Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop 20-08-2021

Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

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-Indorama Recycling : Critical to growth

Yashovardhan Lohia of Indorama Ventures Public Co. Ltd. says recycling is critical to the virgin PET producer’s growth.

In recent years, Indorama Ventures Public Co. Ltd. (IVL), the global polyethylene terephthalate (PET) producer with headquarters in Bangkok, has been vocal about its desire to expand its production of recycled PET, or rPET. The company is working to achieve that mission in part by acquiring established PET reclaimers throughout the world as well as by exploring chemical recycling technologies.


“As the world’s largest manufacturer of PET for packaging, IVL has a responsibility to drive the sustainability of our sector,” Yashovardhan Lohia, IVL chief sustainability officer, says. “We take this responsibility seriously,” he adds, noting that IVL is also the world’s largest producer of rPET resins. “We see recycling as a critical growth engine for IVL and the PET industry.”

Lohia points to market studies that foresee a 15 percent annual growth rate for rPET compared with a 2 percent growth rate for virgin PET.

He says consumer demand for sustainable and recyclable packaging, government plans to mandate the collection of PET bottles for recycling and global brand owners’ targets to increase the use of rPET in their packaging are factors contributing to rPET’s growth.

“Recycling is critical to our sustainable future as it delivers fewer greenhouse gases and less waste,” Lohia says. “IVL believes that the recyclable properties of PET will drive growth in our sector.”

In 2019, the global chemical producer signed the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, which calls on companies and governments to develop solutions to make their plastic packaging 100 percent reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025. But IVL’s production of rPET began earlier than this decade.

Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

-East China port congestion threatens polymer exports

Congestion at the major east coast China ports of Ningbo Zhoushan and Shanghai is threatening to delay exports of finished polymer products as the peak year-end demand season nears.

The Meishan terminal at Ningbo-Zhoushan suspended all container uploading services after a worker tested positive for Covid-19 on 11 August. The terminal will be closed for two weeks until 25 August. Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

Ningbo Zhoushan, the world’s third-busiest container port, handled 16mn standard containers in the first half of 2021, up by 21pc from the same period last year. The Meishan terminal accounts for about 20pc of its total volumes.

The worsening congestion at Ningbo and neighboring Shanghai, the main container ports in China, is likely to hamper export trades for container cargoes. The peak demand season for finished polymer products — toys, packages, electronics, appliances, Christmas gifts and decorations — is about to get under way in the run-up to the year-end festival season.

Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

-European project to recover contaminated plastics from automotive, construction and electrical appliance industry waste

The European NONTOX Project aims to eliminate hazardous and unpleasant substances from plastic waste and thus convert non-recyclable plastics and recycling waste into new resources.  Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

Increasing plastic recycling rates is key to creating the circular economy of plastics promoted by the European Union. It is therefore essential for research to continue developing new recycling processes, including procedures to recover plastic wastecontaining hazardous substances and then use it to produce safe, high-quality plastic products. The European NONTOX Project aims to eliminate hazardous and unpleasant substances from plastic waste and thus convert non-recyclable plastics and recycling waste into new resources. AIMPLAS is participating in the project.

The research developed by the different project partners will focus on the recovery of plastic materials from waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE), end-of-life vehicles (ELV), and construction and demolition waste (CDW), all of which contain hazardous additives and unpleasant compounds such as flame retardants, stabilizers and filling materials. Two different technologies will be used (Extruclean and CreaSolv®) to eliminate these hazardous substances from waste plastics such as ABS, EPS, PS, HIPS, PE and PP, which jointly account for about half of EU demand for plastics, hence the importance of recycling plastics rather than continuing the current practice of landfilling or incinerating a significant part of this waste.

European project to recover contaminated plastics from automotive, construction and electrical appliance industry waste

-MEG finds support from buying with price lower than MTD average

Due to high inventory of grey fabric, production losses and scarce new orders, more water-jet looms in northern Jiangsu were closed and some large-scaled home textile fabric producers closed their machines. Up to August 13, Loom operating rate in Zhejiang and Jiangsu fell to around 74%, and the rate may likely decrease further.

With the continuous weakness in end-user market, some polyester plants cut output. Polyester polymerization rate was estimated at around 89% Monday and may further decrease to around 87.5%. Looking ahead, eyes could rest on the reduction implementation of Hengyi and Xinfengming. Forecast for August polyester polymerization rate has been revised down, and the supports to MEG market weakens.  Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

In supply side, Hengli Petrochemical and PetroChina Sichuan Petrochemical closed their plants shortly and ECO Coal Chemical cut operating rate for days. Restart of Weihe Binzhou Chemical was postponed. Recovery in MEG plant operating rate was less than expected. China domestic output was estimated at around 1.1 million tons in August, broadly flat with in July.

Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

-Circle of plastics : first boon, now bane

A completely circular plastic, thanks to Versalis’ Hoop project which applies innovative chemical recycling techniques to waste.

Plastic’s durability that was once considered a boon is now viewed as a bane. When we hear the word plastics today, one of the lasting images in our minds is that of a plastic bag floating in the ocean. This is largely because of the unprecedented rise in single-use applications and a mindset as consumers to just use and throw.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of plastics?

It is critical to not lose sight of the value plastics bring and the various industries that depend on this important material. Plastics have proven their merit in terms of mechanical properties, performance, versatility, cost, etc. For example, plastics are a key material of choice in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic across the world. The health risk, especially for the medical professionals and frontline workers, would be higher without plastics in PPE kits, masks and gloves.

The way plastics are currently produced, consumed and managed at the end-of-life, however, is not completely sustainable. Talks of replacing plastics with other recyclable materials, such as paper, especially in packaging applications, have gathered pace due to the negative environmental impacts of linear plastics production, the high volume of single-use applications, and the mismanagement of waste over the years. Plastics circularity and waste valorization are the need of the hour and chemical recycling technologies can play a vital role in achieving the same

Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

-Plastics Recycling World Expo to feature Amcor’s David Clark

The company’s vice president of sustainability will participate in a session on collaboration.  Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

David Clark, vice president of sustainability at Amcor, who works out of Ann Arbor, Michigan, will speak at this year’s Plastics Recycling World Expo in North America.

Clark’s key focus areas and responsibilities include reducing the footprint of Amcor’s operations and products; using more sustainable materials including more postconsumer recycled plastics; working with the organization’s innovation teams, customers and others to develop Amcor’s packaging to be recyclable or reusable and working with industry coalitions to deliver solutions to plastic waste.

He will contribute to the industry debate, “Confronting the plastics packing challenge head-on: can solutions be found through industry-wide collaboration,” on the first day of the Plastics Recycling World Expo conference, hosted by AMI Nov. 3-4 in Cleveland. The program is available at

Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

-What does closed-loop recycling mean?

Depending on who you ask, the common phrase “close the loop” might refer to anything from achieving daily fitness goals on your smartwatch to finishing a crocheting project.  Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

But in sustainability, it’s referencing a gold-standard. An upper echelon. A system designed to repeat itself infinitely. Although, unless the right ingredients and inputs are involved, closing the loop can be very difficult to achieve.

By many accounts, “closed-loop recycling” is the key to a truly circular economy. As companies in manufacturing, shipping, and retail prepare their supply chains for the next big challenge, it’s helpful to learn the difference between systems, who’s succeeding with closed-loop, and how your business can bring it full circle.

What does closed-loop recycling mean?

-Polyester production cut-offs may get restrained due to diverging profits ?

Polyester factories are cutting back production recently, and polymerization rate averaged at 88% Tuesday, down 6.3% from Q3 high of 94.3%, and dropping 6.7% from intra-year high of 94.7%. In Aug, polyester capacity is revised up to 65.54 million tons, up 5.2%, or about 3.41 million tons.

Taking into account long-term shut plants, the theoretical loss of polyester production is about 7.14 million tons (the actual output reduction will be higher than this figure because the actual maximum O/R is higher than theoretical figure).

Among them, PET bottle chip accounts for the largest proportion, followed by PSF. PFY plants operating rate has been rising all the way after the Spring Festival, and output cut back progress is slow.  Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

So far, about less than 3% the capacity is shut down.

Polyester production cut-offs may get restrained due to diverging profits ?

-Coke, Asahi lead joint venture to recycle 1 billion PET bottles annually

Pact Group, Cleanaway, Asahi Beverages and Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) have announced they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to form a joint venture that will build and operate a new PET recycling facility. Under the MOU, the parties intend to come together to provide an industry model for recycling solutions in Australia. This will include the new facility as well as the PET recycling facility currently being built by Pact Group, Cleanaway and Asahi Beverages through Circular Plastics Australia (PET) in Albury-Wodonga, which is expected to be completed later this year.  Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

The proposed facility will provide a massive boost to Australian recycling by processing raw plastic material collected via Container Deposit Schemes and kerbside recycling. It is expected to process the equivalent of around 1 billion bottles each year to produce over 20,000 tonnes of new recycled PET bottles and food packaging. The facility will use state-of-the-art sorting, washing, decontamination and extrusion technology.

The cross-industry solution combines the complementary expertise of each participant to enhance their individual sustainability goals. Cleanaway will provide available PET through its collection and sorting network, Pact will provide technical and packaging expertise and CCEP, Asahi Beverages and Pact will buy the recycled PET from the facility to use in their respective products. The plant, when fully operational, will be run by Pact.

Coke, Asahi lead joint venture to recycle 1 billion PET bottles annually

-UK government launches hydrogen strategy

On 17 August the UK government outlined plans for a potential 20% blend of hydrogen in the gas network by the end of the decade through a strategy paper, despite maintaining a low production target.

ICIS analysis indicated this could amount to 51TWh in 2030, based expectations from system operator National Grid that gas demand will be 72 billion cubic metres (bcm) by this point. This would displace 14.4bcm of gas.

However if all blended hydrogen were produced using autothermal reforming, gas demand in 2030 would rise to 74.6bcm due to conversion efficiencies, ICIS analysis showed.  Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

Total hydrogen demand by 2050 was expected to reach between 250-460TWh, accounting for 20-35% of final UK energy consumption, the strategy stated.


A key component for the strategy is to help bring the cost of low-carbon hydrogen in line with fossil fuels.

A consultation for a hydrogen business model that aims to reduce costs was launched alongside the strategy.

UK government launches hydrogen strategy

Petrochemicals Plastic Closed Loop

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