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I have been studying the application of new recycling technologies because I am concerned with plastic pollution. I have thought of a way to apply new technology differently but the missing piece of the picture was how to find a company that would be willing to work with our city to apply this technology.

With 9% percent or less of plastics being recycled in America because of sourcing and down-cycle challenges, LEGO is positioned to positively transform the way plastics are used and galvanize support for their brand. It would really just take a single industrial leader, operating at scale to make it happen. Others would follow.

If LEGO could transform the way that plastics were produced, and create living wage jobs, would they?

In other words, do they have any motivation to use recycled plastics, or hire American workers, and if so, what motivations?

closed as off-topic by Mr. Shiny and New 安宇, zovits, Kramii, Phil B., Zhaph - Ben Duguid Jun 23 '15 at 14:52

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The LEGO Group has already created clear sustainability goals.

TLG is currently investing money to try to find sustainable and non-petroleum based ways to design LEGO bricks. Here's some info about the new Sustainable Materials Center that TLG is working on:

http://www.lego.com/en-us/aboutus/news-room/2015/june/sustainable-materials-centre

It sounds like they are investing significant money (1 billion DKK, ~150 million USD) and manpower (100 new employees) into solving this problem. They have also made it clear that they want to keep their focus on product quality while exploring sustainable technologies, so it sounds like whatever new plastics they develop will need to be at least as high quality as ABS.

If you are interested in collaborating with them on this, you'll need to get in touch with TLG directly. This is a fan-moderated FAQ site, so you are unlikely to get a response from a LEGO employee. I'd recommend using the "Contact Us" page on LEGO.com.

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Unlikely, since TLG prides themselves on high quality, which somewhat contradicts the notion of reused materials. But there are more practical concerns too:

I'm far from an expert in plastic manufacturing, but I guess it wouldn't be trivial to gather the trash, clean it from any foreign materials, sort by color, remelt and recast into bricks.

Also, recycling would be much better suited to high volume items, like packaging materials, where allowed tolerances are an order of magnitude larger.

LEGO bricks have a very high life expectancy, apart from breaking due to excessive forces or discoloration caused by chemical reactions (which in itself makes recycling quite complicated - who would like their "new" white bricks already yellowed?), there aren't any ways that would transform usable bricks into recyclable trash, so even if implemented, the scale and therefore the environmental impact of this operation would surely be negligible compared to plastic bottle caps for example.

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