Rubicon Reports on New Plastics Economy Progress

Rubicon’s mission is to end waste, in all of its forms.

In October 2018, Rubicon was among the first 250 signatories of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy Global Commitment. By promoting increased accountability and supporting innovation throughout the plastics supply chain, the New Plastics Economy envisions a world without plastic waste—a world where all plastic packaging is reused, recycled, or composted.

This is an ambitious but urgent mission: At present, only 14 percent of plastic packaging is collected for recycling, with the majority of it being landfilled, incinerated, or leaking into the natural environment. Plastic that is not properly collected and managed impacts natural ecosystems and finds its way into our oceans and other waterways. The amount of plastic in the oceans continually increases, and it is estimated that there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean by weight in 2050.

Plastic leakage is not only costly to clean up, but counterproductive in the fight against climate change. When plastic escapes the collection system, it leads to the production of more virgin plastics, a carbon intensive activity.

As a signatory of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, it is our commitment to publicly report on our progress against the commitment we made to grow the volume and quality of recycled plastics by 15 percent each year from a 2018 baseline. This year, Rubicon is proud to report a 40 percent increase in the volume of recycled plastics from 2018 to 2019, which far exceeds the goal we set.

We attribute our success to our growth as an organization and to the work of our Account Management, Commodities, Circular Solutions, and Sustainability teams, who have worked together to effectively engage our customer partners on ways to maximize the value, impact, and viability of their recycling programs. Additionally, we continue to expand the portfolio of innovative closed-loop solutions for “hard-to-recycle” plastic materials we are able to offer our customers.

Despite the global downturn as a result of the COVID-19 public health emergency, and its reverberations through the recycling industry, we remain steadfast in our mission to end waste, in all of its forms, and we are committed to increasing the volume of plastics we recycle in 2020 by 15 percent.

To learn more about Rubicon’s work transforming the entire category of waste and recycling, be sure to download our inaugural Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Report.

If you would like to learn more about Rubicon’s sustainability offerings, please reach out to Rubicon’s Sustainability team directly at sustainability@rubicon.com, or contact our sales team at (844) 479-1507.


Alyson Wright is a Sustainability Analyst at Rubicon. To stay ahead of Rubicon’s announcements of new partnerships and collaborations around the world, be sure to follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, or contact us today.

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