The Vinyl Council of Australia (VCA) and its project partner Specialised Textiles Association (STA) have secured Government grant funding of nearly $350,000 to further research into the recycling of waste PVC and polyester (PES) composite textile products in Australia.
The TexBack project is one of the 15 successful grant applications (out of a total 190 submissions) to receive $349,850 from the National Product Stewardship Investment Fund (NPSIF). The Government’s funding program was launched to promote and stimulate shared action for everyday products with a focus on working to reduce waste generation and increased resource recovery.
TexBack is an industry-driven initiative which aims to steward polyvinyl chloride (PVC)-polyester (PES) composite textile products
and waste which are currently not recovered in Australia.
Range of activities
The Morrison Government’s grant will fund the development of the business case for a national product stewardship scheme for textiles such as grain covers, tarpaulins, advertising banners, tents and marquees, roofing and grounds sheets, truck tarps, marine fabrics, swimming pool liners and upholstery fabrics. The project covers a range of activities, including testing of a new chemical separation technology, that will enable the specialised textiles and vinyl sectors to address the growing concerns of waste ending up in landfill.
The NPSIF has projected 1.5 million tonnes of waste to be diverted from landfill through the initiative and will further boost the economy by creating more than 560 potential jobs.
Developing a uniquely Australian solution will pave the way for the establishment of a new, industry-led product stewardship scheme that recovers a complex local waste stream, reprocesses it within Australia and supports the local manufacture of an innovative recycled content PVC building product being developed here, with export market potential. Local markets for recovered polyester will also be sought.
Welcoming the grant, the Vinyl Council of Australia’s PVC Stewardship Manager, Jan van de Graaff said that TexBack would build on earlier VCA-led research into potential recycling options of PVC coated fabrics conducted over the past four years.
“This grant now gives VCA and STA a real opportunity to collaborate to engage the textile sector in developing a viable scheme for recovery and reprocessing of this waste stream; particularly as there is a potential end-use for the material that will lead to manufacturing of a completely new durable building product in Australia.”