Recycling of Plastics from Used Automobiles

Recycling of Plastics from Used Automobiles

Resource Recycling by by Jared Paben. Read the full article here.

For years, plastics recycling stakeholders have discussed the possibility of recovering more polymer components from end-of-life automobiles. One initiative involving a range of plastics players recently got underway.

Vehicles destined for recycling today incorporate more plastic than scrapped cars of yesteryear, but almost none of the plastic is being recycled in the U.S.

Scrap workers pull off valuable auto parts for reuse, and magnets separate metals from shredded vehicles. But plastics typically take a ride straight to the landfill.

“Right now, virtually none of it is being collected,” said Kim Holmes of the Plastics Industry Association. “Really, auto recovery is being driven by the metals, not the plastics.”

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Jared Paben is associate editor of Resource Recycling and can be contacted at

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