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The future belongs to plastics and plastics belong to the future


Title: Plastics: Energy efficient resource use Author: Aafko Schanssema Last modified by: Created Date: 4/14/2006 7:40:26 AM Document presentation format – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The future belongs to plastics and plastics belong to the future

The future belongs to plastics and plastics
belong to the future
  • David Cadogan, ECPI
  • Plasttekniske Dager, Oslo, 8-9 November 2006

  • The threats to our future
  • The importance of energy
  • The role of plastics
  • The in use phase is a key contributor to the
    energy efficiency of products
  • Contribute significantly to the decoupling of
    economic growth and energy demand
  • Life without plastics
  • The unbelievers
  • Summary

Threats to our future
  • Ever increasing use of oil and coal
  • Heating
  • Electricity generation
  • Transport
  • Continual increase in level of greenhouse gas
  • Climate change Now

Consumption of oil gas by sector
Plastics part of our daily life
Packaging and Construction dominate
  • Packaging 39
  • Building construction 23
  • Automotive 8
  • Electric electronic 7
  • Furniture 3
  • Agriculture 2
  • Medical 2
  • Others (household, leisure, sports) 15
  • Total demand in EU25 (2004) ca. 43.5 Million
    tonnes SourceAJI-Europe

The importance of energy
  • All processes need energy for extraction
    /production / distribution
  • Good property balance of plastics products
    provides energy savings across their life-cycle
  • At end-of life additional energy savings possible
    via recycling and/or energy recovery
  • Renewable energy is a priority (and biomass
    developments may benefit from synergies with
    non-renewable waste plastics)

The importance of total life cycle
  • All materials products consume energy resources
  • Feedstock production energy, energy for
  • Materials can frequently save energy resources
  • Less production energy than alternatives
  • Less energy demand in the use phase
  • Energy recovery possible in waste management
  • Study by GUA, Vienna - estimate the net-effects
    of the TOTAL MARKET of plastic products in
    Western Europe on energy demand and greenhouse
    gas (GHG) emissions during total lifetime,
    compared to a case in which plastics would not

Main results of study (Gesellschaft für
umfassende Analysen GmbH - GUA, Vienna, 2005)
  • Total energy to produce, use and recover plastics
    in Western Europe is 3.900 Million GJ/a
  • Substitution of plastics where possible (81)
    would need additional energy of 1.020 Million
    GJ/a ( 26!)
  • Additional GHG emissions if plastics were
    substituted97 Mt/a or 56 more than in total
    life cycle of all plastic products today

Results are equivalent to ...
  • 1.020 Million GJ/a additional energy needed for
    substitution of plastics is equivalent to
  • 22.4 Million tonnes of crude oil or 43 ultra
    large crude oil tankers (a row of 20 km of ultra
    large crude oil tankers)
  • primary fuel input of 10 nuclear power plants
    with 1.000 MW capacity
  • heating and warm water for 40 Million people
    (half of Germany)
  • 97 Mt/a additional CO2 emissions are equivalent
  • 30 of the annual Kyoto reduction target for the
    EU-15 in the period 2000 2012 (319 Mt/a)
  • CO2 emissions from 90 of private cars in Germany
  • all Germans driving 4-5 times per year to the
    Italian beach and back

(No Transcript)
EU Green paper on energy efficiency
  • Europe will import 70 of its energy supply by
  • Growing world-wide energy demand
  • Lack of crude-oil refining capacity
  • Political instability in sensitive regions
  • Europe can save 20 of its energy demand by 2020!
  • Changing consumer behaviour
  • Energy efficient technology
  • Innovation

looking for internal solution
looking for internal solution
Plastics contribute to the energy solution
  • Plastics production, use and recovery are closely
    related to energy efficiency by
  • optimized production of raw materials
  • increasing the energy efficiency of products
    during the use phase
  • contributing to energy efficiency in end-of-life
  • contributing to energy efficiency through
    end-of-life recovery
  • Plastics enable eco-efficient use of natural
    resources and save energy.

What more about decoupling?
  • Limits to what can be achieved by just changing
    raw materials
  • Design and behaviour to improve energy
    efficiencies are critical factors
  • Improving insulation of houses (with any suitable
    material) makes a dramatic contribution

Design and changing behaviour
  • Innovative products make it possible to cut CO2
    emissions and energy consumption
  • 0.3 of the European fossil fuel consumption in
    2003 is used as plastics materials in Automotive
  • Weight savings resulted in an average fuel
    consumption cut of 750 liters per life span of
    150, 000 km
  • Oil consumption reduced by 12 Mt and CO2
    emissions by 30 Mt.

Benefits of insulation also enable de-coupling
(GUA GmbH, Vienna, 2006)
  • Study on plastics insulation (EPS/PUR/XPS) shows
    production energy is recovered after first 4
    months use in insulation of outer walls in EU
    (2004). Over lifetime, energy savings are 150x
    energy needed for production
  • Total use net savings from insulation boards sold
    in 2004 are
  • 290 Million tonnes CO2 over their lifetime and
  • 5150 Million GJ
  • Savings from additional insulation alone
    (ceilings, floors, window frames) would almost
    double the savings given above.

How much is 5,150 Million Giga Joules?
Ultra large crude oil tanker Jahre Viking can
carry 137 Mill litres of crude oil
  • Plastics in use save about 120 Million tonnes of
    crude oil or 216 ultra large crude oil tankers
    lined up for 99 kilometres.

or 10 of the total final energy consumption
of the EU25 in 2002
Increase reliance on other forms of energy
  • Waste phase of plastics offers significant
    potential for resource savings
  • Extensive landfilling of End-of-Life plastics
    means a valuable hydrocarbon resource is being
  • Depending on the ability to sort into homogeneous
    streams of the same type, discarded plastics can
    be recovered as either material for (mechanical)
    recycling or used as a source of feedstock and

The four recovery options of plastic waste
Raw material derived from oil/natural gas
Plastic materials
Consumer products
Mechanical recycling
Feedstock recycling
Energy recovery
  • Plastic products enable significant savings of
    energy and GHG emissions
  • Substitution of plastic products by other
    materials in current applications would greatly
    increase the consumption of energy and the
    emission of greenhouse gases
  • Plastic products help use resources in the most
    efficient way
  • Restricting plastics relative growth would result
    in increased energy consumption

  • Diversion from landfill would increase resource
  • The preferred route for homogeneous and clean
    plastic waste streams is mechanical recycling
  • Waste-to-Energy is an additional resource and is
    complementary to mechanical recycling

  • It is obvious that plastics can play in
    significant role in safeguarding the future of
    our planet. However there is great media coverage
  • Natural is much better than synthetic
  • The Greenpeace pyramid of plastics
  • Endocrine disrupters (BPA, phthalates, all
  • Theo Colburn Our stolen future
  • Increasing asthma, decreasing AGD
  • Falling sperm counts chemicals or life style

  • The future belongs to plastics
  • Without plastics there will be no future
  • Thank you for your patience