Econyl | report

million cars off the road per year). A lot more must be done to incentivise everyday product recyclability, according to Ward Mosmuller, Director of EU Aff airs at the Dutch multinational, DSM. He cited “bulky” products that are not recycled today – products such as carpets, mattresses and furniture. He wrote as long ago as 2018: “Can you imagine the scale of Europe’s annual waste mountain of ‘everyday’ products? To help, let me give you some fi gures to illustrate the volume of big, bulky, one-product polluters that are sent to landfi ll or incinerated each year: 30 million mattresses; 16 million tonnes of textiles (mainly clothes); 1.6 million tonnes of carpets; and 10 million tonnes of reusable furniture.”

TOURER DRIVEN BY VEGAN CONCEPTS Back to the auto industry. Another car using recycled fi shing nets for its carpeting is Polestar’s Precept grand tourer, whose interior has been described as “completely vegan”, the headlining being made from 100 per cent recycled plastic bottles, and headrests made with cork recycled from those thrown away by wine companies. Parent company, Volvo, had previously announced its aim to use 25 per cent recycled plastics by 2025, while its XC40 compact SUV has carpets made from 97 per cent recycled PET plastic bottles. Toyota, Ford,

Nissan, Honda and VW have also been exponents of recycled plastic. And in aircraft, an eco-friendly binder constructed from recycled laminated glass has been developed jointly by Anker, along with Devan Chemicals and the Danish clean- tech outfi t Shark Solutions for a new aviation carpet. The PVB (polyvinyl butyral) binder in the fl ame-retardant carpet is designed to make use of laminated glass waste from windshields and architectural applications. The non- toxic binder contains no chlorine or phthalates and is recyclable. The fl ooring industry support for carpet waste reuse and recycling opportunities in the UK continues to rise, despite a 10 per cent decrease in the total amount of carpet waste in 2019 compared to 2018, according to Carpet Recycling UK’s October 2020 report. Since its formation in 2007, the association diverted 1.25 million tons of carpet waste otherwise destined for landfi ll. CRUK data for 2019 revealed the volume of carpet waste diverted from landfi ll in the UK was 158,577 tons (175,252 tonnes in 2018), with the vast majority being post- consumer broadloom carpets.

Econyl is a regenerated nylon fi bre made from the synthetic waste comprising largely abandoned fi shing nets. It is proven to perform as well as new nylon, but can be recycled over and over again. Made predominantly from nets recovered by the international Healthy Seas initiative, along with discarded industrial plastics, fabrics as well as old carpets, it has been manufactured by the Italian company, Aquafi l since 2011. The production process involves cleaning and shredding the waste before depolymerising it to extract the nylon. It is then polymerised and made into a new nylon yarn that’s used to make a variety of sustainable textile-based products, with clothing and carpets featuring prominently among the main ones. And that’s not all. There are other benefi ts related to climate change as well. It is said to reduce the global warming impact of nylon by up to 90 per cent compared to oil-based materials.




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