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Category Archives: Top stories

Country lockdowns bring ‘unprecedented implications’

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Container ship unloading at port.

Regulatory changes, and an overall sense of uncertainty, are playing into difficulty moving scrap materials abroad. | 28 November Studio/Shutterstock

Overseas markets for recovered plastic, including Malaysia and India, are experiencing disruption as governments enact widespread restrictions and close ports in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

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APR and ACC both look to verify recycled content

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A vial of plastic resins emptied onto a black surface.

The Association of Plastic Recyclers will endorse third-party PCR certification and the American Chemistry Council released principles for mass balance accounting of recycled content. | Praethip Docekalova/Shutterstock

Consumers may want products with recycled plastic, but how can they trust the items contain post-consumer material? Two industry groups have taken steps to answer that question.

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Plastics collection cuts prompt supply concerns

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In communities around the country, recycling programs are limiting the materials they collect, altering service hours or shutting down altogether. | Oksana Shturo/Shutterstock

Recycling programs nationwide have curtailed service due to the coronavirus pandemic, potentially hampering the supply of scrap plastics moving to reclaimers in the weeks to come.

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The details on three disruptive developments in virgin market

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Exterior of the OPEC building in Austria.

An ongoing battle between OPEC and Russia is flooding the market with cheap barrels of oil, threatening downward pressure on virgin plastics prices. | Rebekah Zemansky/Shutterstock

Construction has been delayed on two large U.S. prime plastics plants – one because of high costs and the other due to coronavirus. At the same time, an oil price war put downward pressure on virgin plastic prices.

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Plastics recycling sector reacts to coronavirus pandemic

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Artist's rendering of coronavirus cells.

North American plastics recycling companies are working to prevent the spread of coronavirus within their operations. | joshimerbin/Shutterstock

The global escalation of COVID-19 is leading reclaimers to enact new safety regulations, while on a wider scale it impacts some collection programs, reduces Asian scrap plastics demand, constrains global shipping, dents stock prices and threatens an economic recession.

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Basel expert lays out changes to come

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Rolph Payet, executive secretary of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions, speaks at the Plastics Recycling Conference and Trade Show.

Rolph Payet, executive secretary of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions, speaks at the Plastics Recycling Conference and Trade Show. | Plastics Recycling Conference/Brian Adams Photography

Scrap plastic exporters should closely monitor policy changes in the countries they sell to as the global community prepares to enact more aggressive shipment requirements, according to the top staff member for the Basel Convention.

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