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Quality Protocol for flat glass published

Post Time:Feb 02,2009Classify:Success StoriesView:895

WRAP and the Environment Agency have published a final version of the Quality Protocol for flat glass, defining when it is no longer classified as a waste and aiming to make it easier for glass manufacturers to source larger quantities of high quality flat glass cullet.

The protocol, which was produced following consultation with the UK glass industry and other stakeholders, aims to provide glass collectors, recyclers and reprocessors with clear standards and guidance on when cullet from flat glass, such as window panes, is suitable for reuse or reprocessing.

WRAP and the Agency hope that suppliers of flat glass cullet will be able to guarantee the quality and consistency of their product by complying with the protocol, thereby increasing its attractiveness to manufacturers of flat glass, abrasives, bricks and ceramics as an alternative to using virgin raw materials.

Marcus Gover, market development programme director at WRAP and joint project executive, said: "The introduction of the flat glass Quality Protocol will yield a number of environmental benefits, and help to hit the government's sustainability targets.

"An estimated 500,000 tonnes of flat glass currently being sent to landfill each year could be used in manufacturing. The industry experts drawn together to form the technical advisory group behind this Quality Protocol take the view that if more flat glass of sufficient quality could be supplied then it would certainly be used," he added.

The standard for flat glass is the third Quality Protocol to be finalised by the Waste Protocols Project, with guidance already having been published on non-plastics packaging and compost, and a Protocol on anaerobic digestate currently subject to final approval from the European Commission before being published.


Mr Gover claimed that using flat glass cullet would offer both cost and environmental savings to manufacturers.

He said: "From the point of view of the glass manufacturing industry there is a strong economic case for using more cullet because of the cost benefits it offers. Re-melting cullet uses 25% less energy than making glass from raw materials, and each tonne of cullet saves around 1.2 tonnes of raw materials.

"In addition, even when taking collection, transport and processing costs into account, cullet can often be purchased more cheaply than the corresponding virgin materials," he added.

Last week, the Waste Protocols Project launched a new appeal for industry to come forward with further material streams that it could consider for the potential publication of a Quality Protocol.

Source: letsrecycle.comAuthor: shangyi

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