ineos tacoil plastic
The Ineos Tacoil product is made from plastic scrap.
Photo courtesy of Ineos.

Ineos, Plastic Energy collaborate to construct facility

Companies aim to build a plant to recycle plastic scrap; Ineos also takes delivery of Rhine River barges.

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London-based Ineos and London-based Plastic Energy are planning to collaborate on the construction of a new plant to convert plastic scrap to make new plastic. According to a news release from Ineos, the production of the new facility is targeted for 2023. Ineos has reported to Recycling Today that it is still in the process of evaluating the best location for this facility.

Ineos reports that the two companies have trialed technology together recently. The first trials of Plastic Energy’s recycling process have been completed, and the new raw material has been successfully converted to virgin polymer through Ineos’ cracker in Köln (Cologne), Germany. The plastics made from this trial will be used by selected customers and brands to demonstrate the benefits of the process.

Plastic Energy’s technology, called Thermal Anaerobic Conversion (TAC), transforms previously difficult to recycle plastic scrap into Tacoil. The new recycled raw material could be used by Ineos sites to produce plastic for use across medical products, food packaging, lightweight automotive parts and pipes for safe water transportation. 

The recycling technology will make it possible to produce final product with “an identical specification to virgin material,” Ineos states. It would remove all contamination so that the resulting polymers can be used in food and medical packaging. 

“This represents the delivery of another important milestone in the Ineos sustainability strategy,” says Rob Ingram, CEO of Ineos Olefins and Polymers Europe. “To take plastic waste back to virgin plastic is the ultimate definition of recycling and will create a truly circular economy solution. This will enable us to offer another opportunity for our customers to help them meet their pledges and commitments in this area.”

“We will work jointly to bring this new solution on to the market and respond to the growing demand for high quality recycled content and the growing imperative to increase recycling rates and move toward a circular future for plastics,” says Carlos Monreal, founder and CEO of Plastic Energy.

Ineos also has announced taking delivery of three vessels it says will be the largest gas barges operating on the Rhine River. A fourth such ship is expected later this year.

The new barges will bring butane gas from the ARA region (Antwerp, Rotterdam, Amsterdam) to the Ineos ethylene cracker and polymer recycling facility in Cologne.

“This supersized delivery is the result of a four-year project to design and build this new class of barge,” says Hugh Carmichael, feedstocks trading director of Ineos Trading & Shipping. “They have three times the cargo capacity of typical gas barges.”