Technological watch

Feedstock from chemically recycled plastics for European plants / MoU with UK's Plastic Energy

Feedstock from chemically recycled plastics for European plants / MoU with UK's Plastic EnergyChemical recycling specialist Plastic Energy operates two plants in Spain (Photo: Plastic Energy)Saudi Arabia-based chemicals and plastics giant Sabic (Riyadh; has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with British company Plastic Energy (London; to supply feedstock chemically recycled from plastics waste for its petrochemical production facilities in Europe. Sabic, which claims to be the first petrochemicals producer to launch an industrial project involving this type of chemical recycling, said it represents an important step in the group?s commitment to the EU drive to create a circular economy.
Together with Plastic Energy, the Saudi player with a large European presence plans to build a first commercial plant in the Netherlands to refine and upgrade ?Tacoil,? a patented Plastic Energy product derived from recycled low quality, mixed plastics waste that otherwise would be incinerated or landfilled. The plant is planned to enter commercial production in 2021.
The UK chemical recycling specialist has developed a technology to convert what it says is a ?wide range of end-of-life, dirty and contaminated plastics, hardly recyclable for conventional processes? into usable feedstock. In the process, the plastics are melted in an oxygen-free environment and then broken down into synthetic oils that need to be refined and upgraded as feedstock for traditional petrochemical uses.
Frank Kuijpers, general manager for corporate sustainability at Sabic, said the circular economy is a cornerstone of the group?s sustainability strategy and a testament to its commitment to scale-up advanced chemical recycling processes of plastics back to the original polymer. After investing more than 10 years of experience developing its technology, Plastic Energy now has two commercial plants in Spain, one in Seville and the other in Almería. ?Our advanced expertise will promote this new opportunity to turn plastic back into plastic as part of the circular economy,? said the company?s founder and CEO Carlos Monreal.
Plastic Energy is already a partner in a number of European circular economy initiatives ? see of 14.03.2018. Among others, it collaborates with the sustainability agency Waste and Resources Action Programme (Wrap, Banbury / UK;, which co-founded the ?UK Plastics Pact? in May of this year with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation (Cowes / UK; ? see of 04.05.2018. The company is also a platinum partner in Waste Free Oceans (Brussels / Belgium;, a foundation that partners with recyclers, converters and brands to make optimal use of available resources and raise awareness on the issue of ocean plastics.14.12.2018 [241332-0]

Publication date: 14/12/2018


This project has been co-funded with the support of the LIFE financial instrument of the European Union [LIFE17 ENV/ES/000438] Life programme

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