SABIC has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the plastic recycler Plastic Energy for the supply of feedstock. The companies intend to build a plant in the Netherlands to refine and upgrade feedstock. The feedstock will be produced from the recycling of low quality, mixed plastic waste otherwise meant for incineration or landfill.
The plant is scheduled to enter commercial production in 2021. According to SABIC, they are the first petrochemical company to implement a project for the chemical recycling of challenging plastic waste into a feedstock for steam crackers.
Plastic Energy has developed a patented, low carbon footprint technology called thermal anaerobic conversion (TAC) to convert a wide range of end-of-life, dirty, and contaminated plastics, hardly recyclable for conventional processes, into alternative fuels or oil, called TACOIL. TACOIL is used for making new, virgin food-safe plastics. Plastics are melted in an oxygen-free environment and then broken down into synthetic oils. The oils then need to be refined and upgraded as feedstock for traditional petrochemical uses. The company owns and operates two plastic recycling plants in Seville and Almeria, both Spain.