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<Report> Recycling of end-of-life building glass

Glass for Europe, 2013

Despite its recyclability, end-of-life building glass is almost never recycled into new glass products. Instead it is often crushed together with other building materials and put into landfills or recovered.

Most of the flat glass used in buildings could be dismantled and recycled in glass furnaces. The flat glass industry is eager to support the development of end-of-life building glass collection, sorting and recycling and is ready to use more recycled glass in its manufacturing process, and therefore save raw materials, energy and CO2 emissions.

The absence of an in-depth European study on this issue has resulted in a shortfall of reliable data on quantities of end-of-life building glass and current practices across Europe on sorting, collection and recycling. Such a study is needed as a first step in order to apprehend the scale of the challenge and in order to identify best practices.

Many different steps need to be taken before waste glass can be recycled by the glass industry. The biggest challenges are linked to the creation of recycling schemes able to ensure and organise the dismantling of windows or glazing from buildings before demolition, the collection of these windows or glazing after building demolition or renovation, and the segregation of glass from other window components before recycling in a glass furnace.

Link to 'Recycling of end-of-life building glass'


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