The definition for chemical recycling encompasses a wide range of technologies and is sometimes used with different meanings. The necessity and mission of the Coalition, to provide a definition and scope for chemical recycling, is to avoid misunderstandings and clearly define what is meant by the term. The European Coalition for Chemical Recycling has agreed that not only the input but also the output of chemical recycling operations is relevant to both the scope and definition of chemical recycling.

The Coalition aims to provide a harmonised understanding that recycling waste does not include energy recovery and the reprocessing into materials that are to be used as fuels or backfilling operations. This in turn is intended to aid the Coalition in setting the scope and boundaries for its work, reflecting the views of the 25 associations involved in bringing visibility and understanding to the concept of recovery of raw materials from waste polymeric products.