recycled Plastics

Brussels-based association Digitaleurope*1) has published a paper with selected best practices in recycled plastics of the European information and communications technologies (ICT) industries.

It was developed to showcase current best practices of early adopters, highlight the challenges ahead to policy-makers and inspire other sectors and producers. It contains an initial assessment of the market size and expected trends as well as opportunities and challenges in using recycled plastics. The last section of the paper gives room to a number of case studies from the ICT industry, ranging from printer cartridges to printers and closed-loop recycling in monitors.

“The idea for this paper emerged from a series of industry workshops and visits to recycling plants,” Digitaleurope reported. “It is clear that the widespread use of recycled plastics in all ICT products remains a challenge. However, with a combination of economic incentives and technical progress, the ICT industry could make a meaningful progress. The case studies in the paper show that it is feasible to use recycled plastics in a number of ICT products when innovative solutions are explored for particular products or components.”

Since the early 2000s, the digital technology industry has been experimenting with the use of recycled plastics in electric and electronic equipment (EEE), the association underlined. “Recycled plastics are now found in a variety of ICT products as companies start to use recycled plastics as part of voluntary agreements/certifications or broader green marketing initiatives.”

According to the provided information, the imaging equipment industry has signed a voluntary agreement (VA) in the framework of the Ecodesign Directive, which requires producers to declare the use of recycled plastics to customers since 2015. The agreement was signed by 15 producers that account for more than 95 percent of all office and household imaging equipment sold in Europe. Declaration requirements of the use of recycled plastics are also in the ECMA 370 Eco Declaration*2).

The publication “Best Practices – Recycled Plastics Paper” can be downloaded under

*1) Digitaleurope represents the digital technology industry in Europe; the members include some of the world‘s largest IT, telecoms and consumer electronics companies and national associations from every part of Europe.
*2) Standard ECMA-370 (5th edition, June 2015) specifies environmental attributes and measurement methods for ICT and CE products according to known regulations, standards, guidelines and currently accepted practices.

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