The RE3 – Rethinking Resources and Recycling – project is part of a consortium of eight new projects funded by UKRI and based at single higher education institutions, all of which are interdisciplinary collaborations that will bring new thinking to the plastics challenge.

The aims in RE3 are to:

i) reduce the need for plastic by addressing demand,
ii) improve the materials used to deliver better performance and clean degradation,
iii) demonstrate new methods for recycling soft and mixed plastics/non-plastic films (currently very difficulty) and removal of micro plastics from source; and
iv) create smart circular economies that allow users to take ownership of and reduce plastic waste.

Professor Duncan Wingham, UK Research and Innovation’s Lead for the Plastics Research Innovation Fund and Executive Chair of the Natural Environment Research Council, said: “These eight multidisciplinary research projects will lead the way in finding new solutions to our current use of plastics, through recycling methods and developing alternative materials. UKRI is drawing UK researchers together with companies to address the challenge of reducing plastic waste entering the environment and creating an economy that is free from plastic waste.”

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