FPA Update November 2011: FPA Conducts Flexible Packaging Resource Recovery Research, Releases Study Results
Identifying Viable Resource Recovery Options
The FPA Identification and Assessment of Available Technologies for Materials and Energy Recovery from Flexible Packaging Waste Report details the results of research conducted by Columbia University’s Earth Engineering Center (EEC) on behalf of FPA examining the best end-of-life technologies for difficult-to-recycle flexible packaging waste.
Through this study, viable resource recovery processes for flexible packaging waste were identified. In addition, the economic benefits and costs of those technologies were analyzed during the study. The report details tertiary recycling options for flexible packaging waste including pyrolysis, gasification and engineered solid fuel. Expanded profiles of the processes and the companies that offer them including Agilyx Corporation, Envion Incorporated, Climax Global Energy Incorporated and Dongra, are also provide in the report.
Testing Promising Technologies
The FPA Flexible Packaging Resource Recovery Alternatives to Landfill Pilot Program Report details the results of pilot studies, conducted by FPA, assessing the technologies identified in the EEC research. The pilots yielded valuable end-products including synthetic crude oil, condensed wax, fuel pellets and combustible gases. Pre-consumer flexible packaging materials, contributed by FPA members, and post-consumer materials, contributed by TerraCycle – an upcycling and mechanical recycling company, were utilized during the pilot trials.
The collection of post-consumer flexible packaging waste is one challenge the research identified. Therefore, FPA has commissioned Columbia University’s Earth Engineering Center to further examine collection system alternatives for flexible packaging waste, in addition to the economic benefits and system costs.
FPA will also conduct life cycle assessment of cradle-to-grave with focus on end-of-life of several flexible packaging formats, and four resource recovery options including landfill, traditional waste-to-energy, recycling, and pryolysis. The results of these research studies will be available in early 2012.
The FPA Identification and Assessment of Available Technologies for Materials and Energy Recovery from Flexible Packaging Waste Report, and the Flexible Packaging Resource Recovery Alternatives to Landfill Pilot Program Report are benefits of FPA membership and are available in the members only section of the FPA website. PDF copies of the FPA Identification and Assessment of Available Technologies for Materials and Energy Recovery from Flexible Packaging Waste Report are available to FPA non-members for $3,500. For more information about the FPA Flexible Packaging Resource Recovery Program, contact FPA at (410) 694-0900 or visit www.flexpack.org.