BPF believes PAS 9017 will not help provide a solution for littering
The BPF strongly advocates the enabling of circularity in the use of plastics – the value of materials and resources should be kept in use and always be prioritised.
Plastic that break down at an accelerated rate are not a solution to littering. Also, the environment in which plastics are littered cannot be controlled or regulated apart from in well managed home compost heaps and industrial composters.
Furthermore, the use of materials that have the potential to disrupt recycling must be avoided at all cost unless used in carefully managed closed environments. Additive based solutions that aid degradation of plastics have the potential to disrupt and/or contaminate plastics recycling streams and undermine the confidence, quality and durability of recycled plastics.
Following the publication of the standard and the subsequent discussion in the industry, the BPF believes PAS 9017
will not help provide a solution for littering. The lack of references to the impact on recycling streams within the standard could pose major risks to the recycling infrastructure in the UK as mentioned.
In addition, it is worth noting that the EU will prohibit the placing on the market next year of the use of some degradable materials such as oxo-degradable materials. In the UK devolved governments in Wales and Scotland are presently consulting on the banning of the use of these materials as well. Furthermore, the Plastic Pact has placed these materials on its list for elimination.
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