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CSIR-NCL, RIL join hands to recycle COVID-19 PPE waste

Petrochemical industry | 24 Sep 2021 IST | Polymerupdate.com
CSIR-National Chemical Laboratory (CSIR-NCL), Pune jointly with Reliance Industries Ltd and several other companies from Pune have achieved a breakthrough to manufacture useful moulded plastic components from COVID-19 PPE waste. The successful "pilot project has the potential to scale up and replicate throughout the country to convert PPE waste into useful and safe products," RIL said in a statement.

A pilot project converted the decontaminated PPE waste (mainly comprising PPE suits/overalls) into an easily processable and upcycled agglomerated form (pellets or granules). The polymer pellets can find usage in non-food applications, including high-performance automotive components.

A substantial increase in demand for single-use plastic items such as Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), masks and gloves has been witnessed since the pandemic.

Across India, more than 200 tonne of COVID-19 related waste was generated every day in May 2021. So far, this hazardous PPE waste is incinerated at central waste management (BMWM) facilities. Incineration is energy-intensive and leads to the release of harmful greenhouse gases.

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