Published 12-11-2020
| Article appears in November 2020 Issue

AUSTRALIAN-FIRST SOFT PLASTICS RECYCLING TECHNOLOGY

12-11-2020

Polyrok is a sustainable alternative to minerals used in concrete, and it is going to be the foundation for the carpark installation led by RED Group and Coles in Horsham Victoria.

The concrete slab carpark will be made partly out of the recycled soft plastics product Polyrock. The innovation is being led by Victorian recycling RED group and Replas, in partnership with Coles.

The carpark is the first commercial construction project in Australia to make use of Polyrok.

Made from plastic bags and soft plastic packaging recovered from the REDcycle program, Polyrock has the potential to divert 105,000 tonnes of soft plastics from landfill each year, if used in commercial concrete projects across Australia.

Coles state construction manager Victoria Fiona Lloyd said this was the first time the product had been used in a commercial environment.

The project will help repurpose 900,000 pieces of soft plastic, to be used in the carpark at the soon-to-be-competed Coles Horsham redevelopment.

RMIT University is also an active partner throughout the whole development process.

Polyrok reduces the carbon footprint due to the reduced thermal mass it provides.

This tackles the plastic problem, in addition to carbon reduction, while being fit for purpose.

Federal Assistant Minister for Waste Reduction and Environmental Management Trevor Evans welcomed the collaboration to find innovative and practical ways to reuse soft plastics.

“There is huge potential and opportunity for infrastructure projects to help us build a more circular economy,” Mr Evans said.

“This is why the federal government has prioritised the development of new national standards and guidelines to encourage the use of recycled content in roads and other projects.”

Since the partnership began, Coles and its customers have diverted more than 1.3 billion pieces of soft plastic from landfill.

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