Neste Studies Scale-up of Chemical Recycling Technology

05.04.2022 - Neste has announced its intention to conduct a feasibility study on installing new capacity for processing liquefied waste plastic at its refinery in Porvoo, Finland. The move is part of plans to commercialize its chemical recycling technology.

The company expects to make an investment decision in 2023 and gradually implement the technologies in 2024.

The study will look at integrating Neste’s proprietary technologies to pre-treat and upgrade the waste into its refinery operations. The intermediate refining step is needed to remove detrimental impurities and optimize the chemical composition of the material in order to produce drop-in petrochemical feedstock.

A first step will see pre-treatment and upgrading capacity of 400,000 t/y, which Neste said would be a major step toward its target of processing more than 1 million t/y of waste plastic from 2030.

“To turn chemical recycling into a viable and industrial-scale feed source for our downstream partners in the polymers and chemicals value chain, we have to bridge the quality gap between unprocessed liquefied waste plastic oil and our customers’ raw material requirements,” said Mercedes Alonso, executive vice-president renewable polymers and chemicals.

The Finnish firm has already completed a first series of trial runs to process liquefied waste plastic at Porvoo and addiitional runs with larger volumes will continue this year.

Last October, Neste announced its intention to build its first joint chemical recycling facility with Belgian plastics distributor and compounder Ravago at North Sea Port in Vlissingen, the Netherlands. 

Author: Elaine Burridge, Freelance Journalist