Plastics: Less PET Resin Used for Water Bottles

May 2, 2013
The International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) has announced that new data from the National Association for PET Container Resources (NAPCOR) and the Beverage Marketing Corporation (BMC) show the bottled water industry continuing to show significant increases in recycling and the use of less plastic in single-serve PET bottled water containers.

According to NAPCOR, the recycling rate for single-serve PET plastic bottled water containers, now at almost 39%, has more than doubled in the last seven years. And, BMC found that over the last 11 years, the average weight of a 16.9-oz (half-liter) single-serve PET plastic bottled water container has dropped by almost 47.8 percent, to 9.9 g.

Additionally, data released by BMC on Jan. 31, 2013 shows that between 2000 and 2011, the average weight of a 16.9-oz (half-liter) PET plastic bottled water container has declined 47.8 percent. This has resulted in a savings of 3.3 billion pounds of PET resin since 2000.

According to a January 2013 internal NAPCOR study, the national recycling rate for PET plastic bottled water containers jumped dramatically in 2011 to 38.6 percent, representing an increase of nearly 20 percent over the previous year’s rate of 32.25 percent.

“The bottled water industry utilizes a variety of measures to reduce our environmental footprint,” says Chris Hogan, IBWA’s vice president of communications. “All bottled water containers are 100 percent recyclable. And, when you do the math, it turns out that of all the plastics produced in the U.S., PET plastic bottled water packaging makes up only 0.92 percent; less than one percent. Moreover, plastic bottled water containers make up only one-third of one percent of the U.S. waste stream, according to the EPA.” 

>> Anne Marie Mohan, [email protected], is an Automation World Contributing Writer.