Republic Services opens Las Vegas plastics recycling facility

Credit: Republic Services

Phoenix-based Republic Services Inc., a recycling, solid waste, special waste, hazardous waste and field services company, recently opened its Polymer Center in Las Vegas.

“The Republic Services Polymer Center will supply high-quality, domestically sourced recycled plastic to advance a critical need for more sustainable packaging,” Jon Vander Ark, Republic Services president and CEO, said.  “As a leader in the environmental services industry, it’s our responsibility to challenge every truckload of material we collect. The Polymer Center is another example of our commitment to developing solutions that promote greater circularity and help customers achieve their sustainability goals.”

The facility will process plastic bottles, jugs and containers collected from homes and businesses to produce recycled PET (rPET) flake and color-sorted HDPE and polypropylene to use in sustainable packaging and other applications.  The Polymer Center expects to produce more than 100 million pounds of recycled plastics annually.

Recycling will extend the lifecycle of plastic packaging and turn plastic bottles into new bottles six to seven times.  Currently, recycled plastic bottles are generally downcycled into fiber for use in carpet or clothing.

It is expected that the demand for rPET in the United States will reach 5 billion pounds by 2030.

One of the first customers of the Las Vegas Polymer Center will be the Coca-Cola Company, which has committed to use at least 50 percent recycled material in its packaging by 2030. The company said the Polymer Center is scheduled to supply rPET to Coca-Cola beginning in January 2024.

Republic Services expects a second Polymer Center to open in Indianapolis late next year.