Canada’s chemistry and plastics industries share federal government’s concerns about mismanagement of plastic waste

June 10, 2019

Ottawa – Representing the broad plastics value chain in Canada, the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) and the Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC), fully endorse the objective of stopping waste, including plastic waste, from leaking into the environment.

This is why CPIA and CIAC support the government as they work on the science to better understand the implications of plastic waste in the environment. Specifically, we welcome the plans for producer-led extended producer responsibility initiatives which will lead to more harmonized collection and help build markets for recycled plastics.

We would only caution government not to pre-determine the outcome and consider impacts throughout the lifecycle of plastic products and their alternatives. Any rush to judgment could have serious implications on industry’s ability to create a circular economy for plastics that supports a national zero plastic waste strategy.

“Plastics are key to our modern and sustainable way of life, but they do not belong in the environment. We understand the urgency of problem and are committed to being part of the solution,” said Carol Hochu, President and CEO of CPIA.

“CPIA and CIAC believe in the development of a circular economy for plastics that treat plastics as a resource to be kept in the economy and not leaked into the environment,” said Bob Masterson, President and CEO of CIAC. “Consumer education is important as we need a whole of society approach to the issue. Industry, governments, civil society and consumers must work together to solve this global issue.”

The Canadian chemistry and plastics industries are already stepping up to provide solutions: several members are founding members of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, which is investing over $1.5 billion USD to deliver waste management solutions globally.

In 2018, CPIA and CIAC members also committed to 100 per cent of plastics packaging being re-used, recycled, or recovered by 2040, and 100 per cent of plastics packaging being recyclable or recoverable by 2030.

However, our members believe that creating an impression that safe, sanitary plastic materials are toxic through the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) will ultimately make it more difficult for Canada to achieve its zero waste objectives.

CIAC and CPIA look forward to working with the federal government to support their science-based approach.

For more on what the Canadian chemistry and plastics industries are doing to tackle plastic waste in the environment, please see Canada’s chemistry and plastics industries making strides to tackle plastic waste and the report: Role of Chemistry in a Circular Economy for Plastics.

Canada’s chemistry and plastics industries making strides to tackle plastic waste

Canada’s chemistry and plastics industries making strides to tackle plastic waste

June 6, 2019

In celebration of Environment Week, the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) and the Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC) are highlighting the important headway their members are making in tackling the global challenge of plastic waste in the environment.

Canada’s chemistry and plastics industry are also providing international support to tackle this global issue where it is most critical:

  • BASF, Dow, NOVA Chemicals, P&G, and Shell are founding members of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste. This global alliance has committed over US$1 billion over the next five years to help end plastic waste in the environment by working with international agencies.
  • In 2018, NOVA Chemicals announced a three-year investment of nearly $2 million to prevent plastic debris from reaching the ocean. Its first partnership is with Muncar, a coastal fishing community located in Banyuwangi, Indonesia.
  • In Indonesia, Dow worked with the government and various stakeholders to complete the first plastic road trial in Depok, Indonesia. Approximately 3.5 metric tons of plastic waste was mixed with asphalt to create a 1.8 kilometer road. The result of the two-month project was a plastic waste-based road that was more durable and stronger than typical roads. In addition to the roads lasting longer, they also reduced estimated greenhouse gas emissions by 30 tons by replacing nearly 10 per cent of bitumen that would be used in road asphalt.

Some of the key innovations already being employed by the Canadian chemistry and plastics industry include:

  • NOVA Chemicals and Dow have developed versatile, all-polyethylene versions of the popular stand-up pouch that are widely accepted at recycling centers while retaining the performance, processability and cost-competitiveness of existing mixed-material structures.
  • NOVA Chemicals tougher and more sustainable packaging including abuse-resistant, recyclable film structuredesigns and lightweight ARCEL® resins that protect fragile goods in transit.
  • Building on successful programs in the United States, Dow is working with a community in Ontario to bring THE Hefty® EnergyBag® program to Canada later in 2019. The first Canadian city will receive grant funding from the Dow Community Foundation to help launch the program in their community. The program complements mechanical recycling programs and uses existing curbside recycling infrastructure to capture many plastic materials that can’t currently be recycled. Once collected, these materials are diverted from landfills and converted into useful resources such as diesel fuel, oils and waxes.
  • Canada Kuwait Petrochemical Corporation and Inter Pipeline Ltd will invest $10 million and $7 million respectively on research and development to facilitate the reduction of plastic waste, recycling and other improvements.
  • BASF is breaking new ground in plastic waste recycling with its ChemCycling project. Chemical recycling provides an innovative way to reutilize plastic waste that is currently not recycled, such as mixed or uncleaned plastics. Using thermochemical processes, these plastics can be utilized to produce syngas or oils. The resulting recycled raw materials can be used as inputs in BASF’s production, thereby partially replacing fossil resources. BASF has for the first time manufactured products based on chemically recycled plastic waste and is thus one of the global pioneers in the industry.
  • ReVital Polymers, Pyrowave and INEOS Styrolution announced a partnership in 2018 to recycle polystyrene packaging. This Canadian solution then uses the recycled polystyrene in the manufacturing of new products and packaging.
  • In 2018, Total S.A., a global energy producer, and Polystyvert, a Montreal-based clean technology startup with an innovative method for polystyrene recycling, teamed up to work on the dissolution and purification of household post-consumer polystyrene to generate high-quality recyclates addressing a broad range of polystyrene market requirements.
  • GreenMantra Technologies and INEOS Styrolution have signed a joint development agreement to align GreenMantra’s patented technology and INEOS Styrolution’s manufacturing infrastructure to convert waste polystyrene into chemical monomer building blocks, replacing a portion of virgin monomer feed in INEOS Styrolution’s polymerization process

Representing the broad plastics value chain in Canada, CPIA and CIAC and their members announced waste reduction targets on June 4, 2018: 100 per cent of plastics packaging being re-used, recycled, or recovered by 2040, and; 100 per cent of plastics packaging being recyclable or recoverable by 2030. These are just some of the projects and initiatives in progress that will help CPIA and CIAC members achieve these targets.

“Plastics offer myriad of benefits for a modern and sustainable society. But the issue of what to do with plastic waste continues to be a global challenge that must be addressed. Canadians and indeed the world want real, workable solutions,” said Carol Hochu, President of CPIA.

“The innovation and ingenuity of the chemistry sector will be key in solving this problem and our industry is already stepping up to do our part and reach our goals of a zero plastic waste future,” said Bob Masterson, President and CEO of CIAC.

For more information, please see CIAC’s report: Role of Chemistry in a Circular Economy for Plastics.

On World Environment Day, CIAC highlights its members’ commitment to reducing air pollution through Responsible Care®

June 5, 2019

Today, the United Nations’ Secretary-General António Guterres announced the theme for 2019’s World Environment Day is air pollution, encouraging citizens and businesses of the world to act to reduce pollution and beat climate change.

As part of the codes and ethic of Responsible Care® and their commitment to accelerating progress of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, members of the Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC) have made it a priority to reduce emissions of air pollutants, helping to ensure cleaner air for all. Responsible Care is the UN-recognized sustainability initiative for the chemistry industry that was first developed by CIAC in 1985 and is now practised in 67 countries and by 96 of the 100 largest chemical producers in the world.

“Every CIAC member must commit to Responsible Care’s rigorous codes and ethic which compel our members to innovate for safer and more environmentally friendly products and processes,” said Bob Masterson, President and CEO of CIAC. “Our members serve as an example of environmental stewardship and transparency for other industries in Canada and around the world.”

Since 2004, CIAC members have:

  • Reduced nitrogen oxide emissions by 32 per cent
  • Achieved a 76 per cent reduction in SO2 emissions
  • Reduced volatile organic compound emissions by more than 27 per cent
  • Reduced particulate matter (PM2.5) by 77 per cent
  • Reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 18 per cent through investments in new plants and technologies, investments in combined heat and power facilities, substitutions of lower-carbon fuels and other investments.

For more information on our members’ commitments Responsible Care, please visit our website and read CIAC’s 2018 Responsible Care Performance Report: Delivering on our Commitments

Polystyrene recycler Pyrowave joins CIAC as full member

June 4, 2019

The Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC) welcomes new member, Pyrowave.

Headquartered in Oakville, Ontario with a research and development centre in Montreal, Quebec, Pyrowave uses patented microwave technology to recycle mixed plastic waste, including post-consumer polystyrene packaging, back into their initial elements. Pyrowave has the capacity to convert between 450 to 900 tons of plastic waste back into feedstock each year, per module.

“We believe that chemical recycling will enable closing the plastic recycling loop. It was therefore a natural step to join the CIAC, an organisation that has an essential role in the new generation of plastics. We are looking forward to build closer ties with its members of the value chain, specially now that we are at commercial stage, ” said Jocelyn Doucet, CEO of Pyrowave.

In 2018, Pyrowave partnered with INEOS Styrolution, a global leader in styrenics, to use advanced technology to chemically recycle polystyrene packaging collected in consumer recycling systems as well as post-industrial PS. INEOS Styrolution became a CIAC member in March 2019.

In 2019, BASF Canada awarded Pyrowave $20,000 in a start-up challenge hosted by the CIAC’s Good Chemistry Conference.

“CIAC is thrilled to welcome Pyrowave as a full member,” said Bob Masterson, CIAC President and CEO. “We look forward to helping the company tap into its full potential with their innovative technology and to helping them make important connections within the chemistry industry. We are especially excited to have Pyrowave’s valuable expertise on achieving a circular economy for plastic waste at the table.”

Bob Masterson to speak on the global plastic waste crisis for the Canadian Global Affairs Institute

President and CEO of CIAC, Bob Masterson will be speaking on the Global Plastic Waste Crisis for the Canadian Global Affairs Institute on June 7 in Calgary as part of their luncheon speaker series. Mr. Masterson will explore how Alberta’s growing chemical industry can be a responsible environmental steward and leader in this area.

Register here


National Silicate sand CIAC host MPP Christine Hogarth on site tour

L-R: Rivy Blass, External Stakeholder Relations, MPP Christine Hogarth’s Office, Larry Massaro, National Silicates, Christine Hogarth, MPP, Etobicoke-Lakeshore, Carmen Romano, National Silicates, Don Fusco, CIAC

On May 24, Christine Hogarth, MPP for Etobicoke-Lakeshore and Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing took a tour of National Silicates’ Etobicoke production facility along with CIAC’s Director, Government and Stakeholder Relations – Ontario, Don Fusco. The meeting provided the opportunity to demonstrate the important role chemistry plays in the local and provincial economy and in environmental stewardship. National Silicates and CIAC appreciate MPP Christine Hogarth’s time and interest supporting businesses in Etobicoke-Lakeshore. Ontario needs more good chemistry!

CIAC congratulates INEOS Styrolution and GreenMantra for their joint development agreement to advance polystyrene chemical recycling