[GRRN] PVC & Autos

RecycleWorlds (anderson@msn.fullfeed.com)
Mon, 20 Sep 1999 11:35:53 -0500

According to the 9/20/99 issue of Plastics News, GM has instructed its
suppliers of car components made of plastics to shift from any presently
made of PVC to thermoplastic olefins (the polyethelene family such as HDPE
and PP) that presently cost 40% more. The stated reason is performance: GM
feels that PVC cracks and bends over time. However, the environmental
issue appears to lie as subtext. I would not automatically exclude the
possibility that GM is attempting to mollify the PVC industry by not
repeating publicly the statements by the toy and blood bag companies which
specifically identified the controversy over PVC as the reason for their
considering changing resins.

As regards recycling, the article states:

"The change also could provide a major charge to the movement to
recycle interior automative parts.
"PVC parts must be separated from olefinic materials before they are
recycled, adding cost to the process. The recycling issue makes TPO a prime
candidate at GM to replace PVC, Sobolewski said."
Peter Anderson
RecycleWorlds Consulting
4513 Vernon Blvd. Ste. 15
Madison, WI 53705-4964
Phone:(608) 231-1100/Fax: (608) 233-0011