MBA has won the prestigious Daniel Eberhardt Environmental Award at the 2014 Global Plastics Environment Conference (GPEC) in Orlando, Florida. The award is the highest accolade to be bestowed by conference organisers, the Society of Plastics Engineers, and recognises MBA’s 22-year commitment to recycling plastic polymers and raising awareness of the importance of tackling plastic pollution. MBA’s founder, Dr Mike Biddle, who gave a keynote address on ocean plastic waste, accepted the award on behalf of the company.
“I’m honoured to receive the Daniel Eberhardt award for our contribution to advancing plastics recycling technologies,” says Biddle. “Every step we’ve taken since we first started out has been driven by a desire to cut plastic waste from our world and transform it into high quality raw materials for use in new products. This kind of circular thinking is vital to conserving natural resources, preventing environmental pollution and ensuring a good quality of life for future generations.”
Biddle founded MBA Polymers in 1992 from his California garage, convinced that there must be a better way to deal with the plastic waste that clogs up our oceans and pervades our landscapes. The company has since grown to become a world leader in recovering post-consumer plastics from complex waste streams – including end-of-life vehicles and e-waste – and transforming them into high quality secondary raw materials. It can process more than 175,000 tonnes of plastic per year at its three high-tech plants in the UK, Austria and China, and works with some of the world’s largest manufacturers to close the loop by offering them a high performing, lower carbon alternative to virgin plastics.
“The award is all the more special because I knew Dan Eberhardt, the founder of MRC Plastics,” explains Biddle. “Dan was one of the first major mono-stream recyclers in the US, and well respected among the plastics recycling community.”
GPEC outlined MBA’s outstanding achievements for polymer recycling, technological innovation, impact and commitment to education among the chief reasons for its decision to present the company with the award. “MBA has gone beyond pioneering new technologies to become a true champion for plastics environmentalism,” says Susan Kozora, IAC Eng. Mgr/GPEC 2014 Chair, Society of Plastics Engineers. “In particular, Dr Biddle is an outstanding spokesperson on the topics of the circular economy and the need to reduce waste, protect our oceans and make the most of our resources. We’d like to congratulate him and his global team on a great achievement and wish MBA well as it looks to expand and increase its processing capacity.”
“Based on MBA’s relentless and un-matched commitment to recycling and environmental solutions for plastics, they are awarded the prestigious Daniel Eberhardt Environmental Stewardship Award,” said Dr. P. Subramanian, the Chairman of the GPEC Environmental Awards Committee and a Fellow of the Society of Plastics Engineers, commenting as he presented Dr. Biddle with the award.
The theme of this year’s GPEC was ‘It’s a green world after all’. The conference, held on 12th-14th March, focused on recycling, reclamation and bioplastics, and welcomed speakers from all corners of the plastics industry to discuss pressing challenges and present inspirational ideas and innovations. Other award winners included Ford, Coca-Cola and Dow Chemicals.