<%@LANGUAGE="JAVASCRIPT" CODEPAGE="1252"%> Sustainable development
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Sustainable PVC Commitment to sustainability PVC recycling Eco-manufacture


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Waste management: recycling


The waste hierarchy shows the best ways to treat wastes:

  • Minimise the amount of waste by only using what is needed.

  • Extend the useful life of an item by re-using it whenever possible. for example, plastic bottles can be re-used.

  • Recycling turns wastes into raw materials for new products.

  • Disposal is a last resort. Incineration can recover some of the energy in the waste to generate heat or electricity.
    Landfill is the least-preferred method of disposal.

Waste Hierarchy

Reduce, reuse and recycle

PVC recycling


Recycle arrows

This symbol identifies PVC packaging for recycling.


PVC is a thermoplastic and is ideal for recycling. It can be mechanically ground into pellets that can be re-heated and molded into new products.

PVC is also resilient. Research has shown that it may be recycled up to ten times before it no longer retains the desired physical properties.

Recycling PVC is a good thing. It reduces the amount of raw materials used to make new PVC and also lessens the amount of wastes produced when PVC products have reached the end of their use.

One problem with recycling PVC is that it is often contaminated with other materials. This can make separating, sorting and recycling an expensive process. New methods of recycling, such as the Vinyloop® system, are being developed to cope with these mixed sources of PVC.


The graph shows a forecast for PVC recycling in the European Union.



PVC recycling forecast


Data: AEA technology Environment