Today I got an email in from a manufacturer of a new plastic wall panel: AKRIL.
I had a look at the website at www.akril.co.nz.
They claim it is environmenatlly friendly and “can be recycled under recyclable plastic number 7”.
Well, this is No. 7:
Number 7 Plastics: Miscellaneous
Found in: Three- and five-gallon water bottles, ‘bullet-proof’ materials, sunglasses, DVDs, iPod and computer cases, signs and displays, certain food containers, nylon
Recycling: Number 7 plastics have traditionally not been recycled, though some curbside programs now take them.
Recycled into: Plastic lumber, custom-made products
A wide variety of plastic resins that don’t fit into the previous categories are lumped into number 7.
So, it cannot be recycled, max downcycled into low grade products. It will not be taken in NZ at all and will end up in the landfill. If the manufacturer has no product stewardship in place and does not take returns, you end up with waste.
They also claim “Akril has also been awarded a green star rating by The Good Environmental Choice of Australia“
Well, GECA does not rate any products in terms of green star, it’s got absolutely nothing to do with it.
I had a look at the GECA requirements for plastic boards:
188.8.131.52 Resin Identification Codes
Certified products must mark each individual plastic product or component weighing greater than 100g with an
appropriate resin identification code promulgated by the Plastics and Chemical Industry Association.
Exemptions may be made for products where the nature of the manufacturing process or the size and shape of
the product restrict the application of the plastics resin identification code on the product. Exempt products will
ensure that appropriate information describing disposal methods for the product, including the relevant
That’s all to it! Ergo, you put a sticker with a plastics “7” symbol on it and there is your GECA certification (after you paid the invoice).
I send an email to AKRIL asking them why they believe they have an environmentally friendly product, but have not received any reply.