Introduction to PolyCE
European Commission Horizon 2020 project enabling recycling of plastics from electronic waste for a more sustainable future
The global economy needs an immediate shift towards a circular economy model for plastic waste. It requires a systematic transformation that involves all actors in the value chain and encompasses the entire lifecycle of plastic materials.
Although there are individual efforts to improve the collection and recycling of plastics in electronic waste (e-waste) the plastics value chain is still too fragmented, and recycled plastics are still perceived as unattractive to the end-user. For reference, the European Commission estimates e-waste to be one of the fastest growing waste streams in the EU, expected to grow to more than 12 million tonnes by 2020.
PolyCE (or Post-Consumer High-tech Recycled Polymers for a Circular Economy), a European Commission funded project consisting of a consortium of 20 expert organisations, has taken on the challenge of addressing this problem during the next four years.
Through significantly reducing the use of virgin plastics and enhancing the use of recycled plastics in new electronics applications, PolyCE will:
- Demonstrate the feasibility of a circular model for the plastics supply and value chain.
- Develop a grading system for recycled plastics, which will ultimately serve to provide guidelines for designing new electronic products.
- Involve green public procurement initiatives and consumer awareness raising campaigns across the EU (with a focus on Germany, Poland, Italy and France).
- Establish a feedback loop from research activities that provides policy input regarding technical feasibilities and conflicts from a technical perspective.