HP "closed loop" ink cartridge recycling

HP’s leadership with “closed loop” plastics recycling for ink cartridges began in 2005 with our recycled polyethylene terephthalate (RPET) initiative. RPET plastic from this process has a 33% lower carbon footprint and 54% lower fossil fuel consumption in its production than new plastic—even when accounting for the environmental impact associated with collecting, transporting, and processing used cartridges and plastic bottles1.

Manufacturing Original HP ink cartridges with recycled plastic instead of virgin plastic reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 6,900 tonnes in 2013—equivalent to taking 1,455 cars off the road for one year2. We have built on this success with a second “closed loop” plastics initiative involving recycled polypropylene (RPP)—polypropylene is used in a significant percentage of HP’s inkjet supplies. This new initiative became fully commercialized in early 2014, having started development in 2010. The RPP program combined with the existing RPET initiative has led to more than 75% of our Original HP ink cartridges containing recycled plastic. In addition, 24% of HP LaserJet toner cartridges contain recycled plastic.

As of the end of January 2014, we have manufactured more than 2 billion Original HP ink and toner cartridges using more than 62,000 tonnes of recycled content material. Through this process, HP has contributed to the “circular economy” by keeping 566 million cartridges, 498 tonnes of polypropylene hangers, and 2.5 billion postconsumer plastic bottles out of landfills.

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1 For RPET cartridges produced in 2013 and beyond. Based on a 2014 life cycle assessment performed by Four Elements Consulting and commissioned by HP. The study compared the environmental impact of using polyethelene terephthalate (PET) plastic with the environmental impact of using recycled PET to manufacture new Original HP ink cartridges. See details..

2 Calculated with the EPA Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator. See details..