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IHS Markit Analysis Indicates Need for Multibillion-Dollar Capital Spending to Achieve a “Circular Plastics Economy” by 2050

HOUSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Ambitious goals for attaining a circular plastics economy could be achieved by shifting a portion of the future investment required to meet the growing demand for plastics towards advanced recycling methods, according to a new analysis by IHS Markit (NYSE: INFO), a world leader in critical information, analytics and solutions.

Approximately $1.5 trillion in investment by the global plastics industry would be required to meet growing demand for consumer plastics to 2050. Under current market trends, progress towards a circular economy for plastics would be modest, relying primarily on mechanical recycling. More ambitious goals, targeted at reducing the practices of landfill, incineration and energy recovery as end-of-life solutions for waste plastics may be achievable by redirecting a portion of new manufacturing investment towards a wider range of plastic recycling facilities, including both mechanical and chemical recycling, especially as the latter become more economically feasible.

According to the IHS Markit analysis, more than $300 billion of the total capital spending earmarked for new plastics production capacity can be redirected to mechanical and chemical recycling processing capacity thereby meeting the goals of an aggressive circular economy case.

The findings are part of the new IHS Markit Circular Plastics Service provides a comprehensive, scenario-based evaluation of how the plastics value chain is expected to transition from a linear to a circular economy. It addresses implications of carbon intensity and the impact on future capital investments within the context of energy transition and carbon valuation, amid changing policy and regulations. This service quantifies the magnitude and timing of substantial market shifts, identifies key regulatory and societal risks and provides ongoing tracking of fast-moving developments. It is essential insight and analytics to reformulate your company strategy.

IHS Markit (NYSE: INFO) is a world leader in critical information, analytics and solutions for the major industries and markets that drive economies worldwide. The company delivers next-generation information, analytics and solutions to customers in business, finance and government, improving their operational efficiency and providing deep insights that lead to well-informed, confident decisions. IHS Markit has more than 50,000 business and government customers, including 80 percent of the Fortune Global 500 and the world’s leading financial institutions. Headquartered in London, IHS Markit is committed to sustainable, profitable growth.

IHS Markit is a registered trademark of IHS Markit Ltd. and/or its affiliates. All other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners © 2020 IHS Markit Ltd. All rights reserved.

Publication date: 11/10/2021

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Last update: 2022-01-31