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Case study

Managing plastic waste

The benefits of plastic are well documented in terms of lightness, strength, durability, formability, and its use in sterile and hygienic environments. Plastic is found in many everyday products and can be reused and recycled almost infinitely.

Discarded plastic waste is, however, a global challenge. KAP is committed to working with industry, government and society to promote the reduction, reuse or recycling of plastic waste.

KAP is involved in a number of initiatives to reduce the impact of plastic waste. We participate in industry forums such as Packaging SA, PETCO, Polyco and Plastics SA, which all have recycling and waste management at their core. These industry forum initiatives include clean-up operations, education, training programmes, awareness campaigns and employment creation. They are actively engaging with government, industry, local communities and retailers to develop an Integrated Waste Management Plan (‘IWMP’) for approval by the government’s Department of Environmental Affairs.

KAP’s financial contribution to these industry forums is linked to our production volumes. KAP contributed R4.5 million to Plastics SA and an additional R1.4 million to PETCO in the form of a grant in 2018.

PETCO is an industry-driven and industry-financed initiative to self-regulate post-consumer PET recycling.

PETCO has been extremely successful in growing the PET recycling volumes and currently 66% of all PET is recycled, creating an estimated 50 000 income opportunities for informal collectors. PETCO subsidises collections and recyclers.

The PET recycling industry has created 1 335 permanent jobs at recyclers.

Over 103 800 tonnes of PET was recycled this past year. PETCO estimates that over the past 10 years, recycled PET has saved 651 000 tonnes of carbon and avoided 2.7 million m3 of landfill space.

PETCO also has several education initiatives for both industry and schools to encourage recycling.

Polyco provides financial funding support to the polyolefin recycling industry value chain to grow the collections, recycling and recovery or beneficiation of polyolefin plastics.

KAP supports a number of education and recycling initiatives within the local community where Safripol operates.

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