Assembly Line

Plastic reuse program could become permanent in Tucson

📅 Date:

✍️ Author: Nicole Ludden

🔖 Topics: Recycling, Material Recovery, Circular Economy

🏢 Organizations: ByFusion

Instead, the plastic was sent to ByFusion, a California company that places plastic into a patented machine that uses steam and compression to churn out 22-pound blocks that fit together with interlocking pegs. Since the material is all superheated, ByFusion can take the discarded food packaging, plastic grocery bags and bubble wrap that standard recycling plants often can’t process.

While the company has collaborated with other municipalities throughout the country, ByFusion CEO Heidi Kujawa said Tucson’s pilot program has been “one of the first in this capacity,” and that “Tucson looks like they could be the first in the world,” to adopt the infrastructure to make the program an official city service.

“One of the reasons why we did the pilot is to just learn and understand how the community was going to react to a service like this,” she said. “Now that we’re armed with that information, it’s clear that we would have increased participation if we were to provide some extending services outside of drop-off locations.”