American Chemistry MattersA Blog of the American Chemistry Council

American Chemistry Matters

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The U.S. EPA adds its voice to plastics recycling and sustainability

We have a new partner in promoting a more holistic way of looking at plastics: the U.S. EPA.

On America Recycles Day (November 15), ACC’s Plastics Division and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a partnership to promote sustainable materials management (SMM) for plastics. SMM offers a systematic approach to more efficiently using and reusing materials throughout their life cycles to reduce environmental impacts and waste. Taking a SMM approach to managing and evaluating materials helps decision makers see the multiple environmental benefits plastics offer throughout their life cycles, including and beyond recycling.

ACC and the EPA will collaborate on reducing environmental impacts of plastics, decreasing the amount of plastics disposed, increasing the amount of plastic recyclables recovered, and increasing stakeholder capacity to implement SMM.

As part of its work to grow plastics recycling, the EPA is partnering with ACC’s Wrap Recycling Action Program (WRAP). WRAP’s goal is to increase the amount of plastic bags, wraps and flexible film packaging collected for recycling. WRAP has launched plastic film recycling campaigns in Wisconsin, North Carolina, and Connecticut, and will continue to grow next year. The EPA will help to amplify WRAP messaging about where and how to recycle plastic film as the WRAP campaign continues to expand throughout the country.

EPA’s leadership on SMM has the potential to help many stakeholders think more broadly about the environmental impacts of the materials we use. We’re thrilled to be working with the Agency on this important issue.

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