Converting Plastics into Energy to Reduce Wastes

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Plastics into Energy

Australia has been making ardent efforts to ensure that their waste management system changes for the better. The traditional techniques of land filling and recycling may not suffice the large-scale waste that gets generated every day. The environment ministers at the federal and state levels recently held a meeting to come to a sustainable solution for packaging goods that float in the Australian markets. They have an ambitious target of making packaging reusable, compostable, and recyclable by 2025. They also supported the idea of turning wastes, plastics into energy but were not clear about how that can be done.

Large-Scale Plastic Production

It is possible to make the packaging 100% reusable and recyclable if wood and paper is strictly used for all forms of packaging. However, it is expected that a major share of packaging materials would be dominated by plastics over the coming years. Most of the plastic products can only be recycled a few times before they add up to the environmental waste. It is anticipated that the production of plastic across the world would elevate by a little than 4% each year until 2030. Hence, it is difficult to ascertain the future progress of initiatives aimed at reducing the use of plastics in packaging.

Mechanical and Chemical Recycling

Under mechanical recycling, plastics can be converted into mini pellets that can then be used to manufacture other products. Chemical recycling, on the other hand, pyrolysis and gasification processes are used to turn plastic into feedstock or energy carriers for fuels. It is anticipated that the chemical recycling methods would be used by the Australian recycling industry to convert plastic into energy.

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