Two Inland Empire Companies Team Up to Capture Plastic from Oceans
Envision Plastics Partners with Microdyne Plastics to Help Save Oceans
One of the most visible and egregious abuses of pollution happens in third world countries where, due to the lack of waste services, discarded plastics are thrown into rivers and streams. At least 8 million tons entered the ocean in 2010[i]. About 80% of ocean plastic is washed there from the land.[ii] Many environmentalists point to increasing plastic in the oceans as a reason to ban plastics outright. In truth some plastics are recyclable and provide low cost advantages to poor populations.
Plastic lowers the cost of packaging in those poor countries and provides post-use containers, used as storage containers, at no cost (something many could not afford). But the cost is so cheap, that even poor people have more plastic containers than they need, so plastics are discarded into waterways and streets where they are washed into streams by the rain.
The good news is that now companies are doing something about this. One leader is Envision Plastics with their new OceanBound Plastics program. Envision Plastics, located in Chino, works in At-Risk Zones to catch plastic before it enters the ocean. An At-Risk Zone is defined as a community within 50 km of a coastline and does not have a formal waste in place. These are the places where most of the plastic is entering the oceans.
Envision Plastics works with qualified partners in At-Risk Zones to collect this plastic. To become a qualified partner, they must complete the Envision Verification Process which is a regular recertification process that includes fulfilling the safety, social and environmental criteria on a proprietary scorecard, on-site inspections and 3rd party audits. The collected plastics is shipped to the US to be recycled into new resin to make a new product or package. The material is fully traceable from collection through processing.
Envision Plastics is currently working in Haiti and some coastal regions in Mexico with the hopes that demand for OceanBound Plastic will require them to expand the program Central American countries and possibly Asia.
But there is a cost for this. Colton California’s Microdyne Plastics helps its customers understand the value of this process, creating an additional market for OceanBound Plastic. It is well known that sustainability is a brand differentiator[iii]. This includes one-use containers as well as durable plastic products. For instance, OceanBound Plastic resins can cost from 50 to 100% more than virgin plastic resins. However, as a percentage of the total product and distribution costs, this may be only a small percentage of the total retail price. It is well worth researching OceanBound Plastic as a more sustainable and responsible way to continue providing better, lighter, and still cheaper plastic products than using other materials (wood, metal, glass, pottery or stone). Certain consumers do spend more for environmentally responsible products.
Envision Plastics has been in business since 2001 and has achieved unrivaled product innovation with flagship products EcoPrime®, PRISMA®, OceanBoundPlastic and Deodorized Resin™. Envision is committed to creating safe, clean, and economical inputs for recycled and recyclable packaging so that manufacturers, brands and retailers can contribute to a cleaner future.
Microdyne Plastics is a 44 year-old business with extensive expertise in blow and injection molding. It offers a variety of virgin and eco-friendlier resin options.
Microdyne and Envision Plastics invite you to join us in this effort to keep plastics out of our oceans by integrating it into your products and packaging.
[i] Science Magazine, Plastic Waste Inputs from Land into the Ocean, Volume 347, Issue 6223, pages 768-771
[ii] Stemming the Tide 2015, Ocean Conservancy
[iii] Plastic Recycling Becomes a Brand Differentiator, Molded Concepts, http://microdyneplastics.com/2018/07/plastic-recycling-becomes-brand-differentiator/