Research consortium PVC recycling

In the Netherlands, the objective is to handle plastics with greater responsibility. In the Netherlands alone, for example, 64 kt of PVC waste is produced. When one speaks of the recycling of the plastic PVC, one mainly speaks of the recycling of the hard form. Unfortunately, this is still impossible for the soft form of PVC due to the presence of plasticisers.

Ecoras is working together with TRH Recycling B.V., Deepgrooves B.V. and the University of Groningen on a project in which new recycling methods are being investigated with regard to recycling soft PVC. It is important for all parties to find an alternative to the incineration of PVC waste, because the dioxins and hydrochloric acid fumes released in this process are very harmful to human health and the environment. In addition, many valuable raw materials are lost. There is also a financial interest because the cost of disposing of PVC waste using current methods is at least five times higher than the original production cost of the PVC. In early 2021, the SIA governing body will have approved the grant application required for the future development of this research project.

One method currently being investigated in the recycling process of soft PVC is extraction of plasticizers by supercritical CO2. The extraction of these plasticizers is made possible by exposing the soft PVC to super critical CO2.