Total and Polystyvert in PS Recycling Pact

  • Total and Polystyvert in PS Recycling Pact  (c) Picsfive/ShutterstockTotal and Polystyvert in PS Recycling Pact (c) Picsfive/Shutterstock

The polymers business of French oil, chemicals and plastics company Total has signed an agreement to collaborate with Canada’s Polystyvert on the dissolution and purification of household post-consumer polystyrene (PS) waste.

The Montreal-based clean technology start-up has developed a method for recycling PS that is based on a dissolution process and has a low carbon footprint. Total said Polystyvert’s process produces recyclates that can be used in a broader range of applications than those produced through mechanical recycling methods. Household post-consumer plastics such as PS often contain contaminants that make mechanical recycling difficult or not practical, it explains.

Jean Viallefont, vice polymers Europe at Total Refining & Chemicals, said the partnership with Polystyvert is the next logical step, following a series of test runs that Total performed last year with post-consumer recyclates incorporated in virgin polymer via dissolution and polymerization.

“Collaborating with Total on household waste will accelerate the industrial development of our technology for global markets and demonstrate its suitability to address any type of polystyrene stream,” commented Solenne Brouard, Polystyvert’s founder and CEO.

Last month, Total received certification from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its recyclate-based HDPE compounds. The agency said the group’s secondary recycling process at its Antwerp, Belgium site is effective in reducing contaminants from post-consumer recycled HDPE.

The approval means that rPE 6306, a compound produced in Antwerp that contains 50% post-consumer HDPE can be used for food packaging applications. Total said the US recognition paves the way for the compound’s use in demanding applications in Europe.


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