While recycling may seem like a relatively straightforward concept, the plastic supply chain proves otherwise. These and many other challenges, from understanding recycled plastics to determining the quality of plastics, lead to a decline in recycling engagement.
Statistics show that the global recycling market will reach $ 377 billion by 2024. However, handling plastic waste has become a problem that affects today’s environment. For example, the United Nations estimates that around 300 million tons of plastic waste is generated worldwide every year. Unfortunately, only 9% of them are recycled. we.
Stan Chen, CEO of recycling platform RecycleGo, told Cointelegraph that the recycling business is “plagued by concerns, a large number of stakeholders and a lack of digital data.” In addition, he believes that the development of the industry is hampered by “the need for more transparency in the supply chain to make better decisions.”
While it is clear that recycling systems are very small, Chen noted that a lot of this has to do with the idea that citizens and businesses do not have sufficient education or incentives to recycle. With regard to increasing the transparency of the recycling supply chain, he also mentioned:
“The more visible you are in any type of supply chain, the more opportunities you have to participate in planning business resources, including pricing and procurement decisions, and inventory management, which directly impacts profit protection and, ultimately, the creation of your value in general. ”
Blockchain technology bridges the gap between the packaging gap
Noah Lehmann, head of communications at the Blockchain Research Institute, co-authored a report with Cointelegraph entitled “Transforming Plastic Pollution with Blockchain.” The document outlines how blockchain technology can support a fairer and more sustainable plastic business by creating a bridge between packaging and the parties that use it. In addition, Lehman explained that blockchain allows parties to securely exchange information without intermediaries.
RecycleGo, which Chen says is responsible for handling £ 1 million of recycling per month, is currently partnering with tech company DeepDive Technology Group to leverage blockchain to provide supply chain transparency.
While it is still under development, Chen explained that the first phase of the project will allow supply chain participants to determine the complete history of a particular plastic bottle. He noted that the partners will be able to decide when to create a plastic bottle, assemble it, turn it back into a mold for raw materials, and eventually send it back to the manufacturer to make another plastic bottle.
DeepDive CEO Misha Khanin told Cointelegraph that the data generated by the plastic recycling industry is highly fragmented, often incomplete and difficult to access. For its part, blockchain provides an excellent solution for the efficient exchange of secure data between different parties without intermediaries.
Khanin said the blockchain product’s RecycleGo strains are powered by the open source Hyperledger Fabric platform. The combination of IoT sensors and QR codes will also be used to collect data from the production site. All data is loaded and written to the blockchain ledger. Khanin said:
“We collect everything of value from the place of production. For example, the geographical location of the bottle. Everything we do to collect data, whether it is relevant or not, is placed on the blockchain as documents that are undeniable and cannot be edited. “.
After the data is collected and recorded on the blockchain, all participants with authorized access can view this information through the web portal, access APIs or other methods. Khanin said: “We are currently in talks with some of the world’s largest home manufacturers in the world on how best to do this. He also noted that RecyleGo is currently testing its blockchain product and it is open to a number of contributors:
“We are creating a blockchain not only for RecycleGO, but for everyone who wants to be part of this network. Our goal is to increase the recycling rate from 8% to 100% in the future. “