Plastic Soup Foundation: UK microbeads ban first step to implementing plastic circular economy
EXCLUSIVE: The UK Government's decision to introduce a national ban on microbeads can act as an "important step" that mobilises countries to look beyond microbeads in the ocean and focus on creating a plastic circular economy "without leakage".
MPs call for outright ban on plastic microbeads from cosmetics products
The UK Government has today (24 August) been urged by the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) to completely ban cosmetic companies from using environmentally harmful plastic microbeads in bathroom products by the end of 2017.
Could a '100% recyclable' polymer drive the new plastics economy?
The developers of a packaging polymer that is both 100% recyclable and 100% biodegradable in standard waste management facilities claim the new material could help to create a much-needed circular economy for plastic packaging.
Plastic waste dumped in UK seas 'carried to Arctic within two years'
Plastic dumped into the seas around the UK is carried to the Arctic within two years, scientists have revealed, where it does "extreme harm" to the fragile polar environment.
MPs attack loopholes in cosmetic industry's microbead phase out
Voluntary action by the cosmetics industry to phase out the use of microbeads in Europe came under strong attack from MPs on Wednesday, who criticised loopholes in the pledges and slammed the lack of labelling on products containing the plastic particles.
G-Star RAW launches scheme to halt plastic pollution in oceans
Designer clothing company G-Star RAW has joined forces with marine pollution campaign group the Plastic Soup Foundation in an effort to prevent microfibres creating plastic pollution in the world's oceans.
Interface builds boat from 7,000 plastic bottles to tackle ocean pollution
The world's largest carpet tile manufacturer has joined forces with a 'plastic fishing' company to design and create a unique boat made from more than 7,000 plastic bottles fished from the canals of Amsterdam.
Card Factory defends plastic bag tax avoidance
Greetings cards retailer Card Factory has fended off criticism of it's decision to sell plastic bags without handles as a way of avoiding the 5p carrier bag charge.
More plastic than fish in oceans by 2050, Ellen MacArthur study warns
With environmental issues featuring high on the agenda at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos this week, a new report has revealed that applying circular economy principles to plastic packaging could save up to $120bn for the global economy.
Adidas adds 3D-printed insole to ocean waste shoe
Sportswear giant Adidas has created the world's first sports shoe made entirely from reclaimed and recycled ocean waste, which now includes a 3D-printed midsole made from recycled polyester and fill net content.
VIDEO: Bristol's giant whale lights up Green Capital
A spectacular LED-lit monument made of recycled plastic bottles has been unveiled in Bristol to commemorate the city's year as European Green Capital.
Eight million tonnes of plastic waste shifts from land to sea every year, new study finds
Around eight million tonnes of plastic waste find their way into the world's oceans each year, according to a new study.
Solar lanterns offer smart reuse concept for plastic bottle waste
A cheap lighting concept which creates solar lanterns from plastic bottle waste is being trialled by designers in the hope it can be scaled up for commercial production.
Viridor breaks ground at £12.5m Kent recycling plant
Waste management and recycling firm Viridor has started work on a new Plastics Recycling Facility (PRF) in Rochester, which will boost the region's plastic recycling capacity by 75,000 tonnes a year.
Beauty brands commiting to microbead phase out as environmental threat grows
Growing evidence around the environmental impact plastic microbeads in beauty products are having on oceans is seeing some of the industry's major brands committing to phasing them out.
IBM uses plastic bottle waste to help fight MRSA
Researchers from IBM have linked up with scientists from the Singapore Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology to develop a treatment, made from plastic bottle waste, for hospital superbug MRSA.
Kimberly-Clark takes a 'hand in glove' approach to recycling
Kimberly-Clark Professional is embarking on worldwide programme to recycle single-use cleanroom and laboratory gloves.
LEGO targets material optimisation through supply chain innovation
LEGO Group has joined forces with WWF to reduce its carbon impacts through greater collaboration with its supply chain.
Councils may be forced to impose England's carrier bag charge
Local authorities should be responsible for enforcing the plastic bag charge due to be introduced in England in 2015, according to Defra.
Tetra Pak to scale up bio-based plastic dependent on Brazil trial
EXCLUSIVE - Tetra Pak is considering a roll-out of bio-based polyethylene in its carton packs across the world if a trial in Brazil is successful.
Crayola goes back to the classroom to close 'pen to fuel' loop
Crayola is working with schools in the US on a closed loop recovery scheme to recover its used plastic marker pens and convert them into renewable energy.
TNT delivers social value by closing loop on plastic mail bag waste
TNT Business Solutions has developed a closed loop recycling scheme for its plastic delivery bags where all profits will be donated to charity.
Bad news on bag use as consumption increases year-on-year
Progress on reducing the number of single-use carrier bags issued in the UK has stalled according to the latest figures from WRAP - in fact, last year saw an increase in usage.
Rise in plastics bans forcing firms to consider sustainable alternatives
A growing number of countries are banning unsustainable plastics, meaning UK plastics firms will need to adopt oxo-biodegradable technology quickly if they want to retain their export markets.
UK in danger of failing on new plastic recycling targets
The waste sector must have "sensible policy and strategic development" if the UK is serious about achieving the new and ambitious five-year recycling targets for plastic packaging from 2013 to 2017.
Closing loop on waste plastics could spark renaissance in British manufacturing
Recycled polymers could stimulate a return to plastic manufacturing in the UK as changing attitudes towards sustainability and rising costs for Far Eastern producers present new market opportunities for Britain.
London council sees surge in mixed plastics recycling at kerbside
The Royal Borough of Kingston Upon Thames has seen a 43% increase in the amount of plastic recycled after the council widened the range of materials that could be collected at the kerbside last October.
HP strengthens recycling network to close loop on cartridge waste
Hewlett-Packard (HP) has expanded its free customer recycling take-back scheme for cartridges as it looks to strengthen its closed loop plastics recovery operations.
Mixed plastics waste proves hardy material for flood defence
Markets for mixed polymer waste may be opening up as a pan-European consortium proposes to manufacture high value products such as flood defences from these materials.
Pressure mounts for plastics landfill ban as NI joins bag tax brigade
Northern Ireland has become the latest region within the British Isles to introduce a levy on disposable carrier bags as the European Commission draws up plans to clamp down on their use.
Ecover trials ocean plastic waste 'trawls' for latest packaging drive
Ecover has raised the bar in closed loop packaging by creating a recycled polymer mix for its bottles that will incorporate plastic waste fished out of the ocean.
Pressure grows for VAT suspension on recovered plastics
Calls are mounting for a VAT exemption on recycled plastics to help stimulate consumer demand and encourage investment in the UK's plastics recycling industry.
John Lewis to close the loop on plastics waste in retail first
John Lewis Partnership is set to develop a pioneering closed loop business model for its plastics waste, in a move believed to be a first for any UK retailer.
NASA lifts off with closed loop project for space waste
Space detris could be recycled and made into radiation shields for spacecraft exploration if research from NASA scientists bears fruit.
PVC recycling 'text book example' of cutting resource use
Recycling can dramatically reduce the environmental footprint of PVC and boost material optimisation, according to a white paper released today.
Veolia wins £460m PFI waste deal as it goes plastic fantastic
Veolia has secured a 25-year PFI contract worth £460m with Leeds City Council for residual municipal waste treatment and energy recovery.
Zero waste to landfill for milk bottle manufacturer
The UK's leading manufacturer of high density polyethylene (HDPE) milk bottles has achieved its goal of zero waste to landfill.
Europe heading for dismal zero waste 'fail' on plastics
The plastics industry is not on track to achieve zero waste to landfill until 2037 - 13 years later than its stated 2020 target.
Jonathon Porritt advocates EfW for plastics recovery
Enviromentalist Jonathon Porritt has called for a more open debate on the potential of using waste-to-energy to recover the calorific value in plastics waste.
Virgin harnesses recycled PET for sustainable flight kits
Virgin Atlantic plans to recycle four million plastic bottles a year for use in its new amenity kits for airline passengers.
Futuristic 'icebergs' float to rescue of polluted oceans
A set of floating inverted skyscraper-like structures capable of coverting ocean litter into energy have been designed by architects.
VIDEO: The carrier bag that could crunch down on plastics pollution
A reusable carrier bag that can be turned into a bin liner has been developed, an invention which could reduce plastic film use in light of taxes on single-use carrier bags.
Celebrities throw weight behind 'plastic bag free' Olympic Games
High profile names such as David Attenborough, Richard Branson and Vivienne Westwood have announced their support for the Greener upon Thames campaign, which aims to have the London Olympic Games 2012 plastic bag free.
Richard Branson looks to ditch plastic for airport luggage
Richard Branson has called for plastic alternatives to help improve luggage security across airports and cut down on pollution at the same time.
Plastic bag 'tax' shown to slash usage rates
New figures suggest that charging for single-use carrier bags is a highly effective way of reducing their use, with Wales recording a 22% fall in bags last year.
Nestlé pushes for EfW debate on mixed plastics
Nestlé has called for more lifecycle assessment around post-consumer mixed plastics, arguing that a there may be greater role for energy recovery in dealing with this waste stream.
M&S launches world's most sustainable suit
Recycled plastic bottles form the lining of what Marks & Spencer is claiming is the world's most sustainable suit - a result of years of development.
Boris says London needs a whole lot more bottle
London Mayor Boris Johnson is backing a campaign to boost plastic bottle recycling and create more jobs.
VIDEO: Nike creates better world for plastics recycling
Some of the world's biggest sports stars are raising awareness of how plastic bottles can be transformed into athletic performance clothing under Nike's latest football brand campaign.
Plastics recovery hit by rising contamination levels
The quality of plastic bottles sent for reprocessing in recent years has deteriorated due to the "rampant" rise of mixed plastics in the waste stream, according to an industry expert.
Irish farmers get plastics recycling boost
Hundreds of tonnes of waste farm plastic are expected to be collected for recycling throughout County Clare in Ireland over the coming weeks.
EU study shows rising trend for plastics waste recovery
Recovery levels for building and construction plastics waste appear to be on the rise across Europe as a whole, but there are strong disparities in performance at state level.
Prisoner PVC recycling pilot could form UK blueprint
A pilot prisoner recycling scheme in Rochdale could be used as a national model to capture greater volumes of low-grade PVC if it proves successful.
WRAP targets plastic packaging as priority
Plastic packaging waste was singled out as a priority area for action by WRAP at an Associate Parliamentary Sustainable Resource Group meeting in London last week (March 7).
Bioplastics packaging proving 'too costly' to recover
The growth of plant-based plastics in packaging is causing problems when it comes to their end-of-life recovery, a waste management expert has warned.
Ford gears up with electric car launch made from recycled bottles
Ford is set to launch what it claims will be the most sustainable car on the consumer market next month with its new Focus Electric vehicle, made with recycled plastic bottles.
London restaurants opt for drinking straws ban to cut plastic waste
London restaurants, bars and cafes have joined forces to launch the UK's first 'Straw Wars' campaign in a bid to cut down on the use of plastic drinking straws by customers.
NI announces phased charging structure for plastic bags
Northern Ireland will introduce a 5p charge for plastic carrier bags in April 2013, which will increase to 10p in April 2014.
Reprocessors struggling with surge in mixed plastics recycling
The rise of mixed plastics collections in the UK is starting to pose serious material quality problems for reprocessors, according to new research out today (January 30).
Casepak opens MRF in Leicester
A pioneering £21m materials recycling facility (MRF) has opened in Leicester to handle municipal and commercial waste, with the aim of recovering 95% of material as a resource.
Plastics recycling will be 'key focus' in 2012
Boosting plastics recycling in the UK will be a "key focus" for 2012 as the sector continues to develop PET and HDPE bottles recycling technologies.
Balfour Beatty develops closed loop process for plastic waste
Balfour Beatty is recycling waste plastic from its sites into cable protection covers for use during utility maintenance work in what is thought to be an industry first.