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Inter Pipeline commits $10 million to research plastic waste reduction

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Inter Pipeline and the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) have partnered to research opportunities to reuse and recycle plastic in Canada.

The 10-year agreement, which is known as Plastics Research in Action (PRIA), will be funded through a $10 million (€9.1 million) commitment from Inter Pipeline, which represents the largest applied research partnership in NAIT’s history.

"Our partnership with industry is fundamental to who we are as a polytechnic,” said Dr. Glenn Feltham, president and CEO of NAIT. “This agreement showcases how NAIT plays a vital role in helping industry to find solutions to the problems they are facing. We are proud of our partnership with Inter Pipeline.”

"I'm confident that the researchers at NAIT will find new opportunities to help keep plastics out of our environment and extend their useful life," added Christian Bayle, president and CEO of Inter Pipeline. "Today in Canada, nearly 80% of all post-consumer plastics end up in landfills. Inter Pipeline believes that innovative thinking is critical to addressing this complex societal issue and is very pleased to do its part through this long-term funding commitment."

Possible research projects under the partnership including examining opportunities for plastics to be reused, retaining the value of the product, and supporting the ideals of a circular economy. Some of the applied research funding will be dedicated to improving sustainable practices at Inter Pipeline’s Heartland petrochemical complex.

The polypropylene manufacturing process at Inter Pipeline's complex is estimated to generate 65% less greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than the global average, and 35% less GHG emissions than the North American average.