January 19, 2024

Japanese Firm Uses Blockchain To Trace Plastic Waste

Recycling

Recycling

Circularise, a software firm, has recently completed a pilot project in partnership with Japanese companies AMITA and Marubeni Corporation. The project explored the use of blockchain technology to trace plastic waste.

The pilot introduced two digital product passports to track plastic bottle caps throughout recycling. This initiative was trialed in Kobe City, Japan, and involved tracking bottle caps made of polypropylene (PP) and polyethylene (PE) types before and after recycling.

Circularise’s experiment is part of the Japan Circular Economy Partnership (J-CEP), an ambitious project launched in October 2022. J-CEP aims to strengthen public and private partnerships to improve recycling practices in Japan.

J-CEP aims to upcycle waste plastic, recycle food waste, and use environmentally friendly proprietary technologies. The initiative has attracted the participation of over 170 companies from various industries.

Although J-CEP’s efforts have made significant progress, its use of blockchain technology is still in its early stages. Blockchain enthusiasts argue that this technology makes it nearly impossible to manipulate data throughout the supply chain. This ensures the traceability of recycled materials.

Circularise co-founder Jordi de Vos has noted that the company had successfully tested its proprietary “Smart Questioning” technology with six Japanese firms in real-life scenarios. The blockchain-based solution has demonstrated exceptional proficiency in creating a digital product passport without exposing users’ private details.

Circularise has announced the success of its digital product passport pilot with J-CEP. The pilot has shown the potential of digital product passports to revolutionize the recycling industry.

CEO Jordi de Vos has expressed the company’s vision of empowering more businesses with this technology to drive a tangible shift towards a circular economy. However, some critics have raised concerns about using blockchain in recycling, citing the environmental impact of Proof-of-Work (PoW) systems due to their high power demands. Despite this, Circularise plans to raise awareness of digital product passports for consumers and businesses.

Blockchain technology has been gradually gaining popularity and becoming more widely used in various sectors such as finance, real estate, and education. Although it has found its main application in finance through tokenization, other industries are discovering its disruptive potential with new use cases in artificial intelligence (AI), medicine, and even gambling.

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