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Mon May 17 2021

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Knauf invests in glass recycling plant

28 Mar 17 Mineral wool insulation manufacturer Knauf Insulation has signed a long-term deal with Veolia that will see £10m invested in a new glass cullet processing facility next to its manufacturing plant in St Helens.

Knauf’s John Sinfield with Estelle Brachlianoff of Veolia UK
Knauf’s John Sinfield with Estelle Brachlianoff of Veolia UK

Waste management firm Veolia will operate the plant, processing tens of thousands of tonnes of recycled glass, to be used by Knauf Insulation in the production of its insulation products. The crushed glass cullet will be melted and spun into the glass mineral wool products used in the building trade.

Estelle Brachlianoff, senior executive vice-president at Veolia UK & Ireland, said: “This facility will be the first of its kind in the UK and means everything from glass bottles to jam jars will be transformed into energy saving insulation products for houses, offices and other buildings.”

John Sinfield, managing director at Knauf Insulation Northern Europe, said: “Working with Veolia on this investment perfectly aligns with our goals for improving the efficiency and sustainability of our processes. And, given recent building product shortages impacting the construction sector, the announcement also highlights our commitment to proactively working to safeguard our supply.”

Cllr Graham Morgan, chair of Merseyside Recycling & Waste Authority, said: “The authority is always working with its contractors to promote the circular economy in relation to the reuse and recycling of raw materials, and this new facility is an excellent example of local solutions that can reduce costs and the impact on the environment.”

The process of using glass cullet uses less energy than traditional methods of manufacturing mineral wool insulation, Knauf said, with the associated energy saving generated from recycling a single glass bottle equal to powering a 100-watt light bulb for almost an hour.

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