Shrink Wrap Recycling

Wrapping together zero waste sustainability

Home to world-renowned regattas, seaside summer hot spots and the sailing capitol of the world, New England boasts a bustling marine industry that attracts boats big and small from around the world. In addition to requiring ample marinas and shipyards, this thriving boating industry relies heavily on seasonal low density polyethylene (LDPE) shrink wrap protection for recreational and business assets. The need to address a proper and efficient life cycle assessment of this material is crucial for diverting landfill waste, promoting a circular economy, and fostering environmental sustainability within the marine community. In the past few years efforts have been put forth to advance recycling efforts at the industry level by supplying individuals with a low-cost service to remove shrink wrap waste. However, the value of this material within the global recycling process continues to decline as oversea recycling industries refuse the influx of American plastics as a result of the National Sword Policy implemented by China in 2017. In addition, there are challenges associated with recycling this material related to material contamination, material collection, and the material’s market volatility. The risk and uncertainty of the market can disinterest waste haulers, further driving the collection service cost up and/or halting collection all together. The Shrink Wrap Recycling Project aims to demonstrate the effectiveness of domestic recycling efforts, circular economies, expansion of scope of common-material collection, and further mitigate the risk of shrink wrap (plastic film) from entering landfills or incinerators – a risk that is increasing with the National Sword Policy implemented by China in 2017.

Map of Rhode Island Harbors and Marinas

Overview of the Shrink Wrap Recycling Project

Home to world-renowned regattas, seaside summer hotspots and the sailing capitol of the world, New England boasts a bustling marine industry that attracts boats big and small from around the world. In addition to requiring ample marinas and shipyards, this thriving boating industry relies heavily on seasonal low density polyethylene (LDPE) shrink wrap protection for recreational and business assets. The need to address a proper and efficient life cycle assessment of this material is crucial for diverting landfill waste, promoting a circular economy, and fostering environmental sustainability within the marine community.
The overarching goal of the shrink wrap recycling project is demonstrate the effectiveness of domestic recycling efforts, circular economies, expansion of scope of common-material collection, and further mitigate the risk of shrink wrap (plastic film) from entering landfills or incinerators – a risk that is increasing with the National Sword Policy implemented by China in 2017. The immediate goal is to activate a proof of concept recycling effort of existing shrink wrap on Aquidneck Island using Teracycle (a private U.S. recycling business headquartered in Trenton, New Jersey) to re-purpose the shrink-wrap into production pellets used for domestic manufacturing of finished products. The long range goal of the project is to expand the existing partnerships with individuals in the sailing and marine community, consumer product companies, retailers, manufacturers, and municipalities to establish a leadership model for how to recycle hard to recycle materials and further advance circular thinking and economies and divert waste from entering landfills or incinerators.
In the past few years efforts have been put forth to advance recycling efforts at the industry level by supplying individuals with a low-cost service to remove shrink wrap waste. However, the value of this material within the global recycling process continues to decline as oversea recycling industries refuse the influx of American plastics as a result of the National Sword Policy implemented by China in 2017. In addition, there are challenges associated with recycling this material related to material contamination, material collection, and the material’s market volatility. The risk and uncertainty of the market can disinterest waste haulers, further driving the collection service cost up and/or halting collection all together.
Yes. Please contact us via phone at 401-236-2561 or email and we’ll be in touch.

Statistics

13000

The actual pounds of shrink wrap diverted from landfill in 2019

40000

Planned pounds of shrink wrap diverted from landfill in 2020

200000

Planned pounds of shrink wrap diverted from landfill in 2021