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Construction Plastics Recycling Scheme

PVC Recycling Scheme a Focus for World Earth Day Celebrations

22 April 2022

As countries across the world come together today, Friday 22 April, to celebrate World Earth Day, the Queensland construction industry has united to raise awareness of how businesses can reduce waste and contributions to landfill by recycling PVC off-cuts for a more sustainable future.

Master Plumbers’ Association Queensland (MPAQ) and Plastics Industry Pipe Association of Australia (PIPA), in conjunction with Iplex, Reece, Tradelink, and Vinidex, joined forces to launch the Construction Plastics Recycling Scheme in October 2021. The Queensland Government has provided funding support to ensure the delivery of the Scheme’s pilot program.

The Construction Plastics Recycling Scheme aims to educate and change behaviours when it comes to the disposal of PVC offcuts, working collaboratively with the broader industry to provide easy and accessible drop off points and helping to divert waste from landfill, which can be recycled into a new long-life recyclable pipe product. In total, the Scheme has collected 1,091kg of PVC off-cuts, of which 893kg has been useable material that can be recycled.

Master Plumbers’ Association of Queensland’s Executive Director, Penny Cornah, said the Construction Plastics Recycling Scheme has been developed to help industry understand the volume of PVC pipe off-cuts and fittings that are removed from construction sites every year.

“This scheme highlights the environmental commitments of not only the partners involved but also the industry as a whole.”

“There isn't one person who can do it all, but now is the time for us to try. If, individually, we do our bit, together we can make a difference. Sustainability is the answer to environmental prosperity, and plastic pipe systems are smart, efficient, and sustainable.”

Breakfast events were held at Enoggera Reece Plumbing Centre and Tradelink Woolloongabba on World Earth Day to promote the progress of the Scheme, as well as launch a video that highlights why and how businesses should participate and contribute to reducing waste in trade industries.

The video was developed to show the recycling process, as well as industry participation and support for the Scheme and its intention to invest in our planet. As society moves its attention towards long-term sustainability, the Queensland plumbing industry has recognised its role in contributing to a responsible and sustainable future by diverting off-cuts of plastic pipes from landfills and recycling them into new pipes.

Plastics Industry Pipe Association of Australia’s Executive General Manager, Cindy Bray, said the key to a circular economy is designing products to last.

“One of the common plastics used for pipe production is PVC; thanks to its durability and long service life, typically more than 100 years, this material is found on all building sites today. Although most of the PVC goes into the buildings, there can be off-cuts that can be reused and reprocessed into new PVC pipe,” Ms Bray said.

“Overall, the process of producing, recycling, and reusing pipes have minimal environmental effects highlighting the never-ending benefits to implementing the Construction Plastics Recycling Scheme. Plastic pipes are smart, efficient, and sustainable, providing long-lasting and reliable infrastructure both now and into the future,” Ms Bray said.

The Construction Plastics Recycling scheme partners are committed to the Australian community and environment. The scheme aims to educate and recycle plastic pipe and fittings waste, diverting from landfill to contribute to a responsible and sustainable future.

Participating Partners

Participating Locations

  • Beenleigh Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre
  • Caboolture Hospital
  • The Star Casino Site Gold Coast
  • Labrador Reece Plumbing Store
  • Enoggera Reece Plumbing Centre
  • Prominence Outlook Pallara
  • Queen’s Wharf Brisbane Development (Towers 1 and 2)
  • Woolloongabba Tradelink Store

To find out more about the Construction Plastics Recycling Scheme and what can and cannot be recycled, visit www.mpaq.com.au/pvc.

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For more information:

Penny Cornah
Executive Director
Master Plumbers’ Association of Queensland

penny.cornah@mpaq.com.au
0418 724 457
07 3273 0800

Cindy Bray
Executive General Manager
Plastics Industry Pipe Association of Australia

cindy.bray@pipa.com.au
0459 919 437

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