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The joint venture with 23 Oaks Investments will convert difficult-to-recycle plastic waste into feedstock for LyondellBasell’s commercial-scale catalytic advanced recycling plant.

Norbert Sparrow

February 26, 2024

3 Min Read
recycling plant
Source One Plastics' advanced sorting and recycling plant.Image courtesy of Source One Plastics

At a Glance

  • Unit will process post-consumer plastic waste that would otherwise be incinerated
  • Facility has a processing capacity of 70,000 metric tons
  • Dry processing method said to reduce energy consumption by up to 30% compared with conventional recycling technologies

Source One Plastics, a joint venture between 23 Oaks Investments and chemicals company LyondellBasell, announced today the successful launch of its plastic waste sorting and recycling facility in Eicklingen, Germany. The new unit processes difficult-to-recycle post-consumer plastic waste such as mixed plastic packaging and flexible polyolefins that would otherwise be incinerated, the company said. The facility has a processing capacity of 70,000 metric tons, which is approximately the amount of plastic waste produced by 1.5 million German citizens annually.

Technology minimizes release of fine plastic dust

The new plant will use an innovative dry processing method to reduce energy consumption by up to 30% compared with conventional plastic recycling technologies. The system is designed to minimize the occurrence of fine plastic dust and its release into the environment and is powered by locally generated renewable energy. The plastic waste processed in Eicklingen will produce feedstock for the first commercial-scale catalytic advanced recycling plant that LyondellBasell plans to build at its Wesseling, Germany, site.

Feedstock will go to LyondellBasell’s hub near Cologne

“We celebrate today the opening of our joint venture Source One Plastics facility with valued partners, employees, and local stakeholders,” said Yvonne van der Laan, LyondellBasell executive vice president in charge of circular and low-carbon technologies. “This marks another important milestone in our strategy to transform recycled material into high-quality polymer. This state-of-the-art advanced sorting facility will turn post-consumer mixed plastic waste into feedstock for our integrated hub in the Cologne area. There, we will use cutting-edge technologies to close the loop of plastic materials and create sustainable solutions for society,” said van der Laan in a prepared statement.

23 Oaks Investments owner Kai Hoyer said the company promotes the sustainable use of plastics by leveraging its global experience and comprehensive knowledge of the circular economy. "We combine this expertise with a strong operational approach. With the Source One Plastics plant, we are today inaugurating another ecologically and economically attractive solution for up-cycling post-consumer plastic waste,” said Hoyer. “With the help of AI technology, our system will detect and sort material composites with product-specific accuracy. We have, thus, laid the foundation for true closed loops, the supreme discipline of the circular economy."

LyondellBasell acquires mechanical recycling capabilities in US

This news follows an announcement last week that LyondellBasell has acquired mechanical recycling assets from PreZero, a global recycling and waste management service provider. The transaction includes leasing a processing facility in Jurupa Valley, CA, which has a production capacity of approximately 50 million pounds per year for recycled materials.

LyondellBasellplans to operate the mechanical recycling plant in California to manufacture post-consumer recycled resins using plastic waste feedstock. It will offer the recycled polymers under its CirculenRecover brand, part of the company's Circulen portfolio of products that enable the circular economy. Operations are expected to begin in 2025.

"This acquisition further strengthens our US presence and will deliver value for our customers and plastic recycling rates on the West Coast," said van der Laan. "We will build upon our existing experience in plastic recycling in Europe and deliver a state-of-the-art mechanical recycling facility to meet growing demand for recycled products in the US.”

About the Author(s)

Norbert Sparrow

Editor in chief of PlasticsToday since 2015, Norbert Sparrow has more than 30 years of editorial experience in business-to-business media. He studied journalism at the Centre Universitaire d'Etudes du Journalisme in Strasbourg, France, where he earned a master's degree.


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