The new age of PVC pipes: designers, authorities, utilities

Contribution to the VinylPlus Communication Vision
This communication plan, aims at opening a dialogue with the Italian Utilities and at exploring the possibility of cooperation in the two fields of interest for PVC Forum and VinylPlus: piping and waste.

This new dialogue could lead to a new relationship between the parties involved so that PVC Forum Italy/VinylPlus can become in the next years a technical support and quality assurance on PVC pipes for utilities, while the Utilities could become points of collection of those PVC waste to be sent to recycling.

A further objective is to gradually introduce PVC4pipes and its activities, in order to make it become a stakeholder for the utilities, able to support the activity of promotion carried out by the Group pipes of the PVC Forum Italia.

Project Description

  • The project aims at informing and sensitising designers, engineers, municipalities on the benefit of PVC pipes and on the PVC industry ‘s contribution to the circular economy.
  • The project is organised directly involving some of the pipes and fittings manufacturing companies, members of the PVC Forum Italia, and with the support, for some aspects, of PVC4pipes
  • The organisation of a PVC waste collection scheme with the utilities is a further aim of the project

The project includes three phases:

  • 5 courses with Orders of Engineers aimed at promoting PVC pipes for training engineers
  • Contacts with Bodies and Authorities
  • Participation with a booth at H2O, the Italian exhibition dedicated to water transportation
  • Organisation of a workshop at Ecomondo Rimini in November 2016

Progress Made
Phase 1

  • Preparation, printing and realisation of digital support of the documentation for both engineers and authorities regarding: VinylPlus; market; PVC pipes installation; PVC pipes advantages; environmental impact , LCA and sustainability of PVC and PVC pipes; quality tests √ done
  • Preliminary contacts with the Orders of Engineers (Engineers Association) √ done
  • Organisation and management of 5 courses and training sessions with engineers
    • Training courses Brescia, Perugia, Treviso, Trento and Bologna √ done

Direct and indirect contacts with bodies and authorities

This action is being implemented within the phase 2, thanks to the contacts taken with the utilities. In general, in fact, the Italian utilities have a mixed private/public (municipalities) ownership, which should facilitate the creation of relationships with the PVC Forum.

Phase 2

  • Direct contact with Utilitalia √ done
    • Contacts taken with communications department and technical sector water. 
    • PVC Forum and Utilitalia will collaborate at the project Global Water Expo at Ecomondo (see phase 3)
  • Utilities database creation (the list includes about 100 Italian utilities) √ done
  • Newsletter format definition (on the basis of the feedback received , the PVC Forum will evaluate the opportunity of implementing a dedicated software) and preparation of supportive documents, also in cooperation with PVC4pipes (PVC pipes state-of-art and innovation)
    • 4 newsletter already sent 
    • other 8 newsletters are in preparation for 2016 on: 
      • Characteristics of PVC pipes and their correct installation, duration of the performance and operating life, LCA of PVC pipes and fittings, technical and performance specifications for the PVC pipes, the reasons for choosing PVC pipes, pipe market in Italy and Europe, features and high performance of the innovative products, recovery and the recycling of PVC in Italy and in Europe, VinylPlus waste program and results in Italy and Europe, closed loop of PVC and article containing recycled PVC.

Progress Made

Phase 2
Direct contact with some utilities: √ done

  • Seven major utilities were contacted: SMAT, Veolia, Veritas, MM, AcquedottoPugliese, Hera, Acea.
  • A meeting has been organised with SMAT Turin (water management) and Veolia Turin (sewage systems).
  • During the meeting were discussed the issues related to the use of the PVC pipes for sewage and drinking water. All the documents prepared by the Group pipes, and the activities carried out by VinylPlus and PVC4Pipes, were presented. In particular, the PVC Forum addressed the issues related to performance, duration and life cycle of materials, and discussed the position of the utilities on the new procurement code and on the CAM GPP protocols.The Newsletter initiative was positively evaluated, and it has been expressed the need of having more continue and detailed information on PVC pipes systems.
  • A first meeting with Veritas Veneziahas also been organised. This first meeting was entirely dedicated to the waste management (in the zone covered by Veritas), in anticipation of the meetings already planned on the issue with the Italian authorities.
  • Direct contact taken with MM, Acea, AcquedottoPugliese, Hera in occasion of the Utilitalia’sGlobal Water Expo at Ecomondo

Phase 3 (H2O)√ done

  • PVC Forum Italia/VinylPlus at H2O
  • PVC Forum Italy participated with a booth to the H2O, XIII International Water Show, held in Bologna in October 2016, representing the segment of PVC systems for water transport and management. The 2016 edition of H2O saw the participation of more than 70,000 visitors and 77 workshops and seminars.
"H2O Academy” section, dedicated to the training and dissemination program through a number of workshops, seminars, courses and debates, was the most interesting for the PVC Forum Italia. The section presented a new strategic approach to facilitate discussion and debate on various issues: improvement of the transport service, energy efficiency, sustainability, water conservancy, new services and new technologies

euPhase 3 (H2O)√ done

  • PVC Forum Italia/VinylPlus at H2O
  • PVC FORUM participated with a speech to the meeting organisedby Faraplanduring the fair. PVC Forum presented its approach of conscious choice with the comparison of LCAs, outlining end-of-life scenarios in order to propose a direct application of the Circular Economy to PVC pipes.

euPhase 3 (Ecomondo)√ done

  • PVC Forum Italia/VinylPlus at Utilitalia’sGlobal Water Expo
  • In occasion of Ecomondo, Utilitaliapromoted a special initiative called Global Water Expo. The Global Water Expo was a kind of physical “market place” for the water industry, dedicated to the Italian water value chain, involving top national utilities, ESCOs , industry and technologists.
  • At the Global Water Expo , the value chain had the opportunity to meet the producers of technologies and to discuss the issues concerning innovation and sustainability, regulations and development of new markets.
  • Thanks to the collaboration with Utilitalia, PVC Forum Italia had the opportunity to organisea “conference lunch” on “Reasons to choose PVC piping systems” in the framework of the Global Water Expo. The workshop was introduced by Prof. Marangoniof Althesys.
  • Around 25-30 representatives from national utilities, ESCOs , industry and technologists attended the event.
  • A USB key with the handbooks on PVC pipes sustainability prepared by the PVC Forum and info on PVC Forum and VinylPlus (VinylPlus at a glance) was distributed to the attendees.

Participation with a booth
The collaboration with Utilitaliaallowed PVC Forum Italia to have a booth immediately close to the Global Water Expo and to the main Italian Utilities. This exploited the opportunities given by the common area where events, interviews, meetings took place during Ecomondo. Thanks to the good position of the booth, several people visited the desk in order to ask info and suggestions on recycling and on the use of PVC for specific applications.


  • The participation at Ecomondowas also supported with media relations.
  • Following the collaboration with Utilitalia, a dedicated article on PVC pipes has been also published by StaffettaQuotidiana, the most influential and read Italian media on energy and water

Outcomes of the project

  • Reinforced relationship with Utilitalia.
  • Contacts are currently ongoing with Utilitaliain order to organise meetings with some of their members.
  • Contacts open with several utilities. These contacts could also be useful for a follow-up by the PVC Forum Italia and the pipe group of the association.
  • Creation and implementation of a database of the national utilities (nearly 100). The database is utilised for the regular dispatch of a e-newsletter on PVC pipes. No requests of cancellation from the newsletter received to date. It was also decided to continue with the dispatch of the newsletters even over the end of this project.
  • Direct feedback from the market on PVC pipes. Comments taken were generally positive or fair, no particular issues emerged.
  • PVC Forum was invited to participate to the “Servizia retetour 2017”, a conference organised by the editor Tecneditaimed at bringing together utilities, companies and regulators to discuss the world of services, including water transportation.

Follow up 2017

  • Possible follow-up for 2017 as foreseen by the PVC Forum Italia planning
  • Maintain the contacts with Utilitalia.
  • Participate to the meetings organised by Utilitaliawith its members.
  • Develop direct contacts with some of the more important utilities also to verify possibilities of collaborations in the management of the PVC waste.
  • Widening the database with other utilities.
  • Continue with the sending of the newsletters.
  • Participate to the “Servizia rete tour 2017” a conference organised by the editor Tecneditaimed at bringing together utilities, companies and regulators to discuss the world of services, including water transportation.


  • TURQUOISE is a France-based project that for several years has been aiming at developing soft recycled PVC use, particularly PVC floor covering waste.
  • Our partner, Novafloor is one of the only French recycled PVC converter able to develop products made from 100% recycled PVC (rigid and soft)
  • The product range was defined last year and the Novafloor products can be used in building activities: outdoor flooring, cladding, roofing …

The 2016 TURQUOISE project was aimed at developing in France the Novafloor visibility and the associated communication tools in order to increase the Novafloor products sales 

  • The principles steps defined to reach these goals were:
    • Find and realise construction sites
    • Develop the Novafloor press communication strategy

Milestones / Deliverables

  • During this first 2016 semester, Novafloor worked with SFEC on communication items:
  • Develop the Novafloor communication tools:
    • Objective 1: Translate the Website www.Novaplak.com in French, increase the visibility of Vinylplus in the website
    • Done: Document for the translation. 
    • To do : Technical implementation in the Novaplak website
    • Objective 2: Develop some communication tools for the new roofing product “Novardoise” 
    • Done: develop the sticker with the VinylPlus logo
    • To do: Test the Novardoise displays with new stickers in some tested wholesalers
    • Objective 3: Develop a brochure in French dedicated to the Novafloor products containing recycled PVC flooring (Novalame)

  • Done: Specifications document describing the brochure
  • To do : Brochure development (electronic format for the time beeing)

New objective since Spring 2016 : Reviews the Novafloor internal organisation in order to be more efficient

  • Some recurring issues appears during the end of 2015 and beginning of 2016. The identified needs are the following:
    • Faster answers to the customers requests (products adaptations, samples deliveries …)
    • Faster deliveries of the final products when the contract is signed
  • The Novafloor conclusions were that they need a independant structure able to deal with those commercial and logistical aspects: A new engineering structure is beeing create which name will be « Green.I » for Green innovation
    • This structure will deal with the commercial, logistical, ingineering aspects of the Novafloor product
    • Dominique Legrand, ex sales manager of Novafloor, will manage this new structure
    • Daniel Moquet, which is one of the Novalame customer, will be part of this structure
    • The adminitrative actions are in progress

Next steps / actions
Green. I creation

  • The Green.I firm creation is in progress. The firm should be create at the end of the summer
  • Some press releases or communication actions will certainly be planned for the creation of Green.I with Sandrine Wiart, the Novafloor press officer

Communication tools

  • The new Novafloor organisation had as a consequence to delay the development of the communication tools (brochure and website)

During the next months, those tools will certainly have to be modified in order to be in line with the Green.I creation, organisation and communication. Then the development will be finalised, certainly before the end of 2016

Milestones / Deliverables


The commercial activity organisation has been modify in 2016 with the creation of a company dedicated to the commercialisation of the Novafloor products: I.déel

  • Shareolders: Dominique Legrand (ex Novafloor commercial manager), Novafloor and 3 companies involved in construction sector or recycling sector

During the last 2016 quarter the first I.déel communication tool has been developed

  • Website: www. i-deel-in.com

Key Learnings & Hard Points

I.déel creation

  • The I.déel creation was a necessary point in order to optimize the Novafloor products distribution
  • But a company creation involve time investment and a consequence is a delay in some Novafloor/I.Déel actions
  • Those actions will take place in 2017


  • Despite the time needed for the I.Déel creation, Novafloor managed to launch several important construction site with success
  • Novafloor is now recognized as a strong actor of the building sector and some major building companies will certainly continue to work with Novafloor

Next steps / actions

I.déel Communication tools

  • The I.déel creation delayed the communication tools development (brochure and website)
  • During the first semester 2017, those tools will be modified in order to be in line with the I.déel communication.

Other companies?

  • The work with Novafloor and I.Déel is not the only development way for TURQUOISE.
  • We need to develop the possible outcomes for the flooring recyclate and SFEC is still active in new company able and willing to recycle PVC flooring

Contribution to the VinylPlus Communication Vision Novafloor contribution

  • Novafloor is a VinylPlus member for 2 years
  • The Novafloor press release quote VinylPlus as a key partner
  • Novafloor helps PVC industry to increase its environmental performance via a recycling increase of “difficult to recycle PVC”
  • Novafloor is for the moment our only French example on a real end of life PVC flooring recycling. This is really important for the discussions with the French Ministeries.

I.déel contribution

  • The future I.déel communication tools will quote VinylPlus and the actual I.déel website also quote VinylPlus as a partner
  • The VinylPlus communication documents were used by I.déel in order to explain the PVC recycling significance to the bank

PVC recycling


  • 4 AXES
  • PARTNERSHIP SCHOOL BOULLE / UPCYCLER THE PVC (communication on Equipbaie)
  • A MAP WITH 190 ADRESSES OF COLLECTION POINTS (web and press relations and communication on EquipBaie)
  • THE NEW QUALITY MARK « QualiPVC fenêtre » (communication tools and communication on EquipBaie)
  • EXHIBITION EQUIPBAIE (web, tools, press relations)

Milestones / Deliverables

  • 4 AXES
  • January 2016 : PARTNERSHIP SCHOOL BOULLE / UPCYCLER THE PVC (communication on Equipbaie)
  • March 2016 : A MAP WITH 190 ADRESSES OF COLLECTION POINTS (web and press relations ( juin and december) and communication on EquipBaie)
  • September 2016 : THE NEW QUALITY MARK « QualiPVC fenêtre » (communication tools and communication on EquipBaie)
  • November 2016 : EXHIBITION EQUIPBAIE (web, tools, press relations)
Key Learnings & Hard Points 

Outreach to national association "Non-TEPPFA" Company Members

Project Description & Objectives

  • A major awareness campaign specifically targeting members of our national associations who are not company members of TEPPFA and other plastic pipe producers who do not belong to any trade associations
  • Issues to be covered include:
  • Importance of contributing to the TEPPFA annual survey of recycling activities
  • Awareness of the work being done by Vinylplus and the PVC Network related to incoming changes to WFD and the relevance of initiatives related to the Circular Economy
  • A communications programme based on market research conducted in specific countries to identify key issues
  • Communication via:
  1. TEPPFA National Associations
  2. Workshop Events
  3. New multi language TEPPFA Microsite (focusing on key issues)
  4. Wider circulation of TEPPFA E-magazine 

Milestones / Deliverables

  • Market Research
  1. Focus group and individual interview sessions conducted in UK, Germany, France and Poland
  2. Designed to identify key issues for specifiers and end users  including importance of environmental and sustainability agenda including voluntary commitment
  • Communications Programme
  1. Lead PR agency engaged to develop toolkit of key messages to be translated into local language for use by National Associations
  2. Multi-language microsite being developed to ensure consistency of themes and messages
  • Workshop Events
  1. Organised by TEPPFA in conjunction with NA’s and Company Members:
  2. Riga, Latvia
    • Target audience local pipe producers, installers, contractors and architects
    • Programme focused on environmental and sustainability issues including Vinylplus voluntary commitment
  3. Split, Croatia
    • Target audience non TEPPFA member companies, specifiers and local policymakers
    • Programme focused on environmental and sustainability issues including Vinylplus voluntary commitment

Key Learnings & Hard Points

  • The work undertaken by TEPPFA has provided a valuable insight into the opinions and awareness of those engaged in the manufacturing, specifying or installing of plastic pipe systems across the EU states.

  • Key Findings relevant to Vinylplus:
    • Within the pipes sector the importance and relevance of the environmental agenda varies significantly across the EU
    • Those operating in the more “sophisticated” markets such as Germany, UK and France are often quite aware of EU policies and initiatives and the significance of incoming environmental legislation and how it could affect their activities.
    • For those operating in newer member states such as Latvia and Croatia these issues are far more remote. They are often completely unaware of initiatives such as Vinylplus. Plastic pipe manufacturers in these countries generally believe they have other more critical issues to deal with than improving sustainability.
    • The use of recycled materials in plastic pipe production by local SME’s is largely unreported. They are often very reluctant to share such information which they believe is commercially sensitive

  • §It is hoped that the TEPPFA National Associations will be bale to encourage more of their non TEPPFA members to participate in the 2017 recycling survey  

Contribution to the VinylPlus Communication Vision

  • The TEPPFA initiative has contributed to raising awareness of Vinylplus to those involved in the PVC pipes sector particularly SME’s.
  • The market research and workshop feedback provides further insight into the general understanding of the issues being dealt with by Vinylplus on behalf of PVC users and recyclers
  • The new TEPPFA Micro website to be launched in 2017 will provide another important communication channel to reach companies not directly involved with TEPPFA or its National Associations

Achieving acknowledgement for the closed loop recycling of PVC Denmark

Project Description & Objectives

  • The WUPPI system is a well known brand in Denmark
  • Estimated 50-60% of available post consumer PVC waste is recycled via the system


  • Acknowledgement f the results is still low in certain municipalities and among advisors
  • PVC is still being de-selected because of the risk of ending up in the waste stream

The objective of the project is to study, document and mitigate the resistance of using PVC-U for building products in the public area.

Milestones / Deliverables

  • Mapping out the position of using PVC in the 98 municipalities. Our findings so far:
    • Copenhagen is negative: The municipality has an unwritten non-PVC policy
    • 8-10 other municipalities “prefer non-PVC products”
    • Remaining ̴90 municipalities are indifferent
  • Understanding the reasoning for de-selecting PVC (Still under investigation)
    • So far the risk of the waste being incinerated seems to be the most common reason for de-selecting
    • Lack of knowledge is another main driver: Dioxin and heavy metal stabilizers (phased-out in 2001 in Denmark!) is an often used argument
  • Building and executing a communication plan 
  • Meassuring the results of the effort
    • Pending till end of 2016

Building the communication plan

  • A database for companies to receive the WUPPI-newsletters is being established
  • Two editions of the newsletter have been issued: August and December
  • Positive reception: 62 municipalities (of 98) have signed up
  • The WUPPI shareholders and associated members are frequently informing on WUPPI and VinylPlus in own company newsletters
  • Individual pictures and text had been selected and drafted to support 7 WUPPI member companies in communicating the message
  • Companies are a.o. Per Aarsleff, Wavin, Primo and Plastmo
  • The WUPPI information video is ready

  • Wuppi

wuppi newsletter

  • December edition of the WUPPI newsletter:
  • Introduction with summary of the activities in 2016
  • Plastmo story: PVC recycling and the strengths of the material for building material use
  • VinylPlus story: How VinylPlus is a flagship for circular economy
  • Currently 108 subscribers 
  • Opening rate 58 %

Communication activities planned for 2017:

  • Update and maintenance of website – revision of text and graphics, expansion of certain pages, addition of extra pages for news etc.
  • SEO project to increase Google ranking for the website (ongoing process)
  • Establishment of LinkedIn presence
  • Campaign to involve members in the LinkedIn presence
  • 2 sign-up campaigns for newsletter distributed throughout the year
  • Production of 3-4 newsletters
  • Distribution of newsletter stories to news media, via LinkedIn and via members
  • Ongoing PR effort and VinylPlus branding

Key Learnings & Hard Points 

  • The increased focus on circular economy will help pushing the public administration  in direction of accepting PVC as a easy recyclable material
  • Most significand expressed by the municipality of Aarhus (second largest city)
  • Recycling of PVC is difficult from a financial point of view:
  • Land-fill is cheaper
  • Low oil and raw material prices reduce the attractiveness of recycling
  • European standards and especially the Nordic Polymark standards are restricting the possibilities of using recyclate in pipes
  • Transportation cost due to the lack of possibilities for using the lead-containing recyclate in Denmark is an extra financial burden
  • WUPPI will also need support from VinylPlus in the years to come

Contribution to the VinylPlus Communication Vision

  • Business Value:
  • VinylPlus is mentioned in newsletters with a full article
  • Open dialogue:
  • Member companies are encouraged to share news and to encourage employees to learn more about PVC recycling
  • One voice:
  • WUPPI and VinylPlus are being shown as close collaborators and united in a shared vision
  • Environmental performance:
  • WUPPI news and communications always have the focus on the environmental benefits