Arkema Joins PET Recycling Project

27.09.2022 - French chemicals and materials company Arkema is participating in a Spanish consortium to explore and advance the recyclability of post-consumer polyester resin (PET from bottles and other items) in order to regain monomers for use in more sustainable powder coatings.

The Suschempol project also includes energy and chemicals group Repsol, rubber additives manufacturer Nasika and waste management firm Valoriza Servicios Medioambientales.

Neil Tariq, Arkema’s global business director for coating resins, described the project as a natural fit. He commented: “As a leading provider of polyester resin for the solvent-free powder coating technology, we are constantly exploring new paths, partnerships and scientific research that advance the circularity of our products. We are excited by the long-term goals of this project and look forward to sharing more innovation with our customers and partners in the years to come.”

The project is focused on four primary objectives. These are to develop profitable and sustainable chemical recycling alternatives with scalable potential based on chemolysis, chemocatalysis, thermolysis and devulcanization processes to recover polyesters, polystyrene and derivatives, and rubber; to eco-design alternative synthesis strategies for producing polymers that could be recycled and reused; to transform recycled and renewable plastics into new and more sustainable polymers, coatings or high-added value products; and develop predictive models to assess the quality of chemically recycled monomers/oils from complex multi-material mixtures found in waste streams.

Suschempol was founded by Spain’s Ministry of Science and Innovation and the State Research Agency as part of the NextGenerationEU Initiative, which is an €800 billion package designed to support member states in their economic recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic and build a greener, more digital and more resilient future.

Closure of Mexican buy

In separate news, on Sept. 1 Arkema finalized its acquisition of Polimeros Especiales, strengthening its position in Mexico. Polimeros Especiales produces waterborne resins for applications in markets such as architectural and decorative paints, textiles, pressure sensitive adhesives and construction.

Richard Jenkins, senior vice president of Arkema Coating Solutions, said the Querétaro-based company “offers leading and complementary solutions in many diverse markets which will bring scale to Arkema’s solvent-free offering and advanced technologies.”

Author: Elaine Burridge, Freelance Journalist