Director of Circular Economy & Sustainability
I thought I knew about polystyrene, coming to AmSty in April after a three-decade career in the paper and packaging industry. But what I thought I knew didn't even scratch the surface.
Having spent the last six months immersing myself in Amsty, a company leading the way in circular recycling of polystyrene, I've quickly come to realize that the material is nothing short of amazing.
While this list is just the tip of the iceberg, polystyrene enhances our lives in many ways:
The best part? Polystyrene is now continuously recyclable. AmSty is an innovator, creating the first circular recycling technology to keep polystyrene off the land and out of the landfills. We do this by recycling polystyrene products back to their original quality and durability so they can be used over and over again – much like aluminum can recycling.
Our long-term vision at AmSty is that polystyrene products should never be landfilled, but reclaimed, recycled and reused again and again.
The above list of benefits is long, but that's not to say polystyrene is without its challenges.
The litter and landfill waste problem is real, but that's where circular recycling comes in. AmSty is leading the way, recycling polystyrene each year at Regenyx, a joint venture between AmSty and Agilyx. We've also forged key partnerships and are collaborating with others in the industry to move the technology forward and make circular recycling just as commonplace as the recycling of aluminum and paper. In the near future, we'll be purchasing circular feedstocks from Encina that can be converted and used by companies in products to help meet their important sustainability goals.
It's going to take continued work with state and national governments to support legislative frameworks, as well as extended producer responsibility (EPR) where the plastics industry takes ownership to initially fund the infrastructure needed for collection and recycling.
AmSty is early in the journey, but we'll get there as we work with both a sense of urgency and excitement. We will not let up as we continue to make progress toward establishing a circular economy for a material that makes our lives better and, with infinite recycling, protects our planet, too.