Lacalle Pou participated in the inauguration of a plant that recycles plastic containers in Pando

Lacalle Pou participated in the inauguration of a plant that recycles plastic containers in Pando

The Envases company inaugurated, at its Ecopet plant, a washing line that makes it possible to advance in the recycling of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) containers. President Lacalle Pou observed the operation of the machinery that allows the production of clean flakes to make new bottles. Environment Minister Adrián Peña pointed out that the plastic problem is global and that it needs to be managed efficiently.

Also participating in the activity were the Secretary of the Presidency, Álvaro Delgado; the Minister of Industry, Omar Paganini; the undersecretaries of that portfolio and of the Environment, Walter Verri and Gerardo Amarilla; the National Director of Energy, Fitzgerald Cantero, and other national and departmental authorities.

Peña said that Ecopet has become a fundamental ally in the scheme developed by the national government for the recovery of plastic in this type of packaging. In addition, he highlighted that the company demonstrates its commitment to the circular economy.

He also considered that Uruguay faces a challenge in waste management and it should be understood that consumption habits should not be at the expense of the environment. As for plastics, Uruguay recovers 4% of the containers on the market. To improve these figures, he maintained, a reimbursement deposit will be launched so that disposable waste acquires value. “You can take that waste to a machine and money will be returned,” he said.

He also pointed out that the National Waste Management Plan is the 12-year roadmap to efficiently manage the different waste streams and that in Uruguay there are some 63,000 tons a year of single-use plastics, of which which 60% is related to packaging. Of the total of this material, some 13,000 tons are non-returnable containers, which cause a management problem, said the minister.

Within this framework, the portfolio issued a resolution that is consistent with the corporate goals of the most important companies and requires a recovery of 50% by 2025 and that 40% of the material used in PET containers be recycled. He recognized that they are ambitious goals but consistent with corporate goals.

He also stated that the first international negotiation event on plastic management will take place in Uruguay between November 28 and December 2.

Álvaro Queijo, general manager of Ecopet, stated that for 20 years the company has maintained this activity as part of its social responsibility, offering stability to recovery, which is the weakest link in the chain.

Until now, the recovered containers were classified and crushed, which generated dirty flakes, which were exported to China and Brazil at a low value, but allowed us to reduce the volume of plastics in our garbage. With the inaugurated machinery, a final product washing process is added, which allows producing clean flakes, which are used for the manufacture of bottles, which enables a new use for this material.

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