No. It’s not just about emissions but also water use and waste. The challenges are great. Whether it damages the UK packaging industry depends on how innovative we can be as producers and brand owners. The last years have seen the accountants eliminate a lot of great branded physical pack properties. If we let this challenge beat us down to an unimaginative lowest common denominator, we do not deserve a successful industry. Challenges throw up great ideas – it’s what the British are supposed to be good at.
No – but that’s a heavily conditional and hopeful no. Such an ambitious target is going to demand big changes in packaging manufacturing and change demands big financial commitment. The financial climate isn’t that sunny and for industry to be able to invest and survive, it needs to be commercially supported and incentivised for reaching the incremental targets. Challenging change is good for the creative industry. Brand owners will need to ensure that the ecological impact of their packaging is reduced.
Maybe. We agree that an ambitious CO2 reduction programme is appropriate to address global warming. Sound environmental management represents good business practise. The question is about appropriate allocation of a 50% reduction. We advocate an intelligent approach taking account of the broader scope of sustainability issues, such as packaging closed loop recyclability or toxicity, as well as the national energy supply strategy. Metal and glass could be adversely impacted.
No. Reducing emissions may pose some short-term challenges for industry, but developing a genuinely low-carbon economy will open as many doors as it shuts. Our deal with Coca Cola Enterprises, to develop a new purpose-built plastics recycling facility in Lincolnshire, is an example of a major corporation taking responsibility for its environmental impact. This is the ‘low carbon economy’ in practice. Independent analysis shows that the rPET resin we produce attracts a carbon cost during manufacture of one third that of virgin PET which our material displaces.
Online poll results Yes 38% No 62%
Next month’s question
Supermarkets are reducing their packaging footprint, but can they do more?
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