Artistic suppliers, Crayola, has announced a partnership deal with clean energy company JBI Inc that will see 70m used marker pens recycled to create diesel and other liquid fuels.
The Colorcyle initiative, which was the launched in the United States last month, encourages schools to ensure that students dispose of disused marker pens so that they can be collected and then used as feedstock.
Around 600 schools in the United States have pledged their support for the scheme, and their combined efforts have resulted in 17,000 marker pens being recycled already.
The fuel derived from the pens can be used in ships, boilers and some road vehicles.
John Bordynuik, JBI – “It is an excellent way to handle un-recyclable plastics, and it’s a very critical one because only 8-9 percent of the plastic in the U.S. is actually recycled. The rest goes to landfill”
Crayola manufactures around 60 percent of the world’s marker pens (approximately 700m per year), the vast majority of which end up in landfill once they run out of ink.
The only part of the marker pen that is recyclable is the plastic container, and therefore the product is regarded as waste should it still contain the ink segment upon disposal. Crayola has said that through this environmentally sustainable solution they hope to recycle around 70m marker pens, whilst at the same time educating children about the importance of resource management.
JBI chief of technology, John Bordynuik, is extremely positive about the partnership, noting that it will provide significant environmental benefits.
He said: “At JBI, we are committed to environmental sustainability by diverting plastic waste from landfills and potential incineration. It is an excellent way to handle un-recyclable plastics, and it’s a very critical one because only 8-9 percent of the plastic in the U.S. is actually recycled. The rest goes to landfill.
“Partnering with Crayola is a unique opportunity for our company, and we look forward to a relationship that reduces the amount of plastic entering landfills, while also creating cleaner, lower sulphur fuels.”
JBI chief executive officer, Tony Bogolin, added: “We are extremely pleased to partner with Crayola. By introducing this program, Crayola continues to prove to be a leader, not only in its industry, but also in worldwide waste reduction ethics and social responsibility.”