Those who describe uPVC windows as environmentally friendly do so because they focus on the energy efficiency that uPVC windows bring to a home in terms of insulation. Lowering the heating and cooling costs of a building helps to reduce the carbon count of a building.
Another reason why uPVC windows can be regarded as 'green' is that they reduce the use of hardwood in construction. Moreover hardwood windows quickly rot if not constantly maintained whereas uPVC is impervious to all types of weather.
Those who think of uPVC windows as being not environmentally friendly focus on the production and disposal of the windows. Dioxins are released when PVC is made. These dioxins are carcinogenic. The other issue is that it is very difficult to dispose of uPVC. It is not safe to burn and usually it is just buried in landfill sites where it slowly leaches chemicals into the environment.
Veka Group have come up with 1 alternative. They have a large factory in Thuringia in Eastern Germany. The plant is capable of recycling 30 tons of uPVC an hour.
Veka group in Germany now offer a free collection for their unwanted uPVC windows. They will also collect free of charge small items that contain uPVC, like for example old land line telephones.
They also offer this service to other producers of uPVC and fabricators of uPVC windows.
All the waste is crushed and then separated through a series of processes. The iron, glass and uPVC then all be reused to make new uPVC windows. The beauty of the system is that it is closed. No chemicals are released into the atmosphere.
The Veka group have thus moved one small step towards making uPVC environmentally friendly.