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ReVital Polymers, Pyrowave and Ineos Styrolution partner to launch closed-loop polystyrene recycling consortium

Three companies involved with post-consumer packaging recovery have initiated a strategic partnership to recycle polystyrene (PS) packaging collected in consumer curbside and depot recycling systems as well as other sources. ReVital Polymers (Sarnia, ON, Canada), a member of the Circular Polymers Group and processor of post-consumer plastics; styrenics manufacturer Ineos Styrolution (Frankfurt, Germany); and Pyrowave (Oakville, ON, Canada), a company that has developed a process for making PS recyclable even if it has color additives and food residue, have committed to reducing the amount of plastic waste that ends up in landfills and contaminates the world’s waterways and oceans.

ReVital will install Pyrowave’s Catalytic Microwave Depolymerization (CMD) technology as part of its plastics recycling process to convert sorted post-consumer polystyrene packaging into a liquid that contains plastic building blocks, called monomers, which it will hand over to Ineos Syrolution. It will process the material in a final step to return it to a virgin resin state for reuse.

“This is a game changer for consumers and for municipal and industrial, commercial and institutional recycling programs,” said Keith Bechard, Chief Commercial Officer at ReVital Polymers. “Polystyrene packaging, regardless of color, food residue or odors, can be successfully added to recycling programs. For ReVital, this project is an opportunity to increase our range of acceptable feedstock, increase the recovery rate for residential and commercial recycling programs and increase our value proposition to customers.”

Proper recovery of waste PS is a big problem that causes a lack of available material, according to Jocelyn Doucet, CEO of Pyrowave. “Pyrowave’s technology expands the range of acceptable polystyrene feedstock, making it possible to build a new value chain that links ReVital’s processing expertise with Ineos Styrolution’s global end-market capacity.”

The Pyrowave process is an example of how innovation in diversion technology goes beyond resin-to-resin recycling. ReVital’s Bechard explained: “These new technologies can improve recovery capabilities, drive our societies closer to zero waste and enhance circular economy objectives. We are very excited to bring our years of expertise in large-scale plastic recycling operations to support the commercialization of Pyrowave’s technology. We want to be the leader in adopting new circular technologies applied to recycling, and our expertise in innovation makes it a perfect fit for our company.”

“Ineos Styrolution is extremely excited about this project, which brings together major players across the value chain with a smart solution to recycle polystyrene through new, innovative technologies,” said Ricardo Cuetos, Vice President, Standard Products, Ineos Styrolution America LLC. “Chemical recycling enables us to close the loop and prevents valuable waste from entering our lands, waterways and oceans.”

Publication date: 17/10/2018

Plastics Today

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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Last update: 2020-07-14