Pyrochem Project Consortium to Chemically Recycle 1-Million-Tons of Plastic Waste Annually into Feedstock

Source: Press release

The Pyrochem Project aims to process 1 million tons of waste plastic into feedstock for the chemical industry from 2030 onwards. With this project, the project partners intend to reduce 1.7 million tons of CO2-eq annually and save 550 kilotons of petroleum.

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The Pyrochem project partners want to make the chemical industry more sustainable by optimizing and scaling up the chemical recycling of plastic waste and the pyrolysis of other (biomass) residual flows.
The Pyrochem project partners want to make the chemical industry more sustainable by optimizing and scaling up the chemical recycling of plastic waste and the pyrolysis of other (biomass) residual flows.
(Source: Pixabay)

West Brabant/The Netherlands – Much plastic waste such as agriculture foil or potato chips bags cannot be recycled now because it is too dirty or consists of several layers. The Pyrochem project aims to make the chemical industry more sustainable by optimizing and scaling up the chemical recycling of plastic waste and the pyrolysis of other (biomass) residual flows. The ambition: to process 1 million tons of waste plastic into feedstock for the chemical industry from 2030 onwards.

Pyrolysis: chemical recycling by heating in the absence of oxygen

Plastic waste that is currently unsuitable for recycling is often too polluted, such as agriculture foil, or consists of multiple layers such as bags for potato chips or coffee. In the Netherlands alone, we are talking about 629 ktons of plastic waste annually. At the moment this is incinerated, producing energy; a very low-grade form of waste processing.

There is a technology that can process contaminated plastic - but also other (biomass) waste streams - to a high standard: pyrolysis. By means of heating in the absence of oxygen, these waste streams are processed to circular or bio-based building blocks that the chemical industry can use to make new products. Pyrolysis technology is still under development, but successes have already been achieved, for example in the ‘Pyrolyseproeftuin Moerdijk’. The Pyrochem project partners will now scale up the technology and further develop the value chain.

Infographic of the Pyrochem Project.
Infographic of the Pyrochem Project.
(Source: Green Chemistry Campus)

Pyrochem: Waste2Chem Innovation Cluster

The Pyrochem project partners want to make the chemical industry more sustainable by optimizing and scaling up the chemical recycling of plastic waste and the pyrolysis of other (biomass) residual flows.

In the Pyrochem project, Waste4me will be designing a demonstration plant with a capacity of 35 kilotons. In addition, the project partners create a Waste2chem open innovation cluster. Here, SMEs can make use of the facilities of the Pyrochem project partners on favorable terms and use the network in order to optimize their pyrolysis technology and work together on roadmaps towards market introduction. The partners of the Pyrochem project want to chemically recycle 1 million tons of plastic into valuable raw materials every year from 2030 onwards. This will reduce 1.7 million tons of CO2-eq each year and save 550 kilotons of petroleum.

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Intensive collaboration

The partners in the Pyrochem project are working intensively together to make West Brabant a Waste2chem hotspot.

Port of Moerdijk is providing a location for the establishment of pyrolysis plants on a commercial scale, Waste4me is creating a design for the pilot plant and testing five waste streams originating from waste processor Renewi. Van der Kooy is sharing its facilities and knowledge about recycling oils and fats. The Green Chemistry Campus makes the connection with the circular ecosystem in the region and provides a location for pyrolysis activities on a demo scale. The Brabant Development Agency (BOM) is developing the innovation cluster and Avans University of Applied Sciences is providing knowledge in the field of pyrolysis and Life Cycle Analysis (LCA), and involves students.

West Brabant is an ideal location for the Pyrochem project which has a value of 2.9 million euros. This is made possible by the European Regional Development Fund and the province of North Brabant as part of REACT-EU.

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