Accredo Wins Re|Focus Sustainability AWard

Accredo Packaging, Vartega and Eastman Win Second Annual Re|focus Sustainability Innovation Awards

By The Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS)
Published Friday, February 14, 2020

These Awards Celebrate Innovations Driving Environmental Advantages in the Plastics Industry

2020 Re|Focus Award for Sustainability Innovation

WASHINGTON, D.C., February 14, 2020 —The Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS) today announced the winners of the annual Re|focus Sustainability Innovation Awards. The three winners exemplify the best submissions in the categories of materials, design and end-of-life innovations, all of which were assessed by a judging panel of experts in recycling and sustainability from members of PLASTICS. The winners include:

Materials

  • Vartega for its reclaimed and recycled carbon fiber that enables the diversion of thousands of tons of carbon fiber from the landfill. Vartega’s recycled fibers are used in a broad range of applications including nonwoven fabrics, thermoplastic pellets, and 3D printing filaments. Vartega’s partners include: Ford, Dow, Michelman, Techmer PM, Michigan State University, IACMI-The Composites Institute, Colorado School of Mines, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee.

Design

  • Accredo Packaging for its AccredoFlex® RP™ Gen2, an all-Polyethylene fully-recyclable stand-up pouch that can be utilized for a variety of products. These pouches can be made using up to 25% bio-based resin, and are fully converted into pouches using wind or solar energy.

End-of-Life

  • Eastman for its Carbon Renewal Technology (CRT), which breaks down waste plastics into molecular building blocks like carbon, oxygen and hydrogen and turns those building blocks into new, virgin-quality plastics.

These winning entries were chosen out of 35 innovations submitted.

“The 2020 Re|focus Sustainability Innovation Awards drew an exceptionally competitive field of entries this year,” said PLASTICS Director of Sustainability Ashley Hood-Morley. “Each winning innovation has the potential to be a game-changer when it comes to eliminating waste in plastics manufacturing, and eliminating waste, period. There are countless ways in which this industry is working to solve our planet’s environmental challenges. We congratulate Eastman, Accredo and Vartega for their commitment to sustainability, and look forward to seeing the impact their innovations will undoubtedly have on our industry and our environment.”

In addition to these three award categories, the Leadership in Innovation Award – determined by a judging panel – and a People’s Choice Award – determined by Re|focus attendees – will be announced at the Re|focus Sustainability & Recycling Summit that will take place from May 18-20 at the Duke Energy Convention Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.

To learn more about the awards visit: www.refocussummit.org/2020-refocus-sustainability-innovation-awards. To see all submissions visit: www.refocussummit.org/2020-award-submissions.

Contact: Elleni Almandrez
ealmandrez@plasticsindustry.org


About Plastics Industry Association

The Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS), formerly SPI, is the only organization that supports the entire plastics supply chain, representing nearly one million workers in the $451 billion U.S. industry. Since 1937, PLASTICS has been working to make its members and the industry more globally competitive while advancing recycling and sustainability. To learn more about PLASTICS’ education initiatives, industry-leading insights and events, networking opportunities and policy advocacy, and North America’s largest plastics trade show, NPE: The Plastics Show, visit plasticsindustry.org. Connect with PLASTICS on TwitterFacebookLinkedIn and Instagram.

I'M GREEN

I’m green PE is a plastic produced from sugarcane, a renewable raw material, while traditional PE uses fossil fuel sourced raw materials. For this reason, I’m green PE captures CO2 from the atmosphere during its production, helping to reduce greenhouse gases emissions. Additionally, suppliers must follow principles of sustainable development present in the “Responsible Ethanol Sourcing” developed and implemented by Braskem, which covers aspects such as respect for biodiversity and good environmental practices. I’m green PE retains the same properties, performance and application versatility of traditional PE and can be recycled within traditional PE recycling streams.

Source: Braskem USA
EPA GREEN POWER PARTNERSHIP
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) established the Green Power Partnership (GPP) in 2001 to protect human health and the environment by increasing organizations’ voluntary green power use to advance the American market for green power and the development of those renewable electricity sources. The Green Power Partnership helps to achieve Clean Air Act requirements by reducing the pollution and the corresponding negative health and environmental impacts associated with conventional electricity use. The program provides a framework that includes credible usage benchmarks, market information, technical assistance, and public recognition to companies and other organizations that use green power. Partners commit to use green power for all, or a portion, of their annual electricity consumption.

For more information, please visit https://www.epa.gov/greenpower

OPERATION CLEAN SWEEP

Zero Pellet, Flake, and Powder Loss is a priority for the plastics industry—and a critical issue for our environment. Spilled pellets, flakes, and powder can make their ways can make their way into local waterways and ultimately estuaries and the ocean. This isn’t just an eyesore and a litter issue; pellets, flakes, and powder, if accidentally mistaken for food by birds or marine animals, could harm them. That’s why the industry is behind Zero Pellet, Flake, and Powder Loss—and it can only be achieved with your help. The OCS Program was created to help you protect the environment and keep it clean.

The campaign’s goal is to help every plastic resin handling operation implement good housekeeping and pellet, flake, and powder containment practices to work towards achieving zero pellet, flake, and powder loss, protecting the environment and saving valuable resources.

For more information, please visit https://www.opcleansweep.org/
CERTIFIED BIO-BASED

The USDA Certified Biobased Packaging label on a product certifies that the packaging contains third-party tested and verified biobased content. The purpose of this label is to make it easy for consumers to locate and compare biobased products for purchase.

The USDA has established minimum biobased content standards for many product categories. A product must meet or exceed the minimum biobased content percentage in its given category in order to qualify for certification. Products belonging in categories for which minimum biobased content requirements have not yet been established must contain at least 25% biobased content.

Biobased products are derived from plants and other renewable agricultural, marine, and forestry materials. These products provide an alternative to conventional petroleum derived products and include a diverse range of offerings such as lubricants, detergents, inks, fertilizers, and bioplastics. For the purposes of the BioPreferred program, biobased products do not include food, animal feed or biofuels.

For more information, please visit https://www.biopreferred.gov

HOW2RECYCLE
How2Recycle is a standardized labeling system that clearly communicates recycling instructions to the public. It involves a coalition of forward thinking brands who want their packaging to be recycled and are empowering consumers through smart packaging labels. The label communicates the following details:
  • How to prep the material for recycling
  • For more information
  • How to recycle
  • Type of material
  • Packaging format
Source: https://how2recycle.info/
OCEANBOUND PLASTIC

Cleaner oceans start by preventing plastics from entering them in the first place. Being able to recycle that plastic is even better. That’s the concept driving OceanBound Plastics. 

We take material at-risk of becoming ocean pollution and turn it into a reliable plastic resin. Combining supply chain experience with technical expertise, we create a versatile product that can be used in virtually any application where HDPE is preferred. Every pound of OceanBound Plastic is potential pollution transformed into a recyclable resource.
Source: Envision Plastics

MINORITY OWNED

The National Minority Supplier Development Council advances business opportunities for certified minority business enterprises and connects them to corporate members. They work through the NMSDC Network to support and facilitate MBE integration into corporate and public-sector supply chains; build MBE capacity and capabilities through our programs and other education offerings; and facilitate MBE-to-MBE partnerships to meet the needs of their corporate members. They do this by matching our more than 12,000 certified minority-owned businesses to their vast network of corporate members who wish to purchase their products, services and solutions. Their corporate membership includes many of the largest public and privately-owned companies, as well healthcare companies, colleges and universities.

Source: https://nmsdc.org/about-nmsdc
WASTE REDUCTION

Our expanded gamut printing process eliminates all ink changes which results in up to 95% ink waste reduction, and up to 35% less ink and solvent usage.

Our state of the art extruders are capable of producing the thinnest, high-performance films and barriers that can also incorporate eco-resins such as renewable content or post-consumer recycled content.

We also have a closed loop recycling system in our US facility to recycle and reincorporate our waste into new packages.

All of these work to reduce our waste to landfill relative to conventional printing and extrusion processes.

WIND ENERGY

Accredo Packaging uses 100% wind electricity to power its Sugar Land, Texas Global headquarters and manufacturing facility. In 2013, we were recognized by the EPA for our leadership in green power with the Green Power Leadership Award.

Our sustainability goals include continued dedication to 100% Texas wind energy in our Texas operations through 2025.

LEED® CERTIFICATION
LEED projects earn points across nine basic areas that address key aspects of green buildings.
  1. Integrative process
  2. Location and transportation
  3. Sustainable sites
  4. Water efficiency
  5. Energy and atmosphere
  6. Materials and resources
  7. Indoor environmental quality
  8. Innovation
  9. Regional priority
Based on the number of points achieved, a project earns one of four LEED rating levels: LEED Certification Legend: 4 Levels
Source: http://leed.usgbc.org/leed.html

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