MARINE LITTER
South Korean car maker Kia partners with The Ocean Cleanup / New automobiles could use 20% more reclaimed plastics
The Ocean Cleanup’s founder and CEO Boyan Slat (right) and Kia’s president and CEO Ho Sung Song (Photo: TOC)
As it steps up its activities to rid the world’s rivers and oceans of plastics waste, Dutch non-profit The Ocean Cleanup (TOC, Rotterdam; www.theoceancleanup.com) is joining forces with a growing number of commercial partners to support the work of its river-going vehicles (see Plasteurope.com of 17.01.2022).

The latest collaboration is with another major plastics user. South Korean car maker Kia (Seoul; www.kia.com) has agreed not only to provide funding and in-kind contributions for the non-profit’s ocean-cleaning operation, it will also help with the construction of parts for The Ocean Cleanup’s Interceptor Original river-cleaning devices and integrate part of the recycled plastics waste into new automobiles.

Overall, Kia has said it plans to increase its use of recycled plastics in finished vehicles to more than 20% up to 2030 and also hopes to contribute to protecting the environment by actively recycling used car batteries and plastics from scrap cars. One of its future projects foresees activating a “Virtuous Recycling Loop” to minimise climate impact when disposing of vehicles.

Related: The Ocean Cleanup is back in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

In November 2021, the carmaker announced its intent to become a sustainable mobility solution provider as it steers its fleet toward all-electric vehicles such as its new EV9. It also plans to gradually increase the use of eco-friendly materials in car interiors generally.

As part of the seven-year collaboration with The Ocean Cleanup, Kia will supply four electric vehicles, including one EV6 and three Niro EVs, in exchange for rights to suitable plastics material collected. The organisation will also share its accumulated data on reducing plastics pollution with the Asian automotive giant.

At a signing ceremony in Seoul together with The Ocean Cleanup’s founder and CEO Boyan Slat, Kia’s president and CEO Ho Sung Song said the link-up underscores his company’s vision to build a sustainable future for mobility and is, moreover, one of a number of “inspirational movements” it hopes to pursue with partners that possess innovative technologies and ideas.

“Plastic is not inherently a bad material, but we must use it responsibly,” said Slat, noting that with its projects to curb marine litter, The Ocean Cleanup “is demonstrating how pollution can be turned into a solution, in particular proving that recycled plastic can be used sustainably”.

Related: Faurecia collaborates with Veolia for sustainable car interior compounds
27.05.2022 Plasteurope.com [250336-0]
Published on 27.05.2022

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Date of print: 03.07.2022 01:22:39   (Ref: 18908119)
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