Sign & Digital Graphics

March '20

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1 2 • M A R C H 2 0 2 0 • S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S tics—such as PVC and HDPE sheets— are an ideal choice because they already contribute to sustainability: durable construction designed to replace wood, metal, and other traditional materials in a variety of applications (therefore reduc- ing high-turnover replacement needs); and fuel efficiency and energy savings in transport. And – ultimately – these mate- rials are recyclable." Duffy notes that sign shops using rigid substrates that include a percentage of recycled material is a good start to going green. "More importantly, PSPs that regularly use expanded PVC should look beyond the content of the board, and for- ward to what happens when that graphic is ready to be retired. While there are some take-back programs available, sign and digital print shops should ensure the selected program doesn't simply dump the material in a landfill, but instead returns it to a responsible recycler that can clean, sort and repurpose the content into sustainable performance plastics." Recycling Program In October 2019, Vycom unveiled plans for its new Recycling Take-Back Program intended to take back and recy- cle printed and unprinted PVC sheets, as well as scraps and drops from finishing and fabricating. Duffy says the program is intended for users of PVC, but can also accommodate PP and PE products —in coordination with authorized distribu- tors for drop-off or collection—to recy- cle used signage and scrap. The materials are returned to the company's facilities and recycled into the company's prod- ucts, ensuring these materials do not end up in landfills. He adds that Vycom's sister brand, TimberTech, operates a 100,000 square foot recycling plant in Wilmington, Ohio. "This dedicated facility accepts post-consumer and post-industrial recy- cled polyethylene materials from retail- ers, waste management companies and municipalities for reprocessing into mul- tiple product lines including TimberTech deck boards. PVC scrap and used graph- ics are also used in the core of the deck boards." Using Recycled Media He says that the company offers a number of green products. "Vycom's Celtec line of foamed or solid PVC sheet products generally contain around 20% of post-industrial recycled material. Vycom's line of HDPE sheet products including Polycarve can contain up to 100% post-consumer or post-industrial recycled material. Recycled content is from internal sources, or obtained from waste management companies or munic- ipalities." He notes that the company's Scranton, Pennsylvania plant, can process more than 40 million pounds of recycled PVC and HDPE material per year, with capa- bilities including shredding, grinding and pulverizing scrap, to convert to raw materials for Vycom's sheet products, or for use in other offerings manufactured These projects were created by Digital Sign Services utilizing EFI VUTEk 5r+ LED superwide roll-to-roll printers that offer green "cool cure" LED technology.

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