Situated in a central ‘hotspot’ at this year’s Ecobuild, VEKA plc generated a wealth of interest in its acclaimed closed loop recycling facility, seeing the company not only secure a solid list of leads, but more importantly change the perceptions of the visiting environmental fraternity about its current extrusion operations and ongoing sustainable developments.
VEKA’s stand demonstrated the exact method it uses to break down old PVCu frames for recycling without incurring any significant changes to the physical properties of the material. This means that the company can recycle old windows whilst at the same time making sure that they are taking measures to preserve natural resources, by producing profile that matches the virgin material counterpart exactly.
The message was simple; the fenestration industry must increase its recycling rate and divert the amount of PVCu profiles ending up on landfills. Since its establishment back in 2004 VEKA has proven that its recycling facility works to safeguard those all important limited resources, because extruding recycled PVCu has many benefits such as savings in energy and reduced carbon emissions compared to extruding and using virgin polymer. The benefits are plentiful and have a positive impact on everyone in the whole chain of events from fabricators to installers, right through to the homeowner. VEKA’s closed loop recycling plant is ensuring that PVCu already installed in buildings today can still be utilized in buildings for centuries to come.
VEKA’s environmental credentials are extended further seeing the company manufacture to EN ISO 14001 standards, ensuring that its products and business management reach the highest environmental performance criteria. Also adhering to the BRE’s (Building Research Establishment) minimum life expectancy of 35 years for all its PVCu profiles, VEKA's commercial team offer a complete specification writing service and CAD design service to ensure it products achieve their full life potential.
The company also demonstrated how it works to recycle end of life products, to improve security or energy efficiency, and how it works with fabricators to ensure that their end products can achieve an 'A' rated energy efficient certification.
“The Code for sustainable homes green guide now includes ratings for PVCu which acknowledges the progress made by our industry in recent years and the response we had in our initiatives was overwhelming…our stand was continually busy throughout the full three days,” commented VEKA’s National Commercial Sales Manager Trevor Ranns. “As an extrusion company attending an eco event, peoples perception of our industry are already preconditioned to think we are all about the draining of natural resources, but we worked long and hard to change that by showing them that we operate differently, and it paid off. We took each visitor to our stand on a step-by-step tour on just how the frames are broken up, with metals and glass being sent to other specialist recycling companies, ground down, separated and cleaned into polymer granules ready for extruding into new window profiles with the same high quality as virgin material. We also highlighted how we would work with businesses to collect the PVCu waste product and just how simple it was to start making a change to their current operations.
“We are continually seeking solutions to better the social and environmental challenges that our industry faces to deliver long term value. We understand our business and what society expects of it and our closed loop recycling facility is just one method we can use to help change the face of our industry for the better. As with any manufacturer we can’t produce our products without having some degree of environmental impact, but we can work to heavily reduce that impact and reuse material that is already in existence.”