Marine Link
Thursday, December 14, 2017

Antwerp to Implement “Zero Pellet Loss”

October 10, 2017

Photo: Port of Antwerp

Photo: Port of Antwerp

 Unique collaboration between industry, logistics and transport to keep plastic out of the environment.

 
Plastics are found everywhere in modern life. The raw materials of which plastic products are made are polymers, usually delivered in the form of small pellets. Antwerp is the main polymer hub in Europe for production, handling and distribution of plastic pellets. 
 
Every year, millions of pellets find their way via Antwerp to other hubs in Europe. Preventing these small plastic pellets getting into the water or anywhere else where they are not wanted is a top priority in all these activities.
 
The companies in the port have long taken various initiatives to prevent the loss of pellets, but now the entire sector is taking the game to a whole new level. Manufacturing industry, logistics operators and the transport sector are putting their weight behind “Operation Clean Sweep.” 
 
Antwerp is the first port in Europe to sign up for this programme, an initiative of PlasticsEurope. In practical terms a “Zero Pellet Loss” consultative platform is being set up in Antwerp to organise measures for keeping the loss of pellets to an absolute minimum.
 
“Sustainable enterprise is now deep in the genes of our port companies,” says port alderman Marc Van Peel. “They work hard in all sectors to reconcile people, planet, prosperity, peace and partnership. The signing of this charter today is the best proof of the great importance attached to this subject in the world of plastics.”
 
Operation Clean Sweep is an international programme supported by PlasticsEurope, with the aim of preventing plastic litter materials getting into the marine environment. Companies that join this programme undertake to help achieve zero pellet loss. Antwerp is the first port in Europe to sign up for the programme. 
 
Signing the charter on behalf of the port, alderman Marc Van Peel declared: “The fact that all players in the polymer logistics chain are prepared to take part in this programme is key to its success: collaboration gives the best guarantee of obtaining good results.”  
 
As part of Operation Clean Sweep, the Zero Pellet Loss initiative is being organised by Antwerp Port Authority, essenscia (federation of the chemical, plastics and life sciences industries), Voka Chamber of Commerce Antwerp-Waasland: Industry Platform and Alfaport, and PlasticsEurope. 
 
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