Polyurethanes are based on oil, a finite resource. However, the product qualities of polyurethanes are such that they help to conserve many resources, while at the same time safeguarding high and ever increasing standards of living.
In terms of the environment, polyurethanes actively help fight climate change in a variety of ways:
- As effective insulators, they improve the energy efficiency of buildings and reduce the need for heating and cooling, thereby lowering carbon emissions.
- In vehicles, not only do they ensure comfort and safety, but also enhanced fuel efficiency, because they are lighter than alternative materials.
The polyurethanes industry is constantly striving to improve the end-of-life phase of its products to achieve even greater sustainability. Existing projects demonstrate that recovery schemes reduce the volume of polyurethane waste going to landfill. Indeed, more than 250,000 tons of polyurethanes from European sources are recycled and recovered every year. Furthermore, use of polyurethane waste for power generation in municipal solid waste incineration decreases the need for fossil fuels.