Infinite Cycles: Canada’s Innovation Competitiveness in Chemical Plastics Recycling

The Conference Board of Canada, 41 pages, July 25, 2022
Impact Paper by ,
(You must be signed in and entitled to rate this report)


Chemical recycling is an important pillar of plastic innovation. Firms in Canada, the United States, and elsewhere are developing innovative chemical recycling technologies to remedy the limitations of mechanical recycling.

Document Highlights

  • Canada lacks industry-specific research, development, and demonstration programs for chemical recycling innovation.
  • Radical innovations in chemical recycling are crucial to achieving an enduring Canadian competitive advantage. Incremental innovations can be useful where scale and desired environmental outcomes can be achieved in the near term.
  • The federal government should create vehicles that foster connections and diffuse knowledge across regional institutional networks for chemical recycling in Canada.
  • Despite being major hubs for petrochemical plastic production in North America, chemical recycling firms headquartered in Alberta and Texas are scarce. California and Quebec have more firms and higher levels of private venture capital investment.
  • Alberta has the richest talent pool for chemical recycling innovation of all the jurisdictions examined.
  • Entrepreneurial academics have been instrumental in developing intellectual property and forming chemical recycling firms in Quebec.

Table of Contents

Key Findings
Introduction
What Is Chemical Recycling?
Recycling Has Variants
Measuring Up
Industrial Ecosystem
Factor Input Conditions
Firm Strategy, Inter-firm Rivalry, and Technological Capabilities
Demand Conditions
Chemical Recycling Innovation Competitiveness: A Bird’s-Eye View
What Is Old Is New Again
Degrees of Disruption
Bolstering Innovation Competitiveness in Canada

Appendix A—Methodology

Appendix B—Glossary of Terms

Appendix C—Bibliography

COVID-19: Get all the insights

Price: $0

No charge, funded by The Conference Board of Canada and/or the research sponsor

Browse by...
Need Help?