Renewing Plastics and Ghanaian Women’s Livelihoods

Ending plastic waste in the environment is an ambitious goal that can only be achieved through industry collaboration and partnering with non-profits like the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (the Alliance), who share our passion for harnessing the power of circularity. As a founding member of the Alliance, LyondellBasell provides project funding and leverages our industry network to engage the technical leaders, engineers, scientists and practitioners needed to advance innovative solutions around the world.

We are extremely proud of a pilot project in Africa called Closing the Loop which is run by the ASASE Foundation and supported by the Alliance. The project is empowering Ghanaian women in the city of Accra by turning the collection of plastic waste into meaningful job opportunities. These entrepreneurs sell the waste to the CASH IT! recycling facility, which regrinds what is collected and sells it to produce household and building materials. The impact of the project is significant. Not only are women cashing in on the plastic waste in their community, but they are also contributing to a cleaner, circular economy. Collectors can sell their waste every day and provide for their families, waste management issues are alleviated, and over 100 new jobs in the local recycling sector have been created.

The support and knowledge provided by the Alliance has advanced their work beyond what CASH IT! thought was possible. When they started this project in 2019, they processed 35 metric tons of plastic waste annually.

Today, they have increased processing capacity to 500 metric tons of plastic a year, an almost 15-fold increase. Industry insight and guidance helped build and repair essential machinery sourced second-hand from scrap yards and markets, including shredders for hard and soft high density polyethylene (HDPE) plastics and a dehydrating unit for HDPE sachets.

To learn more about our sustainability efforts, visit our page here