Ineos Pushes More European Recycling Projects

  • Ineos Pushes More European Recycling Projects (c) IneosIneos Pushes More European Recycling Projects (c) Ineos

Ineos is pressing full speed ahead on plans for jumping on board the European circular economy train, which is gathering more and more steam.

Over the past two weeks, the Swiss-headquartered group has dribbled out a few more details of its plans to meet the targets of the EU’s Circular Economy package passed in 2018, which foresee a recycling rate of at least 50% by 2025.

From a UK perspective, Ineos has agreed to cooperate with waste collection specialist Viridor to draw recovered post-consumer polymer from Viridor’s new £65 million recycling plant at the Avonmouth Resources Recovery Center near Bristol, England.

Under its Resources & Waste Strategy and the UK plastic tax planned for 2022, the British government is supporting recycling projects such as those Ineos envisages.

This week Ineos announced the opening of a new advanced polymer pilot plant at Rosignano, Italy, which it said would “help develop and produce” advanced products that incorporate waste diverted from landfill or incineration.

The chemical producer said the plant is part of its €100 billion R&D budget, which serves customers globally.

It was not clear what the source of the Italian waste input would be or what recycling volumes were expected to be. Ineos said, however, that lightweight car parts would be one example of possible applications of the near-virgin quality recyclate.

Gerd Franken, chairman of Ineos Olefins & Polymers Europe, commented that the Rosignano pilot facility will help to leverage more and more plastic waste for new high value polymers, which he said is the “very core of the circular economy” and “demonstrates the group’s commitment to developing the technology to commercial scale.”

For Ineos Olefins & Polymers South, CEO Iain Hogan said the “key R&D project” supported by Italian regional and local authorities is an important investment in the Rosignano site.

Earlier this month, Ineos announced the launch of its new Recycl-IN polymer range, which contains up to 50% post-consumer recycled plastic compounded with virgin polymers.

Without giving more details, it said the range covers rigid and flexible products for use in non-food applications.

Describing the Recycl-N project. Peter Williams, group technology director at Ineos, said “this isn’t a PR exercise.”  The new products, he stressed, will help to move business and consumers toward a more circular approach.

Without eradicating the root causes of plastic waste and pollution, the project will help change thinking about plastic waste, while making Ineos’ business more resource efficient, Williams said.

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