Sorting and reusing plastic
In June 2014 the municipality of Holbaek initiated a project named “from waste to product”. The intention was to motivate private residents in the municipality to collect their plastic waste in a specific designed container. The municipality should collect the plastic waste and sort it, so it was possible to produce plastic granulate in a quality, so a plastic manufacturer could produce container boxes to private households in the municipality. Also plastic waste from recycle sites (mainly handed by the residents) was part of the project. To achieve the goal the municipality made an agreement with Aage Vestergaard Larsen (AVL) who recycles plastic, Schoeller Plast (SP) who manufactures plastic and The Danish Institute of Technology (DTI). The project was supported by the Danish Ministry of Environment due to the focus of circular economy.
The municipality did not have employees with experience in plastic sorting. The skills in sorting plastic were the success criteria number one. So, in order to overcome this difficulty, 2 employees from the municipality were educated in sorting plastic.
Furthermore, Aage Vestergaard Larsen did not have the production equipment to recycle plastic from private households, neither any experience in handling plastic from private households. However, special designed equipment for plastic waste was developed by the company, and experience to handle plastic waste was built up internally.
Scholler Plast did not have tools for manufacturing products based on raw materials from private households, when 200.000€ were invested in new tools special designed for producing plastic from private households. All challenges were overcome and the result was the progress of the project.
It is clear that sorting plastic waste from private households correctly is a very important to get raw materials in right quality. It is necessary to educate and motivate the employees, who handle the sorting process41.