The fight against plastic pellet loss shifts up a gear. Ten transport companies and their sectoral federations are now supporting the Antwerp Zero Pellet Loss initiative in its actions to reduce and prevent pellet loss, through best practice sharing and ongoing engagement.
Since November last year, ten transport companies, Febetra and Transport & Logistiek Vlaanderen (TLV) joined the Antwerp Zero Pellet Loss Task Force (ZPL TF), whose aim it to implement pellet loss prevention measures.
“The fight against the loss of pellets is a battle that all actors must wage together. We feel it is our duty as a transport organisation to motivate, inform and raise awareness among transporters and lorry drivers about this problem”, said Febetra when joining the initiative.
In the past few months, the Task Force addressed two key areas: the exchange of best practices with respect to the inspection and cleaning of trucks after loading, so as to prevent losses on the road, and; a set of 10 instructions aimed at truck drivers for their loading and unloading operations. A series of educational infographics is also being developed highlighting the key procedural steps, and will be displayed directly on sites where polymers are both produced and handled, at the Port.
“It is important to inform road hauliers sufficiently about the impact of pellet loss on the environment. TLV therefore wants to assist them with best practices and advice on how to avoid pellet loss”, highlighted TLV.
As committed in the Operation Clean Sweep® Action Plan for Antwerp - a set of additional measures to intensify the fight against pellet loss - the Task Force launched a sweeping plan in Spring 2020 engaging both polymer producers and logistics companies, to regularly clean up spills on the Port’s roads.
What is next?
Further outreach will be focused on the missing stakeholders of the logistics value chain. A study on the role of the logistics chain in the fight against pellet loss, carried out by Alfaport Voka, has helped to identify those. For instance, information sessions will be offered to shippers and forwarders after the summer break.
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Operation Clean Sweep® (OCS) is an international programme designed to prevent the loss of plastic granules (pellets, flakes and powders) during handling by the various entities in the plastics value chain and their release into the environment.
The Antwerp Zero Pellet Loss Task Force is the Antwerp plastics value chain platform aimed at preventing, monitoring and initiating actions to remove pellets from the environment. It gathers 12 polymer producers, 6 logistics and 10 transport companies, as well as 5 sector organizations and the Port of Antwerp authorities. It also monitors the implementation of the Operation Clean Sweep® Action Plan for the Port of Antwerp by the companies operating in the Port. The latter plan was launched in November 2019 and outlines practical commitments to intensify the fight against pellet loss.