PET provides the automotive industry with many parts – such as parcel shelves and boot liners – and is now being used in the furniture market. PET is also used extensively in the ‘drinks’ and packaging industry – some 13 billion bottles annually in the UK alone.
IKEA makes a chair called Balstar, and I designed a product for Nowy Styl in Poland, called Tepee, which features a series of sound absorbing enclosures for working.
There are now many sound absorbing ‘PET felt’ suppliers of wall and ceiling cladding, screens and chairs. New to the market is DeVorm in Holland, who are a great user of PET. I have also worked extensively with Connection, whose enlightened approach and support of PET helps them lead the way to a ‘Carbon Neutral’ position in the UK.
Over eight billion tons of plastic has apparently been created since its birth in 1907. It’s a resource that we have not tapped into… our recycling record is very poor. We have 100 million tons of recycled plastic in use today…1.25% against aluminium’s claim of 90%. There is change ahead, however.
Loop Industries has a zero energy process to depolymerize PET – turning bottles into bottles. Now that is worth a ‘WOW’! Evian and Coca Cola have taken up the process. Coca Cola use a fifth of the world’s PET – that is 108 billion bottles annually or 200,000 every minute, a very strong case for upcycling and it is now starting to happen! Ioniqa in Holland has just commissioned an upcycling PET plant, capable of processing 10 kilotons per year – but we’ll need 300 of these plants just for Coca Cola!
Man has been making ‘things and stuff’ for thousands of years – let’s start re-using them!