A New Blockchain Use-Case: Plastic Recycling

A New Blockchain Use-Case: Plastic Recycling

Blockchain, the world’s most exciting technology, has made a new use case for the recycling industry. For monitoring products in all forms of supply networks, Blockchains prove extremely useful and provide transparency and immutability. Meanwhile, policymakers around the world are regulating the issue that allows retailers and plastics producers to demonstrate that they reach minimum recycling rates, which are likely to step further.

RecycleGO, a worldwide leading recycling company, collaborated with the DeepDive Technology Group to provide the recycling industry with confidence, accountability, and better decision-making using blockchain technology.

The Problem Faced by the Plastic Recycling Industry

There is a significant shortage of adequate plastic waste management globally. Just 9% of the plastic products manufactured are recycled each year. 10% of plastic ends up in the atmosphere and contributes 13 million tons of waste to the oceans per year. It is essential for the Caribbean Sea, Pacific, and Atlantic to maintain plastic waste from over 36,600 kilometers of coastline in Latin America and the Caribbean, covering over 24 % of global fishing. Over 29,000 people live in coastal communities dependent on the health of ocean habitats.

Estimates indicate that plastic production is expected to double by 2050 to 400 million tons a year. According to the World Economic Forum, 40% of plastic is estimated to be dumped and 32% more into the atmosphere.

At many critical points in the network, recycling is ineffective. Low turnout and debris pollute the atmosphere and lead to wastage of money. Recyclers receive low-quality products, owing to a lack of customer awareness and transparency, as there are not many recycling opportunities for residents or corporations. There is no measurement instrument available for brands, recyclers, and communities to report their recycling activities and environmental effects in a straightforward way.

The Possible Repercussion of Implementing Blockchain

  • RecycleGO forges partnerships with multinational household brands, which publicly vowed to hit 25 percent recycled material by 2025. With fewer than five years left, the recycling rate currently stands at about eight percent.
  • Blockchain recycling participants will expect that 15-20% savings from supply chain improvements alone would be made during stage 1. At the same time, big corporations can use data to boost the supply of recycled products directly and indirectly to improve the corporate brand value.
  • Phase 1 of the multi-phase project allows project partners to recognize the history of a particular plastic bottle – as soon as it is made, processed, converted into raw material, and returned to the supplier to produce a new plastic bottle.

The new, officially under development, blockchain product will be developed using Hyperledger Fabric, an open-source blockchain environment internationally sponsored by more than 250 participants, including IBM, Intel, and, most recently, DeepDive.

“The goal is to get from eight percent recycling to 100%,” said Stan Chen, Eco-Entrepreneur and RecycleGO CEO. “That’s the moonshot we’re shooting for, and this is our target, and we know we have to use blockchain to do it.”

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