Press release: Indaver receives permit to build a new plant for the chemical recycling of end-of-life plastics

Waste management company Indaver has received the environmental permit to build a new demo plant for recycling 15,000 tonnes of end-of-life plastics each year. This is an important step towards creating a facility that will recycle around 50 tonnes of plastics into valuable raw materials for the industry every day.

Indaver is planning to install the facility on its site on the right bank of the port in Antwerp and intends to start treating the first waste streams in the summer of 2021.

Society demands solutions

Plastic is a lightweight and strong material that can easily be tuned for numerous useful applications and is therefore widely present in our daily lives. Plastics are produced using oil and are available in a wide range of compositions. These excellent properties, made possible by additives or multi-layers etc have the drawback that in many cases they make recycling some  plastic waste streams challenging. Today the limits of plastics recycling have become an issue that is high on the societal agenda. 
Europe is demonstrating a clear ambition to provide a sustainable solution for end-of-life plastics. This goal to recycle plastics has been translated into European law. With the EU packaging directive, the European Union has refined its recycling goals considerably. In addition, the goal to recycle plastic packaging waste has doubled from the current 22.5% to 55% by 2030. Belgium is taking it a step further and wants to recycle 70% of household plastic packaging waste and 65% of industrial plastics packaging by 2030.  


Creating value for end-of-life consumer plastics

Indaver is constantly striving to reclaim materials and energy from the waste streams it treats and thus to close the materials chains without losing quality. It is continuing to fulfil this ambition with Plastics2chemicals (P2C). For example, the Plastics2chemicals plant offers a recycling solution for both mixed polyolefins and polystyrene. Polyolefins (PP and PE) and polystyrene (PS) are used among other things, to produce electronic devices and packaging materials , such as margarine tubs, films, cups, yoghurt pots, etc.  

Paul De Bruycker, Indaver CEO:

"With our innovative Plastics2chemicals project, Indaver will be able to recycle plastics successfully into base chemicals for the industry.  We are thus realising our ambitions to be a waste management company that plays an essential role in the circular economy. We are reclaiming valuable raw materials from plastics and thus creating value for society and our customers.”

Since the collection and sorting of plastic packaging materials is constantly being refined, over the next few years more fractions will become onto the market that are suitable for new recycling technologies such as P2C. 


Plastics2chemicals, a circular solution

With its Plastics2chemicals project Indaver has developed an innovative depolymerisation technique to convert plastic waste into base chemicals. During the treatment process, the plastics are broken down into smaller carbon chains or monomers. The polyolefins (PE and PP) will produce base products such as naphtha and wax. The polystyrenes will be broken down into monomers that are re-usable as raw materials. P2C thus provides new raw materials with the same virgin qualities as primary raw materials. The recycled products will fit the requirements for direct industrial use in petrochemical processes. The new polymers are also fit for food applications. Thus guaranteeing a sustainable loop for the future.

From pilot to large-scale solution

Since 2017, Indaver has expanded and tested the new process successfully in a laboratory environment in collaboration with Ghent University and the University of Antwerp. With the installation of the new demo plant facility in Antwerp the process is being scaled up from 2kg/hour to 2 tonnes/hour. Primarily, the plastics2chemicals demo plant will further adapt the end-quality of the raw materials to customers’ specifications. If the demo plant confirms our expectations, we plan to install large-scale facilities at strategic locations across Europe, which are dedicated to recycling both polystyrene and polyolefins.  P2C could therefore represent a veritable revolution for the end-of-life plastics recycling market. 


Further information

Inge Baertsoen – Communications Manager - +32 497 970570 – inge.baertsoen@indaver.com

Indaver 
Indaver is a European Player with plants and operations in Belgium, the Netherlandsbe Germany, Portugal, Italy, Ireland and the United Kingdom. Indaver manages and treats industrial and household waste in specialist facilities for the industrial sector, waste collectors and governments. Valuable raw materials and energy are recovered from the treated waste streams. Indaver therefore creates value from waste and helps to close the materials loop in a safe low-carbon and energy-efficient manner. This makes Indaver the ideal partner in the pursuit of a sustainable circular economy. In 2018, Indaver achieved a turnover of 543 million euros with its 1,700 staff throughout Europe.
More information on www.indaver.com
 
 

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