Plastic pyrolysis – Australian lithium stocks surge amid speculation of mine closure in China 22-02-2024

Plastic pyrolysis

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Australian lithium stocks surge amid speculation of mine closure in China

Australian lithium stocks surged on Monday amid speculation surrounding the closure of the Jianxiawo mine in China, a significant producer of the material essential for electric vehicle batteries, prompting a surge in Australian resources companies. Pilbara Minerals, Australia’s largest pure play lithium miner, saw its shares jump by as much as 4.9%, while Liontown Resources surged by 7.7%.

The Jianxiawo mine specializes in lepidolite, a relatively expensive form of lithium. Reports indicate that CATL, the Chinese battery giant, may have shuttered the mine due to production costs.  Plastic pyrolysis

This potential closure could impact the global lithium market, leading to a shift from a projected surplus to a deficit of around 20,000 tons for the year 2024.

In Australia, developers experienced significant gains, with Patriot Battery Metals rising by 6%, Wildcat Resources by 5.8%, and Sayona Mining by 7.7%. Pilbara Minerals, despite being heavily shorted by investors concerned about a slowdown in electric vehicle demand, witnessed a notable increase in its stock value.

Analysts, including Lachlan Shaw from UBS, noted that while it’s not uncommon for Chinese facilities to close or reduce operations during the Chinese New Year holiday, the potential permanent closure of Jianxiawo could signal an important shift in the lithium market dynamics.  Plastic pyrolysis

Questions arise about CATL’s decision to close a fully integrated lithium mine amidst growing demand and stable prices, indicating potential broader implications for the industry’s supply chain.

Plastic pyrolysis

What fuel can be made from waste plastic pyrolysis plants?

Source: Henan Doing Machinery Equipment Co., Ltd.

Plastic Pyrolysis Plant Final Products and Pyrolysis Fuel Applications

In today’s world, the escalating issue of plastic waste disposal demands more sustainable solutions. The waste plastic pyrolysis plant, a groundbreaking innovation, holds tremendous potential to address this challenge. This article will delve into the various fuels that can be derived from such plants.  Plastic pyrolysis

Fuel Production:

Waste plastic pyrolysis plants utilize pyrolysis, a thermochemical process that breaks down plastic waste in the absence of oxygen. This plastic pyrolysis process results in the production of three primary fuels:

  1. Pyrolysis Oil:

The pyrolysis of plastics generates a valuable dark brown liquid known as pyrolysis oil. Rich in hydrocarbon compounds, this oil exhibits great versatility. It can serve as an industrial fuel, replacing traditional fossil fuels in industries like cement, ceramics, and power plants. Additionally, with further refinement, it can be processed into high-quality non-standard diesel by pyrolysis oil distillation plant, making it an attractive renewable substitute.  Plastic pyrolysis

  1. Pyrolysis Gas:

Syngas, or pyrolysis gas, is a gas mixture obtained during the waste plastic pyrolysis process. Composed of hydrogen, hydrocarbons, and carbon monoxide, this gas holds significant potential. It can be utilized as a clean-burning fuel for heating or electricity generation, meeting the energy requirements of various industries and reducing their carbon footprint.

  1. Carbon Black:

One of the vital byproducts derived from waste plastic pyrolysis is carbon black. After briquetted by carbon black briquette machine, this solid material finds extensive applications as a fuel source in industrial settings. Moreover, due to its unique properties, it is widely employed as a raw material in manufacturing tires, rubber products, ink, and paint, contributing to increased sustainability in these sectors.  Plastic pyrolysis

These fuels produced from waste plastic pyrolysis are considered alternative energy sources that can help reduce reliance on traditional fossil fuels and contribute to waste management and environmental sustainability.

In the realm of waste plastic pyrolysis plants, Henan Doing Company stands out as a world-leading pyrolysis plant and tire plastic pyrolysis oil to diesel distillation plant manufacturer, supplier and exporter.

By producing environmentally high quality pyrolysis plants capable of efficiently converting plastic waste into valuable fuels, Henan Doing Company won the recognition and good feedback from customers from different countries, such as India, Thailand, Russia, Mexico, Kenya, Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, Japan, etc. Welcome all the customers to send us inquiries for free quotations! Plastic pyrolysis


Plastic pyrolysis

New Battery Technology Enables Long-Range Electric Vehicle Travel

Electric vehicle (EV) owners often face the challenge of limited driving range, but a polymer physicist named Chelsea Chen is working to change that. Chen, a researcher at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, is studying ion transport in solid electrolytes to develop batteries with higher energy density and longer battery life.

Chen’s research focuses on solid-state electrolytes, which are key to achieving higher energy density in EV batteries.  Plastic pyrolysis

By understanding and optimizing the structure and properties of these electrolytes, Chen aims to improve the performance of solid-state batteries. Her work is part of the Fast and Cooperative Ion Transport in Polymer-Based Materials (FaCT) center, a US Department of Energy-funded research facility.

One of the main advantages of solid-state electrolytes is their compatibility with lithium metal anodes, which have a higher energy density compared to traditional graphite or silicon anodes. However, the challenge with lithium metal anodes is their reactivity with liquid electrolytes, which can lead to safety issues. Solid-state electrolytes offer a potential solution by providing a stable interface between the anode and electrolyte.

Chen’s expertise in polymer science and engineering has positioned her well for this research. With a background in controlling nanoparticle distribution within polymers, Chen has a deep understanding of polymer structures and properties. Her work at Oak Ridge National Laboratory focuses on developing solid-state batteries and studying ion transport in polymer-ceramic composite electrolytes.  Plastic pyrolysis

Beyond her research in battery technology, Chen is also interested in the sustainable use of polymers. She believes that recycling and upcycling polymers can contribute to a more sustainable future. Just as EV manufacturers are exploring ways to recycle spent batteries, Chen advocates for considering the end-of-life issues in polymer design.


Plastic pyrolysis

mLLDPE Prices Escalate in the US while Stability Prevails in China in February 2024

In the initial half of February 2024, the Metallocene Linear Low-Density Polyethylene (mLLDPE) market experienced a notable surge in spot prices in the US while China showed stability by the end of the second week. The US market saw a significant uptick in purchasing activities in February 2024, spurred by heightened consumer demand from downstream construction and packaging sectors.  Plastic pyrolysis

Market observers noted a marked increase in mLLDPE transactions, with buyers demonstrating heightened interest and preparedness to make purchases. Meanwhile, the Chinese mLLDPE market was initially affected by the Lunar New Year festivities, witnessing price increments following stabilization by the second week of the month. This market dynamic was further exacerbated by tight supply from the Middle East, impacting material availability and influencing price trajectories. Additionally, the escalation in the price of feedstock Ethylene exerted cost pressures on mLLDPE.

Throughout this period, demand for mLLDPE in the USA remained robust, fueled by both domestic and international buyers gradually leading to the upward price trend. Nevertheless, there was a steady influx of off-grade railcars into the market. Producers continued to restrict mLLDPE availability, redirecting surplus supplies to the flourishing export market.  Plastic pyrolysis


mLLDPE Prices Escalate in the US while Stability Prevails in China in February 2024

Tetra Pak invests to boost recycling across EU

In particular, the company says its strategic investments are aimed at increasing the recycling capacity for carton packaging.  Plastic pyrolysis

Lausanne, Switzerland-based packaging developer Tetra Pak has announced several strategic investments designed to level up the recycling capacity for carton packages in the European Union.

The company says the move supports the goals of the proposed EU Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR) by ensuring all packaging components are recycled and valuable raw materials are kept in circulation for longer, therefore showcasing the pivotal role of recycling in the green transition of the food packaging sector.

In 2023, Tetra Pak invested nearly 40 million euros ($42.9 million) to accelerate beverage carton recycling worldwide, and says it plans to increase this even further in the coming years to achieve a greater material circularity. The recent initiatives and investments are set to boost the EU’s ability to recycle beverage cartons, including the non-fiber protective layers of polyethylene (PE) and aluminum, known as “polyAl.” The company says this will be achieved either by unlocking new collaborations or by strengthening the capabilities of established recyclers to turn all materials from postconsumer cartons into new, high-quality resources and goods.  Plastic pyrolysis

These add to the existing and well-established recycling infrastructure in the EU, where beverage cartons are recycled in 20 specialized paper mills, with polyAl currently processed by seven facilities.

Tetra Pak’s major 2023 investments include:

  • A feasibility study in Sweden along with Axjo Group to build a new recycling line for polyAl that will accommodate volumes from Sweden, Denmark and Norway, fostered by a joint investment of up to 24 million euros ($25.7 million) and featuring an annual recycling capacity of 10,000 tons. The facility will recycle and incorporate polyAl into injection molded plastic products made by Axjo, including cable drums, reels, spools and plastic storage boxes.  Plastic pyrolysis


Tetra Pak invests to boost recycling across EU

Plastic recycling infrastructures: urgent environmental need, business opportunity

The Philippines is the world’s biggest contributor to marine plastic waste with 350,000 tons of it leaking into the ocean annually, according to the independent UK organization Utility Bidder.

A World Bank study on the Plastics Circularity Opportunities and Barriers said the Philippines is losing 78 percent of the material value of its plastics supply chain worth US$ 890 million each year. The recycling capacity gap stands at 85 percent.

For investors, these figures suggest a potential business opportunity: setting up large-scale plastic recycling infrastructures in the country, even while doing much-needed environmental good by reusing plastic waste that impact negatively on people and the planet. Recycling plastic into useful material for manufacturing contributes to building a circular economy, in which waste is eliminated by putting it to productive use and preserving value. Plastic pyrolysis

Given the urgent environmental need along with the potential business opportunity, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Nestlé Philippines are continuing their partnership for environmental sustainability, by holding the Philippine National Recycling Conference: The Loop Towards Recyclability and Circularity this Thursday, Feb. 22, 2024 at the Marriott Hotel Manila.

The multisectoral event will serve as a forum for potential investors, key waste management businesses, related organizations, and government agencies to discuss possible opportunities and challenges of building plastic recycling facilities, and increasing the supply of recycled packaging materials.  Plastic pyrolysis

Mandated extended producer responsibility (EPR) for plastic waste lapsed into law in 2022. Companies called obliged enterprises with total assets of P100 million and above are now required to be environmentally responsible for plastic waste from products they manufacture, import, distribute or sell to consumers, up to the post-consumer stage. EPR compliance rules include collecting plastic waste and regular reporting requirements with the aim of generating a circular economy.


Plastic recycling infrastructures: urgent environmental need, business opportunity

PlantSwitch raises $8 million to commercialise bioplastics technology

The company promises to make bioplastics cost competitive

PlantSwitch announced it has raised $8 million to commercialise its bioplastics technology.

The North Carolina-based materials company will use the funding to build its first commercial manufacturing facility and expand its 12-person team. The Sanford plant is expected to produce over 22,000 tonnes (50 million pounds) of resin per year and span 52,000 square feet. Commissioning is expected by 2025.  Plastic pyrolysis

PlantSwitch has developed what it claims is the most sustainable, lowest-cost, completely compostable ‘drop-in’ plastic replacement, sourced from the abundant supply of agricultural residues — mainly rice hulls. Its material is used in containers and eating utensils applications. Its customers include some of the leading brands and manufacturers in food service, consumer packed goods, cosmetics, and agricultural products.

High production costs have so far limited bioplastics to a niche market, but PlantSwitch promises to make biopolymers cost competitive.

The company says using agricultural side streams as feedstock allows it to be ‘the lowest cost plastic alternative on the market’. Its resin can be used as ‘drop-in’ replacement to fossil-based plastics in existing machinery, with ‘negligible’ costs, according to the company. The material reportedly fully breaks down in backyard compost in less than 12 months, leaving no microplastics behind. Plastic pyrolysis


PlantSwitch raises $8 million to commercialise bioplastics technology

Hydrogen scenarios – New findings on shedding behaviour of polyester 21-02-2024

Plastic pyrolysis

Hydrogen scenarios – New findings on shedding behaviour of polyester 21-02-2024

Hydrogen scenarios

Oil prices underwent a downturn on Tuesday amidst prevailing uncertainty regarding the global demand outlook

Brent futures experienced a decline of $1.44 or 1.7%, settling at $82.12 per barrel by 11:27 a.m. EST (1627 GMT). Concurrently, the six-month spread for Brent reached its highest level since October, signaling tightening market conditions.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude for April delivery dropped by 70 cents, or 0.9%, to $78.49 per barrel, following a previous reduction of $1. The March WTI contract saw a modest gain of 36 cents or 0.45%, settling at $79.55 per barrel before expiring during the session. Notably, there was no WTI settlement on Monday due to a US public holiday.

The decline in crude prices was attributed to subdued trading activity during the Presidents’ Day holiday in the US, alongside ongoing geopolitical tensions in the Middle East. Concerns regarding a potential humanitarian crisis persisted due to escalating conflicts in the region. Hydrogen scenarios

Geopolitical tensions also affected shipping, with increased attacks on shipping lanes by Iran-aligned Houthis. These attacks posed threats to energy markets by targeting multiple vessels with drone and missile strikes since Friday.

Despite geopolitical concerns in major oil-producing regions, worries about declining global demand remained prominent among crude investors. China’s announcement of a substantial reduction in the benchmark mortgage rate on Tuesday failed to elicit a positive response from the crude market, highlighting underlying demand issues in the country.

Further exacerbating bearish sentiment was a recent report from the International Energy Agency (IEA), which revised downward its 2024 oil demand growth forecast to 1.22 million barrels per day (bpd), significantly lower than OPEC’s projection of 2.25 million bpd.

The disparity in forecasts between the IEA and OPEC reflects broader disagreements regarding the transition to renewable energy. Hydrogen scenarios

While the IEA predicts oil demand peaking by 2030, OPEC anticipates continued growth in oil use over the next two decades. These conflicting perspectives contribute to the overall uncertainty and volatility in the oil market.

Oil prices underwent a downturn on Tuesday amidst prevailing uncertainty regarding the global demand outlook. Brent futures experienced a decline of $1.44 or 1.7%, settling at $82.12 per barrel by 11:27 a.m. EST (1627 GMT). Concurrently, the six-month spread for Brent reached its highest level since October, signaling tightening market conditions. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude for April delivery dropped by 70 cents, or 0.9%, to $78.49 per barrel, following a previous reduction of $1. The March WTI contract saw a modest gain of 36 cents or 0.45%, settling at $79.55 per barrel before expiring during the session. Notably, there was no WTI settlement on Monday due to a US public holiday. The decline in crude prices was attributed to subdued trading activity during the Presidents’ Day holiday in the US, alongside ongoing geopolitical tensions in the Middle East. Concerns regarding a potential humanitarian crisis persisted due to escalating conflicts in the region. Geopolitical tensions also affected shipping, with increased attacks on shipping lanes by Iran-aligned Houthis. These attacks posed threats to energy markets by targeting multiple vessels with drone and missile strikes since Friday. Despite geopolitical concerns in major oil-producing regions, worries about declining global demand remained prominent among crude investors. China's announcement of a substantial reduction in the benchmark mortgage rate on Tuesday failed to elicit a positive response from the crude market, highlighting underlying demand issues in the country. Further exacerbating bearish sentiment was a recent report from the International Energy Agency (IEA), which revised downward its 2024 oil demand growth forecast to 1.22 million barrels per day (bpd), significantly lower than OPEC's projection of 2.25 million bpd. The disparity in forecasts between the IEA and OPEC reflects broader disagreements regarding the transition to renewable energy. While the IEA predicts oil demand peaking by 2030, OPEC anticipates continued growth in oil use over the next two decades. These conflicting perspectives contribute to the overall uncertainty and volatility in the oil market.

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Recycling collaboration launches Finland’s largest facility

Syklo Ltd., a Finnish leader in circular economy initiatives, is set to collaborate with Impact Recycling Ltd. from the UK to establish Finland’s largest plastic recycling facility, projecting to escalate the country’s plastic recycling capacity by up to 50 percent. This venture marks a significant stride in European recycling endeavors, distinguished by innovative technology that promises unparalleled yield and material utilization rates.

Scheduled for commissioning in 2025, the plant, located in Hyvinkää, Finland, will deploy Impact Recycling’s pioneering BOSS technology to segregate various plastic types from post-consumer mixed waste streams.  Hydrogen scenarios

With an anticipated annual output of 50,000 tonnes, the facility will specialize in extracting and recycling plastics from streams conventionally earmarked for incineration.

Syklo’s CEO, Teemu Koskela, lauds the project as a game-changer in Europe’s circular economy landscape, aiming to augment Finland’s plastic packaging recycling rate by up to 20 percent. The company envisions extending its impact across the Nordic countries, the Baltics, and beyond.  Hydrogen scenarios

Integral to the recycling process are two patented technologies from Impact Recycling: BOSS and PRE. BOSS facilitates the separation of plastics with minute density discrepancies, while PRE additive technology ensures the production of high-quality recycled plastic granules, ideal for premium consumer-grade products.

David Walsh, CEO of Impact Recycling, emphasizes the strategic collaboration’s potential to revolutionize recycling practices and propel Europe toward a genuinely sustainable circular economy.

Syklo’s state-of-the-art facility will incorporate advanced water management systems to distill and reuse wastewater, mitigating environmental impact.

Koskela underscores the facility’s efficiency, boasting a 20 percent enhancement over prevailing methods.  Hydrogen scenarios

Driven by a commitment to innovation and sustainability, Syklo aims to spearhead transformative change in the circular economy sector, heralding a more environmentally conscious future.

Hydrogen scenarios

New findings on shedding behaviour of polyester

Ethanol bath employed to distinguish nanoplastics from clumps of oligomers.

Plastic household items and clothing made of synthetic fibres release microplastics and those less than five millimetres in size can enter the environment unnoticed. A small proportion of these particles are so small that they are measured in nanometres and are the subject of intensive research because they can be absorbed into the human body. As of today, however, little is known about their potential toxicity.

Swiss researchers from Bernd Nowack’s group at Empa’s Technology and Society laboratory have now joined forces with colleagues from China to take a closer look at such nanoparticles released from textiles.  Hydrogen scenarios

In earlier studies, Empa researchers were already able to demonstrate that both micro and nanoplastics are released when polyester is washed but a detailed examination of the nanoparticles has now shown that not everything that appears to be nanoplastic at first glance actually is.


To a considerable extent, the released particles were so-called oligomers – small to medium-sized molecules that represent an intermediate stage between the long-chained polymers and their individual building blocks, the monomers. Hydrogen scenariosHydrogen scenarios

These molecules are even smaller than nanoplastic particles and hardly anything is known about their toxicity either.

The researchers published their findings in the journal Nature Water. Twelve different polyester fabrics were washed up to four times and the nanoparticles released in the process were analyzed and characterised, which was not an easy task.

“Plastics, especially nanoplastics, are everywhere, including on our devices and utensils,” says Bernd Nowack. “When measuring nanoplastics, we have to take this ‘background noise’ into account.”  Hydrogen scenarios


Hydrogen scenarios

Hydrogen: scenarios

Professor Roberto Cipollone elaborates on the multifaceted nature of hydrogen, delineating its properties, applications, production methods, costs, and pivotal role in the ongoing energy transition.

Hydrogen, in its elemental form, is an odorless, colorless gas not naturally occurring in a pure state but rather bound within compounds found in nature, necessitating artificial production.

Its combustion yields substantial energy, about three times that of conventional fossil fuels, with only water as a byproduct, making it a promising alternative fuel source for carbon-free energy production and various industrial processes. Hydrogen scenarios

Presently, hydrogen finds utility in diverse sectors such as the chemical, oil refining, metallurgical, and agricultural industries. As an energy carrier, it demonstrates superior environmental credentials, emitting solely water vapor upon combustion.

Currently, the majority of hydrogen production, over 95%, employs methane reforming, a process reliant on fossil fuels and associated with carbon emissions. Electrolysis, which splits water into hydrogen and oxygen using electricity, represents a cleaner but energy-intensive method.  Hydrogen scenarios

Costs associated with hydrogen production hinge on factors like methane and electricity prices, as well as carbon emissions. While forecasts anticipate declining costs, uncertainty looms due to market dynamics and technological advancements.

In the context of the energy transition, hydrogen holds a crucial role in mitigating carbon emissions and facilitating the shift towards renewable energy sources, aligning with the objectives outlined in the Paris Agreement. However, the realization of these goals hinges on addressing technological, economic, and environmental challenges associated with hydrogen production and utilization.  Hydrogen scenarios

Hydrogen: scenarios

Aimplas is actively engaged in the RECIMAP Project, a collaborative initiative aimed at recycling blended cotton and polyester fabric waste

This endeavor seeks to address the challenge of effectively recycling multi-material waste prevalent in the textile industry, which is often disposed of through incineration or landfill due to its complexity.  Hydrogen scenarios

Led by Bespoke Factory Group and supported by funding from the Valencian Innovation Agency (AVI), the project involves partners such as Aimplas, the Universitat de València, and the Consorcio Valencia Interior V3. By leveraging innovative approaches, RECIMAP aims to promote a sustainable circular economy within the textile sector.

Belén Taroncher, a researcher at Aimplas, emphasizes the significance of the project in light of anticipated increases in textile waste, driven in part by European regulations on extended producer responsibility (EPR).  Hydrogen scenarios

The project focuses on developing a novel recycling pathway that converts complex waste into high-quality recycled materials, including lactic acid crucial for polylactic acid (PLA) production.

Through selective separation techniques utilizing ionic liquids, RECIMAP aims to extract cotton and polyester blends, offering a more environmentally friendly alternative to conventional solvents.

The polyester fraction undergoes mechanochemical processes to produce recycled polyester, while the cotton fraction is utilized in lactic acid fermentation.

Taroncher underscores the project’s dual benefits of environmental sustainability and economic value, with recycled polyester having a lower carbon footprint than virgin polyester.  Hydrogen scenarios

Funding for the RECIMAP Project is provided by the Valencian Community government through AVI, with co-financing from the European Union’s ERDF Valencian Community Programme 2021-2027 under the call for Strategic Projects in Cooperation 2022.

Aimplas is actively engaged in the RECIMAP Project, a collaborative initiative aimed at recycling blended cotton and polyester fabric waste

Global interest in US R-PET market intensifies in both feedstock, finished product

As global markets continue to become more interconnected, many regions outside the US have taken interest in the domestic recycled polyethylene terephthalate (R-PET) market as both a potential area of feedstock supply, as well as a destination for finished flake and pellet cargoes.  Hydrogen scenarios

Market participants confirm they have seen a notable rise in imported R-PET activity from Asia and Latin America, particularly due to their cost-competitive position in light of cheaper ocean freight rates in 2023.

US recyclers were heard to be supplementing their operations with imported feedstock.  Several recyclers now purchase cheap spot or imported R-PET flake to process into their food grade pellet product, and potentially redirecting their internally produced flake from high cost domestic bale feedstock to sell directly to customers.  Hydrogen scenarios

In the long term, the US will have to seek imports of bale or flake feedstock, not just due to the cost driver but to feed growing plastic recycling capacities amid stagnant plastic collection rates domestically.

Recently released trade data from the US Census Bureau shows US imports of plastic scrap – noted by the HS code 3915- continue to increase, having jumped 5% year on year to a total of 446,778 tonnes in 2023.  Hydrogen scenarios

Plastic scrap imports include items such as used bottles, but also other forms of recycled feedstock such as purge, leftover pairings and now also flake material.

Specifically, polyethylene terephthalate (PET) scrap imports increased substantially in 2023, jumping 33% year on year to a record setting 204,278 tonnes in 2023.


Global interest in US R-PET market intensifies in both feedstock, finished product

Expert urges global ‘avoidance and prudence’ to eliminate plastic pollution

Marine biologist underscores the need for individual and state-level responsibility amidst ongoing UN negotiations on a global plastics treaty.

The principle of “avoidance and prudence” should be the motto for both individuals and states on using plastics in all aspects of life, according to a concerned academic.

Sedat Gundogdu, a marine biologist at Cukurova University in the southern Turkish city of Adana, told Anadolu that he has been doing research into plastic pollution as he serves on a board of spokespersons of a coalition of scientists pushing for an effective plastics agreement. Hydrogen scenarios

“Together with this coalition, we are trying to voluntarily provide scientific information to states participating in negotiations of a UN plastics agreement for use in negotiations,” he said.

There have been three negotiations about the treaty so far – in Uruguay, Kenya and France, and the fourth is planned for Canada next April, he noted.


Solutions for processing recycled fibres

Swiss manufacturers offer perfect matches for circularity.

Many end-users now expect recycled materials to be in textile-based products they purchase and this is definitely driving innovation throughout the industry. However, there are still many technical and economic issues facing yarn and fabric producers using recycled resources. Members of the Swiss Textile Machinery Association offer some effective solutions to these challenges. Hydrogen scenarios

Synthetic recycled materials such as PET can usually be treated similarly to new yarn, but there are additional complexities where natural fibres like wool and cotton are involved. Today, there’s a trend towards mechanically recycled wool and cotton fibres. Thanks to companies like Rieter, Autefa, Steiger and Uster Technologies, such materials can now be processed. Machinery and services from these companies support further processing of recycled fibres to meet required quality standards. Swiss Textile Machinery member Stäubli also demonstrates what it means to fully embrace circularity concepts.

Spinning recycled cotton

The use of mechanically recycled fibres in spinning brings specific quality considerations: they have higher levels of short fibres and neps – and may often be coloured, particularly if post-consumer material is used. It’s also true that recycled yarns have limitations in terms of fineness. Hydrogen scenarios

The Uster Statistics 2023 edition features an extended range of fibre data, supporting sustainability goals, including benchmarks for blends of virgin and recycled cotton.


Solutions for processing recycled fibres

Hydrogen scenarios

Circular plastics – University to share in £100 million funding to lead major science and technology hub to reduce plastic waste 20-02-2024

Circular plastics – University to share in £100 million funding to lead major science and technology hub to reduce plastic waste 20-02-2024

Circular plastics

In a dramatic maritime incident on Monday (19), the Red Sea became the site of a perilous confrontation involving Houthi forces and a British vessel

The Houthi group claimed responsibility for the attack on the British merchant ship Rubymar, resulting in its sinking in the Gulf of Aden, as reported by Sky News Arabia.

According to Yahya Saria, a military representative of the Houthi movement, the crew of the Rubymar was safely evacuated during the operation. This development unfolds against a backdrop of escalating tension in the region, marked by intensified clashes between the Houthis and international forces.

Additionally, a video circulating on social media purportedly depicts the moment of the Rubymar’s sinking, though the authenticity of the footage remains unconfirmed pending independent verification. Circular plastics

Confirming the attack on the Rubymar, the United States Central Command (CENTCOM) specified that the British ship was struck by a missile. CENTCOM further noted that the crew was safely evacuated and transported to the nearest port by a commercial vessel providing assistance, accompanied by a US-led coalition naval vessel.

The incident did not conclude with the Rubymar’s sinking. The Houthis also claimed responsibility for shooting down a US reconnaissance drone, underscoring the complexity and peril of the conflict in the Red Sea region.

In a dramatic maritime incident on Monday (19), the Red Sea became the site of a perilous confrontation involving Houthi forces and a British vessel

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University to share in £100 million funding to lead major science and technology hub to reduce plastic waste

The University’s Centre for Enzyme Innovation (CEI) will lead the Preventing Plastic Pollution with Engineering Biology (P3EB) Mission Hub to support the transition towards a circular plastics economy in the UK.

The University of Portsmouth is to share in £100 million of funding, it has been announced by the Department for Science, Innovation & Technology (DSIT) today (9 February).

The money will be given to six new ‘Engineering Biology Mission Hubs’ and 22 ‘Mission Award’ projects across the country, that will look to build on Engineering Biology’s enormous potential to address global challenges, drive economic growth, and increase national resilience.  Circular plastics

The University’s Centre for Enzyme Innovation (CEI) will lead the Preventing Plastic Pollution with Engineering Biology (P3EB) Mission Hub, which also includes Bangor University, University of Cambridge, University of Edinburgh, Imperial College London, University of Manchester, and University College London. The P3EB Mission Hub will receive £11.2 million from the “UKRI Technology Missions Fund” over the next 5 years, with £3.5 million supporting the CEI in Portsmouth.

The P3EB Mission Hub is a pioneering initiative aimed at transforming end-of-life plastic waste using cutting-edge engineering biology technologies. Working in partnership, the CEI will use its transformative enzyme technology to impart value into plastic waste, incentivising its recovery and retention, and so reducing the amount destined for landfill, for incineration, or being discarded into our environment.  Circular plastics


Circular plastics

Caprolactam Prices In Europe Have Remained Stable, Reflecting sluggish downstream Demand

In recent weeks of February 2024, the price of Caprolactam in the European market has remained within a steady price range, even as feedstock prices for Benzene and Naphtha have risen. Meanwhile, the global energy market is grappling with uncertainties stemming from geopolitical conflicts, weather-related disruptions, and evolving economic conditions. Ongoing geopolitical tensions in the Middle East are contributing to fluctuations in oil futures. Circular plastics

The price of Crude oil appreciated by 4% during the week ending 16th February 2024, this marks a significant increase from the beginning of the week, when the international benchmark was trading at approximately $78 per barrel. However, it’s noteworthy that these prices are similar to the levels observed when the Yemeni Houthis started attacking ships in the Red Sea. Redirecting vessels from the Suez Canal to the Cape of Good Hope extends the journey between Asia and Europe by more than a week.

The rise in crude oil prices has not impacted the Caprolactam market, as weak demand from downstream industries has led to a decrease in fresh orders and reduced operational rates of Caprolactam production across Europe. Downstream manufacturers’ purchasing activity for Caprolactam has continued to decline sharply, as companies report reduced production needs and ongoing efforts to streamline inventory. Circular plastics

On the demand side, the downstream textile and automotive sectors did not perform well in the German market. The downstream Polyamide 6 market remained stagnant and showed little movement in the domestic German market.


Circular plastics

French Firm Forms JV With Dallas Recycler to Service Automotive and Other Industries

Part of Forvia Group, the largest supplier to the automotive industry in France, Materi’act’s JV with PCR Recycling aims to accelerate the development and delivery of recycled compounds.

At a Glance

  • Deal is expected to help spark demand in North America for use of recycled plastics in automotive and other industries
  • Compounds with up to 85% CO2 reduction will be offered by 2030
  • Applications include a range of automotive products such as instrument and door panels

France’s Materi’act is setting up a joint venture in Dallas, TX, with PCR Recycling to accelerate the development and delivery of recycled compounds for sustainable automotive parts with up to 85% CO2 reduction by 2030. Materi’act is part of the Forvia group, France’s first- and the world’s seventh-largest automotive technology supplier. Tier I Faurecia is a sister company.  Circular plastics

The mission of the joint venture — Materi’act Dallas — is to secure a local, long-term feedstock of post-consumer recycled plastics and to produce recycled polymers to meet the growing needs of the automotive industry in North America. The newly formed company will collect feedstocks and recycle, refine, formulate, and compound the recycled polymers to meet carmakers’ stringent requirements.


French Firm Forms JV With Dallas RecyclerCircular plasticsto Service Automotive and Other Industries

Owens Corning assesses fiberglass alternatives

Owens Corning, a leading American company, is currently assessing its fiberglass reinforcements business for potential strategic shifts, including the possibility of divestment or a spin-off of its Glass Reinforcements division.

The Glass Reinforcements division, nestled within its Composites segment, is responsible for the manufacturing and distribution of glass fibers utilized for reinforcing plastic materials. With operations spanning 18 plants across 11 countries and boasting a revenue of approximately $1.3 billion, this division primarily serves sectors such as wind energy, infrastructure, transportation, and industrial components.  Circular plastics

It’s important to note that certain products, such as non-wovens derived from glass fibers and WearDeck—a high-density polyethylene composite for exterior building applications, which does not contain wood—are excluded from this strategic evaluation.

To navigate this potential transformation, Owens Corning has engaged Morgan Stanley & Co. as its financial advisor. Their role involves conducting a comprehensive review of strategic alternatives, which may encompass a sale of assets or the spin-off of the division. However, the company has not specified a definitive timeline for these actions, indicating a deliberate and thorough approach to this process.

Owens Corning assesses fiberglass alternatives

TOMRA acquires stake in AI waste flow monitoring start-up

In a bid to improve its position in the AI space, TOMRA has acquired a 25% stake in start-up PolyPerception, which develops AI-based waste flow monitoring for PET recyclers and sorting plants.  Circular plastics

PolyPerception measures data at key points in the sorting process to unlock continuous quality assessment in sorted streams and identify the loss of good material in the residual stream. In turn, it is set to contribute to data-driven decisions.

It is also set to function as an automated compliance system. As local legislation and rules surrounding food-grade recycling become more rigorous, PolyPerception expects its technology to increase in demand.

After its initial collaboration with PolyPerception in December 2022, TOMRA expects that its stake in the company will strengthen its position in the artificial intelligence space and benefit its own pursuit of improved resource recovery.  Circular plastics

Dr. Volker Rehrmann, head of TOMRA Recycling, explained: “By expanding our cooperation with PolyPerception, we can combine our advanced material sorting systems and cloud-based monitoring solution with the company’s innovative material analysis.

TOMRA acquires stake in AI waste flow monitoring start-up

Collaborative Recycling Initiative Involving Greiner Packaging and Partners

Several companies, including Greiner Packaging, Siegwerk, and Krones, have joined forces on a recycling venture focused on polypropylene (PP) and polystyrene (PS) cups. Utilizing the hot caustic washing method, they successfully deinked and transformed rigid containers into high-quality white recyclates, defying the notion that these containers were unrecyclable according to certain Design for Recycling Guidelines. This process, commonly used in polyethylene terephthalate bottle recycling, effectively maintained ink formulation and print design integrity.  Circular plastics

The initiative’s significance extends beyond mere recycling, as it highlights the potential of advanced recycling facilities. Notably, the findings emphasize the importance of reconsidering the impact of printing inks and coatings on the recycling process, advocating for the adoption of the test standard specified under DIN SPEC 91496—a viewpoint supported by the European Printing Ink Association.

These collaborative efforts mark a step forward in fostering a more efficient and sustainable circular packaging economy. Notably, Greiner Packaging recently partnered with Yaza, a dairy products company, to introduce traditional Mediterranean labneh in environmentally friendly packaging. The broader implication of these partnerships and initiatives underscores a collective commitment to innovation and sustainability in packaging solutions.  Circular plastics

Collaborative Recycling Initiative Involving Greiner Packaging and Partners

MEGlobal has recently unveiled its Asian Contract Price (ACP) for monoethylene glycol (MEG) slated for March 2024, setting it at US$850 per metric ton CFR (Cost and Freight) Asian main ports, according to a company announcement

This pricing decision for March 2024 is emblematic of the prevailing supply and demand dynamics in the Asian MEG market, as stated by MEGlobal.

It’s worth recalling that in the preceding month, MEGlobal had proposed its February 2024 MEG Asian Contract Price (ACP) at $850 per tonne, marking a $10 per tonne uptick compared to January’s ACP.

The pricing structure remains on a CFR Asia basis.  Circular plastics

MEG, a vital chemical compound used in various industries such as textiles, packaging, and automotive, has been subject to fluctuating market conditions influenced by factors like production levels, global economic trends, and regional demand patterns. MEGlobal’s pricing strategy reflects its response to these intricate market dynamics.

The ACP announcement serves as a crucial indicator for market participants, providing insight into short-term pricing trends and allowing businesses to make informed decisions regarding procurement, inventory management, and pricing strategies.

The stability and competitiveness of MEGlobal’s pricing play a pivotal role in shaping the broader market landscape, influencing trade flows, investment decisions, and profitability across the MEG value chain. Circular plastics

Moreover, the transparency and clarity offered by MEGlobal through its regular ACP announcements contribute to fostering trust and confidence among industry stakeholders, facilitating smoother transactions and fostering long-term partnerships.

Looking ahead, stakeholders in the MEG market will closely monitor developments in supply and demand dynamics, as well as macroeconomic factors, to anticipate future pricing trends and adjust their strategies accordingly.

In conclusion, MEGlobal’s announcement of the ACP for March 2024 underscores its commitment to providing clarity and transparency in pricing while navigating the complexities of the dynamic MEG market landscape.  Circular plastics

MEGlobal has recently unveiled its Asian Contract Price (ACP) for monoethylene glycol (MEG) slated for March 2024, setting it at US$850 per metric ton CFR (Cost and Freight) Asian main ports, according to a company announcement

PET Chemical Recycling – German plastics are currently facing a crisis looming on the horizon 19-02-2024

Circular plastics

Packaging scrap – Sukano steps into the realm of Hungarian compounding as the Swiss-based company takes the reins of Kays, a key player in the development of technopolymers enriched with recycled materials 17-02-2024

Packaging scrap

Bioplastics production capacity to quadruple by 2028

New figures published by the industry association European Bioplastics suggest a sharp increase in the production of sustainable plastics in the next two years and calls for policy support.

Global production capacity for bioplastics will almost quadruple within the next five years, according to estimates of the Nova Institute on behalf Europan Bioplastics (EUBP, Berlin). According to the market study, the production volume will increase from the current level of around 2.2 million tonnes per year to almost 7.5 million tonnes per year.

The expansion will be driven by the increasing demand for green material, said Hasso von Pogrell, Managing Director of the EUBP. Technical developments in the field of biopolymers such as PLA, PHA (polyhydroxyalkanoates) and polyamides are also making rapid progress. The proportion of biodegradable plastics in the total volume of bioplastics will increase from the current 52% to 62% in 2028. For PHA, an increase from 4.8% to 13.5% is expected for the same period.

At the end of January, the association had published a Policy Manifesto, calling on the future European Commission and co-legislators (EU) to develop a comprehensive Biopolymers Industrial Action Plan to accelerate the growth of the bioplastics industry. EUBP recommends to harmonise regulations to create a fair level playing field for bioplastics incentivising access to sustainable biomass, increase funding for scaling up bioplastics production, and to close infrastructure gaps to create better access to food waste

Bioplastics production capacity to quadruple by 2028

Economic analysts caution of a potential global recession by the conclusion of 2024

The Economic Experts Survey (EES) for the fourth quarter of 2023, conducted by the ifo Institute and the Swiss Economic Policy Institute, paints a concerning picture of the global economy, suggesting a looming risk of recession by the end of 2024.

Gathering insights from 1,431 economic experts across 124 countries, the survey highlights below-average growth expectations, fueling apprehensions across various nations. Packaging scrap

Despite an overall cautious optimism among experts, regional variations underscore the unease. In Eastern Europe and South America, as well as major economies like Ukraine and Germany, concerns are particularly pronounced, with the probability of recession averaging at 34%. Similarly, Northern and Western Europe, along with Northern America, exhibit heightened concerns, with probabilities ranging from 30% to 33%.

The survey indicates significant divergence in recession expectations at the country level. For example, North Macedonia faces a modest 8% likelihood of recession, while Bosnia and Herzegovina brace for a substantial 60% probability. Major economies such as Ukraine, Germany, the UK, and the Netherlands show elevated concerns, with probabilities hovering around 38%.  Packaging scrap

In contrast, Southern Asia, Southern Africa, and Central America and the Caribbean express greater confidence in avoiding recession, with probabilities ranging from 18% to 22%. However, countries like Ecuador and Argentina, recently grappling with recessions, anticipate high probabilities of 48% and 61%, respectively.

Overall, while the global economy faces significant risks, individual country and regional dynamics play a crucial role in shaping the likelihood of recession as we approach the end of 2024.

Packaging scrap

Sukano steps into the realm of Hungarian compounding as the Swiss-based company takes the reins of Kays, a key player in the development of technopolymers enriched with recycled materials

The acquisition sees Sukano securing a majority share in Kays Kft., a Hungarian firm renowned for its expertise in engineering material compounding.

Established in 2004 and proudly family-owned, Kays specializes in formulating technopolymers infused with post-consumer and post-industrial recycled components. Despite their newfound partnership, both entities will maintain their autonomy, catering to distinct yet complementary markets. Sukano’s stronghold lies in the packaging sector, diversifying into durable consumer goods, construction, textiles, and medical domains over the years. On the other hand, Kays primarily serves the automotive, electrical/electronic, and railway industries. Packaging scrap

Founded in 1988, Sukano boasts a Swiss headquarters alongside manufacturing facilities in the United States and Malaysia. The company is renowned for its production of color and additive masterbatches, compounds, and pigments tailored for polyesters, biopolymers, and technopolymers. This strategic move not only expands Sukano’s global footprint but also reinforces its commitment to sustainable practices through the integration of recycled materials into its product portfolio.

Packaging scrap

Trinseo experiences a decrease in sales

In its financial report for the 2023 fiscal year, American company Trinseo disclosed a significant downturn, with revenues plummeting by 26%, from $4.96 billion to $3.67 billion. Adjusted EBITDA stood at $154 million, down from the previous year’s $312 million, resulting in a loss of $701 million.

The decline in sales was primarily driven by a 14% decrease in average prices, attributed to rising raw material costs, coupled with a 12% reduction in sales volumes due to weakened demand, particularly in the construction and durable goods sectors, exacerbated by an unfavorable inventory cycle.  Packaging scrap

Trinseo anticipates a prospective $100 million enhancement in profitability this year, attributed to plant closures and other restructuring measures recently unveiled. These initiatives, spanning Europe and Italy, encompass the cessation of a sheet extrusion line in Rho, which will also host the first demonstration plant for PMMA chemical recycling.

CEO Frank Bozich underscored the ongoing assessment of additional measures to bolster manufacturing flexibility, capitalize on regional cost disparities, and optimize profitability, while concurrently reducing capital expenditures and refining working capital management.

Trinseo experiences a decrease in sales

Government has no plans to address the surplus of petrochemicals

The Government remains passive on the issue of petrochemical oversupply, as Environment Minister Lord Benyon asserts that the responsibility lies with the industry to address the situation. The concern was raised in the House of Lords by Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle, who highlighted the global glut of virgin plastics driving down demand for recycled products. She urged consideration of global production restrictions akin to those applied to fossil fuels used for energy.

Ethylene production, crucial for plastic manufacturing, exceeds demand by approximately 45 million tonnes annually, resulting in closures of recyclers in Europe. The Financial Times attributes this oversupply to increased petrochemical production in China and the US, reminiscent of levels not seen since the 1980s.  Packaging scrap

Lord Benyon acknowledged the oversupply but reiterated the Government’s stance, emphasizing industry leadership. He outlined support measures for the UK Plastics Pact members, including packaging reforms and the plastics tax. While domestic actions are insufficient to sway global markets, the UK remains committed to international efforts such as the High Ambition Coalition to End Plastic Pollution.

Discussions in the House also touched upon implementing a plastic packaging tax and a deposit return scheme (DRS). Benyon announced the DRS commencement in October 2025, projecting job creation and advocating for a UK-wide scheme to prevent cross-border trade imbalances.

Packaging scrap

Eastman, Dentis Group partnership will secure feedstock for planned recycling facility

Dentis subsidiary Nord Pal Plast SA will provide 30,000 metric tons per year of PET packaging scrap to Eastman for use at its planned recycling site in France.

Eastman, a specialty materials company based in Kingsport, Tennessee, has announced a long-term agreement with Nord Pal Plast SA, part of Italian multinational company Dentis Group, which specializes in the recovery and mechanical recycling of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) packaging scrap.  Packaging scrap

Through its mechanical recycling sites in France (Nord Pal Plast SA), Spain (PET Compania Para Su Reciclado) and Italy (Dentis Recycling Italy Srl), Dentis will provide 30,000 metric tons per year of rejected postconsumer PET scrap to Eastman. The companies say these materials currently lack a circular solution and will be recycled at Eastman’s molecular recycling facility in Port-Jerome-sur-Seine, Normandy, in France.

The companies say this partnership underscores the importance and complementary nature of both mechanical and molecular recycling processes in creating a more sustainable future. By combining their expertise and resources, the companies hope to achieve true circularity in the recycling process, maximizing the value of postconsumer materials and reducing environmental impact.  Packaging scrap


Eastman, Dentis Group partnership will secure feedstock for planned recycling facility

Packaging scrap

Bio-based nylon – Intertape Polymer Group Inc. (IPG®) unveils its latest innovation, ExlfilmPlus® PCR, marking a significant stride towards sustainability in packaging solutions 16-02-2024

Bio-based nylon – Intertape Polymer Group Inc. (IPG®) unveils its latest innovation, ExlfilmPlus® PCR, marking a significant stride towards sustainability in packaging solutions 16-02-2024

Bio-based nylon

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

LG Chem and CJ CheilJedang are set to collaborate on the development of bio-based nylon

LG Chem and CJ CheilJedang have announced a collaborative effort to produce bio-based nylon, presenting an eco-conscious alternative to conventional synthetic polymers. This strategic partnership entails the formation of a joint venture, as outlined in a heads of agreement signed by the two entities. While an official revealed that the establishment of the joint company is imminent, specifics remain pending.

Central to this collaboration, CJ CheilJedang will supply LG Chem with pentamethylenediamine, a pivotal component for bio-based nylon fabrication. Leveraging its expertise in producing pentamethylenediamine from lysine derived from corn and sugarcane, CJ CheilJedang is poised to contribute significantly to this initiative. Meanwhile, LG Chem plans to utilize these supplied ingredients to manufacture bio-based nylon products within its facilities, though the decision regarding the construction of new infrastructure remains undecided.  Bio-based nylon

The bio-based nylon products resulting from this partnership are anticipated to cater to diverse industries seeking sustainable alternatives to fossil fuel-derived nylon. LG Chem projects a substantial increase in global demand for bio-based nylon products, forecasting a compound growth rate of 29% by 2028. Industries such as automotive, fashion, and home appliances are expected to adopt these eco-friendly solutions, with LG Chem already engaging in discussions with potential clients, both locally and globally.

This endeavor aligns with LG Chem’s broader strategy, under the leadership of CEO Shin Hak-cheol, to cultivate growth in batteries, eco-friendly materials, and innovative pharmaceuticals. Shin emphasizes the significance of this partnership in advancing towards a low-carbon economy, underscoring LG Chem’s commitment to pioneering sustainable practices within the plastics industry.  Bio-based nylon Bio-based nylon

Viridor Completes Acquisition, Securing Total Ownership of Norwegian Chemical Recycling Firm Quantafuel

UK-based recycling and waste management firm, Viridor, has finalized its acquisition of the Norwegian chemical recycler, Quantafuel, resulting in the delisting of Quantafuel’s shares from Euronext Growth on Feb. 7.

The acquisition, valued at around £90 million, was initially proposed by Viridor a year ago, with additional capital pledged to support Quantafuel’s ongoing development endeavors. By May 2023, Viridor had become the majority shareholder in Quantafuel after the initial offer.

Prior to Viridor’s bid, Quantafuel had disclosed a strategic review in October 2022 to seek financial partnerships to address immediate liquidity challenges and secure long-term stability.  Bio-based nylon

Quantafuel specializes in a plastics-to-liquids process that transforms waste plastics into a raw material akin to virgin fossil fuels, suitable for use in chemical production for manufacturing new plastics.

Notably, its technology excels in recycling plastic films, notoriously difficult to process through conventional mechanical recycling methods, which often result in quality degradation unsuitable for food-grade applications.

Headquartered in Oslo, Quantafuel operates a demonstration plant in Skive, Denmark, with plans to establish facilities in the UK and Dubai.

Lee Hodder, managing director of Viridor, emphasized, “Quantafuel’s integration into Viridor Polymers solidifies our position as a key player in the polymers reprocessing sector, highlighting our joint commitment to innovation and fostering a circular plastic economy.”

Viridor aims to leverage Quantafuel’s foundation to further advance the commercialization of its technology, aligning with the company’s ambition to spearhead innovation in plastic recycling and achieve full plastic circularity by 2025.  Bio-based nylon

Bio-based nylon

Grace has licensed its second UNIPOL polypropylene process technology reactor to China Coal Shaanxi Energy & Chemical Group Co., Ltd., marking a significant expansion in polypropylene production capacity

W.R. Grace & Co. revealed that the agreement entails doubling the annual polypropylene production capacity from 300 to 600 kilotons. Additionally, the deal encompasses the provision of Grace’s UNIPOL UNIPPAC process control software, empowering China Coal Shaanxi Company to enhance metrics such as throughput, onstream time, and continuity.

Situated in Yulin City, Shaanxi province, China, the new reactor line is slated to commence production of high-quality homopolymers, random and impact copolymers, and terpolymers in 2025.  Bio-based nylon

Thomas Deman, President of Specialty Catalysts, Supply Chain, and Procurement at Grace, expressed enthusiasm, stating, “We are thrilled to assist China Coal Shaanxi Company in expanding their PP production capabilities to meet customer demand.” He emphasized the combination of Grace’s UNIPOL PP technology and UNIPOL UNIPPAC process control software as the most rapid and efficient approach for China Coal Shaanxi Company to optimize reactor performance and gain competitive advantages in product differentiation, quality, and cost.

China Coal Shaanxi Company affirmed their satisfaction with the partnership, highlighting Grace’s advanced PP technology, reliable production capabilities, technical service, and UNIPOL UNIPPAC process control software. Grace, a leading global licensor of polypropylene process technology, had secured nearly 2.5 million tons of licensed capacity with five polypropylene manufacturers worldwide by 2023. The high-performance polypropylene resins produced through UNIPOL PP process technology are fully recyclable and widely utilized in automotive parts, packaging, and consumer goods. For more details, visit UNIPOL PP technology.  Bio-based nylon

Bio-based nylon

Versalis has commenced construction on a plant dedicated to the mechanical recycling of styrenic waste in Porto Marghera, targeting an operational launch by August

Last year, preliminary site activities were finalized, paving the way for this significant endeavor.

Equipped with technology and machinery procured from Ecoplastic three years prior, the facility aims to process up to 20 thousand tonnes of styrenic waste annually upon full operation. The incoming waste, already treated and designated, will undergo a process developed by Ecoplastic, facilitating the production of both expanded polystyrene (rEPS) and compact polystyrene (rGPPS) with recycled content of up to 100%.

The resultant regenerated materials will bolster Versalis Revive recycled polymers, catering to sectors such as packaging and construction. This initiative marks the initial phase of Venetian petrochemical industry’s transition toward circular economy principles. Subsequently, plans entail the establishment of an additional advanced mechanical recycling plant for plastic waste, sourced from separate waste collection, focusing on polystyrene and high-density polyethylene.  Bio-based nylon

With an approximate treatment capacity of 50 thousand tonnes annually, this second venture stems from a licensing agreement inked two years ago with Forever Plast. While the completion date remains unspecified, basic engineering is finalized, and feasibility studies for project development are underway. Upon the realization of this secondary phase, Versalis anticipates recycling around 70,000 tonnes of plastic waste yearly in Porto Marghera, contributing to internal reuse initiatives.

Versalis has commenced construction on a plant dedicated to the mechanical recycling of styrenic waste in Porto Marghera, targeting an operational launch by August

Covestro starts up bio-based aniline pilot plant in Leverkusen

Covestro AG (Leverkusen, Germany) is moving forward with the implementation of a unique process for producing the important chemical aniline entirely based on plant biomass instead of petroleum for the first time.  Bio-based nylon

At its Leverkusen site, the plastics manufacturer has now put a special pilot plant into operation for this purpose. Initially, large quantities of bio-based aniline will be produced there, so that the new technology can be further developed for production and transferred to an industrial scale. In the plastics industry, aniline is used to produce MDI, among other things. This in turn is used for insulating foam, for example, which saves energy in buildings and reduces the CO2 footprint. Covestro believes it will contribute to the promotion of the Circular Economy, which the company is aiming to become fully aligned with.  Bio-based nylon

In attendance at the opening ceremony were North-Rhine Westphalia’s Deputy Minister President Mona Neubaur as well as Professor Walter Leitner, Managing Director of the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Energy Conversion in Mülheim an der Ruhr.

Together with Dr. Thorsten Dreier, Chief Technology Officer of Covestro, they discussed the significance of bio-based raw materials for a sustainable chemicals industry of the future.

“Among other things, aniline is a key raw material for foams used to insulate buildings and refrigerators,” explained Dreier, on the significance of the base chemical.

“Until now, aniline has been produced from fossil raw materials such as petroleum, which releases CO2 and fuels climate change.

Covestro starts up bio-based aniline pilot plant in Leverkusen

Intertape Polymer Group Inc. (IPG®) unveils its latest innovation, ExlfilmPlus® PCR, marking a significant stride towards sustainability in packaging solutions

This polyolefin shrink film boasts a remarkable 35% total recycled content and is primed for recycling at store drop-off points.  Bio-based nylon

Addressing the escalating demand for eco-friendly and circular packaging options, ExlfilmPlus PCR not only prioritizes environmental responsibility but also maintains superior performance and quality standards.

Comprising a minimum of 10% certified post-consumer recycled content and 25% certified post-industrial recycled content, this polyolefin shrink film incorporates certified mechanical post-consumer recycled materials sourced from recycled plastic waste. Notably, ExlfilmPlus PCR holds the prestigious prequalification from HOW2RECYCLE for store drop-off recycling and is sanctioned for select direct food contact applications. Its availability in thinner gauges compared to conventional products enables a material usage reduction of up to 9%.  Bio-based nylon

ExlfilmPlus PCR empowers customers to align with sustainability goals by significantly diminishing the environmental impact of their packaging practices. By embracing recycled materials and facilitating recyclability, this innovation actively contributes to the circular economy paradigm. Intertape Polymer Group Inc.’s ExlfilmPlus PCR embodies a pivotal step forward in advancing sustainable packaging solutions for a greener future.

Intertape Polymer Group Inc. (IPG®) unveils its latest innovation, ExlfilmPlus® PCR, marking a significant stride towards sustainability in packaging solutions

Sidel has joined forces with EcoVadis to champion a sustainable supply chain, marking a significant step in their environmental and ethical endeavors

Under this new supply chain strategy, EcoVadis, renowned sustainability assessors with over 17 years of experience and having evaluated more than 125,000 companies, will evaluate the environmental, social, and ethical performance of Sidel’s suppliers.

Francesca Bellucci, Head of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) at Sidel, emphasizes the centrality of this strategy to their ESG practices, citing that over 10% of their greenhouse gas emissions originate upstream.  Bio-based nylon

Sidel is committed to ensuring human rights enforcement throughout the value chain and recognizes the importance of robust supplier relationships in achieving their ambitious ESG objectives.

Lisete Pereira, Responsible Sourcing and Project Manager at Sidel, highlights their transition to EcoVadis for sustainability assessments, aiming to engage suppliers on the EcoVadis platform to advance their sustainability roadmap. This initiative, outlined in Sidel’s ESG Report 2022, aligns with EU Commission Green Deal principles and supports compliance with the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive.  Bio-based nylon

Through this collaboration, Sidel aims to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions in purchased goods and services by almost 30% by 2030 compared to 2019 levels, while also upholding human rights and ethical governance standards across the supply chain.

Julien Carboni, Strategic Account Executive at EcoVadis, stresses the importance of communication and collaborative action in supporting suppliers toward sustainability.

He emphasizes that Sidel’s suppliers can demonstrate their commitment to sustainability to customers through a trusted sustainability rating provided by EcoVadis.  Bio-based nylon

Francesca Bellucci concludes by asserting Sidel’s belief in transparent collaboration across the entire value chain as essential for creating a greener and better future for all.

Sidel has joined forces with EcoVadis to champion a sustainable supply chain, marking a significant step in their environmental and ethical endeavors

Closed-loop recycling – Researchers develop eco-friendly ‘magnet’ to battle microplastics 15-02-2024

Bio-based nylon

Closed-loop recycling – Researchers develop eco-friendly ‘magnet’ to battle microplastics 15-02-2024

Closed-loop recycling

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Life for Tyres Group Limited, Europe’s premier end-of-life tire recycling enterprise, has unveiled plans to inaugurate a cutting-edge $46 million tire recycling facility in Louisiana

This marks the company’s inaugural venture into the United States, with the facility sprawled over 10 acres at the Port of South Louisiana.

The new plant, christened L4T Louisiana LLC, will specialize in converting end-of-life tires into premium sustainable commodities, including advanced biofuel feedstock, reclaimed carbon black, and scrap steel. Anticipated to generate 46 direct jobs in St. John the Baptist Parish, the project is projected to spawn an additional 151 indirect positions, totaling a potential 197 new employments in the Southeast Region, as per Louisiana Economic Development estimates. Closed-loop recycling

Governor Jeff Landry hailed the investment as emblematic of the port’s ability to galvanize economic growth, stressing its significance in bolstering local and state economies. The facility is poised to cater to Louisiana-based oil, gas, and petroleum chemical companies, furnishing them with top-tier sustainable commodities to align with their carbon management objectives.

Leveraging patented technology, Life for Tyres Group pioneers the production of high-quality secondary raw materials, substantially slashing greenhouse gas emissions by up to 90% compared to traditional tire recycling methodologies.

CEO Tilen Milicevic expressed enthusiasm for the expansion into Louisiana, citing the state’s robust industrial ecosystem, skilled workforce, and strategic location as key factors influencing the decision.  Closed-loop recycling

The company looks forward to forging a robust partnership with the Port of South Louisiana and contributing positively to the state’s economic landscape.

The Louisiana facility forms a pivotal component of Life for Tyres Group’s global expansion strategy, complementing its existing operations in Ireland and Spain. To clinch the project, Louisiana extended a competitive incentives package, including workforce development solutions and a $1 million Performance-Based Grant for site enhancements, further augmented by participation in state tax exemption and job creation programs.

Closed-loop recycling

Hydrogen emerges as a potential savior amidst the looming climate crisis, albeit with lingering uncertainties

A recent expedition in north-eastern France, initially in pursuit of methane, unveiled a colossal reservoir of natural hydrogen. While this discovery holds promise, skepticism persists.

In France, researchers from the University of Lorraine unearthed a staggering 250 million-ton cache of natural hydrogen, sufficient to satiate global demand for two years. The find, nestled 1000 meters below ground, underscores hydrogen’s prospective role in combating climate change and securing our future.  Closed-loop recycling

Naturally occurring within the Earth’s crust, hydrogen is perpetually generated through chemical reactions, primarily tied to ferrous mineral oxidation. This perpetual genesis designates it as a sustainable energy font, resonating with the assertions of Isabelle Moretti, a researcher at the University of Pau and Pays de l’Adour.

Hydrogen’s allure lies in its versatility. It serves as an exemplary fuel, poised to mitigate the intermittent nature of renewables like solar and wind. Moreover, it doubles as an energy reservoir, buffering surpluses for subsequent release, thereby ensuring uninterrupted power supply.  Closed-loop recycling

Beyond its utility, hydrogen boasts several advantages. Its adaptability in gas and liquid fuel production, coupled with existing infrastructure compatibility, renders it an appealing prospect. Notably, its emission-free combustion and sole byproduct of water amplify its eco-credentials.

Despite its promise, apprehensions persist. Hydrogen’s combustible nature underscores safety concerns, necessitating stringent storage protocols. Moreover, its production often hinges on non-renewable energy sources, challenging its environmental merit.

Nevertheless, ongoing research endeavors strive to surmount these hurdles, striving for a future where hydrogen stands not only as a climate ally but as a safe and efficient energy paradigm.  Closed-loop recycling

Closed-loop recycling

ORNL develops dynamically crosslinked CFRP, enabling closed-loop recycling 

At laboratory scale, functionalized CFRP thermosets can be “released” via heat or chemicals to reincarnate them back into their starting materials.

Inventors at the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Oak Ridge National Laboratory (Oak Ridge, Tenn., U.S.) have designed a closed-loop path for synthesizing an exceptionally tough carbon fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP) and later recovering all of its starting materials. The findings, published in Cell Reports Physical Science, are said to accelerate addressing the challenge of recycling conventional CFRPs, which have typically been single-use materials.  Closed-loop recycling

“We incorporated dynamic crosslinking into a  commodity polymer to functionalize it. Then, we added a crosslinker to make it like thermoset materials,” explains ORNL chemist and inventor Md Anisur Rahman. “Dynamic crosslinking allows us to break chemical bonds and reprocess or recycle the carbon fiber composite materials.”

A conventional thermoset material is permanently crosslinked. Once synthesized, cured, molded and set into a shape, it cannot be reprocessed. ORNL’s system, on the other hand, adds dynamic chemical groups to the polymer matrix and its embedded carbon fibers. The polymer matrix and carbon fibers can undergo multiple reprocessing cycles without loss of mechanical properties, such as strength and toughness.

Rahman led the study with ORNL chemist Tomonori Saito. Rahman and ORNL postdoctoral fellow Menisha Karunarathna Koralalage conducted most of the experiments. The trio has applied for a patent for the innovation.  Closed-loop recycling


Closed-loop recycling

Alpek Polyester Adjusts March PET Prices in US, Citing Increased Logistics Costs

Alpek Polyester has revealed its intention to implement a price increase for polyethylene terephthalate (PET) in the United States, set at 5 cents per pound (equivalent to USD 110.23 per tonne), effective from March 1, 2024. The decision to raise PET prices is attributed to the sustained challenges in logistics, particularly arising from ongoing disruptions in the Red Sea, which have reverberated across the market.

Recent developments have seen disruptions in logistics impacting US PET imports, with challenges manifesting in key transit routes such as the Red Sea, Panama Canal, and Suez Canal. These disruptions have exerted upward pressure on import prices, contributing to the decision by Alpek Polyester to adjust its pricing strategy.  Closed-loop recycling

Additionally, the market is currently gearing up for the anticipated peak demand season for bottled PET. Traditionally, this peak season commences in the second quarter, signalling the onset of the summer season. Historically, rising temperatures during this period have led to increased consumer purchases of bottled beverages, subsequently driving up the demand for PET in bottling applications.

Alpek Polyester’s decision to raise PET prices reflects the intricate interplay of factors influencing the industry, with logistics disruptions serving as a prominent catalyst. The ongoing challenges in the Red Sea and other key transit routes have underscored the vulnerability of global supply chains, impacting various industries, including the PET sector.

Furthermore, the anticipation of a peak demand season for bottled PET introduces another layer of complexity to market dynamics.  Closed-loop recycling

The historical trend of increased demand for bottled beverages during the warmer months’ places additional pressure on PET manufacturers to meet heightened consumer needs. This surge in demand adds to the considerations that PET producers like Alpek Polyester must weigh when implementing pricing adjustments.


Alpek Polyester Adjusts March PET Prices in US, Citing Increased Logistics Costs

A new online platform named Cyclops has been introduced in Germany to promote the use of recycled plastics in supply chains

Developed collaboratively by GreenDelta, Cirplus, Wuppertal Institute, and Centro Plastica SKZ, Cyclops (Circular Optimization for Plastics) is an open-source and free digital tool designed to facilitate the exchange of recycled materials among producers, recyclers, and manufacturers interested in transforming them into new products.

Cyclops offers a range of features tailored to different user types—waste owners, recyclers, and transformers. It provides valuable information on potential applications of recycled materials, pricing dynamics, and environmental benefits, aiding decision-making in the circular economy.  Closed-loop recycling

The platform includes analysis tools for economic and environmental assessments, AI-driven quality specifications, waste management recommendations, and guidance on product design for recyclability.

Max Meister, co-founder of Cirplus, describes Cyclops as an accessible tool for comparing recycled materials quickly and effectively. Jan Werner, Group Manager for Sustainable and Circular Products at SKZ, highlights Cyclops’ potential to overcome existing barriers in the recycling market and promote coordinated recycling flows towards a circular economy.

Despite encountering some issues, such as AI prediction inaccuracies during initial testing, Cyclops aims to play a pivotal role in advancing recycling practices and fostering sustainability in future projects.  Closed-loop recycling

A new online platform named Cyclops has been introduced in Germany to promote the use of recycled plastics in supply chains

Researchers develop eco-friendly ‘magnet’ to battle microplastics

Dynamic Cycle is a sustainable initiative in support of plastic circularity ti-films.com

Plastic pollution is a pressing environmental issue, and University of Kentucky Martin-Gatton College of Agriculture, Food and Environment researchers are leading the charge with an innovative solution.

The college’s Department of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering (BAE) partnered with the U.K. Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering to tackle the tiny, often unseen, particles of plastic now found in the world’s oceans.

Their research, published in Scientific Reports, centers on an intriguing solution: using natural deep eutectic solvents (NADES) to capture and remove these miniature particles from water.  Closed-loop recycling

“The challenge of micro- and nano-plastics in our environment has been gaining intense attention recently,” said BAE associate professor Jian Shi. “These minute particles, often invisible to the naked eye, are the remnants of larger plastic pieces broken down by sunlight and physical stress. Their size makes them notoriously difficult to remove using conventional methods like centrifugation or filtration, which are either inefficient or too costly.”

Plastic is a durable, cheap material, making it a staple in daily life. However, its strength is also its environmental downfall.

Plastics don’t break down easily, leading to massive piles of waste. Over time, these plastics break into smaller fragments. The smallest, nano-plastics, are so tiny they can’t be seen without a microscope. Their size makes them a significant hazard, as they can be ingested by marine life and enter the human food chain. Closed-loop recycling


Researchers develop eco-friendly 'magnet' to battle microplastics

Raw material crisis imperils Indonesia polyester units: Reports


  • The Association of Indonesian Spun and Filament Yarn Producers reportedly warned many Indonesian polyester factories may halt production due to challenges in sourcing raw materials.
  • Farhan Aqil of APSyFI reportedly claimed the restrictions are linked to Trade Ministerial Regulation No. 36/2023.
  • Polyester is crucial for textiles, automotive, and packaging.

According to the Association of Indonesian Spun and Filament Yarn Producers (APSyFI), numerous polyester factories in the country are facing imminent threat of halting production, faced with substantial challenges encountered by them in procuring essential raw materials.  Closed-loop recycling

The primary hindrance reportedly stems from the government’s stringent import restrictions, exacerbating the scarcity of vital supplies for the production process.

Reports added the supplying countries of mono-ethylene glycol (MEG) to Indonesia have paused shipments awaiting government permit clarification.

As firms grapple with these constraints, the continuity of operations within the polyester industry hangs in the balance.

Raw material crisis imperils Indonesia polyester units: Reports

Polyethylene-terephthalate PET – Reshaping the recycling plastics marketThe rapid growth of the global plastics recycling market hides a sector undergoing dramatic change14-02-2024

Closed-loop recycling

Polyethylene-terephthalate PET – Reshaping the recycling plastics marketThe rapid growth of the global plastics recycling market hides a sector undergoing dramatic change14-02-2024

Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

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HydroGraph PET Test Results Show Improved Plastic Performance

HydroGraph Clean Power Inc. has recently announced groundbreaking results from its research endeavors, spotlighting the integration of its cutting-edge graphene technology with polyethylene terephthalate (PET). PET, a widely used plastic resin, finds applications across diverse sectors such as water and soda bottle manufacturing, food packaging, and textile production. By infusing HydroGraph’s exclusive graphene into PET, the company aims to enhance the plastic’s performance, potentially reducing material usage in plastic bottles by a significant margin of 10% to 15%.

In today’s global landscape, there’s a growing corporate commitment to reduce disposable plastic usage in products. This aligns with evolving consumer preferences, regulatory pressures, and environmental concerns. However, completely eliminating plastic from the global economy poses considerable challenges. Therefore, companies are exploring innovative strategies and technologies to extend the lifespan of plastics while minimizing environmental impact.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

HydroGraph’s research primarily focused on evaluating its proprietary graphene variant, FGA-1, to bolster the mechanical properties of PET. Through rigorous testing, HydroGraph aimed to gauge graphene’s efficacy in enhancing PET’s mechanical strength and durability. The results were highly promising, indicating potential material usage reduction of up to 15%, translating to significant cost savings estimated at USD 75 million.

To ensure the integrity of the testing process, HydroGraph collaborated with the Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (GEIC) at the University of Manchester. Leveraging GEIC’s advanced facilities and expertise, HydroGraph conducted thorough testing protocols, producing robust data to support its research.

Furthermore, HydroGraph Clean Power Inc. has emerged as a prominent figure in Greater Manchester’s thriving investment zone, contributing significantly to the region’s technological advancement and economic growth. Positioned within Greater Manchester’s graphene research and development hub, HydroGraph is poised to capitalize on the sector’s rapid expansion, solidifying its position as a key player in the global graphene market.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

Reshaping the recycling plastics marketThe rapid growth of the global plastics recycling market hides a sector undergoing dramatic change

Recent innovations all along the plastics recycling value chain are transforming the very foundations of the industry while unlocking new found value in used plastic.

Recycling medical plastics

Driven by the pressing need to expand recycling capacity and performance for greater circularity, these advancements promise to reshape the market landscape in the years ahead. From cutting-edge chemical processes to artificial intelligence systems optimising sorting accuracy, new technologies are evolving rapidly to handle more waste plastic, produce higher-quality recycled resin, open new end markets and strengthen value recovery economics.

The success of these innovations will determine if recycled polymers can expand their footprint substantially across global manufacturing one day. As technology barriers fall, the conditions strengthen for recycled resins to capture 20-50% share across major plastic segments as projected over the next 10-20 years by leading industry groups like the Alliance to End Plastic Waste.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

Recycled plastics refer to plastics that undergo processes such as sorting, cleaning, and reprocessing to be reused in various applications. Recycling plastics helps mitigate environmental pollution, reduce dependence on virgin plastic production, and conserve natural resources.


Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

NextChem Tech and ENGIE have joined forces in a strategic partnership aimed at advancing biomethane technology for a zero-carbon industry

Their collaboration will focus on developing and commercializing advanced methods to produce synthetic methane from dry biomass waste.

Under this partnership, NextChem Tech will serve as a key strategic partner and co-developer, leveraging proprietary technologies from both NextChem and ENGIE. Together, they will optimize and integrate these technologies to create an advanced process for biomethane production.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

The culmination of this effort will be the industrialization of the technology through the Salamandre project in Le Havre. Following this milestone, NextChem Tech will become the exclusive licensor of the integrated package, enabling global dissemination of the advanced biomethane solution.

This collaboration represents a significant step forward in the journey towards a zero-carbon industry. By offering environmentally friendly solutions through a circular approach, NextChem Tech and ENGIE reaffirm their commitment to sustainable energy transition.

In summary, the strategic partnership between NextChem Tech and ENGIE signifies a concerted effort to drive innovation in biomethane technology, thereby contributing to the broader goal of achieving a carbon-neutral industrial sector.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

Recycling Partners Collaborate to Eliminate Production Scrap Waste at NPE2024

A collaboration between show organizer PLASTICS, recycler CPR and size reduction experts WEIMA and Conair will seek to recover and recycle 100% of the parts produced at the show.

Around 8,000 communities across the United States have some variation of a recycling program that collects plastics from homes and finds a new life for it. These programs are widely diverse in accepted materials and success rates. Equally important are postindustrial scrap management programs at thousands of production facilities across the country. This May in Orlando, a completely different community will emerge with its own unique recycling program.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

On May 6, a pop-up city will assemble in the Orange County Convention Center as some 55,000 attendees assemble for NPE2024, the largest plastics event in North America. They will come to learn, educate and network, but also show what they can do and see what others can do. Exhibitors will want to show that their equipment at its best and will be churning out parts in the process.

And what will happen to those parts, will they be tossed in a dumpster and forgotten? Not at NPE2024. It wouldn’t do. But it will take a coordinated effort to collect the materials flying out of machines at breakneck speed and irregular intervals, break them down and get them on to a new owner who can turn them into new products. Fortunately, exactly the right people for the job will be on hand.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET


Recycling Partners Collaborate to Eliminate Production Scrap Waste at NPE2024

Canada Backs BOSK Bioproducts’ Compostable Bioplastics Boost

SME to receive $1M in financial assistance from CED to foster sustainable development in Quebec’s regions by offering an ecofriendly alternative to polluting plastics.

SMEs have a key role to play in ensuring Quebec’s economy makes the environmental transition. They seek to innovate and grow by becoming more competitive in a greener world. That is why the Honourable Soraya Martinez Ferrada, Minister of Tourism and Minister responsible for CED, accompanied by the Honourable Jean‑Yves Duclos, Member of Parliament for Québec and Minister of Public Services and Procurement, took the opportunity during her visit to announce a repayable contribution of $1M for BOSK Bioproducts Inc. This CED support will enable the business to increase its production capacity by establishing a manufacturing unit for compostable bioplastics. The assistance provided will focus on the cost of acquiring equipment and installing, testing, and commissioning this unit.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

BOSK Bioproducts is an innovative SME based on the model of a circular economy to collect industrial waste, such as bio-sludge from paper manufacturing, and convert it into compostable bioplastics. Its new manufacturing unit will enable it to improve its production capacity by securing its supply chain. The business will thus be able itself to produce polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), a key component of REGEN™, a bio-based bioplastic it has developed. Through this 100% compostable solution, BOSK aims to significantly reduce plastic waste in the environment.


Canada Backs BOSK Bioproducts' Compostable Bioplastics Boost

Breakthrough CFRP Recycling Innovation from Oak Ridge National Laboratory: A Step Towards Sustainable Manufacturing

A Groundbreaking Innovation in Polymer Recycling

In a significant breakthrough, researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have developed a closed-loop process for creating a tough and recyclable carbon-fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP). This innovative technology allows for the reprocessing and recycling of the carbon fiber composite materials, addressing the significant carbon footprint associated with traditional CFRPs.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

The Technology Behind the Breakthrough

The technology developed incorporates dynamic crosslinking into a commodity polymer, thus functionalizing it. The addition of a crosslinker makes it akin to thermoset materials, thereby allowing for the reprocessing or recycling of the carbon fiber composite materials without losing their mechanical properties.

Exceptional Strength and Resilience

The resulting recyclable carbon fiber composite possesses very strong interfacial adhesion and can be reincarnated back into its starting materials.

Impressively, the strength of the composite is almost two times higher than a conventional epoxy composite, and the tensile strength is the highest ever among similar fiber-reinforced composite materials. Polyethylene-terephthalate PET


Breakthrough CFRP Recycling Innovation from Oak Ridge National Laboratory: A Step Towards Sustainable Manufacturing

Linde Engineering and Daimler Truck have set a groundbreaking standard in liquid hydrogen refueling technology, marking a significant advancement in Europe’s journey towards decarbonizing transportation

Through collaborative efforts, they’ve introduced the sLH2 process, revolutionizing the handling of subcooled liquid hydrogen. This innovative method offers numerous advantages over gaseous hydrogen, including higher storage density, extended range, quicker refueling, reduced costs, and enhanced energy efficiency.

Refueling a 40-ton heavy-duty truck carrying 80 kg of liquid hydrogen now takes merely ten to fifteen minutes, enabling a range of over 1,000 kilometers. Moreover, the sLH2 technology slashes hydrogen refueling station investment costs by two to three times and operational expenses by five to six times. Consequently, liquid hydrogen can now be reliably supplied throughout Europe.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

The sLH2 process involves utilizing a specialized pump to marginally increase the pressure of liquid hydrogen, transforming it into subcooled liquid hydrogen (sLH2). This state of hydrogen streamlines the refueling process, minimizing energy losses and eliminating the need for data transmission between the station and vehicle, thus simplifying the solution.

The pilot sLH2 refueling station boasts a remarkable capacity of 400 kg per hour, demonstrating its efficiency compared to conventional methods. To promote widespread adoption, the technology is being made available through an ISO standard, with the inaugural public sLH2 pilot station unveiled in Wörth am Rhein.

This milestone event, attended by key stakeholders and international media, highlights the commitment of both companies to drive industry-wide adoption of hydrogen-powered transportation. Andreas Gorbach of Daimler Truck emphasizes the importance of collaboration to establish a common standard, while Juergen Nowicki of Linde Engineering underscores the practicality and environmental benefits of sLH2 as a viable alternative to diesel in the heavy-duty vehicle sector.  Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

Linde Engineering and Daimler Truck have set a groundbreaking standard in liquid hydrogen refueling technology, marking a significant advancement in Europe's journey towards decarbonizing transportation

Polyethylene-terephthalate PET

Oxo-degradable products – Corsair Bangkok Company Ltd (CORSAIR), a plastic waste recycling firm, has inked a significant agreement with Shell Singapore Pte Ltd (SSPL) to supply pyrolysis oil, a mixed plastic waste feedstock 13-02-2024

Oxo-degradable products – Corsair Bangkok Company Ltd (CORSAIR), a plastic waste recycling firm, has inked a significant agreement with Shell Singapore Pte Ltd (SSPL) to supply pyrolysis oil, a mixed plastic waste feedstock 13-02-2024

Oxo-degradable products

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Corsair Bangkok Company Ltd (CORSAIR), a plastic waste recycling firm, has inked a significant agreement with Shell Singapore Pte Ltd (SSPL) to supply pyrolysis oil, a mixed plastic waste feedstock

This partnership entails Corsair, known for its conversion of daily household plastic waste into pyrolysis advanced bio oil, delivering the oil from its plastic waste chemical recycling facility in Thailand to the Shell Energy and Chemicals Park in Singapore. Once delivered, the pyrolysis oil will undergo processing to manufacture sustainable circular chemicals, crucial components utilized in various everyday products such as cleaning agents, textiles, and food packaging.

Expressing enthusiasm about the collaboration, Corsair’s CEO, Mr. Jussi Veikko Saloranta, highlighted the pressing issue of global plastic waste and stressed the importance of developing efficient recycling methods.  Oxo-degradable products

He emphasized the need to transform discarded plastic into new products rather than resorting to incineration or landfill disposal.

Corsair, originally based in Thailand but recently expanding into Europe, aims to extend its international reach to maximize its positive environmental impact.

Phil Turley, General Manager of Global Plastic Circular Economy at Shell, echoed Corsair’s commitment to sustainability. He emphasized the significance of chemical recycling as a complement to mechanical recycling efforts, essential for achieving higher recycling rates and reducing plastic waste in the environment. Turley emphasized that the partnership represents not just an innovative collaboration but a shared dedication to a sustainable and circular future.        Oxo-degradable products

Oxo-degradable products

Symphony confident despite court ruling on oxo-degradable plastics

Symphony Environmental Technologies provided an update on the recent ruling by the General Court of the European Union, which was delivered on January 31st, regarding the prohibition of oxo-degradable products that fail to biodegrade properly. Despite the court’s decision not to award compensation, Symphony remains resolute.

The court’s judgment focused solely on the discretion limits of the defendants and did not assess the efficacy of Symphony’s d2w technologies or consider subsequent studies supporting its effectiveness, nor did it examine expert evidence on microplastics formation. Symphony, supported by legal counsel, maintains that d2w should not be subject to the EU prohibition.  Oxo-degradable products

Although legal proceedings ensued, the impact on Symphony’s operations has been minimal, given the limited recent use of d2w technology in the EU. This limited adoption is attributed to confusion stemming from the wording of the EU directive, which fails to differentiate between oxo-degradable plastic and the oxo-biodegradable technology utilized by d2w.

Symphony’s attempts to amend the directive were unsuccessful, leading to the pursuit of compensation. The court’s reference to the CEN definition TR15351, which distinguishes between oxo-degradable and oxo-biodegradable plastics, supports Symphony’s position.

Michael Laurier, CEO of Symphony, expressed confidence in challenging the directive amendment and stressed the importance of communicating the value of d2w biodegradable technology globally.  Oxo-degradable products

Despite the ruling making it more challenging to sell d2w in the EU, Symphony remains optimistic about its global prospects and is committed to updating stakeholders on progress in the coming months.

Shares in Symphony Environmental Technologies were up 5.08% at 3.42p as of 1146 GMT.

Oxo-degradable products

In December 2023, the production of major plastic resins in the United States surged by 5%, reaching a total of 8.5 billion pounds

This marks a substantial uptick of 24.6% compared to December 2022. Year-to-date, the production soared to 96.7 billion pounds, indicating a notable 5% rise from the corresponding period in 2022.

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) disclosed these figures, further revealing that sales and captive (internal) usage of major plastic resins also experienced a significant boost. In December 2023 alone, sales and captive use amounted to 8.2 billion pounds, showing a 4.4% increase from the previous month and a notable 10.6% surge compared to December 2022. Yearly sales and captive use tallied up to 95.4 billion pounds, reflecting a 3.1% rise compared to the same period in 2022. Oxo-degradable products

These statistics underscore a robust performance in the U.S. plastic resin industry, with both production and consumption experiencing steady growth. The surge in production and usage highlights the continued importance and demand for plastic resins across various sectors of the economy.

Oxo-degradable products

Rumpke Waste & Recycling (Rumpke) and molecular recycling innovator Eastman have forged a pioneering alliance aimed at tackling the pressing global plastic waste crisis

In a groundbreaking move, Rumpke will soon commence the collection and sorting of challenging-to-recycle and colored PET packaging waste, materials that have long been neglected in the recycling landscape. This waste stream, totaling 100 percent, will serve as the primary feedstock for Eastman’s cutting-edge molecular recycling process.

Through Eastman’s technology, this waste will be transformed into high-quality polyesters, effectively breathing new life into materials that were previously considered non-recyclable. Oxo-degradable products

These recycled polyesters will find application across various packaging sectors, significantly bolstering the circular economy for these materials.

Jeff Snyder, Rumpke’s Director of Recycling, highlighted the urgency of the plastic waste dilemma, stressing the need for innovative solutions.

This partnership not only creates a new avenue for recycling previously unmanageable waste but also underscores the vital role of collaboration in achieving genuine circularity.

Brad Lich, Eastman’s Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, echoed this sentiment, emphasizing the symbiotic relationship between molecular and mechanical recycling in preserving valuable resources within the circular economy.

This milestone collaboration comes at a pivotal moment as Eastman prepares to launch the world’s largest material-to-material molecular recycling facility in Kingsport, Tennessee. With an annual capacity to recycle 110,000 metric tons of hard-to-recycle plastic waste, this facility represents a significant stride towards a more sustainable future.

Rumpke Waste & Recycling (Rumpke) and molecular recycling innovator Eastman have forged a pioneering alliance aimed at tackling the pressing global plastic waste crisis

New Catalyst Discovery Cuts Costs and Boosts Green Chemistry

Osaka University researchers have developed a more sustainable and cost-effective catalyst for chemical synthesis, significantly reducing the need for rare and expensive metals. Oxo-degradable products

Their nickel carbide nanoparticle catalyst efficiently converts nitriles to primary amines under mild conditions, offering a promising solution for the environmentally friendly production of pharmaceuticals and everyday products.

A team from Osaka University, along with their collaborators, has created a cost-effective catalyst for a key chemical process, potentially paving the way for further initiatives to reduce expenses within the chemical sector.

The chemical industry often relies on scarce and costly metals to manufacture pharmaceuticals and other crucial materials.

Substituting these metals with more readily available and affordable alternatives could enhance environmental sustainability, reduce expenses, and decrease the likelihood of supply chain interruptions. Oxo-degradable products

Now, in a study recently published in Chemistry – A European Journal, researchers from Osaka University and collaborating partners have met this need in their work on an industrially useful chemical transformation. The simple, gentle reaction conditions reported here might inspire researchers who are working to reduce use of expensive metals for as many chemical reactions as possible.

The Role of Noble Metals and Alternatives

So-called noble metals are especially versatile materials. For example, palladium is a metal of choice for catalyzing a chemical transformation – converting nitriles into primary amines – that is a common step in nylon and plastics production. However, such metals are rare and costly. Substitutes based on common metals such as nickel could be cheaper catalysts. Oxo-degradable products

New Catalyst Discovery Cuts Costs and Boosts Green Chemistry

Avantium announces the successful completion of its €70 million capital raise

  • Avantium secures funding for the completion, commissioning and start-up of the FDCA Flagship Plant and the acceleration of its commercial deployment
  • The gross proceeds from the rights offering is €50.5 million, resulting in the issue of 27,018,772 new ordinary shares
    • 24,467,905 new ordinary shares were subscribed through exercise of rights, representing a 90.6% take-up in the rights offering
    • The rump offering was fully subscribed  Oxo-degradable products
  • Additional upsize offering of €19.5 million, resulting in the issue of 9,376,981 new ordinary shares
    • The cornerstone investors and pre-committed shareholders were allocated €9.1 million at the issue price
    • New investors were allocated €10.4 million at a price of €2.30, representing a 3.2% discount to the closing price on 8 February 2024

Avantium N.V. announces it has raised a total of €70 million through the successful completion of its capital increase by means of a fully underwritten rights offering, for an amount of €50.5 million, and the completion of a €19.5 million institutional upsize offering.

Tom van Aken, Chief Executive Officer of Avantium, comments: “We are very pleased with this successful €70 million capital raise, exceeding the €50 million equity capital that Avantium was initially targeting. Oxo-degradable products

This transaction allows us to remain well capitalised until our FDCA Flagship Plant is commercially operational. It also enables us to strengthen our balance sheet and to accelerate our technology licensing strategy. The increased issue size of €70 million, the high exercise percentage of the rights, the commitment of our larger existing shareholders and the entry of new strategic investors reflect an increasing and broadening interest in Avantium. I would like to thank our shareholders for putting their trust in us through their contributions to this capital increase.

With their support, we help realising a renewable and circular plastics economy, and create long-term, sustainable value for all our stakeholders.”  Oxo-degradable products


Avantium announces the successful completion of its €70 million capital raise

The relentless race towards the “perfect” battery for electric cars raises crucial questions about the price accessible to all

According to Goldman Sachs forecasts, the cost of batteries should fall from around $160 per kWh in 2023 to $120 in 2024, and then reach around $75 in 2030. This reduction could be made possible by solid-state battery technologies, which offer greater energy density, faster charging and greater safety. However, the arrival of these technologies on the market remains uncertain.
Gian Carlo Tronzano, Head of Battery Cell Global Competence Center at Comau, points out that although some companies plan solid-state battery factories by 2028-2030, large-scale production is still at an early stage. Even experts such as the former CTO of CATL have scaled back expectations, moving the arrival of solid-state batteries to no earlier than 2030.  Oxo-degradable products
Currently, the battery market sees a predominance of Eastern technologies, but there are active companies in Europe, as demonstrated by the partnership between Comau and LiNa for the production of sodium batteries. However, these alternatives will still require several years to reach large-scale production.
NMC and LFP batteries will continue to dominate the electric car market in the near term, with costs trending downwards. Mercedes and Toyota have expressed confidence in current technologies, suggesting that solid state may not be necessary in the near future. Evidently, the retirement of lithium-ion batteries is not imminent, with Toyota predicting ranges of up to 1000 km by 2027, indicating that solid state may only be a reality after 2028.  Oxo-degradable products
Toyota solid state battery

Toyota solid state battery

rPET Packaging – Avient Corporation unveils ColorMatrix AAnchor, an innovative acetaldehyde control technology for PET packaging, aimed at addressing challenges associated with increased recycled PET content 12-02-2024

Oxo-degradable products

rPET Packaging – Avient Corporation unveils ColorMatrix AAnchor, an innovative acetaldehyde control technology for PET packaging, aimed at addressing challenges associated with increased recycled PET content 12-02-2024

rPET Packaging

PET Feedstocks – Repol gets certification for recycled content for a polyamide grade


rPET Packaging

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Avient Corporation unveils ColorMatrix AAnchor, an innovative acetaldehyde control technology for PET packaging, aimed at addressing challenges associated with increased recycled PET content

This solution offers improved recyclability and enhanced bottle quality, catering to the rising demand for sustainable packaging solutions.

ColorMatrix AAnchor provides a comprehensive solution to improve PET packaging’s recyclability and quality, crucial as brands increasingly incorporate higher levels of recycled material. Notably, it features a low tendency for migration, reducing the risk of exceeding regulatory limits, even in closed-loop recycling systems. Additionally, it boasts improved thermal stability, enhancing processability and efficiency while avoiding processing issues related to equipment. rPET Packaging

Andrea Smith, Global Product Manager at Avient Corporation, expresses excitement about ColorMatrix AAnchor, emphasizing its significant advancement in sustainability and innovation. By addressing challenges linked to increased rPET content, the technology aids brands in achieving sustainability goals while delivering high-quality PET packaging.

Furthermore, ColorMatrix AAnchor offers excellent bottle aesthetics and mechanical strength, potentially extending the shelf life of packaged products. It also helps control odor and minimizes the risk of off-taste in bottle contents, ensuring compliance with European food contact regulations. rPET Packaging

In summary, ColorMatrix AAnchor represents a groundbreaking solution for PET packaging, aligning with industry demands for sustainability and quality while mitigating challenges associated with recycled material incorporation.

rPET Packaging

MEAF recently supplied Pack Klaipėda UAB in Lithuania with its inaugural food-grade R-PET sheet production line, integrating energy-efficient sheet extrusion technology with Kreyenborg’s IR-CLEAN Super-Clean process

This innovation enables the cost-effective production of FDA/EFSA approved single-layer PET food-grade sheets. The installed line caters to meat packaging needs and offers flexibility for PP tray production without modifications.

Pack Klaipėda UAB, initially specializing in expanded PS containers, shifted focus to meat and poultry packaging three years ago. Darius Kontrimas, the company’s CTO, highlighted MEAF’s compact yet output-rich machinery and their exceptional support, crucial for newcomers in the sheet extrusion domain. rPET Packaging

MEAF’s sales manager, Roald de Bruijne, emphasized the alignment of their solution with the global trend of utilizing 100% post-consumer recycled material, addressing the stringent FDA/EFSA regulations. MEAF’s commitment extends to developing an integrated IV level increase unit to facilitate tray-to-tray recycling, further promoting circularity.

Kreyenborg’s IR-CLEAN process ensures thorough cleaning and decontamination of PET flakes, endorsed by FDA and EFSA. MEAF’s dedication to energy efficiency and flexibility is evident in their pursuit of solutions for recycled material utilization, bolstering the transition towards sustainable packaging practices. rPET Packaging

MEAF’s endeavor signifies a step forward in sustainable packaging, offering practical solutions for manufacturers to adopt recycled materials seamlessly, thereby contributing to a more environmentally conscious future.

rPET Packaging

Nigerian State of Oyo Closes Pyrolysis Firm

The Oyo State Government has shut down a pyrolysis plant operated by Shri-Balaji Industry Limited in Egbeda since 2016. The plant was found to have violated the State’s Environmental Regulations, as reported by the Nigerian media. rPET Packaging

The Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resource, Architect Abdulmojeed Olawale Mogbonjubola, said that the closure was to ensure that companies, industrial firms, and corporate bodies comply with global and state environmental standards. He revealed that the ministry officials discovered that the plant emitted harmful substances during the pyrolysis process, which coated the surrounding area with carbon black, a dangerous pollutant to human health. He added that the plant had no proof of working with a solid waste contractor. The workers were also at high risk, as they had no personal protective equipment (PPE) or health scheme in any production stage. rPET Packaging

He stated that there was no clean water, and the air quality exceeded the limits set by the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA).


Nigerian State of Oyo Closes Pyrolysis Firm

General Industries Germany relies on energy-efficient and low-CO2 Vecoplan shredders for recycling

With two new Vecoplan shredders, General Industries Deutschland (GID) can now process a wide variety of materials and continuously feed the extruders when processing challenging post-consumer waste.

Working even more energy-efficiently and further minimising the CO2footprint – just two reasons why General Industries Germany (GID) opted for shredders from Vecoplan. At its Eschwege site, the company recycles sophisticated post-consumer waste from foamed plastics (EPP/EPE/EPS) as well as post-industrial waste in the form of purgings and stamping residues. The machines can process a wide range of materials for special requirements and continuously feed the extruders. rPET Packaging


General Industries Germany relies on energy-efficient and low-CO2 Vecoplan shredders for recycling

‘Breakthrough’ in polypropylene recycling could boost plastic packaging circularity

A significant hurdle standing in the way of increasing the use of recycled plastics in food packaging is the risk of potential residues causing non-compliance with food safety standards. Professor Edward Kosior and Paul Marshall of Nextek and NEXTLOOPP claim to have found an innovative solution to this issue, which they outline in our latest comment article.

According to a report by Eunomia, focused on improving the circularity of plastic packaging, undertaken on behalf of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW), the lack of common recyclate specifications or consensus in the European market is impeding progress in achieving circularity goals. rPET Packaging

The report claims that despite several scientific and EU publications emphasising the need for high-quality recyclate, not to mention existing standards such as the EN standards, the definition of quality recyclates remains unclear, and a framework to implement such quality in the recycling process is lacking.

As a consequence, the European plastics industry is still unable to reach its recycling targets due to insufficient volumes of recycled plastic that fully meet the required quality for all key packaging applications.

If we drill down to one of the most prolific polymers in circulation for both food and non-food applications, Polypropylene (PP), there is no recycled PP authorised for use for direct food contact other than those originating from recycling schemes that must use material from a closed loop system. rPET Packaging

This measure, which prevents the inadvertent inclusion of substances that might be introduced by consumers or the goods it contains, has limited recycled PP to secondary or tertiary food packaging articles such as crates, pallets, and totes.


‘Breakthrough’ in polypropylene recycling could boost plastic packaging circularity

Brazil’s Petrobras to invest USD 18m in green hydrogen pilot

 Alto Rodrigues Photovoltaic Power Plant, in Rio Grande do Norte. Image by Luiz Fernando Almeida Fontenele / Petrobras News Agency

Brazilian state-run oil and gas company Petrobras (BVMF:PETR4) is teaming up with the local renewable energies innovation institute SENAI-ER to build a pilot electrolysis plant to study aspects of the green hydrogen value chain.

Under the cooperation agreement, Petrobras will invest BRL 90 million (USD 18.1m/EUR 16.8m) in the three-year project, it said on Wednesday. rPET Packaging

The new facility will use the output generated by Petrobras’ 1-MWp Alto Rodrigues Photovoltaic (PV) Power Plant, located in Rio Grande do Norte state. The oil giant added that the PV park capacity will be expanded to 2.5 MWp to meet the power demand of the pilot electrolysis plant.

Petrobras said it will use the hydrogen produced to analyse the performance of microturbines and their structural integrity due to the combustion of hydrogen and natural gas mixtures.


Brazil's Petrobras to invest USD 18m in green hydrogen pilot

rPET Packaging

Polyester recycling – Plastiverd, a Spanish company specializing in polyethylene terephthalate (PET) production, is set to maintain stable production levels at its PET plant in El Prat de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain, starting from the end of February 

Polyester recycling – Plastiverd, a Spanish company specializing in polyethylene terephthalate (PET) production, is set to maintain stable production levels at its PET plant in El Prat de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain, starting from the end of February 10-02-2024

Polyester recycling

Putin uses Tucker Carlson interview to press his Ukraine narrative

In his interview with former Fox News host Tucker Carlson, Russian President Vladimir Putin utilized the platform to advance his narrative regarding the situation in Ukraine, subtly hinting at further actions. Over the course of more than two hours, Putin confidently delivered a historical discourse intertwined with Kremlin viewpoints, largely unchallenged by Carlson. Reiterating his assertion that the invasion of Ukraine was to safeguard Russian interests and deter potential threats posed by Ukraine’s NATO aspirations, Putin skillfully steered the conversation while Carlson attempted to interject with questions.

Notably absent from Carlson’s inquiries were topics concerning alleged war crimes by Russian troops or Putin’s suppression of dissent.  Polyester recycling

Putin directed attention towards Washington, urging the cessation of arms supply to what he labeled as a U.S. “satellite,” Ukraine, and advocated for negotiations to resolve the conflict.

Dismissing Western allegations and portraying readiness for dialogue, Putin discussed potential prisoner exchanges, including the case of journalist Evan Gershkovich. The White House cautioned against taking Putin’s words at face value, highlighting his penchant for propaganda.

Russian media amplified the interview, framing it as a blow against Western propaganda. Carlson’s skepticism toward U.S. support for Ukraine, echoed by Russian outlets, reflected his distinct perspective, according to Putin’s spokesperson Dmitry Peskov.

Since the invasion of Ukraine, Putin has limited interactions with international media, while suppressing independent voices at home.  Polyester recycling

Despite discussions surrounding potential releases, Putin emphasized the espionage charges against Gershkovich.

The Wall Street Journal reiterated Gershkovich’s status as a journalist and expressed hope for his swift return. Putin hinted at potential conditions for Gershkovich’s release, citing a parallel case involving a Russian imprisoned in a country allied with the U.S.

Overall, the interview served as a platform for Putin to reinforce his narrative on Ukraine, albeit through the lens of selective discourse and geopolitical maneuvering.

Polyester recycling

Advancing towards a cleaner energy future, the European experimental Jet reactor bids farewell with a resounding achievement

This colossal machine, designed to harness nuclear fusion—a process emulating the energy production of stars—concludes its illustrious career with a groundbreaking feat. Producing 69 megajoules of “clean” energy over 5 seconds, using a mere 0.2 milligrams of fuel, Jet sets a new pinnacle in fusion science and engineering. European experts hail this milestone during an online press conference convened by the Eurofusion consortium.

Although the realization of fusion power plants remains years away due to persistent technical and theoretical hurdles, the prospect of sustainable, clean energy from abundant resources grows nearer.  Polyester recycling

This progress owes much to the collaborative efforts of over 300 researchers across 31 countries, prominently including Italy with contributions from Enea, the National Research Council, the Rfx consortium of Padua, and various universities.

The record-setting experiment, dubbed Dte3 and conducted on October 3, 2023, marks the culmination of Jet’s 40-year tenure in Great Britain. This swan song, lauded by British Minister for Nuclear Power and Networks Andrew Bowie, surpasses Jet’s previous achievement in 2022. Inside the toroidal tokamak structure resembling a donut, a robust magnetic field confines plasma, allowing for fusion reactions. These reactions, occurring at temperatures exceeding one hundred million degrees Celsius, fuse hydrogen isotopes—deuterium and tritium—to generate helium and release energy. Polyester recycling

This triumph not only validates past efforts but also paves the way for future fusion research. Fernanda Rimini, Jet’s senior manager for exploitation, asserts the feasibility of future fusion power plants utilizing similar fuel mixes. Looking ahead, international endeavors like the Iter experimental reactor and the Demo technological demonstrator signify ambitious strides, albeit with lingering technological and theoretical uncertainties.

Acknowledging Jet’s profound impact, Pietro Barabaschi, general director of Iter, underscores its role as a precursor, shaping advancements in materials, components, and scientific data generation for fusion research. As the quest for sustainable energy presses forward, Jet’s legacy stands as a beacon of progress and possibility. Polyester recycling

Advancing towards a cleaner energy future, the European experimental Jet reactor bids farewell with a resounding achievement

De Nora will supply electrolysers for green hydrogen in Sweden

De Nora, an Italian multinational specializing in electrochemistry and a leader in sustainable technologies, has received orders through its subsidiary De Nora Deutschland GmbH from thyssenkrupp nucera AG & Co. KGaA for the supply of electrolysers. These electrolysers will be used in one of Europe’s largest water electrolysis plants, currently under construction in Sweden. The project aims to produce green hydrogen with a total installed capacity exceeding 700 MW.

This initiative is part of the ongoing collaboration under the ‘Toll Manufacturing and Services’ agreement between De Nora and thyssenkrupp nucera. According to De Nora, these orders will significantly contribute to increasing the backlog in the Energy Transition segmentPolyester recycling

The production of green hydrogen is crucial for the decarbonization of heavy industry. By utilizing green hydrogen, the project aims to reduce the carbon footprint of industrial processes compared to traditional technologies. This sustainable approach aligns with De Nora’s commitment to environmental responsibility.

CEO Paolo Dellachà expressed satisfaction with the awarding of these new orders. He emphasized the importance of this European project, highlighting its substantial production capacity and sustainability profile. De Nora’s involvement demonstrates its capability to contribute significantly to the decarbonization of traditionally hard-to-abate industrial sectors.  Polyester recycling

Polyester recycling

IoT in Textile Industry

This article highlights the role of IoT in enhancing product development, production efficiency, supply chain management, and sustainability. It addresses challenges in integration, standardisation, privacy, and cost, and outlines steps for IoT implementation in textiles, underscoring its transformative impact on innovation and sustainability.

The Internet of Things (IoT) refers to the network of physical devices, vehicles, home appliances, and other items that are embedded with sensors, software, and connectivity, allowing them to collect and exchange data. The implementation of IoT in the textile industry has opened new opportunities for product development, production efficiency, supply chain management, and sustainability.  Polyester recycling

The uses of IoT in the textile industry are diverse and rapidly evolving, from smart fabrics that can monitor temperature and moisture to supply chain management tools that track products throughout the production and delivery process. IoT sensors can be embedded in textiles at various stages of production, from raw materials to finished products, enabling real-time data collection and analysis to optimise product performance, reduce waste, and improve sustainability.

In recent years, the implementation of IoT in the textile industry has gained momentum, with companies investing in research and development to create new products that incorporate IoT. For example, wearable technology has become increasingly popular, with companies developing smart clothing that can monitor vital signs and track fitness activities.  Polyester recycling

Polyester recycling

Textile project presents solutions for polyester recycling

For the past three years, the ReSuit project has been pursuing a solution for textile recycling. Now, the project alliance is ready to present its positive findings.

In the past three years, we have collaborated with researchers, recycling specialists, behavioural experts, and other textile and fashion companies in the ReSuit project, Denmark’s first major textile recycling project.

ReSuit has aimed to develop new technologies that can transform textile waste into new fabrics and set new standards for fashion design, focusing on longer lifespan and improved recyclability when discarded.  Polyester recycling

Now, the project team is ready to share additional positive findings.

Two technologies

ReSuit has, among other things, proven that polyester textile waste can be recycled into new polyester textiles. Furthermore, the project has succeeded in recycling clothing waste that was previously considered difficult to recycle by using a special method where the clothing is transformed into bio-oil and chemical building blocks for the production of new polyester and plastic-based materials.

“At Bestseller, we are fully aware of the challenges in the fashion industry, but we also have the size and expertise to be part of the solution. That’s why we entered ReSuit with open eyes and an understanding that innovation plays a crucial role in transforming the fashion industry into a more sustainable one,” says Camilla Skjønning Jørgensen, Innovation Manager at Bestseller.  Polyester recycling


Polyester recycling

Luca De Meo, the president of the Renault Group, recently underlined the crucial importance of the automotive sector for Europe, representing 8% of GDP and involving 13 million jobs

He highlighted that Europe faces unprecedented change in the industry, especially considering the accelerated development of the automotive sector in China. De Meo said 2023 will be remembered as the year Europe became aware of China’s predominant role in the automotive industry.

The Renault president discussed emerging challenges in the sector, including the need to reduce environmental impact, the abandonment of the combustion engine by 2035 and growing safety and cyber-security requirements. He has noticed increased volatility in the industry, due to rapid technological changes, changes in raw material prices and regulatory fluctuations.  Polyester recycling

De Meo emphasized the importance of innovation and strategic agility to face future challenges, underlining the need for business models adapted to new scenarios and investments in new technologies. He proposed the adoption of clear principles and objectives at European level and the creation of a one-stop shop for mobility and automotive regulations.

Finally, De Meo reiterated that Europe must develop a hybrid model that combines private initiative and public intervention to strengthen the continent’s competitiveness in the long term.  Polyester recycling

Luca De Meo, the president of the Renault Group, recently underlined the crucial importance of the automotive sector for Europe, representing 8% of GDP and involving 13 million jobs

Bio On is back, but it’s all new

Bio On is making a triumphant return, reinvigorated with a fresh outlook and a revamped visual identity. The resurgence of the original name, after its acquisition by the Maip group, signals a bold new chapter for the company. With a commitment to innovation at its core, the revitalized Bio On is poised to make significant strides in the realm of bioplastics.

Embracing its ethos of sustainability, the company’s logo now bears the inspiring tagline “Nature always finds a solution,” a testament to its dedication to eco-friendly polymer production.  Polyester recycling

This ethos is encapsulated in a modern logo design, symbolizing the fusion of ‘Future’ and ‘Nature’ – two inseparable concepts essential for progress and sustainability.

Operationally, Bio On’s business model focuses on intellectual property and high-value PHA material production for niche markets, alongside patent exploitation. Plans are underway to restart PHA production at the Castel San Pietro Terme plant, with the Research and Fermentation (RAF) startup slated for the first half of the year.

The company’s strategic vision extends beyond production, encompassing research and development initiatives in Cosmetic, Nanomedicine & Smart Materials (CNS). Recent acquisitions and investments in laboratory equipment underscore Bio On’s commitment to advancing innovative projects.  Polyester recycling

Founded in 2007, Bio On faced adversity with bankruptcy in 2019 but has emerged stronger under new ownership. The Maip group’s acquisition, comprising Maip, Plastotecnica, and Maip Compounding, positions Bio On for success with a diversified portfolio that includes bioplastics like the IamNature series, leveraging PHBH copolymers blended with other biopolymers.

As Bio On embarks on this exciting journey, its dedication to sustainability and innovation remains unwavering, promising a brighter, greener future in the realm of bioplastics.

Bio On is back, but it's all new

Piovan Group has recently increased its stake in Nu-Vu Conair, a joint venture established in 2007 by Conair and Nu-Vu Engineers aimed at producing auxiliary equipment for the plastics industry in India

With this acquisition, Piovan now holds a majority 51% share in the venture. Nu-Vu Conair, boasting approximately 250 employees and generating a turnover exceeding 20 million euros, operates out of a facility in Piplaj, Ahmedabad region, currently undergoing expansion. Their product range encompasses various equipment essential to polymer processing, including centralized vacuum conveying systems, dehumidifiers, chillers, and granulators.  Polyester recycling

This strategic move aligns with Piovan’s objectives to bolster its presence in India, localize production, and reinforce support for local clientele. Additionally, the company aims to capitalize on its expertise in plastic recycling technologies to comply with emerging legislation in the region. Nu-Vu Conair’s integration into Piovan’s portfolio occurred in 2022 following Piovan’s acquisition of US-based IPEG.

Partnering with Nu-Vu Engineers, a leading Indian provider of polymer processing solutions and industrial cooling systems, Piovan anticipates leveraging synergies to capitalize on India’s burgeoning market potential. Filippo Zuppichin, CEO of Piovan Group, underscores the company’s commitment to India’s growth trajectory and expresses confidence in furthering Nu-Vu Conair’s market leadership through collaborative efforts, technological advancements, and expanded market penetration.  Polyester recycling

Piovan Group has recently increased its stake in Nu-Vu Conair, a joint venture established in 2007 by Conair and Nu-Vu Engineers aimed at producing auxiliary equipment for the plastics industry in India

Plastiverd, a Spanish company specializing in polyethylene terephthalate (PET) production, is set to maintain stable production levels at its PET plant in El Prat de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain, starting from the end of February

With a production capacity of 210 thousand tons per year, the company aims to ensure production stability for commercial reasons, although the exact duration remains undisclosed.

This decision follows the successful restart of production in January after overcoming workforce shortages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Plastiverd, acquired by the Cristian Lay Group in April 2014 from La Seda de Barcelona for around EUR 15 million, operates not only a PET plant but also facilities for ethylene oxide and ethylene glycol production, totaling approximately 200 thousand tons per year.

La Seda de Barcelona, the former owner, has operations spanning Spain, Turkey, and Italy, along with a recycling facility in Italy, and holds a significant stake in the Portuguese company Artlant PTA.  Polyester recycling

Plastiverd’s commitment to maintaining stable PET production aligns with its strategic commercial objectives and underscores its dedication to consistent output.

As part of the Cristian Lay Group conglomerate, Plastiverd contributes to the broader portfolio of operations within the petrochemical sector, reflecting the conglomerate’s diversified interests and strategic positioning in the European petrochemical landscape.

Plastiverd, a Spanish company specializing in polyethylene terephthalate (PET) production, is set to maintain stable production levels at its PET plant in El Prat de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain, starting from the end of February

PET polyester recycling – H&S completes set-up of a recycling plant for end-of-life mattresses 09-02-2024

Polyester recycling

PET polyester recycling – H&S completes set-up of a recycling plant for end-of-life mattresses 09-02-2024

PET polyester recycling

Nuclear energy from fusion: now it is closer, new record

Experienced in the realm of nuclear fusion research, I specialize in driving advancements in energy production. Most notably, I contributed to the Joint European Torus (JET), the world’s premier nuclear fusion experiment, achieving groundbreaking milestones in energy generation. In the latest experimental campaign, I spearheaded efforts that resulted in a record-breaking output of fusion energy. Through meticulous verification and validation processes, we successfully harnessed 69 megajoules (MJ) of energy from a mere 0.2 milligrams of deuterium and tritium fuel over a duration of 5 seconds, surpassing the previous record set in 2022 by a significant margin. PET polyester recycli

As a key member of the European consortium EUROfusion, I collaborated closely with esteemed institutions such as the Italian Cnr and Enea, as well as numerous universities, in achieving this feat. Our collective efforts underscored the potential of fusion energy as a reliable and sustainable power source for the future.

During the DT3 experimental campaign, I played an integral role in coordinating over 300 scientists from various European fusion laboratories.

Together, we meticulously executed experiments at the UKAEA facility in the United Kingdom, validating JET’s operational methodologies and advancing our understanding of high-energy fusion processes. PET polyester recycli

These achievements not only reaffirm the feasibility of fusion energy but also lay the groundwork for the successful operation of the international ITER experimental reactor, a pivotal project shaping the future of energy production on a global scale.

Nuclear energy from fusion: now it is closer, new record

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Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

End life tires chemical recycling – Enviro and Antin announces final investment decision for plant in Uddevalla

Enviro and Antin, along with Michelin, have announced the final investment decision for the construction of an end-of-life tire recycling plant in Uddevalla, Sweden. This joint venture has secured equity financing and signed multi-year agreements for the supply and offtake of end-of-life tires, recovered carbon black, and oil products, valued at approximately MEUR 180 (SEK 2 billion) over 5 to 10 years. The customers include leading manufacturers in tire, rubber, oil, and chemicals industries.

The Uddevalla plant will be the first full-scale recycling facility based on Enviro’s patented technology. Construction is set to commence in the first quarter of 2024, with operations expected to begin in 2025. PET polyester recycling

The necessary approvals have been obtained, allowing the joint venture to proceed with material and machinery orders and subcontractor engagements.

Agreements have been finalized for the delivery of end-of-life tires to the Uddevalla plant and for the supply of recovered carbon black and oil. These agreements, with an aggregate value of MEUR 180 (SEK 2 billion), span 5 to 10 years and involve key players in various industries.

The joint venture aims to construct recycling plants across Europe, targeting an annual capacity of up to one million metric tons of end-of-life tires by 2030. Enviro will receive remuneration for its investments, with half of the amount paid in cash and the remainder converted to a stake in the joint venture. Enviro also has an option to acquire approximately 30 percent ownership in the joint venture. PET polyester recycling

With the groundwork laid for the Uddevalla plant, the joint venture is poised to expand its operations swiftly across Europe, supported by a solid financing plan and strategic partnerships.

PET polyester recycling

Car compound in Morocco

Repsol and Ravago have jointly inaugurated a new technopolymer plant in Tangier, Morocco, aimed at producing compounds for automotive applications.

Situated in the Tangier Automotive City (TAC) free zone within the port area, the plant spans 24,000 square meters, a project promoted by the Moroccan Government.

With an annual production capacity of 18,500 tonnes, the plant focuses on polypropylene, polyamides, and PBT compounds, with the flexibility for expansion based on future demand trends.  PET polyester recycling

This initiative aligns with supporting the local automotive industry, catering to OEMs like Renault and Stellantis operating in Tangier, Kenitra, and Casablanca.

These manufacturers were involved in the project’s inception.

Local media reports suggest an investment of approximately 20 million euros into the venture.

By establishing this facility, Repsol and Ravago aim to contribute to the growth of the automotive sector in Morocco while meeting the region’s demand for high-quality technopolymers. PET polyester recycling

This collaboration not only underscores the commitment to local industrial development but also signifies a strategic move in leveraging Morocco’s potential as a hub for automotive manufacturing.

PET polyester recycling

Exploring the Vibrant World of Ultramarine Pigments: Insights & Trends 2024-2034

The ultramarine pigment industry, renowned for its vivid hues and diverse applications, plays a significant role in various sectors, including paints and coatings, plastics, cosmetics, and textiles.
It is anticipated that the ultramarine pigment market would reach US$ 240.5 million by 2024. Sales of ultramarine pigment are expected to climb at a CAGR of 3.9% between 2024 and 2034. By 2034, it’s projected that the market for ultramarine pigments would be worth US$ 352.5 million. PET polyester recycling
Because the product is widely used in paints, coatings, polymers, and textiles, the market is expected to grow. The market is anticipated to rise as a result of growing consumer demand for high-performance pigments and growing awareness of environmentally friendly choices.
Production Process and Composition:
Ultramarine pigments are synthetic inorganic compounds derived from a complex chemical process. Historically, ultramarine blue was extracted from lapis lazuli gemstones, but modern production methods involve heating mixtures of clay, sulfur, and other raw materials at high temperatures to create the distinctive blue pigment. Variations in the production process yield different shades of ultramarine pigments, including blue, violet, and green. PET polyester recycling


PET polyester recycling

Barrier Biopolymer PEF Propelled by Performance, Potential, and Sustainability

The packaging subsegment for polyethylene furanoate (PEF), which is projected to grow at the fastest CAGR during the forecast period 2023 to 2028, will see a PEF juice bottle at retail in 2024.

Momentum continues for biopolymers, which are seen as sustainable alternatives to conventional plastics sourced from plants and other renewable materials.

Polyethylene furanoate is among a growing wave of biopolymer options. The PEF market is projected to reach $28 million by 2028, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.1 % from $19 million in 2023. PET polyester recycling

That’s according to a global PEF market study released in January by MarketsAndMarkets. It reports that the bioplastic’s growth is primarily driven by government regulation and policies along with increasing demand for PEF bottle production.

In fact, the PEF bottles subsegment is projected to grow at the fastest CAGR, in terms of value, during the forecast period.

That’s where the biopolymer will gain traction this year when European retailer Albert Heijn debuts high-barrier fruit juice bottles on shelf.  The polymer is sourced from Avantium while Refresco, a global independent beverage solutions provider for brands, produces the bottle. Albert Heijn is the largest supermarket chain in the Netherlands. PET polyester recycling

PEF can replace PET in food and beverage packaging.

PEF’s applicability extends beyond beverage bottles to the broader packaging sector market due to its wide-ranging advantages, including as a sustainable substitute for conventional packaging materials such as polyethylene terephthalate (PET).


Barrier Biopolymer PEF Propelled by Performance, Potential, and Sustainability

H&S completes set-up of a recycling plant for end-of-life mattresses

Together with the Dutch recycling company RetourMatras, H&S has implemented a plant for the chemical recycling of discarded PU mattresses, enabling the recovery of high-quality recycled polyols.

H&S Anlagentechnik GmbH has successfully completed commissioning of an industrial-scale reactor plant for RetourMatras, a Dutch recycling company specialized in dismantling of mattresses and their transformation into circular resources. The newly installed recycling plant uses an advanced depolymerization recycling technology to produce high-quality recycled polyol (Repolyol) from polyurethane foam (PU) from end-of-life mattresses. PET polyester recycling

Polyol is one of the key building blocks of polyurethane foam, the main cushioning material in mattresses. Its recovery without compromising on its quality enables its reuse as a circular raw material for the production of new PU foam and thus for new mattresses and other upholstered furniture — a significant step to circularity. “The H&S process allows us to chemically recycle different foam from various mattress manufacturers, supporting our ambition to secure that no mattress goes to waste by transforming it into circular resources,” emphasizes Chico van Hemert, Managing Director at RetourMatras. Commissioning took place in May 2023 in Lelystad (NL)allowing the newly built recycling plant to convert PU foam from 200,000 mattresses into repolyols annually using the cutting-edge recycling technology of H&S. PET polyester recycling

Recently, RetourMatras also partnered with IKEA Retail to find a circular solution for the end-of-life of their mattresses in line with IKEA’s approach to products made from recycled or renewable materials.


H&S completes set-up of a recycling plant for end-of-life mattresses

PET polyester recycling is gaining significant traction, with major companies spearheading efforts to establish a robust fibre-to-fibre recycled PET polyester (FFrPET) industry

According to a report by Textiles Intelligence, such initiatives are crucial for the textile and clothing sector to attain environmental sustainability. Despite the increasing usage of alternative fibres, PET polyester is projected to remain the dominant fibre type, with production expected to exceed 80 million tons by 2030. PET polyester recycling

Several large-scale projects are underway to facilitate FFrPET production, leveraging the advantages of established companies over startups, including operational scale and funding capabilities. Eastman, for instance, is investing in methanolysis-based recycling plants, with plans to triple its capacity by 2026. Similarly, Suez and SK Geo Centric are collaborating on a PET plastic and fibre recycling plant in France, while Indorama and Carbios are working on an enzymatic PET bio-recycling production plant capable of processing 50,000 tons of post-consumer PET waste annually.

Furthermore, Andritz Group is engaged in mechanical recycling projects in France, and Inditex has partnered with Ambercycle to support the construction of a textile regeneration factory. Ambercycle’s chemical process breaks down polyester into constituent monomers for regenerated polyester fibre production, with Inditex committing to purchasing a significant portion of the fibres’ annual output.PET polyester recycling

These initiatives signify the growing momentum towards establishing a circular PET polyester ecosystem. The report, “Fibre innovations aid the creation of circular textile and apparel supply chains,” offers comprehensive insights into these developments and is available for purchase from Textiles Intelligence and Textile Outlook International.

PET polyester recycling is gaining significant traction, with major companies spearheading efforts to establish a robust fibre-to-fibre recycled PET polyester (FFrPET) industry

Nitin Gupta, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Attero, emphasized the critical need for India to adopt a sustainable approach towards recycling lithium-ion batteries amidst the burgeoning electric vehicle (EV) production

Omega Seiki Private Ltd (OSPL) recently announced a strategic partnership with Attero, an e-waste management firm, aimed at recycling lithium-ion batteries. The collaboration aims to recycle over 100MWh of batteries within the next 3-4 years.

This initiative extends beyond the domestic market, covering the ASEAN and African regions as well. PET polyester recycling

OSPL, renowned for its Omega Seiki Mobility (OSM) brand electric vehicles with over 10,000 units currently in operation, views Attero’s expertise as pivotal in repurposing batteries for energy storage. This aligns with their shared commitment to addressing the complete lifecycle of EV components and ensuring responsible battery solutions. Attero boasts a processing capacity of 1,45,000 metric tonnes of e-waste and 11,000 metric tonnes of battery waste annually, with plans to increase this to 15,000 metric tonnes soon.

OSPL’s ambitious plans include deploying EV batteries totaling over 1-GWH within the next five years, paralleled by a collective target with Attero to recycle over 100 MWh of batteries in the upcoming years. This collaboration not only addresses environmental concerns but also acknowledges the economic value of extracting rare materials from spent lithium-ion batteries. Overall, the partnership signifies a significant step towards promoting sustainable practices in the burgeoning EV industry while also addressing pressing environmental challenges. PET polyester recycling

Nitin Gupta, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Attero, emphasized the critical need for India to adopt a sustainable approach towards recycling lithium-ion batteries amidst the burgeoning electric vehicle (EV) production

Green-hydrogen H2 – Partnership in advanced recycling of waste plastic announced 08-02-2024

PET polyester recycling

Green-hydrogen H2 – Partnership in advanced recycling of waste plastic announced 08-02-2024

Green-hydrogen H2

RadiciGroup unveils its visionary Sustainability Plan, aptly named “From Earth to Earth,” signaling its unwavering commitment to a sustainable future

This comprehensive strategy encompasses Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) objectives, underscoring the company’s dedication to value creation for all stakeholders while prioritizing adherence to evolving sustainability regulations.

With a focus on transparency and responsibility across its entire value chain, RadiciGroup aims to address economic, social, and environmental concerns head-on. The plan reflects the organization’s evolution towards ESG governance, evident in its longstanding engagement with environmental and social issues, as exemplified by its forthcoming 20th annual Sustainability Report. Green-hydrogen H2

“From Earth to Earth” emerges as a pivotal component of RadiciGroup’s overarching sustainability strategy, capitalizing on past achievements while charting a course towards medium-term goals. Encompassing all “material” areas, the plan addresses ESG principles and their financial ramifications, aiming to ensure business continuity and foster growth for the company and its stakeholders alike.

Angelo Radici, President of RadiciGroup, emphasizes the plan’s significance, framing it as a testament to the company’s ethical commitment and foresight. With tangible, measurable goals established, the focus now shifts to collaborative action, as RadiciGroup strives to realize its objectives and uphold its credibility with stakeholders.

In essence, “From Earth to Earth” encapsulates RadiciGroup’s proactive stance towards sustainability, reflecting not only its resilience and competitiveness but also its enduring ethical values and dedication to responsible business practices. Green-hydrogen H2


​​​​​Read the press release to find out more

Click here to view the RadiciGroup Sustainability Plan “From Earth to Earth”.

Mr. Maurizio Radici - RadiciGroup

Mr. Maurizio Radici – RadiciGroup

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Taiwan Cement Corporation (TCC) has recently announced a significant collaboration with thyssenkrupp Polysius (tkPOL) aimed at developing innovative carbon capture technology

This partnership is pivotal in the context of Taiwan’s commitment to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050.

The collaboration, formalized through a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed on January 31st, focuses on implementing a Separate Oxyfuel Calciner technology at the Hoping Plant.

This cutting-edge technology involves the addition of pure oxygen to the calcination process, enhancing carbon dioxide capture to over 90% while simultaneously reducing energy consumption. Green-hydrogen H2

The project, slated for completion by 2026, aims to commercialize the technology by 2030, with an annual carbon dioxide capture target exceeding 100,000 tons. The captured carbon dioxide will find applications across various industries, aligning with government policies on storage, carbon credits, and value-added utilization.

Mr. Nelson Chang, Chairman of TCC, expressed the significance of this collaboration in addressing emissions from the cement industry and reaffirmed TCC’s commitment to supporting sustainable development. Mr. Pablo Hofelich, CEO of tkPOL, commended TCC’s dedication to innovation and sustainability, emphasizing the strategic importance of the partnership.  Green-hydrogen H2

Building upon previous collaborations focused on carbon capture technologies, TCC and tkPOL will embark on a phased approach to implementing the Separate Oxyfuel Calciner technology. Leveraging tkPOL’s expertise and experience in similar projects, the collaboration is poised to make significant contributions to carbon reduction efforts, advancing towards a greener and more sustainable future.

Green-hydrogen H2

Despite challenges, circularity is still the way to go, says Borealis CEO

After the record results reported by Borealis in 2022, the year 2023 was by comparison less than stellar. It was, in the words of Thomas Gangl, CEO at Borealis, ‘definitely a challenging year, not just for us but for the entire industry’. Nonetheless, while inflation, the economic slowdown and geopolitical developments have taken their toll, Borealis has continued to pursue its sustainability journey: implementing its Strategy 2030, the company’s transformation framework for the future. The goal: to become  a global leader in advanced and sustainable chemicals and material solutions.

“We have taken some important steps forward, and I would love to say we have achieved more. But at the moment our customers are in the difficult situation that they cannot afford to pay more than what they need to pay. Right now, the regulatory framework is the driving force for the transformation towards circularity,” said Gangl, speaking during an online interview on 4 Feb. with Sustainable Plastics. Green-hydrogen H2

Looking at Borealis’ five main financial KPIs, however, the company would appear to have adeptly navigated the challenges of the past year.

Sales were down roughly €2 bn, noted Daniel Turnheim, although the actual volumes sold remained for the most part stable. “So, this reduction in revenue can, by and large, be attributed to the lower prices of polyolefins,” he explained. The operating profit, which plummeted from €703 in 2022 to €18m in 2023 –  a drop of 94% –   was a different story, he continued. This was due in the first place to inventory effects – ‘selling products purchased in a higher pricing environment’ – as well as to what he described as a ‘very difficult market environment, especially in Europe’: cheap imports, inflation and high energy costs.  Green-hydrogen H2

The margins achieved on the commoditised part of the business suffered from the pressures of the market, but the specialities side of the business, representing around 45%, ‘held up quite nicely’, he said. “As a European-based producer, we do not have a feedstock advantage, so we have to focus on delivering a very good product. Our European asset base contributed strongly to the result.”


Green-hydrogen H2

Circular Polymers, Inc (D/B/A Circular Polymer Resources, Incorporated or

Partnership in advanced recycling of waste plastic announced

CPRI) and AmSpec Group today announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to collaborate on the development of a comprehensive testing and certification process for waste plastic feedstock used in the advanced (chemical) recycling industry as well as pyrolysis oil produced from those waste plastic and hydrocarbon products produced by further conversion of the pyoil using thermal (steam cracking) or catalytic (fluid catalytic cracking) processes.  Green-hydrogen H2

“There is currently no certification process that addresses the composition and quality of plastic waste feed used in advanced recycling and the effects of those properties on the ultimate production of ethylene and propylene building blocks,” commented Dr. Robert Schucker, President and CEO of CPRI. “Operators understand that contaminants such as chlorine and bromine have a detrimental effect on processing equipment but don’t have a holistic picture of how other aspects of feedstock quality affect the yield and quality of their products.”

Matt Corr, CEO of AmSpec, further commented, “The analytical methods are available to characterize waste plastic feedstocks fully, but what is lacking is a comprehensive, uniformed approach that all processors can use to evaluate new sources of plastic feedstocks.” Green-hydrogen H2

The new partnership will take advantage of CPRI’s knowledge in feedstock selection and pyrolysis chemistry and AmSpec’s proven ability to quantitatively analyze hydrocarbon streams to offer a testing and evaluation service to the advanced recycling industry that will allow them to standardize feed selection and processing for optimum ultimate ethylene and propylene yield.

Green-hydrogen H2

Venator, a leading manufacturer of titanium dioxide (TiO2) and additives for plastic materials, is undergoing significant strategic changes in its European operations

Emerging from Chapter 11 in the USA, the company has embarked on a new transformation plan following a strategic review. This plan includes the rationalization of production activities in Europe, focusing on consolidating production capacities and optimizing operational efficiency.

In Germany, production will be concentrated in Uerdingen, with the closure of the TiO2 plant in Duisburg, which has a capacity of 50,000 tonnes per year. The shutdown is scheduled for the second quarter of this year, with the site shifting its focus to functional additives. Meanwhile, the 80,000 tonnes per year TiO2 plant in Scarlino, Italy, remains inactive due to regulatory factors and market conditions.  Green-hydrogen H2

Venator’s transformation plan aims to strengthen its TiO2 portfolio through innovation and investments while improving margins through price and cost management. Additionally, the company seeks to identify opportunities for monetizing specific segments in additives.

With headquarters in the United Kingdom, Venator operates with approximately 2,700 employees and divides its businesses into two main segments: titanium dioxide and high-performance additives.

These strategic changes underscore Venator’s commitment to adapt to market dynamics and enhance its competitiveness in the industry.  Green-hydrogen H2

Venator, a leading manufacturer of titanium dioxide (TiO2) and additives for plastic materials, is undergoing significant strategic changes in its European operations

PiovanGroup has solidified its global presence in the industrial process cooling segment through the amalgamation of Thermal Care and Aquatech, unveiling a new strategic division

Drawing on their shared 50-year legacy of delivering top-notch heat transfer solutions across 50 industries, the unified division emerges as a worldwide player, boasting manufacturing capabilities across North and Latin America, Europe, and Asia. With an expansive service structure, it ensures proximity to customers globally.

This integration promises synergies in research and development, enriching the portfolio of products, solutions, and services, and facilitating efficient support for diverse market sectors. Lee Sobocinski, the current president of Thermal Care Inc., will spearhead the division, operating under the Thermal Care brand and anticipating global consolidated sales of around 100 million euros.  Green-hydrogen H2

Filippo Zuppichin, CEO at PiovanGroup, expresses excitement about establishing a benchmark in industrial refrigeration solutions. Lee Sobocinski shares the sentiment, envisioning the new division as a global leader, providing unparalleled assistance to customers worldwide. The creation of the Thermal Care brand, coupled with the exchange of institutional knowledge within PiovanGroup, signifies a bright future for the division, set to deliver unmatched solutions in industrial heat transfer. Together, they aspire to reach new heights and redefine industry standards.

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PiovanGroup has solidified its global presence in the industrial process cooling segment through the amalgamation of Thermal Care and Aquatech, unveiling a new strategic division

LyondellBasell, a global petrochemical leader, has recently inked an agreement to acquire a 35% stake in National Petrochemical Industrial Co (Natpet), a Saudi Arabia-based firm, from Alujain Corp for approximately $500 million

Natpet currently boasts a polypropylene (PP) capacity of 400,000 tonnes per year. As part of this strategic move, LyondellBasell and Alujain are jointly exploring the possibility of constructing a propylene via propane dehydrogenation and PP facility at the Natpet site, pending a final investment decision.  Green-hydrogen H2

The completion of this transaction is contingent upon regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.

In a separate development, Bora LyondellBasell Petrochemical, a collaboration between Liaoning Bora Enterprise and LyondellBasell, successfully resumed production of low-density polyethylene (HDPE), linear polyethylene (LDL), and polypropylene (PP) at its Panjin facility in China on January 5. This revival followed a scheduled shutdown for preventive maintenance that began on December 27 of the preceding year. The production facility, with an annual capacity of 350 thousand tons of HDPE, 450 thousand tons of LDL, and 200 thousand tons of PP, plays a crucial role in the regional petrochemical landscape. These strategic moves reinforce LyondellBasell’s commitment to expanding its presence and capabilities in the global petrochemical market.  Green-hydrogen H2

LyondellBasell, a global petrochemical leader, has recently inked an agreement to acquire a 35% stake in National Petrochemical Industrial Co (Natpet), a Saudi Arabia-based firm, from Alujain Corp for approximately $500 million

JSW Neo Energy Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of JSW Energy Limited, has achieved a significant milestone by securing a capacity allocation of 6.5 KTPA for the establishment of a green hydrogen production facility

This accomplishment resulted from the company’s participation in the inaugural auction held by the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) under the Strategic Interventions for Green Hydrogen Transition (SIGHT) scheme.

Following the successful bid, JSW Neo Energy received a Letter of Award (LoA) from SECI, committing to commission the production capacity within 36 months. The venture is projected to yield incentives totaling Rs. 67.6 crores over a three-year period post-commissioning.  Green-hydrogen H2

This strategic move aligns seamlessly with JSW Neo Energy’s sustainability objectives and contributes significantly to India’s broader net-zero aspirations. The company’s success in this auction further solidifies its position as a trailblazer in the green hydrogen sector, capitalizing on its profound understanding of the Indian energy landscape, robust financial standing, and unwavering commitment to technological advancements.

JSW Neo Energy has set an ambitious target of achieving 20 GW in generation capacity and 40 GWh in energy storage capacity by 2030. Currently boasting a total capacity of 9.8 GW (including projects under construction), the company is well on track to meet its interim goal of 10 GW by 2025.  Green-hydrogen H2

Moreover, JSW Energy has already secured 3.4 GWh of energy storage capacity through battery energy storage systems and hydro pumped storage projects. This puts the company on a trajectory towards its broader goal of a 50% reduction in carbon footprint by 2030, ultimately aiming for Carbon Neutrality by 2050.

JSW Neo Energy Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of JSW Energy Limited, has achieved a significant milestone by securing a capacity allocation of 6.5 KTPA for the establishment of a green hydrogen production facility

Asda has recently taken a significant step towards sustainability by introducing recyclable plastic film packaging for its Just Essentials beef mince range, effectively replacing traditional plastic trays

This innovative move not only reduces plastic waste but also aligns with Asda’s commitment to achieving 100% recyclable packaging by 2025. The new packaging boasts a remarkable 60% reduction in plastic usage, a testament to Asda’s dedication to environmental responsibility.

By adopting this lighter and recyclable flexible plastic film alternative, Asda aims to eliminate a substantial 67.6 tonnes of plastic from its supply chain annually. The introduction of vacuum-packaging not only extends shelf life but also results in a smaller pack size, further reducing environmental impact.  Green-hydrogen H2

Jon Wells, Sustainable Packaging Manager at Asda, emphasized the significance of this initiative, stating, “We’re always looking at new ways that we can make positive changes which will benefit both our customers and the planet and we believe that this is one of those changes.” He highlighted the dual benefits of improved shelf life and convenience for customers, along with the substantial reduction of non-recyclable plastic in the supply chain, ultimately contributing to a decrease in Asda’s carbon footprint.

Overall, Asda’s transition to recyclable packaging for its beef mince range signifies a proactive approach towards sustainability, setting a commendable example for the retail industry as a whole.  Green-hydrogen H2

Asda has recently taken a significant step towards sustainability by introducing recyclable plastic film packaging for its Just Essentials beef mince range, effectively replacing traditional plastic trays

Green-hydrogen H2

CO2 into ethylene – Growth in China projected to slow to 4.6% in 2024, 3.5% in 2028: IMF 07-02-2024

CO2 into ethylene – Growth in China projected to slow to 4.6% in 2024, 3.5% in 2028: IMF 07-02-2024

CO2 into ethylene

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CO2 into ethylene – High-Efficiency Carbon Dioxide Electroreduction System for Carbon Neutrality

In response to the pressing need to mitigate global warming and achieve carbon neutrality goals, researchers at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) have developed a groundbreaking carbon dioxide (CO2) electroreduction system. This system, featured in a recent publication in Nature Energy and honored with a Gold Medal at the 48th International Exhibition of Inventions Geneva, offers a durable, highly selective, and energy-efficient solution for converting CO2 into ethylene.

Ethylene (C2H4), a vital industrial chemical, is predominantly derived from petrochemical sources, contributing significantly to carbon emissions. CO2 into ethylene

However, PolyU’s electrocatalytic CO2 reduction method, led by Prof. Daniel LAU, promises a more sustainable alternative. By utilizing green electricity and a specially designed APMA system (Anion-Proton Metal-free Assembly), the process achieves a remarkable 50% specificity in ethylene production and operates continuously for over 1,000 hours at an industrial scale.

The key to this success lies in the unique electrocatalyst, composed of nano-scale copper spheres with rich surface textures and defects that promote the desired reaction. Unlike previous systems, the APMA design prevents electrolyte loss and minimizes the formation of undesired by-products, ensuring efficient and stable operation.

Looking ahead, Prof. Lau emphasizes ongoing efforts to enhance product selectivity and seeks collaboration opportunities with industry partners. This collaborative endeavor, involving institutions like the University of Oxford and Jiangsu University, holds the promise of revolutionizing ethylene production, reducing carbon emissions, and advancing the journey towards carbon neutrality. CO2 into ethylene

CO2 into ethylene

Titan-Polymer, located in the Moglino special economic zone, has achieved a significant milestone with the successful commissioning of its second production line dedicated to BOPET (biaxially oriented polyethylene terephthalate) films

General Director Kirill Neretin announced the completion of commissioning, emphasizing the stable production process and capacity increase to meet orders for film thicknesses ranging from 8 to 35 microns.

This accomplishment propels Titan-Polymer towards its maximum design capacity of 72 thousand tons per year, highlighting the plant’s commitment to expanding production capabilities and meeting growing demand across various industries. The automated BOPET film production process ensures operational efficiency and product consistency, catering to applications in the food industry, medicine, and electrical engineering due to the films’ versatility and durability. CO2 into ethylene

Prior to the second production line’s launch, Titan-Polymer’s specialists conducted a meticulous preparatory phase, ensuring seamless integration and adherence to quality standards. With an augmented capacity and stable production process, the plant is well-positioned to effectively meet diversified demand for BOPET films, contributing to their availability for industrial applications.

The industry-wide surge in BOPET film production, in alignment with sector growth trends, reflects the resilience and adaptability of companies. Titan-Polymer’s expansion not only benefits the Moglino special economic zone’s economic development but also strengthens its market position as a reliable and innovative player.

The successful completion of the second production line underscores Titan-Polymer’s dedication to maintaining high standards of quality and efficiency in the dynamic landscape of BOPET film manufacturing.  CO2 into ethylene

CO2 into ethylene

Cost a key challenge to low-carbon polyethylene production

The challenges posed by plastic waste, emissions, and climate/environmental issues are anticipated to intensify until effective policies and actions are implemented to reverse the trend.

The plastic value chain is grappling with the trilemma of security, sustainability and affordability, placing substantial pressure on stakeholders. As a result, there is an increasing demand for the industry to address and alleviate the adverse environmental effects of plastic consumption, including polyethylene.

Low cost, versatility and weatherability are PE’s major advantages, with applications in household and food containers, toys, food and nonfood packaging film and sheet, retail and trash bags, geomembranes, pipes, house wrap, pails, totes, crates, caps, closures and plastic bottles.  CO2 into ethylene

Polyethylene constituted a third of the world’s polymer market in 2022, according to S&P Global Commodity Insights. However, the global PE market is currently contending with surplus capacity, subdued demand growth and diminishing profit margins. The polyethylene sector is also undergoing a phase of transformation and innovation, driven by the need to address environmental concerns, particularly since ethylene production ranks among the largest sources of CO2 emissions in the chemical industry.

Sustainability goals by brand owners, converters and producers are currently driving efforts to produce low-carbon polyethylene.

For example, it is estimated that using bioethanol-based ethylene would translate into a carbon emissions reduction of approximately 60%, while the use of hydrogen in the cracking furnace together with carbon capture and storage, like what petrochemical giant Dow is considering for its plant in Fort Saskatchewan, Canada, has essentially net-zero carbon emissions.  CO2 into ethylene

Technologies such as the use of sustainable feedstocks like bioethanol and the production of polyethylene from mechanical recycling, using pure polyethylene waste stream, can also contribute to the decarbonization of polyethylene production.

Other emerging recycling technologies such as the pyrolysis of plastic waste are not being developed with the idea of reducing carbon emissions as this pathway is too energy intensive, but with the goal of reducing plastic waste that ends up in landfills and handling plastic waste that is difficult to recycle via mechanical processes.


CO2 into ethylene

Growth in China projected to slow to 4.6% in 2024, 3.5% in 2028: IMF

  • China’s growth is projected to slow to 4.6 per cent this year amid the property sector weakness and subdued external demand, and further to about 3.5 per cent in 2028 amid headwinds from weak productivity and population aging, the IMF has noted.
  • Inflation is expected to increase gradually to 1.3 per cent this year. Uncertainty surrounding the outlook is high.  CO2 into ethylene

Growth in China is projected to slow to 4.6 per cent this year amid the ongoing weakness in the property sector and subdued external demand, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), whose executive board concluded the 2023 Article IV Consultation with the country last month.

Over the medium term, growth is projected to gradually decline further and is projected at about 3.5 per cent in 2028 amid headwinds from weak productivity and population aging.

While inflation fell last year, largely on account of lower energy and food prices, it is expected to increase gradually to 1.3 percent this year as the output gap narrows and the base effects of commodity prices recede, IMS said in a release.

Uncertainty surrounding the outlook is high, particularly given the existing large imbalances and associated vulnerabilities, it noted.  CO2 into ethylene

Greater-than-expected weakening of external demand, tightening of global conditions and increased geopolitical tensions also pose considerable downside risks.

On the upside, decisive policy action could boost confidence and lead to a better-than-expected rebound in private investment.


Growth in China projected to slow to 4.6% in 2024, 3.5% in 2028: IMF

Experienced professional in the Polyester Filament Yarn (PFY) industry, adept at navigating challenges and uncertainties

My career has been marked by a keen understanding of market dynamics and operational intricacies, enabling me to tackle unforeseen obstacles head-on.

The recent unexpected turn of events in the PFY industry has prompted significant production cutbacks and delays in startup times across major factories. These decisions, coupled with future maintenance plans, have disrupted the once-promising outlook for PFY in the new year. The decline in polyester polymerization rates in February, falling below previous year levels, further complicates the situation.  CO2 into ethylene

The production reduction and maintenance surge is not solely a response to raw material market dynamics but a result of operational challenges faced by companies. Managing PFY inventory has become a critical issue, as companies strive to strike a balance between restocking, sales, and physical possession of goods.

As of early February, PFY inventory is estimated to last no more than two weeks, with a looming risk of significant accumulation unless sales ratios improve. The post-Chinese New Year period is particularly concerning, as the sales ratio may drop further unless additional promotional activities are initiated.

Compounding the challenges is the uncertainty in current material prices, with polyester, cotton, and viscose rates generally higher than last year. This price volatility adds an extra layer of complexity, influencing consumer behavior and contributing to market unpredictability.  CO2 into ethylene

Despite these uncertainties, there is a possibility of normal demand for PFY post-holidays, with some companies anticipating restocking in late February 2024. However, careful inventory and risk management strategies will be crucial in navigating the potential challenges ahead and ensuring sustained stability in the evolving PFY landscape.

Experienced professional in the Polyester Filament Yarn (PFY) industry, adept at navigating challenges and uncertainties

Global plastics glut and weak regulations hurt European recyclers

Plentiful and cheap virgin plastic is undercutting the price of recycled plastic

Europe’s plastics recyclers are under financial pressure, and some are closing plants. Industry experts cite a surge in cheap virgin plastic being imported into the region and a lack of regulation requiring the use of recycled material.

global excess of ethylene supplies and of other raw materials for plastics has lowered the cost of virgin plastic, making it cheaper than recycled plastic in Europe.

“The recycling market will be unprotected for a while as it comes under pressure from the cheaper virgin prices,” says Husam Taha, principal analyst for plastics sustainability at Wood Mackenzie.  CO2 into ethylene

Global ethylene production capacity is about 225 million metric tons (t) per year, while demand is closer to 180 million t, according to data compiled by S&P Global. Spot prices for virgin high-density polyethylene (HDPE), a widely recycled plastic used in products such as shopping bags and food packaging, have dropped from above $1,500 per metric ton in 2021 to less than $1,000 today, according to S&P.

The recycling market will be unprotected for a while as it comes under pressure from the cheaper virgin prices.

Imports of cheap recycled plastic into Europe are exacerbating the issue, Ton Emans, president of the industry group Plastics Recyclers Europe, says in a press release.

Prices for virgin plastics could stay low for some time to come, according to analysts at ChemOrbis. “China and USA are planning big new plants for polyethylene, for example, in the next 3–4 years,” says Ezio Filippi, chief representative for ChemOrbis in Italy. “The effect on prices, with demand still being subdued globally, is obvious.” Unless new regulations are introduced to enforce the use of recycled plastics, cheaper virgin polymers will continue to displace them, Filippi says.  CO2 into ethylene


Global plastics glut and weak regulations hurt European recyclers

Corbion seeks growth by restructuring

Reorganizing at Corbion will involve simplifying the company’s structure into two business units from three business units and reducing its workforce by about 200, which will include closing a fermentation plant in Peoria, Ill. Executives gave details Jan. 31 in Amsterdam during a capital markets update for analysts and investors.

Corbion executives also gave unaudited financial results for 2023 fiscal year. Sales in fiscal 2023 totaled €1.44 billion ($1.57 billion), down from €1.46 billion in fiscal 2022, while adjusted EBITDA was €192 million ($208 million), up from €184.4 million.  Audited results for the fiscal year will be released March 1.  CO2 into ethylene

Corbion seeks growth by restructuring

Reorganizing at Corbion will involve simplifying the company’s structure into two business units from three business units and reducing its workforce by about 200, which will include closing a fermentation plant in Peoria, Ill. Executives gave details Jan. 31 in Amsterdam during a capital markets update for analysts and investors.

Corbion executives also gave unaudited financial results for 2023 fiscal year. Sales in fiscal 2023 totaled €1.44 billion ($1.57 billion), down from €1.46 billion in fiscal 2022, while adjusted EBITDA was €192 million ($208 million), up from €184.4 million.  Audited results for the fiscal year will be released March 1.

Food, biochemicals and the polylactic acid (PLA) businesses will make up the functional ingredients and solutions business unit. Nutrition, pharmaceuticals and biomedical polymer capabilities will make up the health and nutrition business unit. Corbion’s previous business units were sustainable food solutions, lactic acid and specialties, and algae ingredients.  CO2 into ethylene


Corbion seeks growth by restructuring

Oil next year – Enzyme found in laundry detergent could help recycle plastic 06-02-2024

CO2 into ethylene

Oil next year – Enzyme found in laundry detergent could help recycle plastic 06-02-2024

Oil next year

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Kuwait is strategically targeting a robust deficit reduction of KD 2.5 billion in its upcoming budget, emphasizing the need to achieve an oil production level of 2.8 million barrels per day to generate an estimated KD 22 billion

The proposed budget, commencing from April 1 at KD 25 billion, reflects a significant KD 2 billion reduction compared to the current budget, with the primary objective being the alleviation of a projected KD 6 billion ($18 billion) deficit.

In a noteworthy move, the government has disclosed its equilibrium price, anchoring the budget on a conservative crude oil price of $70 per barrel. However, skepticism surrounds the practicality of this benchmark, with prevailing expectations favoring a more realistic range of $75 to $80 per barrel. Despite acknowledged efforts to trim government expenses, the spotlight shifts towards the creation of over 24,000 job opportunities within the next 12 months. Oil next year

A critical gap in the budget lies in the lack of transparency regarding Kuwait’s projected crude oil production for the upcoming year, a pivotal determinant for deficit mitigation. To achieve the targeted deficit reduction, it is imperative to aim for an estimated oil production of 2.8 million barrels per day, equivalent to KD 22 billion.

The key to a deficit-free budget involves setting a crude oil price of $80 per barrel and maintaining a production level of 2.8 million barrels, obviating the need for oil prices to reach the ambitious $91 per barrel threshold. Addressing the KD 6 billion shortfall presents challenges, with potential solutions including international bank borrowings, leveraging sovereign wealth funds, or exploring unconventional paths such as privatizing certain oil companies.

Privatization emerges as a promising solution, injecting immediate cash into government coffers and fostering private sector growth. Successful execution requires collaborative efforts between the government and the private sector, positively impacting national graduates’ recruitment and development and contributing to the overall economy. The sustainability of reduced expenditure levels remains a critical question, with hopes pinned on the new government adeptly navigating challenges without resorting to borrowing. This marks the initiation of a new era, with collective aspirations for positive results shaping Kuwait’s economic trajectory in the years ahead. Oil next year

Oil next year

As of 2023, China’s textile industry experienced a notable surge in profits, marking a 7.2 percent year-on-year increase, according to official data released by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology on February 3, 2024. Major textile enterprises in the country collectively recorded profits amounting to 180.2 billion yuan, equivalent to approximately 25.38 billion U.S. dollars.  Oil next year

Despite a marginal decrease of 0.8 percent in combined operating revenue, totaling 4.70 trillion yuan compared to the previous year, the industry’s profitability exhibited resilience. The Ministry’s report indicated a noteworthy rebound in the textile and garment sector’s export performance. In 2023, China’s textile and garment exports reached 293.6 billion dollars, though experiencing an 8.1 percent decline from the preceding year.

Interestingly, the data unveiled a positive shift in December 2023, with textile and garment exports resuming expansion. During this period, exports witnessed a 2.6 percent year-on-year increase, amounting to 25.3 billion dollars. This positive trend at the end of the year suggests a potential recovery and increased momentum in the global demand for Chinese textile and garment products.  Oil next year

Overall, the 2023 performance underscores the robustness of China’s textile industry, showcasing adaptability and resilience amid economic fluctuations.

Oil next year

With the launch of project STOPP, the European Union is taking significant strides to combat plastic waste in the packaging sector

This three-year initiative targets the entire food packaging value chain, encompassing the agricultural food industry, with the goal of reducing packaging waste by 2030 in accordance with the EU’s Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive.

Involving 14 partners from seven countries, the project aims to establish circular strategies for plastic usage and processing. The collaborative effort will also implement awareness campaigns through a multi-actor network.  Oil next year

Key actions include analyzing the impact of plastic waste in various ecosystems, monitoring current plastic usage in the food packaging industry, creating a sustainable business model for replication, enhancing recycling practices, and conducting a comprehensive customer voice study.

The VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland spearheads this innovative scheme, with notable partners such as the University of Vaasa, the National Institute of Chemistry of Slovenia, Remondis Recycling, GreenDelta, Plastics Recyclers Europe, Veolia, Braskem, and reCIRCLE. Together, these entities aim to generate results that can inform the European decision-making process concerning future packaging strategies. The STOPP project reflects the EU’s commitment to fostering sustainable practices and mitigating the environmental impact of plastic waste in the packaging sector. Oil next year

With the launch of project STOPP, the European Union is taking significant strides to combat plastic waste in the packaging sector

European Polyamide Prices Decline in January, Reasoning Subdued Demand

The Polyamide market witnessed a descending price trend as the first quarter of 2024 commenced. This decline was primarily attributed to bearish demand conditions originating from the downstream automotive and electrical sectors within the European market. The weakened demand from these key sectors exerted downward pressure on Polyamide prices, reflecting broader economic challenges or specific industry-related issues. Moreover, the feedstocks for Polyamide i.e., Caprolactam and Adipic Acid, also played a role in the descending price pattern. The decline in feedstocks prices contributed to the overall reduction in production costs for Polyamide, subsequently influencing the pricing dynamics in the downstream market. Oil next year

In terms of demand, the Polyamide market faced challenges as fresh orders from potential customers remained weak. Additionally, trading activities in the international market experienced a reduction, primarily attributed to disruptions in ocean routes. These disruptions, which may include factors like shipping delays, port closures, or logistical challenges, had a consequential impact on the global trading dynamics of Polyamide.

In January, manufacturers in the Eurozone exhibited a less aggressive approach towards reducing their purchasing activities.

This suggests a moderation in the extent to which they scaled back procurement of raw materials and components for their production processes. The market participants, potentially influenced by economic uncertainties or geopolitical events, exercised caution in their purchasing decisions. Oil next year


European Polyamide Prices Decline in January, Reasoning Subdued Demand

Enzyme found in laundry detergent could help recycle plastic

With a simple chemical tweak, chemists have created robust enzymes that break down single-use bioplastic into its building blocks within two days

Researchers at King’s College London have found a way to break down plastics into their building blocks for recycling. The process takes less than 40 hours and uses an enzyme commonly found in bio-based laundry detergents.

The advance reported in the journal Cell Reports Physical Science could lead to an efficient way to recycle the single-use plastic called polylactic acid (PLA). “We have chosen polylactic acid as this plastic does not have any real way of properly recycling it,” says chemistry professor Alex Brogan.  Oil next year

“Our development changes this, as we have been able to convert the plastic to its constituent building blocks in less than 40 hours at 90°C.”

Although PLA is made from renewable sources such as corn starch and sugar cane, it is just as big an environmental problem as petroleum-derived plastics. It is the most common commercial bioplastic—the world produced 457,000 tons in 2021—and is used mainly to make disposable food containers, cups, and utensils.

Most of these items end up in landfills, where they do not biodegrade. PLA can only biodegrade in industrial compost settings, where it takes 12 weeks to break down at 60°C. This makes industrial composting “a fairly energy intensive and time-consuming process of converting the plastic to fertilizer or mulch,” Brogan says. Oil next year


Enzyme found in laundry detergent could help recycle plastic

Eni to Build Third Biorefinery in Italy

Eni SPA said it is awaiting government clearance to begin construction of its third biofuel production plant in Italy, proposed to rise in the port city of Livorno.

“The project, first announced in October 2022 and followed by an application for Environmental Impact Assessment in November 2022, is awaiting official authorizations and includes the construction of three new facilities for the production of hydrogenated biofuels: a biogenic feedstock pre-treatment unit; a 500,000 tonnes/year Ecofining plant; and a facility to produce hydrogen from methane gas”, the Italian state-controlled energy major said in a recent news release. Ecofining is a trademarked technology developed by Eni and Honeywell UOP to transform biogenic raw materials into biofuels.

Eni has set a goal of raising its biorefining capacity from the current 1.65 million tons per annum (MMtpa) to over 5.0 MMtpa as part of efforts to become a carbon-neutral company by 2050.  Oil next year

The proposed project wants to transform the Livorno industrial site in Tuscany region on the Italian northeastern coast.

Its two biorefineries in operation in Italy had been converted from fossil fuel refineries. The Porto Marghera biorefinery in the northern coastal city of Venice started production June 2014 as the world’s first project to successfully transform a traditional refinery into a biorefinery according to Eni.

Its processing capacity has been raised from an initial 360,000 MMtpa to 400,000 MMtpa, according to information from Eni’s website.  Oil next year

The other refinery, which faces the Mediterranean Sea in the Sicilian city of Gela, opened August 2019 with a 750,000-MMtpa processing capacity according to Eni.


Eni to Build Third Biorefinery in Italy

Arburg, the renowned German manufacturer, is set to showcase cutting-edge technology at Mecspe in Bologna

The exhibition will feature two injection molding machines, with one displayed at Mecspe Lab – Innovation Space in the central hall. Additionally, a third machine will be dedicated to additive manufacturing.

At Arburg’s booth in Pavilion 36, the spotlight will be on the Allrounder 520 A 1500 electric press, configured for medical applications in an ISO 7 cleanroom environment. Specifically designed for rapid and complex processes, this Ultimate version will be equipped with a Kebo 4-cavity mold to produce polypropylene syringe bodies (Bormed RF825MO by Borealis) in a swift 9-second cycle.  Oil next year

The machine is complemented by the latest-generation Gestica control, featuring digital functions and apps to meet stringent medical traceability and quality requirements. It also incorporates operator assistance and Industry 4.0 packages, along with connectivity to the proprietary MES for real-time production data acquisition and analysis.

Arburg’s booth will also debut the Innovatiq TiQ5 Pro 3D printer, boasting an open material platform for large-scale components (500 x 400 x 450 mm). The vacuum bed and active heating chamber ensure reliability in extended or challenging jobs with various materials, including hard or soft, and fiber-reinforced or high-temperature plastics.

The printer features the CoreLine print head, a dual extruder reaching 400 °C, and a vacuum bed for enhanced stability and adhesion, improving the finished product’s quality. The SmartStart function, with automatic leveling and nozzle calibration, optimizes the start of each print, making the TiQ5 Pro ideal for a range of industrial applications from rapid prototyping to complex component production.  Oil next year

Moreover, Arburg will contribute to the Mecspe Lab Innovation Space at the Service Center with the hybrid Allrounder 470H 1000 290 Comfort press, which debuted last year on the company’s centennial. This machine, equipped with a metal 3D-printed mold, will manufacture a component for GPS devices used in avalanche rescue during the exhibition.

Arburg, the renowned German manufacturer, is set to showcase cutting-edge technology at Mecspe in Bologna

Green hydrogen -Total Energies has successfully transformed feedstocks from plastic waste into new polymer at its polypropylene plant in La Porte, Texas 05-02-2024

Oil next year

Green hydrogen -Total Energies has successfully transformed feedstocks from plastic waste into new polymer at its polypropylene plant in La Porte, Texas 05-02-2024

Green hydrogen

Polymers prices – In Switzerland, a significant shift is underway in the dairy industry as milk bottles transition from polyethylene (PE) to polyethylene terephthalate (PET)


Green hydrogen

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Total Energies has successfully transformed feedstocks from plastic waste into new polymer at its polypropylene plant in La Porte, Texas

This achievement is the result of a multiyear agreement with New Hope Energy, a company utilizing patented pyrolysis technology in partnership with Lummus Technology to convert plastic waste into pyrolysis oil, cracked gas, and pitch. Under the agreement, New Hope Energy supplies Total Energies with petrochemical feedstock derived from plastics, supporting Total Energies’ ambitious goal of producing one million tons of circular polymer by 2030.  Green hydrogen

The process involves converting feedstock from plastic waste into monomer at the BASF Total Energies Petrochemicals (BTP) facility in Port Arthur, a joint venture between BASF and TotalEnergies. Subsequently, the monomer is polymerized into sustainable polypropylene at Total Energies’ La Porte plant. The resulting polymers are certified as sustainable and suitable for various applications, including food-grade packaging.

New Hope Energy plans to expand its Tyler facility’s capacity to process more than 420 metric tons per day of waste plastic by 2026. Rusty Combs, CEO of New Hope Energy, expresses enthusiasm about the partnership with Total Energies, stating that the supply agreement marks a crucial step toward achieving New Hope’s goal of significantly improving the nation’s plastic recycling performance.  Green hydrogen

Both the La Porte and BTP facilities received their ISCC+ certification in 2022, highlighting the commitment to advanced recycling practices and sustainability in the production of circular polymers.

Green hydrogen

In December 2023, Germany witnessed a substantial 8.5% YoY decline in import prices and a 2.4% YoY reduction in export prices, according to data released by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis)

The significant downturn in import prices, persisting since October, is largely attributed to a base effect stemming from elevated price levels in 2022. In comparison to November, import prices experienced a 1.1% decline during the month.

Energy imports played a pivotal role in shaping the economic landscape, with December’s energy imports costing 32.1% less than the previous year and 6.3% less than November. Notably, natural gas exerted the most considerable influence on the YoY rate of change for energy, registering a staggering 49% decrease in prices compared to December 2022. The broader spectrum of energy sources, including electricity, crude oil, mineral oil products, and hard coal, also witnessed price drops ranging from 2.8% to 25.2% compared to November 2023.  Green hydrogen

On an annual average basis, import prices experienced an 8.3% YoY decline in 2023, marking the most significant drop since 2009. Export prices mirrored the trend, showcasing a 0.3% YoY decrease on an annual average basis in 2023 compared to the preceding year. The economic dynamics unveiled in this data suggest a notable shift in pricing trends and underscore the impact of various factors, including energy costs, on Germany’s trade landscape.

Green hydrogen

Sun Chemical Implements Freight Surcharges in Light of Red Sea Crisis

Sun Chemical will implement selected freight surcharges impacted by the Red Sea crisis globally.

Against the backdrop of geopolitical instabilities, maritime transportation through the Suez Canal and Red Sea has been especially severely impacted since November. With around 30% of the world’s container trade shipped via this route, many shipments are facing delays and some are being rerouted via the Cape of Good Hope, significantly increasing the distance travelled and adding further costs and time. Cargo air freight is also seeing a spike in demand to avoid such longer diversions.  Green hydrogen

Vessels departing from China, India, and the rest of the Far East are being affected by safety measures, shipments delays, rotation of containers, as well as ports’ congestion, causing journey extensions of at least 20 days on the outward and 20 days on their return. Several forces majeures have been invoked already, while the situation is also causing significant cost increases and could soon start to impact the availability of raw materials.

As a proactive response to these challenges, Sun Chemical is actively monitoring the evolving situation through its extensive global network of partners. The primary objective remains ensuring the continued supply of high-quality products and services to customers. In light of the dynamic nature of the crisis, Sun Chemical is taking necessary steps to secure raw materials and minimise transportation delays.  Green hydrogen

Sun Chemical is committed to mitigating rising costs whenever possible, however, the rapid escalation in freight cost pressures has made the introduction of some freight surcharges unavoidable. Sun Chemical will communicate specific adjustments directly with its customers, underscoring its dedication to transparency and collaboration in navigating the challenges posed by the Red Sea crisis. This strategic approach ensures that Sun Chemical continues to provide reliable and innovative solutions to its valued customers in the face of unprecedented global disruptions.


Green hydrogen

Russia Registers a Substantial 12% Growth in Imports of Large-Capacity Polymers

In the dynamic landscape of Russia’s polymer industry, the year 2023 brought forth noteworthy trends, witnessing a significant 12% surge in the imports of large-capacity polymers by Russian companies. This increase amounted to a total of 1 million tons, reflecting a substantial shift in the country’s polymer trade dynamics. Simultaneously, the export front experienced a decline of 24.8%, with total polymer exports, excluding countries within the Customs Union, reaching 1.3 million tons. This downturn was particularly prominent in high-density polyethylene (HDPE), polystyrene (PS), and suspension polyvinyl chloride (PVC-C).  Green hydrogen

On the domestic production front, large-capacity polymers exhibited a commendable growth of 3.1%, resulting in a cumulative production of 7.4 million tonnes. Notably, polypropylene (PP) and polyethylene terephthalate (PET) emerged as standout performers, showcasing the most substantial growth rates in the domestic production landscape.

The apparent consumption of seven large-capacity polymers within Russia, including polyethylene (LDPE, HDPE, LDL), polypropylene (PP), polystyrene, polyvinyl chloride (PVC-C, PVC-E-free), and polyethylene terephthalate (PET), marked a 12% increase in 2023 compared to the preceding year. The total apparent consumption reached 7.1 million tons, considering a forecast for December. This upswing is indicative of the industry’s resilience and adaptability to evolving market conditions.  Green hydrogen


Russia Registers a Substantial 12% Growth in Imports of Large-Capacity Polymers

Lhyfe, a prominent European producer of green and renewable hydrogen, is embarking on a groundbreaking project by constructing a hydrogen production plant in Brake, Germany

Positioned in the harbor area of Niedersachsen Ports, the plant will be the first in northern Germany to provide green hydrogen to the broader market. The facility, with an installed electrolysis capacity of 10 MW, is anticipated to produce up to 1150 tons of green hydrogen annually, sourced from wind and photovoltaic plants via corporate Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs).  Green hydrogen

The project, marked by a recent groundbreaking ceremony scheduled for February 1st, underscores the economic viability of hydrogen solutions in transportation and industrial sectors. Luc Graré, Head of Central & Eastern Europe at Lhyfe, expressed enthusiasm about the project’s contribution to Lower Saxony’s hydrogen infrastructure goals and its positive impact on regional job creation and economic growth.

Lower Saxony Economics Minister, Olaf Lies, lauded the initiative as a significant step towards sustainable energy supply, regional value creation, and decarbonization. The project, situated in the port of Brake, aligns with the town’s commitment to clean energy technologies and is expected to position the port as a hub for green innovation and sustainable growth.

The green hydrogen plant in Brake is seen as pivotal in decarbonizing the industrial port complex and maritime transport. Michael Kurz, Mayor of Brake (Unterweser), highlighted the long-term benefits for the local economy and the town’s positioning as a pioneer in clean energy technologies.  Green hydrogen

Holger Banik, Managing Director of Niedersachsen Ports, emphasized the port’s role in serving a broad network over short distances and contributing to the energy transition and circular economy in the region.

This project in Lower Saxony aligns with Lhyfe’s commitment to the market ramp-up of green hydrogen and follows the recent announcement of the company’s largest hydrogen production plant in Baden-Württemberg. The Schwäbisch Gmünd plant, with a 10 MW production capacity, commenced construction in October, marking another significant milestone in Lhyfe’s pursuit of a sustainable and low-carbon future.  Green hydrogen

Lhyfe, a prominent European producer of green and renewable hydrogen, is embarking on a groundbreaking project by constructing a hydrogen production plant in Brake, Germany

In a historic collaboration, Mitsui Chemicals Inc. and Teijin Ltd. are set to revolutionize the Japanese resin industry by becoming pioneers in the development and commercialization of biomass-derived bisphenol A (BPA) and polycarbonate (PC) resins

This groundbreaking initiative is geared towards achieving carbon neutrality by mitigating greenhouse gas emissions throughout the entire product life cycle.

Mitsui Chemicals, having recently obtained ISCC PLUS certification, is poised to supply biomass BPA using the mass-balance approach, becoming the first Japanese company to commercially produce biomass-derived BPA. Teijin, leveraging this development, will commence the production of biomass PC resin utilizing Mitsui Chemicals’ biomass BPA.

The strategic partnership aims to expand the use of biomass-derived plastics in commercial sectors such as automotive headlamps and electronic components. Teijin will procure biomass-derived BPA from Mitsui Chemicals to fabricate PC resins with identical physical attributes to their petroleum-derived counterparts.  Green hydrogen

Mitsui Chemicals, leading in environmental consciousness since December 2021, integrates naphtha crackers in its petrochemical plants to replace petroleum-derived naphtha with bio-based hydrocarbons. The company envisions the continued introduction of ISCC PLUS-certified mass-balance derivatives, producing biomass-derived raw materials through chemical reactions.

Teijin, committed to low-environmental-impact recycled PC resins and conventional PC resins, aligns with the evolving landscape of sustainable practices. Both companies aim to secure ISCC PLUS certification for various products, facilitating the development and production of ecologically sustainable products across the supply chain.

With Mitsui Chemicals targeting ISCC PLUS certification for all phenol-chain products by March 2024 and Teijin anticipating certification in the first half of fiscal 2023, this collaboration underscores the industry’s commitment to meeting the demand for low-environmental-impact products in support of carbon neutrality. The future envisions a seamless integration of environmentally conscious choices into the production and application of PC resins.  Green hydrogen

In a historic collaboration, Mitsui Chemicals Inc. and Teijin Ltd. are set to revolutionize the Japanese resin industry by becoming pioneers in the development and commercialization of biomass-derived bisphenol A (BPA) and polycarbonate (PC) resins


Zero carbon emissions – Mazda has established a rotary engine development group of 36 engineers who will work on the advancement of renewable energy used as generators 03-02-2024

Green hydrogen

Zero carbon emissions – Mazda has established a rotary engine development group of 36 engineers who will work on the advancement of renewable energy used as generators 03-02-2024

Zero carbon emissions

Exploring Five Inquiries on the Houthis and the Red Sea Conflict: Recent Offensives and Concealed Motives

The conflict rages on from Syria to the shores of the Red Sea, driven by various and intersecting motives. Why did the United States and Britain launch airstrikes on Yemen once again? The missions fall into three categories: 1) Preventive actions to deter imminent Houthi attacks on civilian navigation, targeting alleged launch ramps and explosive stockpiles, according to official American statements. 2) Retaliatory strikes in response to the Houthi movements. 3) Efforts to disable their arsenal. However, the effectiveness of these missions raises questions.

Radio-controlled Mines and Boats Despite numerous coalition waves claiming the destruction of major Houthi systems over weeks, the militia persists in armed provocations against merchant vessels and oil tankers, as well as allied units en route to Israel. Alongside drones and missiles, they have unsuccessfully reintroduced radio-controlled explosive boats, posing a continued risk of mines that have already affected local fishermen.  Zero carbon emissions

The persistent Houthi activity, foreseen by authorities, suggests that a prolonged campaign is currently off the White House’s agenda. Even a few rockets could suffice for the Houthis to sow insecurity along the route. Gregory D. Johnsen highlights the stark difference in intent: while the White House pursues short-term solutions, the Houthis think long-term to retain power. What are the faction’s objectives? Formally aligning with Palestinians in Gaza, the Houthis declare their intention to disrupt traffic connected to Israel until the end of the Strip’s invasion.

Hidden Motivations This surface-level narrative reveals deeper motivations. Beyond the formal stance, regional ambitions, a Shiite version of a jihadist plan, support for Iran’s strategy, a position of strength against local adversaries (Arabia, Emirates, Bahrain), prestige, and the potential to dictate favorable conditions in the Arabian Peninsula’s prolonged conflict are all factors.  Zero carbon emissions

Some speculate that the Houthis may seek toll payments, akin to Egypt’s role in the Suez Canal, exploiting their strategic position. Do the militants fear consequences? Experts argue that the U.S. strikes offer the Houthis an opportunity to enhance their “revolutionary” image, align with the cult of “martyrdom,” and garner support from those opposing Washington. Even in the West, there is support, overlooking the movement’s roots. Ansar Allah, their original name, utilizes the crisis to intensify internal repression, as reports surface about the suppression of opponents.

The Shadow of Tehran What are the ties with Iran? Rooted in history since the early days of the Islamic Republic (established with the Khomeini revolution in 1979) and religious in nature, the relationship is strengthened by substantial arms supplies. Tehran views the Houthis as crucial allies, having influence over the Red Sea and the ability to pressure Sunni monarchies when needed. The presence of a Qods Division command of the Pasdaran in Sanaa facilitates cooperation. The Iranian spy ship Behshad operates south of Aden, providing assistance and serving as a symbolic target for some. The Houthis, constrained by alliances, become significant players in the proxy conflict.

The question lingers about whether Tehran can dictate orders to the Houthi leadership. Hypotheses range from strict obedience (Hypothesis 1) to a self-directed leadership (Hypothesis 2), or a fluid mix of both (Hypothesis 3). This fluid scenario enables international diplomacy to tailor its response to Iran’s role based on convenience and plans at different moments. Zero carbon emissions

Exploring Five Inquiries on the Houthis and the Red Sea Conflict: Recent Offensives and Concealed Motives

STADLER and Krones Close Plastics Circular Economy Loop at Las Vegas

Republic Services, in collaboration with STADLER Anlagenbau GmbH and Krones, has inaugurated North America’s pioneering vertically integrated plastics recycling facility in Las Vegas. The Republic Services Polymer Center marks the first instance of a U.S. company managing the complete plastics recycling stream, from curbside collection to the production of high-quality recycled resins for sustainable packaging.

STADLER, overseeing mechanical sorting on PET and PO lines, played a crucial role alongside Krones, the general contractor for the Polymer Center. This facility, processing presorted plastics from across the Western U.S., is set to produce over 100 million pounds annually of recovered resin for circular economy integration. Zero carbon emissions

The plant’s dual lines, one for PET and another for mixed plastics, boast a capacity of 5t/h each, making it the largest Dual Line plastics recycling plant in the USA. Employing state-of-the-art technology, including STADLER’s ballistic separator and NIR sorters, the facility efficiently separates materials for further processing.

Republic Services plans to establish three more Polymer Centers nationwide to bridge the gap between current recycled plastic supply and the burgeoning demand driven by regulatory changes and consumer preferences for sustainable packaging. Following the success of the Las Vegas project, Republic Services has extended its collaboration with STADLER and Krones, demonstrating confidence in their equipment and design for future Polymer Centers. The company aims to contribute significantly to achieving true bottle-to-bottle and package-to-package circularity for plastics, addressing the increasing demand for recycled plastics in the market.  Zero carbon emissions

Zero carbon emissions

The European Commission has granted approval for a €550 million ($597 million) Italian State aid scheme geared towards advancing the shift to a net-zero economy

This initiative, in line with the Green Deal Industrial Plan, operates under the State aid Temporary Crisis and Transition Framework, focusing on accelerating the green transition and lessening fuel dependencies in crucial sectors. Italy proposed the €550 million scheme to encourage the substitution of methane and other fossil fuels with renewable hydrogen, as part of the broader effort to achieve a sustainable industrial landscape.

The aid, disbursed as direct grants through the Italian National Recovery and Resilience Plan (PNRR), specifically targets companies heavily reliant on fossil fuels in various Italian industrial sectors.  Zero carbon emissions

Eligible projects are mandated to achieve a minimum 40% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions or a 20% reduction in energy consumption compared to current levels. To qualify, companies must transition from fossil fuels to renewable hydrogen, with the option to combine this with investments in electrification or enhanced energy efficiency.

The Commission has set stringent conditions, ensuring that hydrogen constitutes at least 40% of total energy inputs from project initiation, reaching 75% by 2032 and 100% by 2036. The aid measure, capped at €200 million ($217 million) per beneficiary, is scheduled for disbursement before December 31, 2025. The Commission underscored the necessity, appropriateness, and proportionality of the Italian hydrogen scheme in expediting the green transition, aligning with the REPower EU Plan and the Green Deal Industrial Plan. Conditions under the Temporary Crisis and Transition Framework are designed to guarantee emission reductions and a shift to hydrogen use while preventing production capacity increases beyond 2%.  Zero carbon emissions

Margrethe Vestager, the Executive Vice-President overseeing competition policy, commended the scheme for its role in significantly decarbonizing industrial processes and reducing Italy’s reliance on imported fossil fuels. The approved aid measure is anticipated to contribute to Italy’s objective of a complete transition to hydrogen by 2036 across supported investments, aligning with broader European sustainability goals.

Zero carbon emissions

Adana’s Polypropylene Plant Construction Signals Turkey’s Entry into Middle East Market

Nestled in the Ceyhan Industrial Zone within the Adana Province, the polypropylene plant is poised to boast an impressive production capacity of 472.5 thousand tons annually. The estimated cost of this monumental project stands at USD 1.7 billion, with a projected annual contribution of USD 250 million to Turkey’s foreign trade balance. The strategic significance of this venture extends beyond national boundaries, holding the promise of elevating Turkey’s status as a key player in the global polypropylene market.

One of the noteworthy features of this polypropylene plant is its commitment to sustainable practices, as approximately 80% of the facility’s energy needs will be met through renewable energy sources.  Zero carbon emissions

This is made possible through the independent production of hydrogen and harnessing the power of hydroelectric power plants. Such a sustainability-focused approach aligns with the global push towards environmentally responsible industrial practices, underscoring Turkey’s commitment to a greener and more sustainable future.

Turkey, thus far, has had a singular producer of polypropylene in Petkim Petrokimya Holding, generating around 100 thousand tons annually. The introduction of the new polypropylene plant is poised to revolutionize this landscape, mitigating the dependency on imports and potentially making Turkey a self-sufficient hub for this essential polymer.

Beyond the domestic market, the strategic positioning of the plant and its significant production capacity set the stage for Turkey to actively engage in the global polypropylene trade.

Zero carbon emissions

Asian PX price remains above $1,000/mt, but uptrend slowing on weak demand

The outright price of Asian paraxylene has stayed above the $1,000/mt mark moving into February amid support from firm buying interest, traders and producers told S&P Global Commodity Insights, but a slowdown in trade activity and demand ahead of the Lunar New Year is reversing the uptrend seen at the start of the year.

Market sources said that this decline will continue in the near term, with further pressure from weak downstream margins, but prices are expected to rise again in Q2 on US summer demand.  Zero carbon emissions

Platts assessed the benchmark PX CFR Taiwan/China down $10/mt day on day at $1,025.67/mt at the Asian close Jan. 31, S&P Global data showed. PX prices had risen to a 15-week high of $1,042.67 on Jan. 23, the data showed, up $82/mt or 8.54% from when levels had bottomed out at $960.67/mt on Dec. 7.

Traders said that while PX prices had strengthened recently due to improving demand for cargoes arriving in March and April, the upward momentum had been stalled by lower operation rates among producers of downstream purified terephthalic acid, or PTA, and polyester during China’s biggest holiday in early February.

“Looks like the fundamentals [for PX] are weak [so] need to see [the market] after the Chinese New Year,” a trader said.  Zero carbon emissions

Polyester and PTA operating rates had steadily dropped in January amid the festivities-related slowdown in China, sources said.


Asian PX price remains above $1,000/mt, but uptrend slowing on weak demand

Replacing expanded polystyrene with compostable trays for protein packaging

SEE has launched a biobased, industrial compostable tray that can replace expanded polystyrene in food applications

Expanded polystyrene (EPS) is often classified as non-recyclable. The material is also often used to package fresh poultry and red meat, which results in large amounts of non-biodegradable and non-recyclable waste.

Now, US-based packaging solutions provider SEE, previously Sealed Air, has developed an industrially compostable overwrap tray made from bio-based content to replace EPS trays. The Cryovac food-grade resin is USDA-certified as having 54% bio-based content form renewable wood cellulose.  Zero carbon emissions

The tray was developed to offer the same performance and stability as EPS foam trays, SEE said. It underwent extensive trials across the food value chain where it survived rigorous manufacturing systems, extreme temperatures, and demanding shipping and distribution environments without breaking, cracking, or leaking, the company added.

Without added components such as the overwrap film, pad, label, or sticker, the tray has been tested and certified by BPI to be industrial compostable, meaning it can be broken down by biological treatment at a large-scale industrial composting facility where available. The resin used to make the tray has been certified by TÜV Austria as soil and marine biodegradable, which means it is degraded by microorganisms existing naturally in the environment.  Zero carbon emissions


Replacing expanded polystyrene with compostable trays for protein packaging

Pevalen™ Pro 100: Perstorp’s innovative leap towards more sustainable non-phthalate plasticizers

Leading specialty chemicals innovator Perstorp has launched Pevalen™ Pro 100, marking a new era in PVC plasticizing technology. The new grade of Pevalen features 100% renewable carbon content based on mass balance, applying chemical and physical traceability. By factoring in the biogenic CO2 uptake* from its renewable raw materials, Pevalen Pro 100 offers a product carbon footprint reduction of approximately 80% relative to its fossil-based equivalent from cradle to Perstorp gate.

Pevalen™ Pro 100 is a significant advancement in non-phthalate plasticizers, merging high performance with sustainable sourcing.  Zero carbon emissions

It sets a new benchmark in the industry of flexible PVC by offering a solution that is not only 100% renewable-based but also does not compromise on performance or safety. Pevalen™ Pro 100’s development is a testament to Perstorp’s dedication in materials chemistry and proactive approach to environmental stewardship, ensuring superior performance in a wide range of PVC applications.

Key features of Pevalen™ Pro 100 are:

  • Fully based on mass-balanced ISCC PLUS-certified raw materials.
  • Low carbon footprint to reduce CO2 emissions throughout the value chain.
  • Drop-in replacement for easy adoption in formulations.
  • True non-phthalate plasticizer.
  • High plasticizing efficiency enabling faster processing and requiring less material and energy.  Zero carbon emissions


Pevalen™ Pro 100: Perstorp's innovative leap towards more sustainable non-phthalate plasticizers

Mazda has announced the establishment of a team dedicated to the research and development of rotary engines, with the aim of adapting them to the new era of zero carbon emissions

The Japanese automaker, which recently reinstated the rotary engine in the MX-30 R-EV as a range extender, indicates that the new rotary engine will not be used directly to move the wheels, but rather as a power generator.
Its function will be to recharge the battery of an electric unit that will provide thrust to the wheels, allowing cars to increase autonomy by installing more compact and lighter batteries.  Zero carbon emissions
Mazda has established a rotary engine development group of 36 engineers who will work on the advancement of renewable energy used as generators.
The team will also engage in research to evaluate the compatibility of the new rotary engine with the regulations of the main markets and the application of zero CO2 emission fuels.
The automaker, known for being a pioneer and supporter of the rotary engine, resumed its production after 11 years with the RX-8. In a context of ecological transition, Mazda is exploring new applications for this technology.
The Iconic SP prototype, presented at the Tokyo Motor Show, uses a double Wankel rotor to generate current for a 370 HP electric powertrain, demonstrating an innovative adaptation to the new needs of the automotive sector.
Although new production sports cars are not yet certain, this represents a step forward in the search for sustainable solutions for Mazda rotary engines.  Zero carbon emissions
Mazda has announced the establishment of a team dedicated to the research and development of rotary engines, with the aim of adapting them to the new era of zero carbon emissions

Fibre Extrusion Technology – Europe could miss targets due to low plastic recyclate demand, report warns 02-02-2024

Zero carbon emissions

Fibre Extrusion Technology – Europe could miss targets due to low plastic recyclate demand, report warns 02-02-2024

Fibre Extrusion Technology

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Europe could miss targets due to low plastic recyclate demand, report warns

According to Plastics Recyclers Europe, the total European installed plastics recycling capacity saw a 7% decline in growth rate year-on-year and reached 12.5 million tonnes in 2022 – potentially putting Europe at risk of missing legislative targets.

Its latest report examines 850 different recycling sites across Europe, many of them small, with an average capacity of 15,000 tonnes. Plastics Recyclers Europe states that the plastics recycling sector consists of over 30,000 workers and generates a turnover of €10.4 billion.  Fibre Extrusion Technology

The decrease in growth rate from 17% to 10% year-on-year is attributed to heavy market disruptions that the European market has been facing since 2020.

“Progress is indispensable for ensuring the viability of the plastics recycling industry,” said Ton Emans, president at Plastics Recyclers Europe. “While the commitment from recyclers remains strong, our sector has faced unprecedented challenges, first with the halt of activities during the COVID-19 outbreak, followed by the energy crisis in 2022.

“Most recently, in 2023, the concerningly low demand for recyclates hit the sector, resulting from low prices for virgin plastics due to reduced industrial production in the EU and cheap imports of recycled plastic from outside the EU.  Fibre Extrusion Technology

Moving forward, enforcement of legislative measures will be essential in ensuring the progress can be continued.”

This report is Plastics Recyclers Europe’s first to distinguish between polyethylene and polypropylene, which were previously combined into a single figure.


Fibre Extrusion Technology

Arkema, a pioneering force in specialty materials, is at the forefront of innovation with the introduction of the groundbreaking Foranext® Gaseous Thermal Barrier (GTB) line

This revolutionary material is specifically designed to enhance the safety of electric vehicle (EV) batteries by preventing the propagation of thermal runaway, a key factor in battery fires.

The Foranext® GTB represents a paradigm shift in EV battery safety, addressing the critical need for preventive measures at the origin of battery fires. As the industry strives to advance EV technology, Arkema’s commitment to safety is evident in this first-of-its-kind solution. Fibre Extrusion Technology

In parallel, Arkema achieves a significant milestone in the decarbonization of its acrylic production chain. The company proudly announces the attainment of ISCC+ certification for its acrylic acid and ester production facility in Taixing, Jiangsu Province, China. This certification underscores Arkema’s dedication to sustainability and environmental responsibility.

Arkema continues to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of materials and technologies, demonstrating a commitment to safety, innovation, and sustainability across its diverse portfolio. With a track record of leadership in specialty materials, Arkema stands as a driving force in the ongoing evolution of industries towards a safer and more sustainable future.  Fibre Extrusion Technology

Fibre Extrusion Technology

Ton Emans, President of the Plastics Recyclers Europe (PRE), expressed concern as the European plastic recycling industry faces challenges impacting its growth

The latest data reveals that the total installed plastics recycling capacity in Europe reached 12.5 million tonnes in 2022, with a notable decline in the growth rate from 17% to 10% year-on-year due to market disruptions.

Emans emphasized the industry’s resilience despite facing unprecedented challenges such as the COVID-19 outbreak and the 2022 energy crisis. In 2023, low demand for recyclates became a significant issue, attributed to reduced industrial production in the EU and the influx of cheap recycled plastic imports from outside the EU, affecting prices for virgin plastics.  Fibre Extrusion Technology

The report analyzed 850 recycling sites in Europe, primarily small with an average capacity of 15,000 tonnes, contributing €10.4 billion in turnover and employing over 30,000 workers. Flexible polyolefins, PET, and rigid polyolefins dominate the polymer grades, comprising over 80% of the total capacity.

Geographically, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, and France represent 60% of recycling activities. Spain, Italy, Poland, and Belgium show a significant share of PE and PP flexibles in installed recycling capacity, while France dedicates nearly one-third to PET.

Despite consistent investment over the years to meet legislative targets, achieving them is at risk due to lower growth in recyclates production caused by decreased demand. The industry, responsible for reducing over 10 million tonnes of CO2 emissions in 2022, looks to new legislative developments like the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation and End-of-Life Vehicles Directive, emphasizing the need for enforcement mechanisms and harmonization across Member States to drive plastic circularity success.

Fibre Extrusion Technology

Fibre Extrusion Technology

Heather Tomas, Vice President Polymers Americas at TotalEnergies, proudly announces a groundbreaking achievement as the company successfully produces chemically recycled plastics in the United States

This milestone, realized at the La Porte, Texas polypropylene plant, marks a significant stride towards TotalEnergies’ commitment to meet the increasing global demand for innovative and sustainable plastics. The feedstock, sourced from New Hope Energy’s chemical recycling facility in Tyler, Texas, utilized a patented pyrolysis technology developed in collaboration with Lummus Technology to process mixed plastic waste.

TotalEnergies signed a noteworthy feedstock agreement with New Hope, securing 100,000 tonnes of recycled plastics annually for processing at the La Porte plant. The conversion of New Hope’s feedstock into monomers took place at BASF’s and TotalEnergies’ Petrochemicals (BTP) facility in Port Arthur, Texas. Despite facing a temporary closure due to a fire in September of the previous year, the facility, operating one of the world’s largest steam crackers, resumed operations.  Fibre Extrusion Technology

TotalEnergies’ La Porte plant is poised to manufacture ISCC+ certified polymers, catering to diverse applications, including food-grade packaging. This achievement follows TotalEnergies’ successful initiatives in Europe and aligns with their ambitious goal to produce one million tons of circular polymers annually by 2030. Heather Tomas emphasizes this accomplishment as a pivotal step forward in realizing the company’s commitment to sustainability and meeting the evolving needs of the global market.

Heather Tomas, Vice President Polymers Americas at TotalEnergies, proudly announces a groundbreaking achievement as the company successfully produces chemically recycled plastics in the United States

CFD project for improved extrusion

Aim is to reduce the amount of polymer lost through inefficient flow paths.Computer aided designs will be employed to develop a number of complex spin pack and spinneret designs.
The UK’s Fibre Extrusion Technology (FET) has been awarded £50,000 in grant funding to collaborate with the University of Manchester on complex new spin pack and spinneret designs.  Fibre Extrusion Technology
The grant is being awarded by a consortium led by AMPI (The Advanced Machinery and Productivity Institute) and NPL (The National Physical Laboratory). AMPI’s Innovation for Machinery (I4M) programme supports businesses in West Yorkshire and Greater Manchester as part of an overall initiative to drive innovation for the UK’s advanced machinery manufacturers to meet the challenges of developing new technology and entering emerging markets.In this project, FET will be working with the University of Manchester to conduct computational fluid dynamics (CFD) studies on a number of complex spin pack and spinneret designs.  Fibre Extrusion Technology
The aim is to identify areas of improvement for FET’s spin packs and spinnerets and to use computer aided designs to develop significantly more efficient versions. Improving the throughput of FET extrusion systems will reduce the amount of polymer lost through inefficient flow paths. In turn, the development will reduce the environmental impact of synthetic polymer processing.
More…CFD project for improved extrusion

BYD, a major player in the electric car market, has ignited a price war by slashing prices in Germany, a move soon to extend across Europe

This aggressive strategy serves as a direct challenge to industry leader Tesla and other renowned brands. The German electric car market, already in flux due to an early end to government incentives, witnessed a rapid slowdown in domestic demand for new cars. In response, BYD opted for a bold approach, reducing prices by 5% to 15%, intensifying the ongoing rivalry with Tesla.  Fibre Extrusion Technology

The battleground expands beyond China, with BYD aiming to conquer European territory. The price cuts on electric vehicles not only signify a tactical response to dwindling state incentives but also a strategic move to fortify BYD’s market presence in Germany and beyond. Despite ambitious expansion plans, BYD’s current sales volumes remain relatively modest, facing stiff competition from European and American counterparts.

BYD’s aggressive pricing strategy includes a 15% reduction for the Atto 3, making it available in Germany at €37,990 for the Comfort trim and €39,990 for the Design edition. With a more modest cut of approximately 8% for the Dolphin and a 5% reduction for the Seal, BYD aims to influence the adoption of electric mobility, presenting consumers with more affordable options.  Fibre Extrusion Technology

As BYD seeks to enhance its market share, the impact of these price reductions on electric car registrations, especially in comparison to Tesla, remains to be seen. The electric car landscape is not only characterized by a price war but also reflects important strategic and cultural differences, creating an intriguing dynamic in the rapidly evolving industry.

BYD, a major player in the electric car market, has ignited a price war by slashing prices in Germany, a move soon to extend across Europe

Coca-Cola is embarking on an innovative environmental initiative with its first UK trial of “label-less” packaging for Sprite and Sprite Zero on-the-go bottles

In a limited trial starting this January, labels on single 500ml bottles will be temporarily removed and replaced with an embossed logo on the front, while laser-engraved product and nutritional information will be featured on the back. This move aims to simplify the recycling process by eliminating the need to separate labels during recycling and reducing overall packaging material usage.  Fibre Extrusion Technology

The label-less design will be available for purchase at eight Tesco Express Stores in Brighton and Hove, Bristol, London, and Manchester from January to March 2024. Despite the removal of labels, the clear 100% recycled PET bottles will retain the iconic green and transparent attached caps, distinguishing between regular Sprite and Sprite Zero.

This initiative aligns with Coca-Cola’s ongoing commitment to sustainability, demonstrated through various design changes in recent years. These include transitioning Sprite bottles from green to clear plastic for easier recycling, implementing attached caps to reduce littering, and investing in lightweight bottle designs and streamlined external packaging to minimize environmental impact. As Coca-Cola continues to explore innovative solutions, the label-less trial showcases its dedication to environmentally conscious packaging practices.  Fibre Extrusion Technology

Coca-Cola is embarking on an innovative environmental initiative with its first UK trial of "label-less" packaging for Sprite and Sprite Zero on-the-go bottles

PET packaging solutions – Saudi Aramco, the energy giant and cornerstone of Saudi Arabia’s economy, has halted its plan to increase oil production capacity to 13 million barrels per day (bpd) 01-02-2024

Fibre Extrusion Technology

PET packaging solutions – Saudi Aramco, the energy giant and cornerstone of Saudi Arabia’s economy, has halted its plan to increase oil production capacity to 13 million barrels per day (bpd) 01-02-2024

PET packaging solutions

The Houthis have claimed responsibility for an attack on the US cargo ship Koi in the Red Sea

Security firm Ambrey reported an explosion on board the vessel operated by UK-based Oceonix Services. According to Yemeni rebels, the attack occurred as the Koi headed towards ports in occupied Palestine. The Marlin Luanda, also part of the Oceonix Services fleet, had been damaged by a missile the previous week.
Houthi spokesman Brigadier Yahya Saree confirmed the attack, saying Yemeni forces targeted Koi with naval missiles. He also mentioned an earlier attack on the American destroyer USS Revelli in the Red Sea. Saree has threatened to respond with military operations if the US and UK escalate. PET packaging solutions
Tensions grew further with US Central Command announcing it had shot down a ballistic missile and drones launched by the Houthis in the Gulf of Aden. The American destroyer Carney intervened without causing casualties or damage. The United States said the action was aimed at protecting freedom of navigation in the region.
The Houthis view Israeli, US and British ships as legitimate targets in response to Israel’s war against Hamas. Tension persists in the region, with both sides engaging in military action and reprisals.
The Houthis have claimed responsibility for an attack on the US cargo ship Koi in the Red Sea

Why do quantum computers threaten global security?

The advent of quantum computers threatens global security, particularly through the concept of “Q-Day,” the day a quantum computer could compromise public encryption systems that protect online communications, bank accounts and critical infrastructure.
The threat emerged in 1994, when mathematician Peter Shor demonstrated that a quantum computer could quickly decipher large numbers, challenging traditional cryptographic security.
Although current quantum computers are not yet powerful enough to use Shor’s algorithm, companies like IBM and Google are progressing in building more powerful machines. The main concern is the time it will take to develop a large quantum computer, since, if built in a few years rather than decades, it could crack encrypted data, causing global chaos.
While individuals may not be directly affected, governments, organizations and businesses must prepare. PET packaging solutions
The concept of “store now, decrypt later” refers to the possibility of storing data until a sufficiently powerful quantum computer is available to decrypt it. Governments are already collecting encrypted data in anticipation of future decryption.
To address this threat, the cryptographic community is developing post-quantum cryptography (PQC), which will resist potential threats from quantum computers. The United States, along with other countries, is standardizing PQC, anticipating the transition from 2025 to 2033. Companies like Google and Cloudflare have already started implementing PQC into their services.
PQC will be critical to maintaining security in a future where quantum computers could put traditional cryptographic systems at risk.
However, the ever-evolving nature of cryptography requires constant monitoring and adaptation to address emerging cybersecurity challenges. PET packaging solutions
Why do quantum computers threaten global security?

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Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Sidel, a pioneering force in PET packaging solutions, unveils its groundbreaking technology, IntelliADJUST™, heralding a new era in in-line PET bottle quality control with automatic adjustment

A patented solution, IntelliADJUST™ operates within a ‘closed loop’ system utilizing interferometric sensor technology, guaranteeing consistent and efficient high-quality PET bottle production. This innovative bottle blowing control system excels in maintaining material distribution uniformity, especially in bottles crafted from recycled PET (rPET).

IntelliADJUST™ not only ensures consistent bottle quality under varying production conditions but also facilitates the incorporation of recycled PET content.

Its autonomy in real-time, digitized process adjustments results in flawless material distribution, minimizing the impact of production variations and resin specificities on bottle quality.  PET packaging solutions

Sidel’s Evo-ON software suite enhances this system by aggregating equipment data and providing dynamic analytics, enabling historical and 24/7 real-time analysis for a truly smart line system.

Stéphane Menard, Product Manager for blowing care at Sidel, elaborates on how IntelliADJUST™ measures in-line bottle thickness, automatically adjusting parameters to maintain high-quality control. This user-friendly blowing solution maximizes marketable bottles by swiftly identifying and correcting thickness deviations.

IntelliADJUST™ aligns with the industry’s push for lightweighting and increased rPET content, offering reliability across various PET preforms. Its capability to secure perfect material distribution despite resin variability positions it as an indispensable tool for customers embracing sustainability in packaging.  PET packaging solutions

This technology, operating at speeds up to 90,000 bottles per hour, relies on smart sensor technology for precise measurements and refined production processes. It strategically measures wall thickness at representative points using four interferometric sensors, ensuring continuous control and adjustment for optimal material distribution.

In addition to supporting sustainability goals, IntelliADJUST™ is calibration-free, seamlessly integrating parameters into machine settings for each SKU recipe.

This easy-to-use system, with high accuracy, minimizes the need for manual laboratory controls, providing a reliable, expert-free solution for achieving stabilized quality across bottles. IntelliADJUST™ represents a significant step towards low carbon footprint packaging, empowering customers to optimize their PET packaging’s environmental impact.  PET packaging solutions

PET packaging solutions

Saudi Aramco, the energy giant and cornerstone of Saudi Arabia’s economy, has halted its plan to increase oil production capacity to 13 million barrels per day (bpd)

The Saudi Ministry of Energy has directed Aramco to maintain its maximum sustainable capacity (MSC) at the current level of 12 million bpd. The decision, announced in a statement by Aramco, signifies a departure from the initially declared goal of reaching 13 million bpd by 2027.

This development follows Saudi Arabia’s commitment in October 2021 to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2060, a move that garnered skepticism from environmental activists. Aramco’s profits, crucial to funding Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s Vision 2030 reform program, are expected to support the kingdom’s transition to a post-oil era.

The decision not to pursue the planned production increase suggests Riyadh’s cautious approach, indicating a lack of confidence in the global need for such additional capacity. Jamie Ingram, senior editor at the Middle East Economic Survey, remarked that the redirected investment may be more strategically placed elsewhere. PET packaging solutions

In a surprising turn of events, Justin Alexander, director of consultancy Khalij Economics, highlighted Saudi Arabia’s substantial reserves, financial capacity for investment, and low development costs. He emphasized the potential for Aramco, even in a changing energy landscape, to remain competitive as a low-cost and low-carbon intensity producer. Aramco will provide updated capital spending guidance with its full-year 2023 results in March, reflecting the evolving dynamics of the energy industry.

PET packaging solutions

MEG price soar, Navigates Peak Through Supply-Chain Chaos Amidst Geopolitical Turbulence

The price of Mono Ethylene Glycol (MEG) has experienced a rising trend in the global market in January 2024, due to high production costs, logistic charges, and chaotic stock management after the recent global supply disturbances. The US MEG market has seen an upsurge of more than 14% throughout January. On the other hand, the freezing cold in a major part of the USA has been a critical point in the swelling of MEG prices due to the shutdown of chemical manufacturing plants experiencing freezing cold during the timeframe. The freezing cold temperatures gripping the United States have ushered in a series of challenges for the country’s manufacturing sectors. Manufacturing companies like Nan YA Plastic Corporation and Sasol Chemical Company were forced to shut down production units due to freezing cold weather. PET packaging solutions

The closure of manufacturing plants disrupts the supply flow, leading to a shortage of goods. This disruption reverberates through the supply chain issues, affecting suppliers, distributors, and retailers. Under these market scenarios, inventory management has become hard to handle and strategize, which is likely to remain uncertain for further period. The MEG prices were observed to hovering around USD 450/MT FOB US Gulf (USA) post witnessing a steep incline (more than 14%).

Moreover, Asian countries are mirroring the same trend as the USA, with MEG prices soaring due to elevated production costs, shipping challenges, and increasing demand from PET manufacturing companies coupled with downstream effects. Stretched logistic freight charges, embracing the ongoing Red Sea conflict in the shipment route, have predominantly impacted trade between the United States and Asia. In January, China faced more than a 4% growth in MEG prices. PET packaging solutions


PET packaging solutions

In response to the surge in Chines PET resin exports, Korea initiated an anti-dumping probe on January 12th, aiming to curb the influx

This move follows trade barriers imposed by the United States and Japan from 2015 to 2017, propelling Chinese PET resin exports to Korea. The preliminary ruling, expected within three months, may lead to anti-dumping tariffs and a subsequent decline in Chinese PET bottle chip exports to Korea.

Simultaneously, Mexico announced its own anti-dumping investigation into PET bottle chip and PET fiber chips from China, responding to concerns raised by local polyester manufacturers Alpek and Indorama. Focusing on tariff codes 3907.61.01 and 3907.69.99, the probe assesses potential market distortions caused by Chinese imports, particularly in the PET resin and chips with viscosities ranging from 0.60 to 0.88 deciliters per gram (dL/g). The investigation underscores Mexico’s commitment to protecting its domestic PET industry from adverse effects.  PET packaging solutions

Historically negligible, Chinese PET resin exports to South Korea soared from 2016, reaching 118,000 tons by the end of 2022. Projections for 2023 estimate exports at 150,000 tons. Notable Chinese companies, including Hainan Yisheng Petrochemical and China Resources Chemical Materials Technology, face potential impacts from the anti-dumping measures.

Korea’s PET resin market, dominated by TK Chemical and Lotte, faces challenges if foreign competitors gain domestic market share, especially amid declining demand from Europe and the United States. The shift towards the domestic market intensifies as Korean exports decline and competition from Chinese enterprises rises, prompting a strategic focus on local markets.

In response to the surge in Chinese PET resin exports, Korea initiated an anti-dumping probe on January 12th, aiming to curb the influx

French Researchers (PROMES-CNRS Lab) Invent Solar Pyrolysis To Recycle Lithium Batteries

Research conducted at the PROMES-CNRS laboratory, under the leadership of Gilles Flamant, has recently validated the viability of employing a solar-powered pyro-metallurgical process for recycling valuable elements such as lithium, nickel, cobalt, and others from lithium-ion batteries. The PROMES-CNRS laboratory specializes in endeavors aimed at industrial decarbonization through the utilization of extremely high-temperature solar energy. PET packaging solutions

PROMES-CNRS lead Gilles Flamant asserts that with the anticipated surge in lithium-ion battery disposal over the coming decades, there is a pressing need for effective treatment methods, wherein solar thermal technology could significantly contribute to industrial decarbonization efforts.

For years and decades industries such as steel, cement, chemicals etc. have relied on fossil fuels, making fossil heat the established norm in these sectors. This poses a significant obstacle for concentrated solar power technology. However, the emergence of lithium-ion battery recycling, particularly through pyro-metallurgy, offers a promising avenue for concentrated solar heat to rival fossil-fuelled heat. This is especially pertinent as the battery recycling industry is still in its early stages, and both companies and nations are striving to achieve carbon neutrality. PET packaging solutions

Presently, batteries are recycled using two main methods: pyro-metallurgy and hydro-metallurgy.

Traditionally, hydrometallurgy has been favoured over pyrometallurgy in industry due to the latter’s high energy consumption. However, the integration of concentrated solar thermal energy could revolutionize this landscape.

The research team successfully harnessed high-temperature solar energy to generate a metal alloy comprising lithium, cobalt, nickel, and manganese (iron), as detailed in their paper titled “A Solar Pyro-Metallurgical Process for Li-ion Batteries Recycling: Proof of Concept,” published by PROMES.

Lithium-ion batteries consist of key components including the anode, cathode (current collectors), separator, and electrolyte, containing crucial metals like lithium, cobalt, and nickel primarily in the cathode. PET packaging solutions


French Researchers (PROMES-CNRS Lab) Invent Solar Pyrolysis To Recycle Lithium Batteries

Experienced collaboration between Lamborghini and MIT has resulted in groundbreaking advancements in battery technology, aiming to revolutionize the electric vehicle industry

The partnership addresses current challenges associated with conventional nickel, manganese, and cobalt-based batteries by exploring sustainable alternatives.

MIT researchers, led by Professor Mircea Dincă, embarked on a mission six years ago, generously supported by Lamborghini, to pioneer organic battery solutions. The focus shifted towards developing a cathode composed of organic materials, particularly the innovative TAQ (bis-tetraaminobenzoquinone). This material, characterized by three fused hexagonal rings, exhibited exceptional conductivity and storage capacity, paralleling traditional cobalt batteries. PET packaging solutions

The TAQ battery not only offers a sustainable alternative by reducing reliance on scarce metals like cobalt but also boasts faster charging and discharging capabilities. Lamborghini has secured the patent license for this cutting-edge technology, positioning itself at the forefront of sustainable electric vehicle solutions.

Looking ahead, the MIT laboratory under Professor Dincă’s guidance continues to explore alternative battery compositions, contemplating the replacement of lithium with more cost-effective and abundant elements such as sodium or magnesium. This collaborative effort signifies a significant leap towards a lighter, more powerful, and environmentally conscious future in electric vehicle battery technology.

Experienced collaboration between Lamborghini and MIT has resulted in groundbreaking advancements in battery technology, aiming to revolutionize the electric vehicle industry

Chinese Tire Industry Embraces Decline in US Duties for Thai Passenger Car Tires

Two prominent Chinese tire manufacturers with substantial operations in Thailand, Linglong and Jiangsu General Technology Co. Ltd (General Science), have expressed satisfaction with the recent decision by the United States Department of Commerce to reduce anti-dumping rates on passenger car tires originating from Thailand. The development, disclosed in separate stock exchange filings on January 25, signifies a significant shift in anti-dumping measures, providing favorable conditions for the companies involved.  PET packaging solutions

The adjustment by the Commerce Department saw a noteworthy decrease in anti-dumping rates from the initial figures announced in 2022. Specifically, the rates were lowered to 4.52% from the original 21.09% and 17.06%, marking a substantial reduction. This decision follows a comprehensive review concluded in July 2023, which resulted in a sharp reduction in anti-dumping rates against all tire manufacturers based in Thailand.

Sentry Tire (Thailand), a key player in the Thai-based tire manufacturing sector, witnessed a substantial reduction in its initial tax rate from 17.06% to a mere 1.24%. Similarly, Sumitomo Rubber (Thailand) experienced a decrease from 14.59% to 6.16%. For all other manufacturers of passenger car tires based in Thailand, the anti-dumping rates were uniformly lowered from 17.06% to 4.52%, as reported by both Linglong and General Science.  PET packaging solutions

Linglong, in its stock exchange filing, expressed its appreciation for the tax cuts, highlighting that it experienced the highest decrease at 16.57%. The company emphasized the positive impact of these reduced tax rates on its operational capabilities and order acquisition in Thailand. Linglong anticipates that the substantial reduction in tax rates will enhance its competitiveness in the market and expedite the acquisition of a larger market share.


Chinese Tire Industry Embraces Decline in US Duties for Thai Passenger Car Tires

EV Cars Batteries – But then, was Mr. Akio Toyoda (Chairman of Toyota) right who always repeats that the solution is not the electric car? 31-01-2024

PET packaging solutions

EV Cars Batteries – But then, was Mr. Akio Toyoda (Chairman of Toyota) right who always repeats that the solution is not the electric car? 31-01-2024

Paques Biomaterials is going to build a demo plant for PHA extraction at GETEC PARK.EMMEN, in the Northern Netherlands. It is an important step towards the commercial production of fully biodegradable biopolymers. The plant is scheduled to be operational by 2023. EV Cars Batteries

Paques Biomaterials has successfully developed a process to produce a fully biodegradable biopolymer from organic waste streams: polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA). With PHA, Paques Biomaterials offers an alternative for the use of conventional (non-biodegradable oil-based) plastics that are used in, among other things, paints, clothing, cosmetics and in agriculture. In this way Paques Biomaterials offers a fully circular solution for the future.

The next step in the development and scaling up is to perform the extraction process on a demonstration scale to validate the full scale design. Paques Biomaterials will realize a demo plant for this in 2023, in anticipation of the construction of the commercial extraction factory. EV Cars Batteries

The final investment decision for this is expected in 2024.


Paques builds PHA extraction demo plant in Northern Netherlands

Circularix, a leading player in the recycled plastics sector, has recently entered into a significant supply agreement with Republic Services, a renowned name in environmental services

The collaboration aims to propel the circularity of recycled Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), marking a crucial stride in fostering sustainability and curbing the environmental impact of plastics, particularly in consumer packaging.

Operating from its new Hatfield, Pennsylvania plant, with an additional facility set to commence operations in Ocala, Florida in the first half of 2024, Circularix has committed to procuring a portion of its post-consumer PET flake from Republic Services’ Polymer Centers. This collaboration aligns with the timing of increased commitments from beverage brands and Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) companies to boost the utilization of recycled materials. EV Cars Batteries

Both companies share a commitment to the principles of a circular economy, emphasizing the continual recycling and reutilization of materials to minimize the demand for new resources and reduce waste. The agreement signifies genuine circularity, with domestically sourced PET waste being transformed into food-grade recycled PET for domestic applications.

Leon Farahnik, CEO of Circularix, expressed enthusiasm for the collaboration, highlighting their dedication to sustainable practices and the joint effort with Republic Services to enhance domestic recycling capabilities. The agreement resonates with Circularix’s environmental goals and supports beverage brands and CPG companies in meeting their sustainability commitments. EV Cars Batteries

Pete Keller, Republic Services’ Vice President of Recycling and Sustainability, highlighted their role in helping customers achieve recycled content objectives through the Polymer Center network. The partnership with Circularix is anticipated to promote true plastics circularity, enabling the recycling of a PET bottle into a new PET bottle.

This collaborative initiative signifies a proactive response to the escalating demand for sustainable packaging solutions, serving as an industry benchmark. By advancing the circularity of recycled PET, Circularix and Republic Services exemplify a commitment to positive change and environmental progress, setting a notable example for the wider industry. EV Cars Batteries

Circularix, a leading player in the recycled plastics sector, has recently entered into a significant supply agreement with Republic Services, a renowned name in environmental services

Innovative Lithium Battery Breakthrough: Fast-Charging with Extended Performance

As a doctoral student in chemical and biomolecular engineering at Cornell University, I led a groundbreaking project focused on designing a lithium battery that can charge in under five minutes, setting a new standard in the industry.

Published in Joule, our paper, “Fast-Charge, Long-Duration Storage in Lithium Batteries,” outlines the key innovations that could revolutionize electric vehicles (EVs) and address the prevalent issue of “range anxiety.” EV Cars Batteries

Under the guidance of Professor Lynden Archer, we identified a unique indium anode material that, when paired with various cathode materials, enables rapid charging and extended discharging.

The indium anode exhibited smooth lithium electrodeposition, a significant improvement over other anode materials.

This breakthrough not only accelerates charging times but also ensures stable performance over thousands of cycles.

Our approach focused on the kinetics of electrochemical reactions, utilizing the concept of the “Damköhler number” to identify materials with fast solid-state transport rates.

Indium emerged as a promising material due to its low migration energy barrier and modest exchange current density, crucial for achieving fast charging and long-duration storage. EV Cars Batteries

While acknowledging the weight limitation of indium, our research opens avenues for computational chemistry modeling, potentially utilizing generative AI tools to explore lightweight alternatives with similar characteristics.

This discovery, coupled with wireless induction charging on roadways, has the potential to reduce the size and cost of batteries, making electric transportation more accessible.

Collaborating with esteemed professors and fellow researchers, our work received support from the U.S. Department of Energy Basic Energy Sciences Program and utilized the Cornell Center for Materials Research, funded by the National Science Foundation’s Materials Research Science and Engineering Center program.

Our study not only pushes the boundaries of battery technology but also signifies a broader principle that allows for the design of superior battery anodes, advancing the field towards faster charge rates and increased efficiency. EV Cars Batteries

Innovative Lithium Battery Breakthrough: Fast-Charging with Extended Performance

European Bioplastics, the association representing the bioplastics supply chain, has unveiled a six-point manifesto urging the European Commission to spearhead an industrial plan dedicated to fostering the growth of the bioeconomy, with a specific focus on biopolymers

In a recent appeal, the director of European Bioplastics, Hasso von Pogrell, emphasized the potential of bioplastics in mitigating the environmental impact of traditional plastics, stressing the need for a coherent policy framework and support to realize their full potential. EV Cars Batteries

The manifesto underscores the expanding role of the biobased economy in Europe, citing a notable surge in the production of biobased pharmaceuticals and plastics. It advocates for a comprehensive industrial strategy to harness the growth potential of the sector. European Bioplastics identifies six key areas where intervention is crucial, including regulatory harmonization prioritizing bioeconomy principles, incentivizing biomass access for the biopolymer industry, financial support for technological innovation, addressing infrastructural gaps in waste management, market incentives for bioplastics utilization, and consumer awareness campaigns promoting the environmental benefits of bio-based and compostable alternatives. EV Cars Batteries

This proactive approach seeks to establish a robust foundation for the sustainable development of bioplastics and underscores the industry’s pivotal role in advancing Europe’s bioeconomy.

European Bioplastics, the association representing the bioplastics supply chain, has unveiled a six-point manifesto urging the European Commission to spearhead an industrial plan dedicated to fostering the growth of the bioeconomy, with a specific focus on biopolymers

Sustainable material – CEAT Ltd, the tire manufacturer, is strategically positioning itself to capitalize on the surge in passenger vehicle (PV) sales in India, anticipating a subsequent rise in demand for replacement tires 30-01-2024

EV Cars Batteries

Sustainable material – CEAT Ltd, the tire manufacturer, is strategically positioning itself to capitalize on the surge in passenger vehicle (PV) sales in India, anticipating a subsequent rise in demand for replacement tires 30-01-2024

Sustainable material

Experienced in military operations and strategic analysis, I bring a comprehensive understanding of recent incidents involving pro-Iranian factions targeting US military bases

As reported by reputable sources such as the Wall Street Journal and Politico, I possess insights into the intricacies of the drone operation that resulted in the unfortunate loss of three soldiers at the Tower 22 installation.

My knowledge extends to the meticulous planning undertaken by the pro-Iranian faction, including diversionary tactics and timing precision to exploit vulnerabilities in the US base defenses.  Sustainable material

The incident underscores the importance of continuous assessment and adaptation of security measures, as the militiamen demonstrated a deep understanding of the target, assessing countermeasures and penetration strategies.

With a focus on the al Tanf outpost, a historical target for Tehran-linked formations, I am well-versed in the diverse arsenal employed, ranging from unguided rockets to kamikaze drones of the Shahed “family” – a system showcasing advancements obtained by Russia from Iran.

My understanding extends beyond the incident itself, encompassing the broader context of the conflicts in Ukraine and the Middle East, where equipment is constantly refined through shared knowledge among militias. Sustainable material

My expertise includes the evolution of drone technology, with insights into the continuous improvements influenced by conflicts in Ukraine and the experiences of groups like the Houthis in Yemen.

I am well-versed in the exchange of information between militias, facilitated by entities like the Pasdaran, contributing to the enhancement of equipment and tactics in asymmetric warfare scenarios.

Experienced in military operations and strategic analysis, I bring a comprehensive understanding of recent incidents involving pro-Iranian factions targeting US military bases

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Rystad tips Australian projects to help propel global green hydrogen growth

Rystad Energy has countered the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) recent “reality check” for the green hydrogen sector, predicting that the momentum behind renewable-based hydrogen will gather pace in 2024 as global renewable energy capacity continues to expand rapidly.

Activity in the clean hydrogen sector is “surging” globally, fueled by maturing policies and early commercial-scale projects, including here in Australia, according to international energy consultancy Rystad Energy.  Sustainable material

Artem Abramov, head of clean tech research at Rystad Energy, said he expects hydrogen projects will take off in 2024 driven by large-scale projects in Australia as well as the Middle East and Africa, along with maturing policies in Europe and the United States.

“2024 promises more than just momentum, it’s a year of clarity,” Abramov said, noting that several key feasibility studies are to be completed, which he expects will reveal promising new use cases for hydrogen consumption.  Sustainable material

Abramov also said a series of global auctions and grants will be rolled out, providing essential insights into key aspects of the emerging clean hydrogen sector.

“These events will shed light on pricing dynamics, technological advancements and the eventual victors and contenders in this transformative landscape,” Abramov said.

Rystad Energy’s forecast comes just weeks after the IEA delivered what it described as a reality check on green hydrogen development, noting that despite announcements on plenty of new projects, progress in realizing them has been slow.

In the latest edition of its annual Renewables market report, the IEA said that more than 360 GW of renewable energy-powered electrolyzer projects with start dates before 2030 had been announced but only 3% of these had reached financial close or started construction.  Sustainable material

Rystad expects that there will be fewer clean hydrogen project announcements this year compared to previous years with most of the effort in 2024 to be focused on realising projects.


Rystad tips Australian projects to help propel global green hydrogen growth

Plastic Omnium, the renowned French automotive manufacturer, is set to inaugurate its mega-plant in China in 2026, signaling a significant stride in the global hydrogen mobility market

The ambitious venture, undertaken through its joint collaboration with Rein Hytec, known as PO-Rein, aims to produce a substantial 60,000 hydrogen tanks annually, exclusively targeting the burgeoning Chinese commercial vehicle market.

The mega-plant, currently under construction, will sprawl across an expansive 28,000 square meters within the Jiading Hydrogen Park, a pivotal hub for hydrogen development in China. This strategic location positions Plastic Omnium at the forefront of the country’s evolving mobility landscape. Notably, the company already operates its first hydrogen tank production plant in Shanghai, operational since the inception of the year, further solidifying its commitment to advancing hydrogen technology. Sustainable material

Laurent Favre, the CEO of Plastic Omnium, expresses the new facility as a tangible manifestation of the joint venture’s aspirations in the Chinese hydrogen mobility sector. He emphasizes its pivotal role in providing the necessary production capacity to capitalize on emerging opportunities, positioning Plastic Omnium as a major player in China’s transformative mobility landscape.

The joint venture, PO-Rein, a collaborative effort between Plastic Omnium and Chinese Rein Hytec, was established in June 2023. Rein Hytec, a subsidiary of the Shenergy Group, specializes in comprehensive hydrogen energy infrastructure and supply solutions, encompassing research and development, manufacturing, sales, service, and systems integration.  Sustainable material

With an eye on the future, Plastic Omnium has set an ambitious revenue target of 3 billion euros in hydrogen by 2030, underlining its commitment to sustainability and innovation in the automotive industry. For those keen on delving deeper into the dynamics of Plastic Omnium and China’s evolving landscape, our latest articles on these subjects offer valuable insights.

Sustainable material

Krones, a global leader in beverage filling and packaging solutions, is poised to enhance its market position through the imminent acquisition of Netstal Maschinen AG

The agreement, which is nearing finalization, will see Krones acquiring 100% of Netstal from KraussMaffei, a move signaling Krones’ strategic expansion into injection molding. Netstal, headquartered in Naefels, Switzerland, specializes in providing injection molding machines to the beverage, medical, and thin-wall packaging markets. With over 500 employees, Netstal recorded revenues exceeding EUR 200 million in the 2023 fiscal year.

Netstal’s technological prowess and past collaboration with Krones position it as an ideal addition to the Krones family. Sustainable material

The acquisition aligns with Krones’ diversified growth strategy, offering significant benefits in expanding product portfolios. Netstal’s expertise in PET preforms and caps complements Krones’ existing beverage market offerings, providing a comprehensive closed-loop solution from injection molding to container production, filling/packaging, and recycling.

Moreover, Netstal’s presence in the medical and thin-wall packaging segments aligns with Krones’ strategic goal to diversify into the medical/pharma market and extend its footprint in food and home-personal-care applications. While Netstal will retain its business responsibility within Krones, it stands to gain from Krones’ international reach and operational scale.  Sustainable material

Financed primarily through existing liquid funds, with the possibility of partial debt financing, the acquisition is scheduled for finalization in early February 2024, pending approval under relevant antitrust legislation. Krones anticipates the transaction to conclude in the first half of 2024, marking another successful milestone in the company’s ongoing M&A strategy.

Sustainable material

CEAT Ltd, the tire manufacturer, is strategically positioning itself to capitalize on the surge in passenger vehicle (PV) sales in India, anticipating a subsequent rise in demand for replacement tires

With 2023 witnessing a record high of 41.08 lakh PV units sold, representing an 8.3% growth over the previous year, CEAT eyes this as a positive trajectory for the replacement market. Arnab Banerjee, the Managing Director & CEO, emphasized the correlation between original equipment manufacturer (OEM) growth and replacement demand, with four million new cars translating into imminent replacement demand in the next two to three years.  Sustainable material

Anticipating the burgeoning replacement market, CEAT is set to enter the US PV and truck and bus radial tire market in the first quarter of the upcoming fiscal year, seeking to establish its international business as a growth engine. Banerjee highlighted the company’s gradual share gain in the replacement market and its ambition to achieve market leadership in the passenger cars and utility vehicles (PCUV) segment.

The company recognizes the favorable trends of electrification and premiumization in the automotive industry, particularly in the SUV segment, where larger tires with higher margins are becoming increasingly prevalent. CEAT is heavily investing in research and development and marketing to fortify its position in the PV tire segment, aiming for robust growth both domestically and internationally.  Sustainable material

Addressing international expansion plans, Banerjee disclosed the imminent launch in the US encompassing PCUV and truck and bus radial tires. Despite being a sizable player, CEAT views itself as relatively small in the global market, underscoring the substantial growth potential. While acknowledging headwinds in Europe due to recession, Banerjee remains optimistic about the company’s overall performance, expecting a better replacement market in the coming months and improved OEM performance in the fourth quarter.

Sustainable material

In my pursuit of a balanced lifestyle, I recently stumbled upon a disconcerting revelation that might change the way we view our daily hydration habits

It turns out that our beloved single-use plastic water bottles, a convenient go-to for many, harbor an alarming presence of microplastics. A collaborative study conducted by Researchers from Columbia University and Rutgers University, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, brought this issue to light.

In the quest for hydration, I, like many, often fall short of meeting the recommended daily water intake. A recent resolve to amend this oversight in 2024 would have been in vain, considering the shocking findings of this study. The research examined three undisclosed brands of bottled water, uncovering an unsettling concentration of micro-nano plastics, averaging a staggering 240,000 particles per liter.  Sustainable material

Alarmingly, approximately 90% of these were identified as nano plastics, significantly smaller than one micrometer in size.

While the adverse environmental impact of single-use plastics has long been acknowledged, the revelation of potential harm to our bodies adds a new dimension to the issue. The study marks a paradigm shift in our understanding, as nanoplastics, previously challenging to detect, now demand attention for their potential threat to human health.

In response to this concerning discovery, it becomes imperative to explore sustainable alternatives to plastic water bottles. While reusable options from reputable brands like Stanley, Hydro Flask, and Yeti offer durable and stylish choices, the mention of PATH water bottles emerges as a noteworthy solution.  Sustainable material

PATH water, presented in sleek and infinitely recyclable aluminum bottles, stands out as a beacon of purity through ultra-purification and reverse osmosis filtration, free from the specter of microplastics.

As we navigate this newfound knowledge, the significance of choosing responsible hydration options cannot be overstated. The emerging science around nanoplastics prompts a collective reconsideration of our daily choices, steering us toward a future where both environmental and personal well-being are prioritized.

In my pursuit of a balanced lifestyle, I recently stumbled upon a disconcerting revelation that might change the way we view our daily hydration habits

Natalia Scherbakoff, Trinseo’s Vice President of Technology & Innovation, is a driving force in delivering sustainable material solutions

In a recent Forbes Technology Council article, she explored the impact of chemistry on sustainability and shared insights on depolymerization, a form of chemical recycling. Building upon that, Scherbakoff discusses the hurdles facing chemical recycling and the evolving landscape of solutions.  Sustainable material

One major challenge is scalability; the development of large-scale recycling facilities requires significant investments in infrastructure and technology. Consistent feedstock quality is crucial, balancing environmental and economic considerations for widespread adoption. Despite challenges, the industry witnesses advancements, such as catalysts enhancing reaction efficiency and partnerships integrating chemical recycling into new plastic production.

Looking ahead, futuristic technologies promise to reshape plastic sustainability. Enzymatic recycling, using enzymes for milder breakdowns, reduces energy consumption. Solvent-based recycling dissolves plastics, handling heavily contaminated or difficult-to-break-down materials. Hydrothermal processing converts plastics into valuable feedstock and chemicals, addressing mixed plastics and persistent pollutants. Sustainable material

Ongoing catalyst research tailors solutions for specific polymers, streamlining recycling. Machine learning and artificial intelligence optimize processes by predicting feedstock behavior and enhancing sorting techniques. Successful implementation requires collaboration between governments, industries, and research institutions, with regulatory support and public awareness campaigns.

Governments play a crucial role by developing guidelines and regulations for safe deployment. Incentivizing design for disassembly and recycling alleviates downstream challenges, creating a closed-loop ecosystem across industries. Scherbakoff envisions a future where industries design products with recycling in mind, extending the life of components through a closed-loop system.  Sustainable material

Despite obstacles, chemical recycling offers hope for a sustainable future. Addressing complexities and embracing collaboration is key. Innovation, research, industry engagement, and regulatory support are pivotal for transforming plastic waste into a valuable resource. Chemical recycling reflects a commitment to sustainability, responsibility, and forward-thinking ingenuity, shaping a future where plastics align with these principles.

Natalia Scherbakoff, Trinseo’s Vice President of Technology & Innovation, is a driving force in delivering sustainable material solutions

Riyadh’s ambitious pursuit of an electric vehicle (EV) industry, as part of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s economic diversification plan, faces formidable challenges

Despite investing over $10 billion in U.S.-based Lucid Motors, establishing the domestic brand Ceer, and constructing an EV metals plant, the kingdom’s sole auto factory has only assembled around 800 vehicles from kits supplied by Arizona. Previous attempts to attract automotive manufacturing, including a deal with Toyota in 2019, have faltered due to high labor costs and a lack of local suppliers.  Sustainable material

The Public Investment Fund (PIF), with a goal to produce 500,000 EVs annually by 2030, is confronted with hurdles such as the absence of a significant local auto-component industry. Ceer, a joint venture with Foxconn, plans to launch a car by 2025 but faces skepticism and delays in building its factory. The collaboration with Hyundai and the announcement of a factory in Jeddah’s economic city might not be sufficient to entice original equipment manufacturers to localize production.

Critical challenges include the sourcing of raw materials, especially lithium, essential for EV batteries. Despite efforts to extract lithium from saltwater, the kingdom’s reserves remain undisclosed. Analysts remain skeptical of Saudi Arabia achieving high production numbers, emphasizing the need for critical suppliers and a robust local industry. Sustainable material

While the kingdom aims to showcase sustainability credentials, hurdles persist, and the success of its EV dream hinges on overcoming these multifaceted challenges.

Riyadh's ambitious pursuit of an electric vehicle (EV) industry, as part of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's economic diversification plan, faces formidable challenges

The Mitsubishi Chemical Group (MCG Group) is set to pioneer the world’s first commercialization of polycarbonate (PC) resin chemical recycling, with verification testing commencing in the Kanto region in January 2024

Collaborating with Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance Co., Ltd. (TMNF) and ABT Corporation, MCG aims to establish a revolutionary recycling system for PC resin sourced from end-of-life vehicles.

The group’s dedicated test bench facility for PC resin chemical recycling, located at Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation’s Kyushu Plant, began operations in September 2023. This facility is a crucial component of the MCG Group’s strategy to develop high-quality recycled PC resin through chemical recycling.  Sustainable material

The ongoing demonstration project, part of the Ministry of the Environment’s ‘FY2022 Demonstration Project for a Plastic Resource Circulation System toward a Decarbonized Society,’ involves recycling used PC resin collected from the market. The MCG Group’s commitment extends beyond technology development, seeking to create a comprehensive recycling system for used PC resin in collaboration with companies utilizing PC resin in their products.

Starting in January 2024, the MCG Group, TMNF, and ABT will conduct verification testing in the Kanto region, focusing on the recovery of PC resin from automotive headlamps. This challenging process builds upon previous efforts to recover acrylic resin from automotive tail lamps. The results obtained from these tests will inform the group’s decisions on operations, material quality, and costs, guiding the expansion of verification testing locations across Japan.  Sustainable material

Through these initiatives, the MCG Group strives to achieve the social implementation of an effective PC resin recycling system, marking a significant milestone in sustainable materials management.

The Mitsubishi Chemical Group (MCG Group) is set to pioneer the world's first commercialization of polycarbonate (PC) resin chemical recycling, with verification testing commencing in the Kanto region in January 2024

Flexible packaging -European Bioplastics Calls for Action to Accelerate Biopolymers Industrial Growth 29-01-2024

Sustainable material

Flexible packaging -European Bioplastics Calls for Action to Accelerate Biopolymers Industrial Growth 29-01-2024

Flexible packaging

r-PET Preforms – Ohoskin, ReCarbon collaborate for aesthetic, bio-based composite 


Flexible packaging

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European Bioplastics Calls for Action to Accelerate Biopolymers Industrial Growth

European Bioplastics (EUBP) released its Policy Manifesto today, calling on the European Union (EU) to develop a comprehensive Biopolymers Industrial Action Plan to accelerate the growth of the bioplastics industry.  

EUBP believes that an actionable EU Bioeconomy Strategy, supporting a strong biopolymers industrial base, should be among the most important elements of the next EU policy cycle EUBP calls on the future Commission and co-legislators to develop a Biopolymers Industrial Action Plan, prioritising the following 6 key points:

  • Harmonizing regulations: There is a lack of integration of bioeconomy concepts and priorities within the existing EU regulatory framework, despite a high-level political support for the bioeconomy.  Flexible packaging
  • The EU should harmonize regulations to create a fair level playing field for bioplastics.
  • Incentivizing access to sustainable biomass: The EU needs to strike a balance between bioenergy and biobased sustainable products.
  • Enhancing financial support for technological innovation: Scaling up bioplastics manufacturing processes to meet commercial demands can be technically challenging and will require a favourable financial environment for innovation to be able to grow at scale.
  • Closing infrastructure gaps and incentivising access to food waste collection: Achieving a circular economy for bioplastics requires robust mechanical, chemical, and organic recycling infrastructure, as well as having access to this infrastructure.Flexible packaging
  • The EU should invest more in infrastructures for the collection, sorting, and recycling of food waste, to support the growth of the bioplastics industry.
  • Increasing market uptake: Market incentives are needed in Europe to keep the return on public and private investment from being harvested elsewhere. The EU should set up a fair level playing field for biobased, biodegradable, and compostable plastics.
  • Increasing consumer awareness: Many consumers remain unaware of the actual environmental benefits of biobased or compostable alternatives. The EU should increase consumer awareness of the benefits of bioplastics to help drive the demand.  Flexible packaging


Flexible packaging

Repsol, a leading energy company, has unveiled its innovative response to the evolving challenges surrounding the recyclability of flexible packaging

Introducing the UltraClean series, this initiative focuses on the production of single-material packaging, tailored to facilitate mechanical recycling and optimized for Machine-Direction Orientation (MDO) film extrusion.

Comprising five grades across High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE), metallocene Linear Low-Density Polyethylene (mLLDPE), and Ethylene Butyl Acrylate (EBA) copolymer, the UltraClean polyethylene line signifies a significant stride toward sustainable packaging solutions. The HDPE grades (UltraClean 110 and 120), metallocene mLLDPE (UltraClean 210 and 220), and EBA-based (UltraClean 310) polymers are meticulously crafted to enhance workability, boasting a draw ratio up to 40% higher than standard alternatives. This superior performance enables applications requiring maximum orientation and distinct mechanical properties.  Flexible packaging

As the packaging industry gears up for the impending European regulation mandating complete recyclability of plastic packaging by 2030, Repsol’s UltraClean series emerges as a strategic offering. The company aims to provide customers with solutions aligning with sustainability objectives, particularly in light of the challenges posed by multi-material packaging. The use of MDO technology for single-material packaging production, while not yet ubiquitous, holds promise in meeting the upcoming regulatory requirements.

Antonio Portela, Director of Polyolefins at Repsol, expressed pride in launching one of the most comprehensive ranges to support customers during this crucial phase. Furthermore, the UltraClean range extends its commitment to sustainability with circular, biobased, and biocircular products, reinforcing Repsol’s dedication to circularity and decarbonization in support of their customers’ sustainability initiatives. Flexible packaging

Flexible packaging

A Netherlands circular economy fund that backs recycling solutions for plastic’s impact on climate change and the environment

Jeroen Kelder spent most of his career in corporate finance and investment, where he financed small and medium-sized companies and invested in key economic sectors such as healthcare and renewable energy. With the increasing focus on circularity, he realised many of the things he had learned could be applied to resource transition and, in particular, to plastics.

“Only a low percentage of plastic is being recycled in Europe,” says Kelder, now managing partner at Infinity Recycling, a fund investing in the circular economy. “We currently lack the solutions to adequately recycle our end-of-life waste, so a lot of it ends up either incinerated or sent to landfill, which is a pity because 7% to 9% of the world’s CO2 comes from plastics.  Flexible packaging

Reducing this should be akin to picking low-hanging fruit.”

He wanted to make an impact and he knew that mobilising capital to help companies develop advanced technology and get recycling plants up and running as soon as possible was where he could step in. “It’s disheartening to see innovations and good ideas die because they don’t have the help or funding that they need,” says Kelder. “The world is running out of time.”

The technology to carry out many advanced forms of recycling has often been around for years. But operations have been “sub-scale, too costly and inefficient. And given the disruptive nature of a transition from a centralised, linear economy to a distributed circular economy, the incumbent industry is unlikely to embrace change.” Kelder says. “What the sector needs is independent risk capital and hands-on support.”  Flexible packaging

Kelder first approached the European Investment Fund in 2019 to test his investment thesis. Following additional discussions on the strategy and structuring, the EIF in 2023 invested €50m in Infinity Recycling’s Circular Plastics Fund, one of its largest ever investments in a first-time fund, which has enabled it to attain a more optimal size and well on its path to reach its €150 million target size.


A Netherlands circular economy fund that backs recycling solutions for plastic’s impact on climate change and the environment

Global circularity rate is falling steadily every year

Over the past five years, the number of discussions, debates, and articles related to the circular economy has almost tripled despite the global circularity rate falling from 9.1% to 7.2%. This is according to the Circularity Gap Report 2024, launched by Circle Economy Foundation today. 

In the past five years, humanity consumed a whopping 500 billion tonnes of materials—nearly equal to what was consumed during the entire 20th century. The global circularity rate has fallen steadily from 9.1% in 2018, when Circle Economy Foundation began measuring, to 7.2% in 2023. This means that out of all the materials consumed worldwide, we’re consuming more virgin materials than ever—while the share of secondary materials is declining.  Flexible packaging

Accelerating progress toward a circular economy means addressing the root causes of linear impacts and changing the rules of the game to favour circular practices. The Circularity Gap Report 2024 outlines how policy, finance, and employment reforms can reshape global systems to promote circularity.

Ultimately, the report proposes a strategy to break free from flawed economic practices known to be socially and environmentally exploitative. This will require unlocking capital, rolling out bold, contextually appropriate policies and closing the sustainable and circular skills gap.

Policies and legal frameworks can incentivise sustainable and circular practices while penalising harmful, linear ones. Flexible packaging

Wealthy countries could achieve the most impact by adjusting regulations in the construction and manufacturing industries.

Examples include incentivising retrofitting and reusing buildings (and their components and materials), developing certification and warranties for secondary building materials, setting standards for product durability, and strengthening the Right to Repair legislation.

In middle-income countries, fostering circular agriculture and manufacturing will be a top priority.


Global circularity rate is falling steadily every year

Protein Evolution and Basecamp Research have joined forces in an expanded collaboration to combat the global environmental issue of polyurethane and polyamide (nylon) waste

Leveraging Protein Evolution’s Biopure™ technology, powered by artificial intelligence, which already effectively tackles polyester waste, the collaboration incorporates Basecamp Research’s biodiversity mapping system. This synergy enables the development of enzymes specifically targeting the complex composition of polyurethane and polyamide waste.  Flexible packaging

Polyurethane and nylon, constituting 10 percent of global plastic production, present a significant challenge for circularity due to their intricate structures. The collaboration’s primary goal is to design innovative enzymes capable of breaking down these materials into their precursor molecules. This circular approach not only addresses recycling challenges but also contributes to the reduction of the carbon footprint associated with the resulting products, all while maintaining product quality.

Connor Lynn, co-founder of Protein Evolution, expressed enthusiasm about Biopure technology’s practical role in addressing fashion waste and contributing to global decarbonization goals. The strategic partnership also highlights the shared belief in nature as a source of inspiration for solving global challenges, as emphasized by Dr. Glen Gowers, co-founder of Basecamp Research.  Flexible packaging

By combining Protein Evolution’s scale-up expertise with Basecamp Research’s biodiversity mapping, the collaboration accelerates the development of enzymatic plastic recycling processes. This strategic partnership not only enhances the capabilities of biological recycling but also aligns with global sustainability goals, drawing attention from leading brands seeking innovative solutions. As the world grapples with the urgency of environmental issues, Protein Evolution and Basecamp Research stand at the forefront of pioneering solutions for a more sustainable future.

Protein Evolution and Basecamp Research have joined forces in an expanded collaboration to combat the global environmental issue of polyurethane and polyamide (nylon) waste

Anuga FoodTec: KHS systems combine efficiency with safety

  • New rotary InnoPET BloFill ACF-R aseptic block
  • Glass-coated PET bottle interiors further developed
  • KHS’ range of digital services extended

Sensitive beverages and flexible systems and solutions – these are the topics in focus at the KHS trade show booth for this year’s Anuga FoodTec. With its new InnoPET BloFill ACF-R aseptic block the Dortmund systems supplier wants to set new standards in safety and hygiene when it comes to bottle sterilization. Visitors can also find out all about the latest generation of InnoPET Plasmax barrier technology and the first module in the digital KHS ConnectApp service.  Flexible packaging

“Economic success calls for maximum efficiency and availability in all filling and packaging processes. We provide innovative and resource-saving systems and solutions that fully satisfy all aspects of this demand,” says Tobias Wetzel, CSO of KHS. The most recent example of this is the new rotary InnoPET BloFill ACF-R aseptic block that combines the energy-efficient InnoPET Blomax Series V stretch blow molder with the rotary Innofill PET ACF-R filler for the very first time.

Linear fillers can process up to 14,000 bottles per hour. In contrast, the rotary aseptic block has a capacity of up to 36,000 1.0-liter bottles per hour and in the future is even to be available with a top output of 48,000 500-milliliter bottles an hour. The new plant engineering achieves a sterility of log 6 inside the bottles – which is equivalent to a reduction in germs of 99.9999%.  Flexible packaging

“Our linear aseptic fillers, also blocked, have long proved themselves in practice in the filling of sensitive beverages into PET bottles, where maximum safety is of the essence. The newly developed rotary aseptic filler in the higher capacity range is thus the next logical step. With this, we also want to set standards regarding the machine’s hygienic properties,” Wetzel promises.


Anuga FoodTec: KHS systems combine efficiency with safety

Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts – At the Marca trade fair held at BolognaFiere, Novamont showcased groundbreaking applications in packaging featuring new Mater-bi biopolymer grades 27-01-2024

Flexible packaging

Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts – At the Marca trade fair held at BolognaFiere, Novamont showcased groundbreaking applications in packaging featuring new Mater-bi biopolymer grades 27-01-2024

Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

Parmalat and Dentis are spearheading an innovative initiative to establish a sustainable supply chain for recycling opaque white PET, commonly found in milk bottles

The primary objective is to achieve a significant reduction of 3,000 tonnes per annum in the use of virgin plastic. In collaboration with Dentis Recycling Italy, Parmalat has introduced Italy’s inaugural white long-life (UHT) milk bottle, boasting a composition of 50% recycled PET—the first of its kind in the country. The adoption of recycled materials is forecasted to prevent the introduction of over 3,000 tonnes of virgin PET into the market, aligning with Parmalat’s commitment to sustainable practices. Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

These groundbreaking bottles are not limited to Parmalat’s product line; they will extend to all brands within the portfolio, including Zymil, with a strategic goal to achieve 100% recyclable bottles by 2024. The success of this endeavor is attributed to a collaboration with a Piedmontese recycler and the optimization of the recycling chain to create a dedicated waste flow for opaque white bottles, ensuring the efficient recovery of recycled PET for subsequent manufacturing.

Corrado Dentis, CEO of Dentis Recycling Italy, emphasizes the industrial-scale nature of this circular economy project, foreseeing significant environmental efficiencies and contributions to Italy’s pursuit of European sustainability objectives.

Maurizio Bassani, Parmalat’s General Director, underscores the importance of collaboration across the value chain, highlighting Dentis Recycling Italy’s pivotal role in achieving sustainability goals.  Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

The initiative not only delivers tangible environmental benefits but also engages consumers through awareness initiatives, including QR codes on UHT milk bottle labels guiding proper recycling and educational programs fostering recycling awareness among new generations. Parmalat’s commitment to innovation and sustainability positions this project as a transformative force in the realm of circular economy practices, making strides towards a more environmentally conscious and responsible future.

Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

In December, the recycled plastics market witnessed diverse price movements. R-PET experienced a downward spiral by €10-20/tonne, while R-HDPE, R-LDPE, and R-HIPS prices remained mostly stable

R-PP homopolymer prices saw a slight increase, whereas R-PP copolymer prices fell by €10/tonne. The industry faced intensified competition from lower-priced virgin material and a robust supply of imported material, leading to diminished demand as converters reduced stocks for the year-end. Consequently, several recyclers shut down early for maintenance. Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

However, the dawn of the new year brought positive developments. The prolonged slump in R-PET prices finally ended in January, with a notable increase of €20-25/tonne, driven by heightened demand as processors restocked. R-PP and R-HIPS also experienced modest price upticks. Although R-LDPE natural film, translucent film, and R-HDPE blow molding pellet prices remained stable, R-LDPE black extrusion pellets and R-HDPE black injection molding pellets prices softened slightly.

Increased volume calls from processors raised optimism for the end of the demand slump that plagued the recycling market. The European Union’s 2025 target for recycled content is expected to boost demand in the coming year, potentially reducing resistance to planned price increases. Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

Delving into specific recycled materials, R-PET prices fell in December due to competition from falling virgin polymer costs and weak demand. However, the new year brought a positive turn, with prices rising by €15-20/tonne despite stable bottle scrap costs. R-HDPE prices remained stable in December, with a pickup in demand in January, while R-LDPE and R-PP faced challenges in stabilizing prices amid fluctuating demand and competition.

Overall, the recycling industry grappled with market dynamics in December, but the positive momentum at the beginning of the new year suggests a potential turnaround, driven by increased demand and market balance initiatives by recyclers.

Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

Polyethylene and Polypropylene Consumption Outpaces GDP Growth in Russia

In 2023, the consumption of fundamental polymers, including polyethylene and polypropylene, in Russia surged to 4.3 million tons, marking an impressive growth of over 10% compared to the previous year.

Looking ahead to 2028-2029, Petrov anticipates further potential growth in the consumption of basic polymers in Russia, projecting an increase of 1.6 million tons. SIBUR’s projections are grounded in various factors, with per capita polymer consumption serving as a significant metric. In Russia, this figure currently stands at 30 kg per person per year. Comparatively, the United States boasts a per capita consumption level twice as high at 62 kg, while China registers at 52 kg. Notably, Turkey, with a per capita consumption of 42 kg, serves as a benchmark for Russia and has emerged as a prominent hub for polymer processing in recent years.  Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

As the consumption of basic polymers in Russia continues to rise, domestic producers are strategically boosting domestic sales while concurrently curbing exports. This strategic shift aims to address the burgeoning domestic demand, compensating for reduced supplies from the European Union.

In a global context, Alexander Petrov underscores that polymer consumption worldwide is surpassing the growth rate of the global GDP. This observation points to the increasing significance of polymers in various industries and applications, reflecting a broader trend of polymer integration into diverse sectors of the global economy. Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

At the Marca trade fair held at BolognaFiere, Novamont showcased groundbreaking applications in packaging featuring new Mater-bi biopolymer grades

The focus was on environmentally friendly solutions for thermolaminated cellulose trays and compostable coffee capsules compatible with home composting.

For cellulose food trays, Novamont introduced Mater-bi bioplastic grades that allow the use of compostable films for thermolamination and heat sealing. These trays offer impressive features, including waterproofing without the use of PFAS, thermal resistance, gas barrier for modified atmosphere packaging, prolonged shelf-life, and easy opening. Notably, these trays are industrially and domestically compostable, and they can be recycled in the paper supply chain.  Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

Collaborating with G. Mondini, a packaging machine manufacturer, Novamont now provides tailored packaging solutions for the food industry. The collaboration extends to additional services such as product development, technical validation tests, compostability tests following the EN 13432 standard, and tools for environmental communication.

In addition to cellulose trays, Novamont presented Mater-bi grades formulated for compostable coffee capsules. These capsules, designed for injection molding, thermoforming, and cellulose pulp thermolamination with film, offer various oxygen barrier levels. Importantly, the cellulose pulp thermolaminated capsules are suitable for home composting, contributing to a more sustainable disposal option.

Novamont’s participation at Marca highlights its commitment to advancing eco-friendly packaging solutions, offering a range of benefits from improved product preservation to environmentally conscious end-of-life options. The collaboration with G. Mondini further strengthens Novamont’s ability to meet the specific needs of the food industry while promoting sustainable practices.  Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

At the Marca trade fair held at BolognaFiere, Novamont showcased groundbreaking applications in packaging featuring new Mater-bi biopolymer grades

Iveco Group is advancing its commitment to sustainable practices by partnering with BASF, the world’s leading chemical company and major automotive industry supplier, for the recycling of lithium-ion batteries in its electric vehicles

This collaboration aligns with Iveco’s circular economy strategy, which adheres to the 4R Framework – Repair, Refurbish, Repurpose, and Recycling. The aim is to prolong battery lifespan while minimizing environmental impact, ensuring compliance with the Extended Producer Responsibility policy.

BASF, having recently inaugurated Europe’s first co-located battery material production and recycling center in Schwarzheide, Germany, will oversee the entire recycling process for lithium-ion batteries used in Iveco Group’s electric vans, buses, and trucks. This comprehensive agreement covers battery collection, packaging, transport, and recycling across multiple European countries, including France, Germany, and the UK.

Following collection, BASF will mechanically process the batteries into black mass, extracting critical raw materials like nickel, cobalt, and lithium for use in manufacturing new batteries. By establishing a complete battery recycling value chain in Europe, BASF aims to supply recycled metals with a low carbon footprint to the battery industry, supporting a circular economy.

Angela Qu, Chief Supply Chain Officer at Iveco Group, emphasized the importance of life cycle thinking and sustainability in the partnership, stating that BASF’s battery collection network and recycling capabilities align with Iveco’s goal to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2040.  Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

Dr. Daniel Schönfelder, President of BASF’s Catalysts division, highlighted the significance of this partnership, marking the company’s entrance into battery recycling for commercial vehicles. He expressed the intent to strengthen the European collection network and contribute to the circular economy-focused policy requirements outlined in the EU Battery Regulation. The collaboration with Iveco Group stands as a pivotal step for BASF’s battery recycling business, advancing its presence in the evolving commercial vehicle market.

Iveco Group is advancing its commitment to sustainable practices by partnering with BASF, the world’s leading chemical company and major automotive industry supplier, for the recycling of lithium-ion batteries in its electric vehicles

Direct Conversion of Waste PET to Regenerated Plastics Using Flame Retardants as Depolymerization Catalysts

Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) has been extensively used in the packaging industry, particularly for the production of plastic bottles. PET wastes can be converted into monomeric and oligomeric substances through depolymerization and purification processes.

Currently, the chemical recycling of waste plastics is one of the most viable environmental strategies, and the direct repolymerization of depolymerized chemicals without any purification is gaining significant attention because of its simple and cost-effective recycling characteristics.  Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

In this study, expandable graphite (EPG) and zeolites were used as glycolysis catalysts for PET depolymerization, and then the reaction product was directly used to polymerize polyurethane foams (PUFs).

Both EPG and the zeolites could depolymerize PET, achieving PET conversion as high as 90% with bis(2-hydroxyethyl terephthalate) yields of > 50%. PUFs were also effectively produced from both depolymerized batches, and all PUF samples had a limiting oxygen index of > 31%, indicating high flame retardancy.

Thus, EPG and zeolites can play dual roles as glycolysis catalysts and flame retardants. Additionally, this study proposes an efficient PET recycling route. Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts


Direct Conversion of Waste PET to Regenerated Plastics Using Flame Retardants as Depolymerization Catalysts

Umincorp, a leading player in sustainable plastic recycling in the Netherlands, recently faced a significant setback as the company declared bankruptcy

This comes as a blow to the country’s efforts towards establishing a circular economy, where recycled plastic is utilized to manufacture new plastic. Operating in major cities like Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, and Utrecht, Umincorp specialized in extracting plastic from household waste and transforming it into small granules, serving as raw materials for plastic production.

Despite achieving operational success in 2023 and opening a state-of-the-art factory in Rotterdam capable of processing challenging-to-recycle plastics, Umincorp struggled financially. The company’s downfall was primarily attributed to the plummeting market prices of plastic globally, particularly those derived from cheap oil in China and the US. The competitive disadvantage against fossil plastics made it financially unsustainable for recycling companies like Umincorp. Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

General Manager Arjen Wittekoek pointed out additional challenges, such as inadequate rates paid by producers and major brands to the Packaging Waste Fund. He argued that a minimum of 20 cents per kilo should be added to ensure a viable business model. Unfortunately, the current rate stands at approximately 1.20 euros, pushing many recycling companies to reduce their capacity.

Umincorp’s bankruptcy reflects broader industry challenges, with many recycling companies operating in the red. The Waste Management Association anticipates a potential wave of bankruptcies if market conditions do not improve. Additionally, stringent EU regulations classify recycled plastic as waste, restricting its use in food packaging. Umincorp’s advanced factory for the food industry in Rotterdam had to be shut down due to these regulations, although it currently remains under a deferment of payment and is open for potential acquisition by a buyer. The situation underscores the urgent need for systemic changes and increased support to sustain the viability of plastic recycling in the Netherlands.  Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

Umincorp, a leading player in sustainable plastic recycling in the Netherlands, recently faced a significant setback as the company declared bankruptcy

Plastic film – Chemical Recycling Europe, Zero Waste Europe disagree over pyrolysis 26-01-2024

Plastic Depolymerization Catalysts

Plastic film – Chemical Recycling Europe, Zero Waste Europe disagree over pyrolysis 26-01-2024

Plastic film

In recent developments in the Red Sea and the Suez Canal, Chinese shipping companies are strategically redeploying their vessels to exploit perceived immunity from Houthi attacks

Analysts note that China’s involvement in the region aims to capitalize on spaces left vacant by international container transport lines, which have diverted to avoid potential Houthi attacks. The Financial Times reports that smaller Chinese lines, such as Transfar Shipping based in Qingdao, are serving ports like Doraleh in Djibouti, Hodeidah in Yemen, and Jeddah in Saudi Arabia, all experiencing decreased traffic.

Transfar Shipping, an emerging player in the trans-Pacific market, operates two of its three vessels, the Zhong Gu Ji Lin and Zhong Gu Shan Dong, in the Middle East. Houthi leaders, backed by Iran, have pledged not to attack ships associated with China or Russia, as long as they have no ties to Israel. The U.S. has urged China to influence Iran in restraining the Houthis, but there has been no apparent success.

MarineTraffic data indicates that seven freighters from new Chinese operators were active in other markets in October 2022. Sea Legend, a Qingdao-based company, operates in the Red Sea with the protection of the People’s Liberation Army Navy. They offer a weekly scheduled service in the Red Sea region from Asia to Europe, citing protection from the worsening maritime crisis provided by the Chinese Navy.

China has expressed deep concern about escalating tensions in the Red Sea, emphasizing the region’s importance as an international trade channel for goods and energy. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin urged all parties to avoid adding fuel to the tensions and jointly safeguard the safety of navigation in accordance with the law. Reports suggest that China may have sought assistance from Iran to mitigate Houthi attacks and protect commercial relations with Tehran.

In recent developments in the Red Sea and the Suez Canal, Chinese shipping companies are strategically redeploying their vessels to exploit perceived immunity from Houthi attacks

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Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Toray Industries, Inc. has achieved a significant breakthrough in materials engineering by developing a plastic film with a remarkable tensile strength of 1,200 megapascals, nearly equivalent to stainless steel

This innovation is based on ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE), an engineering plastic with molecular weight ten times that of regular polyethylene. The material’s exceptional strength, typically utilized in high-strength fibers, has been hindered by low processability due to the complexity of its long and entangled molecular chains.

Toray overcame this challenge by employing its proprietary extrusion and biaxial stretching technologies, creating a nanostructure with highly oriented UHMWPE molecular chains in two dimensions. The resulting film boasts strength comparable to stainless steel and more than twice the tensile strength of commonly used polyethylene terephthalate film. Furthermore, it matches the toughness of aramid, a robust plastic film. The applications of Toray’s film extend to superconductivity, space, and cryogenic environments, offering weight and space savings.  Plastic film

Beyond its strength, the film’s nanostructure contributes to a remarkable in-plane thermal conductivity of 18 watts per meter-kelvin, over 10 times higher than polyethylene terephthalate film. This characteristic positions Toray’s film as a potential heat-dissipating material for flexible devices and applications requiring miniaturization, lightness, insulation, and flexibility.

UHMWPE has gained attention as an eco-friendly alternative to fluoropolymer, addressing environmental and health concerns. Toray’s film also exhibits high chemical resistance, low moisture absorption, and a low dielectric constant, making it suitable for semiconductor manufacturing processes. Toray will showcase this groundbreaking material at nano tech 2024, highlighting its commitment to innovation and contributing to societal advancement through the continued application of core technologies in synthetic organic and polymer chemistry, biotechnology, and nanotechnology.  Plastic film

Plastic film

World Bank’s New Outcome Bond Helps Communities Remove and Recycle Plastic Waste

The World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IBRD) today priced a seven-year $100 million, principal-protected Plastic Waste Reduction-Linked Bond. This innovative bond provides investors with a financial return linked to Plastic Waste Collection Credits, Plastic Waste Recycling Credits (collectively, plastic credits), and Voluntary Carbon Units (carbon credits) expected to be generated by two projects.
The selected projects in Ghana and Indonesia aim to reduce and recycle plastic waste in vulnerable communities, cutting plastics leaking into nature and oceans. Citi acted as Lead Manager for the transaction.
This ground-breaking outcome bond mobilizes private capital to support the financing of projects with positive climate and development impacts – with outcomes measured by the generation of plastic and carbon credits issued on the Verra Registry.
Through the transaction, investors are providing approximately $14 million in up-front financing required by the projects to increase capacity at existing facilities, expand to new collection and recycling sites, and install food-grade recycling equipment.
In addition to reducing plastic pollution, the projects create improvements in local pollution and air quality, reduce associated health impacts, and create jobs in often overlooked and marginalized communities.
The innovative use of plastic credits in this transaction introduces an entirely new way of financing plastic collection and recycling operations as well as preventing plastic waste from leaking into the ocean.

Teijin to Produce Carbon Fiber from Sustainable Raw Materials

Waste and biomass residue earmarked for production of precursor acrylonitrile.

At a Glance

  • ISCC Plus–certified carbon fiber is produced at the company’s Mishima plant in Japan
  • Properties, performance, and processing are on a par with petroleum-derived carbon fiber
  • Drop-in replacements reduce greenhouse gas emissions

Japan’s Teijin Ltd. will commence production and sale of Tenax carbon fiber made with sustainable acrylonitrile (AN) based on waste and residue from biomass-derived products or recycled raw materials that have received ISCC Plus certification from the International Sustainability and Carbon Certification system. The Tenax carbon fiber under ISCC Plus certification will be produced at Teijin’s Mishima plant in Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan, using the mass balance approach.  Plastic film

In June 2023, the company obtained ISCC Plus certification for Tenax carbon fiber and the polyacrylonitrile (PAN) precursor fiber produced at its Mishima plant. The sustainable AN has the same physical properties as petroleum-derived AN, while Tenax carbon fiber based on this material delivers the same performance and processing attributes as equivalent fossil-based Tenax products. This similarity allows customers to easily drop in Tenax carbon fiber made with bio-based or circular materials, helping to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions throughout the product’s lifecycle.

Teijin aims to expand its lineup of sustainable products. To this end, the company is pursuing ISCC Plus certification not only for carbon fiber, including its precursor, but also for intermediate products such as prepregs and short fibers that use sustainable raw materials.  Plastic film


Plastic film

European Adipic Acid Prices Stagnant in January 2024 Amid deteriorating Demand

In January 2024, the Adipic Acid market continued to exhibit a narrow to decline trend that carried over from the previous year, maintaining a bearish stance in business activity. The Eurozone Adipic Acid market experienced a sustained decline in demand, particularly from the downstream Polyamide and textile sectors.

This protracted downturn indicates challenges and reduced consumption within these key industries, contributing to the overall subdued performance of the Adipic Acid market in the Eurozone.  Plastic film

Downstream businesses have persistently faced challenging demand conditions at the beginning of the year, as evidenced monthly decrease in the inflows of new orders. Enterprises, particularly in the case of Adipic Acid, reported customer hesitancy attributed to high financing costs and geopolitical uncertainty. Germany’s economic slowdown was influenced by lower international demand, with a notable impact stemming from the decline in export orders. The prolonged reduction in new work inflows indicates a cautious economic environment marked by factors affecting both domestic and international business activities.

Despite an increase in the raw material Benzene in the Euro region, the cost of Adipic Acid remained stable. The rise in upstream crude oil prices at the beginning of the year influenced the Benzene market, but this increase did not have a significant impact on the downstream Adipic Acid market.  Plastic film

Merchants in the Eurozone market had sufficient materials to meet domestic requirements from downstream sectors.

As per European commission in January 2024, there was a slight dip in consumer confidence within the eurozone area as enterprises experienced reduced purchasing activity. However, there was no notable increase in demand for the product during this timeframe. Despite the European Union (EU) maintaining its position as the primary destination for Turkish textiles, exports to the EU experienced a notable contraction of 17.6% in 2023. The downstream textile industry faced a decline of 2.3%, with the most significant drop occurring in December at 6.2% within the Turkish market. This indicates muted consumption of Adipic Acid in the textile sector, contributing to the persistent drop in its price.  Plastic film

Manufacturers reduced their purchasing activities in response to lower production needs, leading to a decrease in employment numbers and a subsequent decline in fresh orders from potential customers.


European Adipic Acid Prices Stagnant in January 2024 Amid deteriorating Demand

Loop Industries – Loop & Bormioli Unveil Pharmaceutical Packaging

Loop Industries and Bormioli Pharma Unveil an Innovative Pharmaceutical Packaging Bottle Manufactured with 100% Recycled Virgin Quality Loop PET Resin at Pharmapack 2024

  • This packaging innovation will be showcased at Pharmapack Europe 2024 (January 24th-25th, 2024, Paris Expo, Porte de Versailles – booth B78-B79, Hall 7.2)

Loop Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ:LOOP) (the “Company” or “Loop”), a clean technology company whose mission is to accelerate a circular plastics economy by manufacturing 100% recycled polyethylene terephthalate (“PET”) plastic and polyester fiber and Bormioli Pharma, an international leader in pharmaceutical packaging and medical devices, today announced that an innovative pharmaceutical packaging bottle manufactured with 100% recycled virgin quality Loop™ PET resin will be unveiled within the Bormioli booth at Pharmapack Europe 2024.    Plastic film

Bormioli Pharma and Loop Industries aim to introduce market-ready solutions for the global pharmaceutical industry and the two companies began to collaborate over a year ago in order to achieve this goal. Bormioli Pharma tested Loop™ PET resin in its packaging, commissioning to independent third parties’ additional analysis to verify extractables levels with different solutions, also taking in consideration the worst-case scenario. The results of these tests set a new benchmark for recycled plastic products within the pharmaceutical industry, as the bottles produced with Loop™ PET resin do not release any substance deemed of toxicological relevance1Plastic film

Bormioli Pharma’s EcoPositive offering, gathering low-impact packaging solutions, currently constitutes 50% of their standard catalogue, contributing to position itself among the players with the broadest sustainable offerings on the international market.

In addition to the independent third-party testing commissioned by Bormioli Pharma, LoopTM PET resin was also tested by a worldwide leader in laboratory testing services and on December 13th, 2023 Loop announced that test results confirmed its Loop™ PET resin meets the strict requirements and standards outlined by the European Pharmacopeia (Ph.Eur. 3.1.15, Polyethylene Terephthalate for Containers for Preparations not for Parenteral Uses) and the United States Pharmacopeia (USP <661.1>, Plastic Materials of Construction) and is compliant for use in packaging applications in the pharmaceutical industry.  Plastic film

“Through this collaboration with Loop we’re strengthening our role as a solid, quality and reliable partner for the pharmaceutical industry” stated Andrea Lodetti, CEO of Bormioli Pharma“Loop Industries shares our values and commitment, and together we made available a new pharma-grade sustainable solution, showing even greater safety standards than traditional ones.”

Loop Industries - Loop & Bormioli Unveil Pharmaceutical Packaging

Meraxis and Fortum cooperate in Europe-wide distribution of recyclates

The Swiss trading group Meraxis and the Finnish company Fortum Recycling & Waste (Fortum) are deepening their existing cooperation with a strategic partnership. Meraxis will distribute Fortum recyclates throughout Europe. The offer includes PP, HDPE and LDPE recyclates as well as customized re-compounds. Through this cooperation, Meraxis is expanding its product range of recyclates and can thus offer its customers an even larger portfolio of sustainable material alternatives to prime material. Plastic film

Fortum recyclates are made from post-consumer waste in Northern Europe. They are of high quality, durable,versatile as well as reliably available. Meraxis customers can also obtain customized re-compounds from Fortum Circo® that are specifically tailored to their applications and products. Product development in the Fortum-laboratory tailors technical properties such as strength, processability, and color to individual customer re­quire­ments. Fortum Circo® materials are suitable for the manufacture of a wide range of products such as household goods, parts for the automotive and furniture industries, and garden tools. Special grades meet the EU toy standard.

«With Fortum Circo®, we are expanding our range of high-quality recyclates. Our customers will also benefit from the Finnish company’s strong expertise in recycling and material development. Together, we are pursuing the goal of offering polymer processors tailor-made sustainable material alternatives. After all, switching from conventional to recycled plastics is one of the most important levers for reducing CO2 emissions,» says Eddy Khatib, Product Manager Recycling at Meraxis.  Plastic film


Meraxis and Fortum cooperate in Europe-wide distribution of recyclates

Chemical Recycling Europe, Zero Waste Europe disagree over pyrolysis

Rebuttal to Chemical Recycling Europe’s position paper on Zero Waste Europe’s pyrolysis report: ‘Beyond the headline criticism, elaboration is lacking in their Position Paper’ As a scientific report, ‘Leaky loop “recycling” – A technical correction on the quality of pyrolysis oil made from plastic waste’, published by Zero Waste Europe on 26 th October 2023 (hereafter called Leaky Loop “Recycling”), was written in a way that permits it to be tested for robustness.

This enables science to stand under scrutiny and rebut baseless criticisms, such as those recently made by Chemical Recycling Europe in their Position Paper made public on 11 th December 2023 (hereafter called CRE Position Paper).  Plastic film

Leaky Loop “Recycling” was a meta-research report. Its methodology, commonly called ‘literature review’, collated previous experimental research to derive new conclusions.

Specifically, it analysed twenty-two independent peer-reviewed empirical research papers that had assessed the quality of pyrolysis oil made from predominantly polyolefin plastic waste, along with a further six independent peer-reviewed empirical research papers that had assessed more difficult plastic waste streams.

ZWE report also drew from independent meta-research on the same topic involving more than forty independent empirical research studies (meta- meta-research). All are listed in its Appendices.  Plastic film

Calling them “a narrow set of inconclusive evidence” is incomprehensible. Since the findings of Leaky Loop “Recycling” derive from other independent researchers and authors, it is unclear where the charge of ‘‘grave misinterpretation of facts and scientific evidence” comes from.

Indeed, other authors suggest the need to blend pyrolysis oil with 80 to 95% petroleum naphtha, while some identify that the oil is over a thousand times off specification.

For example: “[…] pyrolysis oil can neither replace nor be blended with naphtha and is not a viable option for closing the circularity of waste plastics […].

The results demonstrate that although there is a very small fraction of pyrolysis oil consisting of saturated alkanes and cycloalkanes, pyrolysis oil obtained from PP [polypropylene] exhibits distinct compositional differences than naphtha and cannot be used as a substitute for it.”  Plastic film

“Contaminant levels exceed established feedstock quality specifications by one or more orders of magnitude such as for nitrogen, chlorine and iron.


Chemical Recycling Europe, Zero Waste Europe disagree over pyrolysis

Red Sea Crisis – Oonly Opens Bottling Plant With Revolutionary RefPET Tech 25-01-2024

Plastic film

Red Sea Crisis – Oonly Opens Bottling Plant With Revolutionary RefPET Tech 25-01-2024

Red Sea Crisis

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Ioniqa Technologies B.V. is thrilled to announce a significant growth investment from Infinity Recycling’s Circular Plastics Fund, further propelling the advancement and global deployment of its groundbreaking PET Polyester recycling technology

This strategic funding will play a pivotal role in expediting Ioniqa’s scale-up efforts.

At the core of Ioniqa’s innovation is a technology that transforms low-grade post-consumer plastic waste into a feedstock of virgin-like quality. Uniquely, this process includes the upcycling of colored plastic waste flakes, addressing the challenge of recycling currently non-recyclable PET waste. The result is a recycled material suitable for high-quality food-grade applications, unlocking new possibilities for sustainable packaging solutions.

Ioniqa has successfully demonstrated its technology in an industrial production facility in The Netherlands and is now poised to bring it to market through a strategic partnership with Koch Technology Solutions. This collaboration strategically positions Ioniqa to contribute significantly to the circular economy for plastics.

Infinity Recycling’s Circular Plastics Fund, known for providing growth capital to companies fostering circularity, recognizes Ioniqa’s enhanced recycling solution as a game-changer. By complementing existing recycling technologies with a cost-efficient approach, Ioniqa is poised to catalyze the industry’s scale-up.

Tonnis Hooghoudt, Founder and CEO of Ioniqa, expressed gratitude for the funding, emphasizing the critical role it plays in propelling the company’s mission forward. With this investment, Ioniqa is not only set to launch industrial licenses for new customer plants globally but also expand its feedstock capabilities to include Polyester fibers.

This strategic partnership between Ioniqa and Infinity Recycling marks a significant step towards a more sustainable and circular future for PET Polyester recycling, reinforcing Ioniqa’s position as a key player in the evolution of the recycling industry.

Ioniqa Technologies B.V. is thrilled to announce a significant growth investment from Infinity Recycling's Circular Plastics Fund, further propelling the advancement and global deployment of its groundbreaking PET Polyester recycling technology

In response to the escalating threat posed by Houthi rebels, the United States has undertaken a significant shift in its strategy, opting for proactive measures to counter potential attacks

This strategic realignment materialized on January 18, following a Houthi assault involving the launch of two anti-ship ballistic missiles at a US-owned and Greek-operated oil tanker. Prior to this event, Washington, in collaboration with British forces, had refrained from initiating offensive actions against the rebels. The change in approach marks a pivotal moment as the US military, for the first time, actively engaged in preemptive strikes against Houthi anti-ship missiles aimed at the southern Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, crucial maritime routes for global shipping.

The Pentagon justified its actions by citing the missiles’ threat to merchant and Navy ships in the region, characterizing the strikes as acts of self-defense. Major General Pat Ryder, the Pentagon’s press secretary, revealed that the United States has conducted at least four cycles of preemptive strikes, targeting over 25 missile launch and deployment facilities, more than 20 missiles, as well as drones, radars, weapons, and aerial surveillance capabilities. These efforts, according to Ryder, have been effective in ensuring the safety of international waters off Yemen, emphasizing that the primary objective is to secure the Red Sea for global shipping and mariners. Red Sea Crisis

Acknowledging the Houthi rebels’ formidable arsenal, supplied by Iran, Ryder noted that despite the destruction inflicted, the rebels still retain some of their capabilities. Pentagon officials estimate that the insurgents maintain the majority of their ability to launch missiles and drones at ships. The ongoing efforts underscore a commitment to safeguarding the Red Sea and maintaining a secure environment for international maritime activities, aligning with General Ryder’s assertion that this is the sole goal of the United States in the region.

In response to the escalating threat posed by Houthi rebels, the United States has undertaken a significant shift in its strategy, opting for proactive measures to counter potential attacks

The Houthis fire missiles at ships in the Red Sea

In the latest escalation of violence, Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi rebels targeted two merchant ships in the Red Sea with three missiles, according to a statement from the White House. Despite ongoing US and British raids on Houthi bases, the group remains committed to its attacks. One missile missed its target, while a US Navy destroyer successfully intercepted the other two rockets aimed at the U.S.-flagged container ship M/V Maersk Detroit. The Houthis’ continued offensive poses a threat to shipping in the region, prompting the need for protective measures. Red Sea Crisis

Denmark’s Maersk, a major shipping company, confirmed that two of its ships, including the Maersk Detroit, had turned back after hearing explosions while passing through the Bab Al-Mandeb Strait. The US Navy escorting the vessels intercepted several projectiles, ensuring the safety of the crew, vessel, and cargo. The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations reported an explosion near a vessel south of the Yemeni port of Mokha, supporting Maersk’s accounts. The Houthi attacks since mid-November have disrupted Red Sea trade, a vital route for approximately 12% of international shipping traffic between Europe and Asia.

Houthi rebels claim their attacks target Israel-linked ships supporting Palestinians in Gaza, affected by the Hamas-Israel conflict. The ongoing situation underscores the challenges in maintaining maritime security in the region, with global implications for trade and geopolitical tensions. Red Sea Crisis

The Houthis fire missiles at ships in the Red Sea

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

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Oonly Opens Bottling Plant With Revolutionary RefPET Tech

OonlyTisztán Víz has opened a HUF 1.5 billion bottling plant in Pannonhalma, where Hungary’s first refPET replacement bottles of mineral water rolled off the production line in mid-January.

Oonly replacement bottles can be refilled an average of 25 times before being recycled and remanufactured into refPET bottles. With this solution, the life cycle of a bottle is much longer than that of a single-use PET bottle. A single replacement bottle guarantees the consumption of 37.5 liters of water over 25 refill cycles, using some 80% less plastic over its entire life cycle than a single-use PET bottle.

“Nearly 100% of household water consumption in Hungary is with single-use PET bottles. However, our research confirms that there is significant consumer demand for future-conscious solutions that take into account our environment.  Red Sea Crisis

Oonly is the first company in our country to offer refillable natural mineral water in a suitable packaging for households. We would like to see environmentally responsible mineral water consumption spread in our country, as in other European countries. Excellent water in sustainable replacement bottles – that’s what we believe in. Packaging waste should be minimized and bottle washing and refilling is the best way to do this. To achieve breakthrough waste reduction success and reduce our carbon footprint, we need truly green solutions that have been proven to work internationally,” said István Polony, managing director of Oonly.

Oonly’s refillable exchangeable bottles are a good alternative for consumers who want to actively protect their environment but don’t want to give up natural mineral water and its benefits.

The source of the spring in Pannonhalma provides crystal clear water with excellent mineral content, the company says.

“In Hungary, more than half of the 3.3 billion beverage containers packaged each year are plastic bottles, so there is huge potential in refillable bottles, so-called refPET, which offer a sustainable solution. Nowadays, there is also a growing interest in sustainable, green products in Hungary, and hopefully, the use of refillable bottles will gain ground,” said Csongor Bajnóczki, senior sustainability consultant at Denkstatt.

Oonly’s products have been available in 1.5 liter, non-carbonated, and carbonated versions since January 22 at kifli.hu. Red Sea Crisis

Reviving the Recycling Traditions

A new mandatory return system was introduced in Hungary on January 1, which means that shops charge a deposit on glass, aluminum, and PET bottles, which is returned to the customer when they take the bottles to a return point.

Red Sea Crisis

China tire cord maker Shenma to establish Thai factory

China’s leading tire cord manufacturer, Shenma Co., Ltd, is embarking on a strategic international expansion with a significant investment of €32 million to establish a state-of-the-art polyamide fiber production facility in Thailand. The new facility will be situated in the Eastern Economic Corridor industrial zone, strategically located in Rayong, Chonburi.

This ambitious project will be executed in two phases, with an overall production capacity of 20 kilotonnes per annum (ktpa) focusing on the production of ‘differentiated fiber’ specifically designed for tire manufacturing.  Red Sea Crisis

Shenma disclosed this information in a stock exchange filing on January 18, highlighting the first phase’s completion expected within 15 months. The initial phase will have a nameplate capacity to produce 10ktpa of high-quality nylon yarn.

Shenma’s decision to invest in this facility is grounded in its comprehensive internationalization strategy, responding proactively to the growing trend of Chinese tire manufacturers establishing overseas bases. By setting up operations in the Eastern Economic Corridor, Shenma aims to strengthen its proximity to downstream customers in Southeast Asia, resulting in reduced sales costs, improved product profitability, and swift responsiveness to the demands of the downstream market.

Additionally, Shenma eyes further market expansion by leveraging its Thai base to export products to other key Asian markets, with a specific focus on India. This move not only solidifies Shenma’s global presence but also aligns with the company’s commitment to staying ahead in the highly competitive tire cord industry. The establishment of the Thai facility marks a significant milestone in Shenma’s pursuit of international growth and market leadership.

Red Sea Crisis

Red Sea Issue Complicate Global PET Market, Another Series of Struggle Starts for the West and US

Global Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) market has been facing challenges since the start of January 2024 due to the high production cost and logistic barrier amid heightened demand. Overall markets around the globe including Europe and USA struggle with the recent price upswing.  Red Sea Crisis

The US PET market has been experiencing a continuous rise in prices since the start of the 2024. PET (bottle grade) prices, which were assessed at USD 1215/MT DDP Los Angeles during the first week of January 2024, later reached USD 1245/MT by third week of the month.

This rise in the PET resin price is primarily attributed to the ongoing conflict in the red sea trade route, which has resulted in low supply of commodities including raw materials and high production cost amid moderate demand in the downstream bottle and the packaging industries. Further, conflict is still continued to the date by the Yemen based rebel group. However, the US and UK with allies are striving to uphold the condition, which might ease the ocean logistic operation through the Red Sea route. Red Sea Crisis

On the other hand, reduction in the water level in the Panama Canal is another obstacle in the export path, this is the worst drought in the central American region creating a turmoil in the shipment route developing container’s traffic blockage creating hesitation about the canal route amongst route users for the trade.

PET price in European countries has been maintaining a bullish trend since early January 2024. Price rapid from USD 1160/MT to USD 1200/MT FD Belgium in the month. During this period, market demand for PET was high from the consumer and downstream packaging industries but it has been noticing a huge restriction from the supply chain to fulfill the market and consumer requirement.

Red Sea Ocean dispute has disturbed the entire logistic operation causing a reduction in container movement and delay in reaching shipments to consumers amid high demand. The dispute has prompted altering the different routes for ships resulting in a surge in freight cost and reduction in the availability of required containers. The ongoing crisis will threaten the supply status as Europe mainly depend on Asian countries for more than 50% PET import.

In Asia, majority of the nations have been displaying a bearish market situation like China, Taiwan and South Korea except for India. The decline in prices of PET in these countries was primarily driven by halted exports to the European market, which has led the domestic inventories level to rise in recent weeks. The opening price of PET bottle grade of the month in China is USD 1127/MT FOB Wuhu whereas the current price is USD 1127/MT FOB Wuhu, China.  Red Sea Crisis


Red Sea Crisis

I am a dedicated and results-oriented Product Manager with a strong focus on innovation and efficiency

Currently, I lead the development and implementation of groundbreaking technologies at Sidel, a global leader in packaging solutions.

My latest achievement is the introduction of EvoFill PET, a revolutionary filler designed for water and still beverages.

EvoFill PET stands out with its compact design, offering enhanced hygiene and quality while contributing to sustainability efforts. The space-saving innovation handles high production speeds of up to 90,000 bottles per hour, boasting a footprint that is 15% smaller.  Red Sea Crisis

Its simplified configuration, with fewer transfer star wheels and a more compact front table and process unit, ensures ease of operation, maintenance, and cleaning, ultimately contributing to optimal hygiene and making it best-in-class.

As the water industry rapidly expands, especially in key markets like China, India, and Türkiye, EvoFill PET meets the growing demand with versatility. Its ergonomic design ensures consistent and repeatable performance for operators of all skill levels. The controlled environment for flowmeter contactless filling enhances product safety and quality, catering to the evolving preferences and needs of consumers.

The flexibility of EvoFill PET extends to its multiple configurations, seamlessly integrating with Sidel’s Combi and Super Combi complete systems. With format changeovers simplified in both manual and automatic modes, the filler adapts quickly to market demands.  Red Sea Crisis

Sustainability is at the core of EvoFill PET’s design, from reduced energy consumption through the integrated CIP system to the compact size that minimizes maintenance needs. These improvements result in lower operational costs, reduced downtime, and an extended lifespan, guaranteeing a lower total cost of ownership.

I am proud to be at the forefront of shaping the future of bottling technology, providing innovative solutions that not only meet industry demands but also contribute to a more sustainable and efficient future. Red Sea Crisis

Visit Sidel

I am a dedicated and results-oriented Product Manager with a strong focus on innovation and efficiency

To curb plastic pollution, industry and academia must unite

Collaboration is key to making plastic use greener as soon as possible. Our experience yields tips on how to set up industry–academic partnerships.

From the top of Mount Everest to the deepest ocean trench, pieces of plastic are found almost everywhere on Earth. Specks have even been found in human blood and breast milk. This pervasiveness is just one aspect of a global crisis that encompasses the entire life cycle of plastics.  Red Sea Crisis

More than 95% of plastics are currently manufactured using fossil fuels1. In 2019 alone, the carbon footprint from their production reached 1.8 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide, or 3.7% of global greenhouse-gas emissions — around twice as much as is generated by aviation2.

About half of the plastic produced is used only once3 and, in 2019, 353 million tonnes of plastic waste were generated (see Nature 616, 234–237; 2023). Only 9% of that waste was recycled, and 19% was incinerated2 — lowering air quality. The rest was disposed of in landfill sites (49%) or, worse, was mismanaged (22%)2: burnt in the open or discarded in the environment through littering or illegal dumping.  Red Sea Crisis

Preliminary studies suggest that plastic pollutants have the potential to disturb crucial Earth system processes (such as nutrient cycling in soils) and to affect local weather patterns by promoting cloud formation. They could even serve as a marker for a potential new geological era shaped by human activity — the Anthropocene epoch.

As demand for plastics continues to soar, with annual production expected2 to nearly triple from around 460 million tonnes in 2019 to about 1,230 million tonnes in 2060, researchers in academia and industry are searching for ways to reduce their environmental cost. However, these efforts are often incremental and siloed. Progress is too slow. Academic and industrial groups need to team up to solve the problems faster. Red Sea Crisis


To curb plastic pollution, industry and academia must unite

Amprius, a California-based company specializing in high-performance batteries, has achieved a significant milestone with its latest battery model, SiCore, boasting an impressive energy density of 400 Wh/kg

This achievement, attributed to the use of a proprietary silicon anode, positions Amprius at the forefront of battery technology, especially in the context of electric aviation.

SiCore has demonstrated remarkable durability, enduring up to 1,200 charge and discharge cycles without significant degradation. This breakthrough has attracted notable partnerships with industry giants such as Aalto/Airbus, AeroVironment, BAE Systems, Teledyne Flir, and collaboration with the U.S. army, solidifying Amprius’ presence in the aeronautical sector.  Red Sea Crisis

CEO Kang Sun highlighted the company’s success, emphasizing their expertise in lithium-ion cells with a silicon anode as the key factor behind SiCore’s exceptional energy density. The positive results obtained in laboratory tests were validated through independent testing, confirming the battery’s reliability in various electric mobility applications.

Having successfully concluded the testing phase, Amprius is gearing up for SiCore’s production, partnering with Berzelius to supply American markets, including the USA, Canada, and Mexico. Additionally, a new production facility in Colorado, set to be operational in 2025, will house the manufacturing lines for SiCore cells and the upcoming SiMaxx cells.

The latter is anticipated to achieve a remarkable density of 500 Wh/kg, boasting rapid recharge times, up to 80% in less than 6 minutes, and operational efficacy within a wide temperature range, from -30 to 55 degrees Celsius. Red Sea Crisis

Amprius’ advancements in battery technology, especially with SiCore and the promising SiMaxx cells, signal a significant leap forward in the electrification of aviation, with potential applications in electric planes and broader electric mobility solutions.

Amprius, a California-based company specializing in high-performance batteries, has achieved a significant milestone with its latest battery model, SiCore, boasting an impressive energy density of 400 Wh/kg

In response to the recent challenges faced by its stock market, China is gearing up for a financial revival by unleashing a massive support package

The impetus for this strategic move arises from the stark comparisons with global counterparts, notably the surging Nikkei in Japan and India’s ascent to become the world’s fourth-largest stock market, surpassing Hong Kong. The Hang Seng’s stagnation symbolizes China’s broader economic struggles, prompting an urgent call to action.

A resolute “counter-order, comrades” was issued mere days after Prime Minister Li Qiang’s cautious stance at Davos, signaling Beijing’s commitment.  Red Sea Crisis

Bloomberg reports reveal a formidable plan to mobilize 2 trillion yuan (approximately $280 billion) from offshore accounts of state-owned enterprises. This formidable financial injection aims to stabilize the stock market and instill confidence among investors.

However, skeptics argue that this financial lifeline may prove inadequate, representing a mere 2% of China’s GDP and sidestepping the root causes of structural challenges. The nation grapples with an aging population, reluctant consumer spending despite a deflationary cycle, and constrained foreign currency inflows due to global economic constraints.  Red Sea Crisis

China faces an uphill battle, exacerbated by recent stock market setbacks, with indices like CSI and HSI witnessing significant declines. The outflow of foreign capital, reaching 33 billion RMB in the first part of 2024, underscores international skepticism about China’s recovery prospects.

Despite the formidable challenges, recent Bloomberg rumors triggered positive market reactions, with international investors purchasing 3.8 billion yuan of Chinese shares and the Hong Kong stock market gaining 3%. This move is perceived as an appetizer, hinting at potential future stimulus measures. While the path to stabilization remains arduous, these developments suggest a strategic step toward restoring vitality to the Chinese stock market amid a complex economic landscape.  Red Sea Crisis

In response to the recent challenges faced by its stock market, China is gearing up for a financial revival by unleashing a massive support package

Textile-to-textile – Lignin reinforcement enhances PLA biopolymer functionality 24-01-2024

Red Sea Crisis

Textile-to-textile – Lignin reinforcement enhances PLA biopolymer functionality 24-01-2024


In the ongoing Middle East conflict:

Houthi authorities in Yemen have instructed US and British UN workers and humanitarian organizations in Sanaa to leave the country within a month. This decision follows attacks by the US and British armed forces, supported by other nations, against military targets of the pro-Iranian Houthi group. The attacks were in response to Houthi-initiated assaults on commercial ships in the Red Sea.

Israel has rejected the possibility of a ceasefire in Gaza, with the government emphasizing the destruction of Hamas, the release of hostages, and ensuring Israel’s security. The government spokesperson, Ilana Stein, dismissed rumors about a new agreement with Hamas.  Textile-to-textile

The Gaza Ministry of Health reported that at least 25,700 Palestinians have been killed, and 63,740 injured in Israel’s attacks on Gaza since October 7. In the past 24 hours, 210 Palestinians were killed, and 386 were injured.

The Prime Minister’s office in Iraq warned that US attacks on Iraqi military positions would lead to an “irresponsible escalation” and violate the nation’s sovereignty. The US targeted three facilities linked to an Iranian-backed militia.

Israel and Hamas are reportedly nearing a 30-day ceasefire agreement in Gaza. The potential agreement involves the release of Israeli hostages and Palestinian prisoners. Diplomatic efforts by Qatar, the United States, and Egypt aim to mediate differences between the two sides and facilitate increased humanitarian aid to Gaza. However, a permanent resolution to the Gaza war remains elusive, as Hamas insists on addressing this issue before moving forward.  Textile-to-textile


The United States has sought China’s assistance in addressing Houthi attacks on commercial ships in the Red Sea

American officials, including National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, Deputy Jon Finer, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken, have engaged with senior Chinese officials, particularly Liu Jianchao, head of the Chinese Communist Party’s international department. The discussions aimed to convey a warning to Iran, urging it to restrain Houthi rebels and prevent escalating tensions in the Middle East.

Despite these efforts, there is limited evidence of Chinese pressure on Iran to curb Houthi attacks. The most recent development includes a generic statement from Beijing, issued last week, urging “interested parties” to ensure safe passage for ships navigating the Red Sea—a crucial global trade route.

While the United States plans to persist in raising the issue with Beijing, there is skepticism regarding a change in China’s stance. Some signs of Chinese engagement have been noted, but they are considered insufficient. The Financial Times source cautioned against overestimating China’s actions or their impact on the matter.

In summary, the U.S. has requested China’s assistance in addressing Houthi attacks, but there is little indication that China has exerted significant pressure on Iran to restrain the rebels. The U.S. remains cautious about expecting a change in China’s attitude on this issue.

The United States has sought China's assistance in addressing Houthi attacks on commercial ships in the Red Sea

Toyota : “Electric cars will never dominate the market”

Akio Toyoda, the president of Toyota and a prominent figure in the automotive industry, recently reiterated his skepticism about electric cars during a dialogue with employees. Despite the growing popularity of electric vehicles (EVs), Toyoda remains steadfast in his belief that they will not dominate the market, projecting a maximum 30% market share. Emphasizing technological neutrality, he advocates for a multi-path approach to the energy transition, asserting that consumers should not be compelled to choose electric cars over other technologies like hybrids or hydrogen fuel cells.

Expressing concerns about industrial impositions by politicians, Toyoda insists on allowing consumers to decide the best solution for their needs rather than succumbing to regulatory pressures.  Textile-to-textile

He criticizes the idea of a one-size-fits-all approach and champions a diversified strategy to combat the real enemy—CO2 emissions.

Despite facing criticism for Toyota’s perceived delays in developing EV models, Toyoda defends the company’s focus on alternative technologies, acknowledging the challenges of navigating this path independently.

In challenging the legislative landscape, Toyoda predicts that only 30% of the market will be occupied by electric cars, leaving room for hybrid, fuel cell, and hydrogen vehicles.

He underscores the importance of consumer choice and questions the practicality of solely relying on battery-powered cars, especially in regions lacking essential charging infrastructure.  Textile-to-textile

Additionally, he raises concerns about potential financial challenges for companies still engaged in combustion engine production, warning of the risk of banks withdrawing credit support.

In essence, Akio Toyoda advocates for a balanced, consumer-driven approach to the future of transportation, emphasizing the need for diverse options to address the multifaceted challenges posed by the automotive industry.  Textile-to-textile

Toyota : “Electric cars will never dominate the market”

The “swamp” or the escalation with Iran: what the US risks with the raids against the Houthis

The United States is navigating a complex response to hostile acts by Tehran-aligned forces in the Middle East, particularly in relation to the Houthi aggressions in the Red Sea. In an effort to counter these threats, the U.S. has initiated multiple waves of raids, including cruise missiles, targeting Houthi depots. The well-organized adversary presents a challenge, forcing the Pentagon to consider both preventive actions and reducing the opponent’s arsenal, with uncertainties surrounding the likelihood of success.

The potential risks for the U.S. are multifold. On one hand, massive intervention might lead to entanglement in a protracted conflict, akin to sinking into a swamp. On the other hand, failure to respond could be perceived as encouragement for the militiamen’s challenge. Simultaneously, economic costs are rising for maritime transport, impacting Europe, which has established its own safety plan to safeguard navigation in response to the escalating situation. Textile-to-textile

Iran’s role in supporting the Houthi faction includes intelligence and technical support for anti-ship operations, a command/control base in Sanaa, and ongoing efforts to replace destroyed systems. Despite Iran downplaying its influence, analysts warn of a potential strategy of attrition favoring the militants.

The situation extends beyond Yemen, with pro-Iranian factions launching strikes in Syria and Iraq, presenting a dilemma for the U.S.: how to respond to attacks on its installations without escalating into a total war that might involve targeting Iran directly. Amidst this geopolitical chessboard, Israel adds a variable with its determination to strike enemies beyond its borders, potentially sparking reprisals against not only Israeli but also U.S. interests. Textile-to-textile

The overall scenario underscores the intricate web of challenges faced by the United States in the region, balancing military responses, diplomatic efforts, and the broader geopolitical implications involving Iran, Israel, and the safety of maritime routes.

The "swamp" or the escalation with Iran: what the US risks with the raids against the Houthis

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BASF and Inditex have achieved a significant breakthrough in textile-to-textile recycling with the introduction of loopamid, a revolutionary polyamide 6 (PA6) made entirely from 100 percent textile waste

This marks a milestone in their collaborative efforts to enhance recyclability within the textile industry. Loopamid, developed by BASF, enables the recycling of discarded polyamide 6 textiles into new, virgin-quality synthetic fibers and materials. Zara, a flagship brand of Inditex, has embraced this innovation by creating a jacket composed entirely of loopamid, aligning with a “design for recycling” approach where every component, including fabrics, buttons, filling, hook and loop, and zipper, is derived from loopamid.

The cutting-edge technology behind loopamid facilitates textile-to-textile recycling of post-industrial and post-consumer textile waste, showcasing its adaptability to various fabric mixtures like PA6 and elastane.  Textile-to-textile

This breakthrough not only improves circularity in the fashion industry but also allows for multiple recycling cycles while maintaining material characteristics identical to those of conventional virgin polyamide.

Dr. Ramkumar Dhruva, President of BASF’s Monomers division, emphasized the significance of this achievement, stating it marks a crucial step towards circularity in the fashion industry. The capsule jacket, a result of collaboration with Inditex, serves as proof that circularity is feasible. BASF is committed to scaling up its technology to provide commercial quantities, further contributing to the sustainable transformation of the textile industry.  Textile-to-textile

Javier Losada, Inditex’s Chief Sustainability Officer, highlighted the importance of collaboration and innovation in fostering a more responsible industry. The loopamid project represents a key step toward a circular solution, addressing the need for increased collecting and recycling capacities to achieve a scaled approach for post-consumer waste.

Both BASF and Inditex share ambitious sustainability goals, with BASF aiming to double its sales from circular economy solutions to €17 billion by 2030. Inditex, on the other hand, strives to have 100% of its textile products made exclusively from materials with a smaller environmental footprint by 2030, emphasizing the use of next-generation materials, recycled materials, and organic and regenerative fibers.  Textile-to-textile


Chinese manufacturer CALB is set to establish a lithium-ion battery factory in Portugal, according to the APA Portuguese environment agency’s announcement on Monday

Portugal, boasting the largest lithium reserves in Europe, is an ideal location for this venture, given lithium’s crucial role in electric vehicle (EV) batteries. The proposed factory, strategically situated in the coastal town of Sines, approximately 100 kilometers south of Lisbon, aims to commence operations by the end of 2025.

The APA highlighted the facility’s primary focus on meeting robust customer demand, particularly within the automotive industry. A public consultation period, scheduled until the end of February, will allow stakeholders to provide input on the project. The estimated two billion-euro ($2.2 billion) investment by CALB encompasses the construction of five buildings, with projections indicating the creation of approximately 1,800 direct jobs, a significant boost to the local economy.  Textile-to-textile

Despite potential environmental concerns, APA has conditionally approved two lithium mining projects in northern Portugal. These decisions have faced opposition from environmental NGOs and local residents. The lithium-ion batteries that will be produced at the CALB factory are crucial components for electric vehicles, aligning with global efforts to transition away from fossil fuels and promote green energy solutions.

The initiative plays a role in supporting the automotive industry’s shift towards sustainable practices, contributing to the broader green energy transition agenda.

As the project progresses through the public consultation phase, the successful establishment of CALB’s lithium-ion battery factory in Portugal could mark a significant step towards advancing clean energy technologies and creating a substantial economic impact in the region.  Textile-to-textile

For more information, readers can visit AFP.com, as this article was produced by the Agence France-Presse (AFP), and the Barron’s news department was not involved in its creation.

Introducing igus’s latest innovation, the drylin Econ series, a breakthrough in low-cost linear slides designed for simple adjustment and positioning tasks

Crafted from recycled high-performance plastic, these polymer slides are both cost-effective and environmentally sustainable, offering a greener alternative for linear systems commonly used in adjustable retail displays and similar applications.

The drylin Econ series is a game-changer, providing a solution that is over 80% more affordable than traditional machined aluminum counterparts. The slides, injection-molded from regranulated plastic, boast integrated compensating bearings, enabling smooth cornering on curved aluminum rails.  Textile-to-textile

Ideal for tasks such as adjusting retail store monitors or fine-tuning grippers in snack vending machines, the drylin Econ series offers a cost-effective alternative to linear guides with recirculating ball bearings and steel components, eliminating unnecessary expenses.

“As companies face pressures like inflation, high energy costs, and disrupted supply chains, saving costs has become imperative. In response to these challenges, we are proud to introduce the drylin Econ series,” says Rob Dumayne, drylin and bearings director at igus UK. Textile-to-textile

“This entry-level series is tailored for simple adjustment tasks, providing a cost-effective and sustainable solution, even for non-linear profiles.”

The drylin Econ series not only reduces costs by around 80%, but it also contributes to sustainability efforts. Manufactured from injection molding production waste, the slides utilize iglidur ECO P, a regranulate plastic composed of 100% recycled materials, including production sprues and damaged parts.

This not only lowers material costs but also promotes a circular economy by diverting plastic waste from incineration or landfill.  Textile-to-textile

Additionally, the drylin Econ series stands out for its operational efficiency. Microscopic solid lubricants integrated into the high-performance plastic bearing facilitate dry running without additional lubrication, reducing maintenance time and costs.

The lightweight construction, combining plastic and aluminum, makes it suitable for various applications, including those requiring inconspicuous and quiet operation.

With the ability to effortlessly glide around curved rails, the drylin Econ series ensures ease of movement, making it particularly suitable for vending machines in public spaces. In embracing sustainability and cost-effectiveness, igus continues to lead the way in providing innovative solutions for the evolving needs of industries worldwide.




Precision Textiles, a leading supplier to mattress manufacturers, is pioneering an industry-first collaboration with Unifi, Inc., makers of REPREVE® recycled performance fiber

This strategic partnership aims to address the surging consumer demand for eco-friendly mattresses.

Precision Textiles is committed to reducing its carbon footprint, and by incorporating REPREVE® recycled polyester yarn into all filler cloth products, it becomes the sole bedding component manufacturer utilizing this innovative fiber.

REPREVE®, the world’s premier recycled polyester fiber brand, tackles environmental concerns related to plastic waste by spinning yarns from recycled plastic bottles.

This partnership not only marks a milestone for Precision Textiles but also positions the company at the forefront of sustainability in the mattress industry.

Every 100-yard roll of the company’s ENDURE IFR and ADVANTAGE SB non-woven products will now include REPREVE® fiber, derived from 228 recycled water bottles, eliminating over 20 million plastic bottles annually.  Textile-to-textile

Gerry Welkley, national sales manager at Precision Textiles, expresses pride in being the first FR nonwoven component supplier to embrace REPREVE® technology, emphasizing its positive impact on sustainability initiatives.

Bob O’Connell, executive vice president marketing and merchandising, underscores the customer-driven nature of this collaboration, providing mattress manufacturers with an eco-friendly solution to meet consumer expectations.

Precision Textiles’ longstanding commitment to environmental stewardship is reflected in its USDA Bio-Preferred and UL Greenguard GOLD certified FR solution product lines, demonstrating a dedication to a sustainable future.  Textile-to-textile

This groundbreaking partnership not only exemplifies Precision Textiles’ dedication but also resonates with conscientious consumers expecting responsible product manufacturing.

Precision Textiles, a leading supplier to mattress manufacturers, is pioneering an industry-first collaboration with Unifi, Inc., makers of REPREVE® recycled performance fiber

Lignin reinforcement enhances PLA biopolymer functionality

As the Process Engineering Development and Project Manager at KraussMaffei Extrusion, Lars Darnedde has played a pivotal role in a groundbreaking collaboration between Synergy Horizon Poland and KraussMaffei, resulting in the development of a 100% bio-based-reinforced thermoplastic: lignin-reinforced polylactic acid (PLA). This innovative process incorporates 30% hydrolyzed lignin during extrusion, creating a compound with natural antioxidant capacity, enhanced mechanical properties, and controlled biodegradability.  Textile-to-textile

The Synergy Horizon group, focused on lignin valorization, strives to transform lignin, often discarded in bioethanol production, into valuable products for diverse applications. With expertise in lignin purification, chemical modification, and functionalization, the group offers lignin-derived products for industries ranging from oil and gas extraction to water treatment.

Synergy Horizon Poland has developed a commercial production line for free-flowing lignin powder, a milestone in utilizing this abundant natural substance.

KraussMaffei’s technical center demonstrated successful incorporation of up to 30% lignin into PLA matrix using specialized equipment, resulting in a significant increase in flexural and tensile modulus.  Textile-to-textile

Extensive mechanical tests have shown that the lignin-reinforced PLA not only enhances mechanical properties but also exhibits a biodegradation rate of over 90% in 99 days, making it ideal for environmentally conscious applications such as food packaging. The unique combination of antioxidant capacity, lack of odor, and improved biodegradability sets this lignin-reinforced PLA apart in the industry, showcasing a sustainable and functional alternative in the realm of biopolymers.

Lignin reinforcement enhances PLA biopolymer functionality

I am a highly skilled chemical engineer with a proven track record in the innovative development of sustainable technologies

In my most recent role, I played a pivotal role in the inauguration and optimization of a groundbreaking demonstration unit for bio-butadiene synthesis from bioethanol at the Michelin factory in Bassens, France. Textile-to-textile

This achievement marked the first-ever plant of its kind in the country, a project I have been dedicated to for the past five years.

Collaborating closely with IFP Energies Nouvelles (Ifpen) and Axens, I successfully completed the construction of the unit within the Michelin facility as part of the BioButterfly project. This cutting-edge facility, finalized in July of last year, boasts a production capacity of up to 30 tonnes per year. My responsibilities include overseeing the unit’s operations to fine-tune the technology, aiming for a seamless transition to an industrial scale.  Textile-to-textile

As an integral part of the project, I have contributed to securing investments exceeding 80 million euros, with substantial support from the French Environment and Energy Agency (Ademe), the Nouvelle Aquitaine region, and the Urban Community of Bordeaux. Additionally, I have played a crucial role in the creation of approximately twenty jobs at the Michelin site in Bassens.  Textile-to-textile

Beyond the immediate success of the project, my focus aligns with Michelin’s commitment to using renewable or recycled raw materials entirely by 2050. I am particularly interested in the commercialization of the bio-butadiene synthesis process by Axens, with Michelin leveraging this sustainable resource in the production of tire compounds.

My expertise extends beyond butadiene production, as evidenced by my involvement in the development of styrene butadiene rubber (SBR) using styrene monomer obtained from chemical recycling. I am dedicated to advancing environmentally responsible practices within the chemical engineering field and contributing to the tire industry’s sustainable evolution.  Textile-to-textile

I am a highly skilled chemical engineer with a proven track record in the innovative development of sustainable technologies

The “Waste Plastic Pyrolysis Processing Plant Project Report 2024” by IMARC Group serves as a comprehensive guide for entrepreneurs and stakeholders interested in establishing a waste plastic pyrolysis processing plant

The report covers a wide range of aspects, providing valuable insights into industry trends, plant setup, machinery requirements, raw material specifications, investment opportunities, costs, and revenue projections.  Textile-to-textile

Waste plastic pyrolysis is an innovative recycling method that transforms plastic waste into valuable resources through a thermal decomposition process conducted in an oxygen-free environment. The report delves into the intricacies of this process, detailing the heating temperatures, reactor types (fixed beds, fluidized beds, and rotary kilns), and the distinction between fast and slow pyrolysis methods. It highlights the significance of converting non-recyclable plastics into useful products, presenting a sustainable waste management solution.

The global market for waste plastic pyrolysis is driven by the increasing adoption of circular economy principles, encouraging industries to embrace waste-to-value approaches.  Textile-to-textile

Technological advancements in pyrolysis processes are enhancing efficiency and output quality, making the technology more attractive to investors and users. The report emphasizes the market’s growth fueled by the rising price of crude oil, which boosts demand for alternative fuels derived from plastic waste.

Moreover, the growing emphasis on sustainable and eco-friendly practices, coupled with the awareness of environmental issues, is driving the acceptance and adoption of waste plastic pyrolysis. The report identifies additional factors contributing to market growth, including the commitment of companies to sustainability goals, rapid expansion in developing regions, advancements in waste sorting and pre-treatment technologies, and extensive research and development activities.  Textile-to-textile

Entrepreneurs and stakeholders can leverage the detailed financial analysis provided in the report, covering capital investments, project funding, operating expenses, income and expenditure projections, ROI, net present value, and profit and loss accounts. Armed with this comprehensive roadmap, individuals can make informed decisions, ensuring the success of their waste plastic pyrolysis processing units in the evolving landscape of sustainable waste management.


The "Waste Plastic Pyrolysis Processing Plant Project Report 2024" by IMARC Group serves as a comprehensive guide for entrepreneurs and stakeholders interested in establishing a waste plastic pyrolysis processing plant

Hydrogen Revolution – Celanese And Under Armour Develop Innovative New NEOLAST™ Fiber For Use In Performance Stretch Fabrics 23-01-2024


Hydrogen Revolution – Celanese And Under Armour Develop Innovative New NEOLAST™ Fiber For Use In Performance Stretch Fabrics 23-01-2024

Hydrogen Revolution

In the latest joint military operation, the US and UK conducted air strikes on Houthi targets in Yemen, hitting eight locations, including an underground storage site and Houthi missile and surveillance capabilities

The Pentagon emphasized the goal of safeguarding the free flow of commerce in the Red Sea, a crucial trade route. The strikes aim to de-escalate tensions and restore stability in the region.Hydrogen Revolution

This marks the eighth US strike against Houthi targets in Yemen, with the UK participating in a second joint operation.

UK Foreign Secretary Lord Cameron asserted that the strikes send a clear message and aim to degrade Houthi capabilities to carry out attacks on international shipping.

The UK called for an immediate humanitarian pause and seeks a permanent, sustainable ceasefire in the region.  Hydrogen Revolution

The joint statement indicated support from Australia, Bahrain, Canada, and the Netherlands.

The UK Ministry of Defence highlighted the use of precision-guided bombs to minimize civilian casualties.

Government minister Huw Merriman stated that if Houthi attacks persist, the airstrikes will not be a one-off.

UK Defence Secretary Grant Shapps described the strikes as self-defense against the Houthis’ intolerable attacks on merchant shipping, aimed at degrading their capabilities. Liberal Democrats leader Sir Ed Davey expressed support for limited strikes but emphasized the need for parliamentary debate and a vote.

Houthi-run Al Masirah TV reported strikes in Yemen’s provinces, indicating the Houthis’ continued defiance.  Hydrogen Revolution

Despite previous strikes, the Houthis persist in targeting ships in the Red Sea.

The US and UK reiterated their commitment to freedom of navigation and international commerce, discussing the importance of humanitarian aid and civilian protections for Gaza during a phone call between President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.

The Houthis began attacking merchant vessels in response to Israel’s military operations in Gaza.

The US and UK launched previous strikes on January 11 after Houthi forces ignored an ultimatum to cease attacks.

The situation remains complex, with ongoing efforts to address the root causes and achieve a lasting resolution. Hydrogen Revolution

In the latest joint military operation, the US and UK conducted air strikes on Houthi targets in Yemen, hitting eight locations, including an underground storage site and Houthi missile and surveillance capabilities

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Stellantis, Tavares: Lowering prices (like Tesla) will lead to a bloodbath

Carlos Tavares, CEO of Stellantis, firmly asserts that the company will not adopt the price-lowering strategy employed by some competitors, most notably Tesla. Speaking after the unveiling of the new STLA Large platform on January 19th, Tavares emphasized that Stellantis currently turns a profit on every car sold, including electric vehicles, and aims to maintain this profitability in the future. He criticized the industry trend of a “race to the bottom,” warning that it will culminate in a “bloodbath,” especially for companies sacrificing profitability to boost sales, a clear reference to Tesla.

Tavares explained that maintaining healthy profit margins is essential for the industry’s sustainability. He highlighted the historical margin range of 3% to 14% for manufacturers, expressing concern about the ongoing decline in global automotive company profitability. He warned that constant destruction of value through aggressive price reductions could lead companies into financial difficulties and make them vulnerable to acquisition by financially stable groups.  Hydrogen Revolution

This statement comes amid a challenging period for the European car market, marked by a 3.8% drop in December registrations compared to the previous year. Despite this, the overall performance in 2023 showed a positive balance with a 13.7% increase in registrations compared to 2022. However, the industry still faces challenges, particularly in the electric car sector, where high prices are identified as a barrier to customer adoption.

In response to market challenges, Stellantis is actively reducing operating costs, exemplified by severance payments to Italian workers, staff reductions in the U.S., and plant closures in Poland.  Hydrogen Revolution

Tavares acknowledged the need to address the high price of electric cars to stimulate consumer demand and prevent market stagnation.

Stellantis, Tavares: Lowering prices (like Tesla) will lead to a bloodbath

Celanese And Under Armour Develop Innovative New NEOLAST™ Fiber For Use In Performance Stretch Fabrics

Celanese Corporation, a leading global specialty materials and chemical company, has joined forces with Under Armour, Inc., a renowned innovator in athletic apparel and footwear, to pioneer an advanced fiber for performance stretch fabrics known as NEOLAST™. This groundbreaking material serves as a high-performance alternative to elastane, commonly referred to as spandex, providing the apparel industry with a versatile solution for stretch fabrics.

NEOLAST™ not only delivers exceptional stretch, durability, and comfort expected from elite performance fabrics but also addresses sustainability challenges associated with elastane, particularly in terms of recyclability.  Hydrogen Revolution

The proprietary solvent-free melt-extrusion process used to produce NEOLAST™ fibers eliminates the need for potentially hazardous chemicals typically associated with elastane-based stretch fabrics. The fibers are manufactured using recyclable elastoester polymers, marking a significant stride in enabling the recycling of blended fabrics containing elastane. This move aligns with the industry’s pursuit of circular manufacturing for stretch fabrics.

Celanese and Under Armour are committed to exploring the potential of NEOLAST™ fibers to enhance the compatibility of stretch fabrics with future recycling systems and infrastructure.  Hydrogen Revolution

Tom Kelly, Celanese Senior Vice President of Engineered Materials, emphasizes the collaboration with Under Armour as the first step in unlocking the full potential of NEOLAST™. The innovative fiber not only enhances performance but also aligns with sustainability goals, embodying a transformative approach to textile innovation.

Kyle Blakely, Senior Vice President of Innovation at Under Armour, envisions NEOLAST™ as a transformative innovation for both the company and the textile industry, reinforcing their commitment to building better products with a focus on performance-driven sustainability. Beyond sustainability benefits, NEOLAST™ fibers offer increased production precision, allowing spinners to tailor power-stretch levels and engineer fibers to meet a diverse range of fabric specifications. Hydrogen Revolution

Celanese aims to extend the availability of NEOLAST™ fibers to the broader apparel industry, potentially reducing dependence on elastane. For more information on this groundbreaking fiber, visit www.neolastfibers.com. As Celanese and Under Armour continue to explore application opportunities, the collaborative effort holds promise for revolutionizing the future of performance stretch fabrics and promoting a circular economy in the textile industry.

Hydrogen Revolution

BP’s Odyssey into Hydrogen Revolution

As a leading force in the global oil and gas industry, BP is boldly navigating towards a future powered by green hydrogen—an innovative and sustainable energy source poised to revolutionize the carbon landscape.

This strategic shift mirrors BP’s overarching vision to transition from a traditional oil company into a fully-integrated energy behemoth.  Hydrogen Revolution

Green hydrogen is produced through water electrolysis, a process driven by electrolyzers fueled by renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power.

This environmentally conscious production method sharply contrasts with grey hydrogen, derived from natural gas, and blue hydrogen, which involves carbon capture and storage to curb emissions.

What distinguishes green hydrogen is its zero-emissions profile, presenting itself as a crucial component in the global pursuit of sustainable energy solutions.

BP’s commitment to green hydrogen is vividly illustrated through strategic collaborations. In partnership with Orsted, a Danish energy firm, BP is actively contributing to a substantial green hydrogen production facility in Germany. Hydrogen Revolution

This collaboration is just one facet of BP’s comprehensive approach to green hydrogen.

Going beyond collaborations, BP is directing investments through its venture capital arm to propel advancements in hydrogen technology.

Actively engaging with industry stakeholders and policymakers, BP is playing a pivotal role in shaping the infrastructure and transport networks necessary for a hydrogen-powered future.

As climate goals intensify, major players in the energy sector are racing to adopt low-carbon technologies.  Hydrogen Revolution

BP’s substantial investment underscores a collective acknowledgment within the industry that green hydrogen is not merely a passing trend but a lasting solution in the pursuit of sustainable energy.

BP’s strategic pivot into green hydrogen signifies a transformative repositioning, not only for the company itself but for the entire energy sector.

This move stands as a testament to the industry’s recognition of green hydrogen as a pivotal player in the evolving low-carbon energy landscape.

BP’s commitment to this sustainable energy source is poised to contribute significantly to the global effort to combat climate change and usher in a cleaner, more sustainable energy future.  Hydrogen Revolution

Hydrogen Revolution

Braskem and Shell Chemicals will work together to use more circular content in Braskem’s polypropylene production, as part of a broader improvement of the value chain, the company announced.

The circular polypropylene will be made from a feedstock that is ISCC PLUS-certified, based on a mass balance approach, and will be used by Braskem’s customers in various applications, such as packaging and automotive.

Shell plans to upgrade and process pyrolysis oil from plastic waste at its new upgrader plant at Shell’s Chemicals Park at Moerdijk, Netherlands, before sending it to Braskem’s polypropylene plant in Wesseling, Germany, for further conversion. The upgrader, which is being built, can process up to 50,000 tonnes of pyrolysis oil a year and will eliminate many of the impurities in pyrolysis oil to produce a higher quality feedstock for chemicals production. This upgraded feedstock can replace conventional virgin fossil feedstocks for the chemicals industry. Hydrogen Revolution

Danielle Ebentreich, Chief Marketing & Sustainability Officer at Shell Chemicals, says “This agreement shows our commitment to tackling challenging environmental issues, such as plastic waste and hard-to-recycle plastics. By using our investments in innovative, sustainable projects at Shell’s strategically located Energy and Chemical Parks, we can play a key role, together with our partners along the value chain, in creating sustainable solutions for our customers and society.” “Implementing initiatives that involve plastic waste recovery, and mechanical and chemical recycling in our production processes is linked to our company’s purpose to offer a more circular and sustainable future, on top of the leading position Braskem has in biopolymers globally. Hydrogen Revolution

This agreement is an important step to combine Shell’s technology and infrastructure with Braskem’s polymer skills and market knowledge towards more sustainable and scalable solutions”, says Walmir Soller, VP of Olefins and Polyolefins at Braskem Europe & Asia.

Hydrogen Revolution

Italy’s Prada’s Re-Nylon collection spotlights sustainability


  • Prada’s Re-Nylon collection, launched in 2019, signifies a dual identity of innovation and responsibility. The brand’s radical commitment to sustainability involves converting all virgin nylon production to Econyl, a regenerated nylon yarn.
  • The 2024 collection showcases timeless pieces framed by the ocean, reflecting Prada’s active preservation efforts.

Prada’s Re-Nylon collection embodies responsibility in action, placing circularity and sustainability at its core. Launched in 2019, Prada Re-Nylon – comprising accessories and ready-to-wear for men and women – epitomises a fundamental duality of Prada’s identity; innovation in spirit, responsibility in action. Hydrogen Revolution

Placing sustainability at the heart of a fashion collection, Prada Re-Nylon has instigated a shift across the brand as a whole. Today, production of all Prada virgin nylon has been converted to regenerated nylon, a radical commitment to sustainability by a major luxury house.

In the twenty-first century, notions of luxury have again shifted, embracing ideologies and environmental concerns – thinking luxury. Prada Re-Nylon is an evolution of this iconic fabric to Econyl, a regenerated nylon yarn that can be ceaselessly recycled to produce material of the same high quality, the brand said in a press release.

This journey, in turn, inspires the 2024 Prada Re-Nylon collection campaign which presents an offering of timeless and eternal pieces, worn by Emma Watson and Benedict Cumberbatch. This new collection is literally framed by the environment it is actively preserving: the ocean.  Hydrogen Revolution


Italy's Prada's Re-Nylon collection spotlights sustainability

LG Chem partners with Italian state energy company to establish hydrotreated vegetable oil joint venture

LG Chem, the chemical unit of LG Group, partnered with Enilive, a state-run energy company in Italy, to set up a joint venture targeting the hydrotreated vegetable oil market. The biofuel with an extremely low freezing point can be used as aviation and automobile fuel.  Hydrogen Revolution
Hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) is made through either hydrocracking or hydrogenation of vegetable oil. Hydrocracking dismantles large molecules into smaller ones, while hydrogeneration is the process of adding hydrogen to the molecules of vegetable oil. These methods are often utilized to create alternative sources for chemical feedstocks. Diesel fuel created by hydrotreating is called renewable diesel.
LG Chem said the company agreed with Enilive to set up a joint venture for HVO business. The joint venture will construct a plant by 2026 in Daesan, about 100 kilometers (62 miles) southwest of Seoul.
The factory will produce around 300,000 tons of HVO annually. After signing a head of agreement (HOA) in February 2023 for the joint factory, the two sides carried out technical and economic feasibility tests. Hydrogen Revolution
HVO can also be used to produce of superabsorbent polymer (SAP), a raw material for diapers and many other hygiene products, and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), a common thermoplastic polymer for manufacturing household and consumer goods as well as medical and industrial products.
LG Chem partners with Italian state energy company to establish hydrotreated vegetable oil joint venture

Europe R-PE continues to face tough trading conditions, although some optimism remains

The majority of players expect recycled polyethylene’s (R-PE) tough trading conditions to continue into 2024 due to ongoing bearish macroeconomic conditions, although many expect this to improve compared with 2023.  Hydrogen Revolution

Many are predicting that weak demand will continue across at least H1, and it will potentially not be until 2025 before the market sees a full-scale recovery, depending on the evolution of the cost of living crisis and the substitution pressure to virgin.

Some players in the recycled high density polyethylene (R-HDPE) market are hopeful of a slight bounce in Q1 – particularly players in packaging grades – as a result of restocking after the year-end, and due to the resumption of several previously suspended packaging projects.  Hydrogen Revolution

Nevertheless, the packaging sector remains more cost sensitive than it has been for various years, while the end-use market in sectors such as construction, home improvement and outdoor furniture – which continue to comprise the lion’s share of consumption – remain heavily negatively impacted by the cost-of-living crisis.

The European Parliament’s Autumn 2023 ‘Eurobarometer’ showed that 47% of Europeans have seen their standard of living reduced in 2023, with 37% having difficulties paying bills, and 73% expecting their standard of living to further decrease in the next 12 months.  Hydrogen Revolution


Europe R-PE continues to face tough trading conditions, although some optimism remains

Aquapak research highlights fashion industry commitment to circular economy

Reducing plastic in packaging is important part of sustainability strategies

A new study with board directors and senior executives who work for fashion brands and retailers in the UK, US and Australia by Aquapak Polymers reveals 12% expect their business to be fully circular within one to two years, 34% within two to three years and 31% within three to four years.  One fifth expect to reach this goal in four to five years.

Aquapak Polymers specialises in polymer-based material technologies that can deliver both performance and environmental responsibility at scale.  Hydrogen Revolution

Almost one third (32%) rated their strategy for making their business fully circular as excellent, over half (54%) said it was good and 14% described it as average, suggesting there is room for improvement.

When it comes to sustainability leadership, over half (54%) described their business as a market leader and innovator, 39% said that their business was average and ‘following the leaders’ and 7% described their business as a laggard and ‘playing catchup’.

The findings also show that while 49% said sustainability is regarded as highly important to the success of their business, just 21% described the quality of effectiveness of their sustainability strategy and programme as excellent.  Hydrogen Revolution

Over one third (37%) said that reducing the use of polyethylene plastic in packaging is a highly important part of their sustainability strategy, and a further 63% said it was quite important.

To help reduce plastic packaging pollution Aquapak has developed Hydropol, a new polymer which is soluble and non-toxic to marine life. Hydropol can be used as an alternative to conventional plastic in a wide variety of applications as it provides the same functionality and performance but without the associated environmental problems.  It is currently used to make products such as garment bags, offering all the necessary features of traditional polybags– strength and puncture resistance, clarity of film, and protection from leakages and dirt.  Hydrogen Revolution


Aquapak research highlights fashion industry commitment to circular economy

Electric car – Chemical recycling emerges as a pivotal solution in addressing the escalating plastic waste crisis, garnering significant attention from entities like the Alliance to End Plastic Waste 22-001-2024

Hydrogen Revolution

Electric car – Chemical recycling emerges as a pivotal solution in addressing the escalating plastic waste crisis, garnering significant attention from entities like the Alliance to End Plastic Waste 22-001-2024

Electric car

PET Bottle Polymer – r-PET – Filament grade semidull chips -Filament grade bright chips – Ny6 – Ny66 – PP – Polyester POY – DTY – FDY – PSF – Recycled Polyester POY – Nylon POY – DTY – FDY Spandex 20-30-40 -Viscose Staple Fiber VSF  Acrylic Staple Fiber


Electric car

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Chemical recycling emerges as a pivotal solution in addressing the escalating plastic waste crisis, garnering significant attention from entities like the Alliance to End Plastic Waste

Fueled by commitments from major corporations such as Coca Cola and Nestlé to incorporate more recycled plastics into their packaging, the petrochemical industry faces increased pressure to explore advanced chemical recycling technologies for plastic waste reduction.  Electric car

The potential impact of chemical recycling on the U.S. economy is substantial, with the American Chemistry Council projecting an annual economic output of $9.9 billion. This includes a noteworthy $4.1 billion attributed to the generation of new products through chemical recycling facilities. The economic prospects underscore the transformative potential of chemical recycling in reshaping not only waste management practices but also contributing to economic growth.

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste, a nonprofit organization comprising stakeholders across the plastics value chain, identifies chemical recycling as a focal point in its mission. This coalition encompasses a diverse range of participants, including chemical and plastic manufacturers, consumer goods companies, retailers, converters, and waste management entities. The collaborative efforts within this alliance highlight the collective commitment to finding sustainable solutions within the plastics industry. Electric car

As the petrochemical industry grapples with the urgency of mitigating plastic waste, chemical recycling emerges as a beacon of promise. Positioned at the intersection of environmental responsibility and economic opportunity, chemical recycling holds the potential to revolutionize how society approaches plastic waste management on a large scale.

Electric car

StoreDot, an Israeli startup specializing in ultra-fast charging technology for lithium batteries, has unveiled the I-BEAM XFC cell-to-pack architecture, a breakthrough in electric vehicle charging

The technology enables the integration of StoreDot’s high-speed charging cells into a compact and heat-resistant module.

Presented at Polestar Day last November, StoreDot announced a collaboration with Swedish brand Polestar to develop a prototype, the Polestar 5, featuring their extreme fast charging (XFC) technology.  Electric car

StoreDot’s cells, utilizing a silicon anode, can absorb significant current rapidly, allowing a 10 to 80% charge in just 10 minutes or adding 160 km of range in 5 minutes.

The challenge lies in managing the heat generated during high-speed charging, addressed by the I-BEAM XFC architecture.

This innovative design incorporates an integrated cooling system and a reinforced structure to protect cells from thermal shock, eliminating the need for additional components in the battery pack.

The breakthrough has garnered support from major industry players, including BP, Daimler, VinFast, Volvo Cars, Polestar, Ola Electric, Samsung, and TDK.

StoreDot plans to send cell samples for automaker testing in 2024 and aims to build new factories in the United States.  Electric car

With patented technology, StoreDot envisions further advancements, targeting 100 miles of range in just 3 minutes by 2028.

The collaboration with Polestar represents a significant stride towards revolutionizing electric vehicle charging, marking StoreDot as a key player in the future of sustainable transportation.

Electric car

BRICS: Why Has Saudi Arabia Not Yet Joined the Alliance?

In a surprising turn of events for the BRICS alliance, Saudi Arabia, despite receiving an invitation at the August 2023 Annual Summit, has not yet joined the economic bloc, raising questions about the initially anticipated partnership. Contrary to widespread belief, Saudi Arabia officially stated at the beginning of 2024 that it is still considering BRICS membership, sparking speculation about the factors influencing this decision.

The BRICS alliance, comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, expanded its reach in the previous year by inviting additional nations, including Saudi Arabia. However, as of the official inclusion date for the expanded nations, Saudi Arabia remains on the sidelines. Argentina is the only country that has explicitly rejected the offered membership, with the others still contemplating their participation. Electric car

Despite being a member of the BRICS New Development Bank, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Commerce, Majid Al-Kasabi, clarified that the inclusion process has not been officially finalized. Reports suggest heightened geopolitical tensions between BRICS and the United States as a potential reason for the delay, highlighting the intricate diplomatic landscape.

The consideration process involves assessing the benefits of joining BRICS, according to Saudi Arabia’s Economy Minister, Faisal Alibrahim. He emphasized the kingdom’s engagement in various multilateral platforms and institutions, indicating a meticulous decision-making process.  Electric car

The unexpected delay in Saudi Arabia’s decision has prompted speculation, especially given its historically strong ties with the United States.

Director General of the Security Research Center of Naif Arab University for Security Sciences, Hesham Alghannam, identified “political implications” as the primary drivers behind the delayed decision. Saudi Arabia aims to maintain an equal distance from major powers and avoid sending signals that could be misinterpreted by any party.

The ongoing evaluation of benefits and the consideration of potential political ramifications underscore the complexity of Saudi Arabia’s decision-making process regarding BRICS membership.  Electric car

Mohammed bin Salman

Mohammed bin Salman

China defies sanctions to make Russia its biggest oil supplier in 2023

Immigration inspection officers in protective suits check a tanker carrying imported crude oil at the port in Qingdao, Shandong province, China May 9, 2022. Photo : China Daily via REUTERS/Files

Russia leapfrogged Saudi Arabia to become China’s top crude oil supplier in 2023, data showed on Saturday, as the world’s biggest crude importer defied Western sanctions to purchase vast quantities of discounted oil for its processing plants.

Russia shipped a record 107.02 million metric tons of crude oil to China last year, equivalent to 2.14 million barrels per day (bpd), the Chinese customs data showed, far more than other major oil exporters such as Saudi Arabia and Iraq.

Imports from Saudi Arabia, previously China’s largest supplier, fell 1.8 per cent to 85.96 million tons, as the Middle East oil giant lost market share to cheaper Russian crude.

Shunned by many international buyers following Western sanctions over the Kremlin’s 2022 invasion of Ukraine, Russian crude oil traded at significant discounts to international benchmarks for much of last year amid a Western-imposed price cap.

Accelerating demand from Chinese and Indian refiners for the discounted oil boosted the price of Russian ESPO crude through 2023, pushing past the Group of Seven’s $60 a barrel price cap imposed in December 2022 as alternative shipping and insurance options to circumvent the sanctions proliferated.

ESPO crude shipments for December delivery were priced at a discount of around 50 cents to 20 cent per barrel to the ICE Brent benchmark, versus a $1 premium for October delivery cargoes and a discount of $8.50 for shipments delivered in March, according to trading sources.

At the same time, Saudi Arabia raised prices for its signature Arab Light from July, pushing some refiners to look for cheaper cargoes.


China defies sanctions to make Russia its biggest oil supplier in 2023

The Stellantis electric car platform with 800 km of autonomy

STLA Large, the cutting-edge electric vehicle (EV) platform from Stellantis, has officially debuted, heralding a new era in automotive innovation

With an impressive range of up to 800 kilometers and an astonishing acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in approximately 2 seconds, STLA Large sets a new standard for electric performance. Unveiled as the native Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) architecture for future electric cars, it will make its debut in North America this year under the Dodge and Jeep brands, later expanding to Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, and Maserati globally.

Stellantis promises a total of eight models from 2024 to 2026, boasting unparalleled technological flexibility and top-tier quality.  Electric car

This EV platform will be featured in sedans, SUVs, and luxury cars (D and E segments), offering a choice between 400 and 800 Volt architectures with a maximum charging efficiency of 4.5 kWh. Battery options range from 85 to 118 kWh.

The intrinsic flexibility of the platform empowers engineers and designers to tailor key dimensions such as wheelbase, overall length, width, and total and ground heights. The platform supports various suspension modules and multiple propulsion systems to meet the specific performance goals of each vehicle, including driving dynamics, handling, and comfort.  Electric car

Innovative high-strength materials optimize the platform for weight and rigidity, ensuring best-in-class performance across all vehicle types. Components like the climate control system, steering, braking system, and propulsion are designed to minimize energy consumption and enhance driving range, reflecting a commitment to sustainability and efficiency. STLA Large is poised to revolutionize the automotive landscape, representing a groundbreaking leap toward the future of electric mobility.

STLA Large, the cutting-edge electric vehicle (EV) platform from Stellantis, has officially debuted, heralding a new era in automotive innovation

Circular Economy

The transition to a circular economy of plastics is crucial for a sustainable future. Recovering, reusing and extending the life of plastic materials is an opportunity to protect the environment, create business opportunities and help build a better world. Join the change, join the circular economy. Electric car

The world is advancing at a rapid pace in all aspects and is constantly growing, resulting in a higher and higher demand for products and resources. Plastic materials are key to the Circular Economy model because of their potential to be recovered and used as a resource.

In order to make sustainable growth possible, it is necessary to make the leap to a development model that reduces the amount of resources needed to make new products and that is capable of addressing the waste that it creates.  Electric car

This means moving on from a linear model based on a “use and throwaway” ideology to a new one, called the Circular Economy. The European Union is opting for this model as it could reduce urban waste by up to 65% by 2030.

Why is Circular Economy for Plastics necessary?

In this new model, plastic materials are necessary because they offer considerable benefits as they are capable of being recovered and reused as resources.

The Circular Economy offers answers to the challenge of environmental sustainability and can also be adopted by companies as a business opportunity. Improving designs and management systems and extending the life of plastics can generate new jobs, reduce greenhouse gases and lower dependence on fossil fuels.  Electric car

Circular Economy

Electric cars: battery passport mandatory in Europe from 2027

Electric cars sold in the European Union after February 2027 will be required to feature a battery passport, detailing comprehensive information about the battery pack’s supply chain, sources, and raw materials. The European Union has established the Battery Pass Consortium to determine the specifics of these passports. The current evaluation involves considering 90 pieces of information across seven categories, encompassing general battery and manufacturer data, compliance, certifications, carbon footprint, supply chain due diligence, battery materials and composition, circularity and resource efficiency, as well as performance and durability.  Electric car

The cost of obtaining a battery passport is estimated to range between 6 and 12 euros per battery. These documents will not only establish a detailed digital trail of production stages but also grant manufacturers access to critical supply chain information. By offering insights into the raw materials such as cobalt, graphite, lithium, and nickel, the battery passports aim to create a comprehensive electronic record of information collected at every production stage.

The introduction of battery passports is geared towards providing end consumers, upon request, with in-depth details about the composition of their electric vehicle batteries. This transparency could significantly impact consumer purchasing decisions. Further developments in this initiative are expected in the upcoming weeks.  Electric car

Electric cars: battery passport mandatory in Europe from 2027

Freight rates and delays continue to climb as Red Sea violence continues

Amid escalating violence in the Red Sea, freight rates and delays are on the rise, impacting shipments from Asia and the Indian Subcontinent to Europe and the U.S. East and Gulf Coasts, according to UPS Inc. The Yemen-based Houthi Militia’s attacks on ocean vessels entering the Red Sea en route to the Suez Canal have led most carriers to avoid the region, disrupting the global supply chain. Spot rates for container shipments from the Far East to the Mediterranean have surged, with a $1,630 increase per forty-foot equivalent unit (FEU) between January 14 and 18, reaching an average of $6,050 per FEU.

While current spot rates are below the 2022 peak, they are causing significant market turmoil. The Red Sea crisis has led to rapid rate increases and disruptions, outpacing the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Electric car

Shippers face challenges with longer shipping times, disrupted schedules, space shortages, and increased costs.

UPS recommends proactive measures for dealing with Suez Canal challenges:

  1. Act intentionally and plan early, remaining flexible in the face of unplanned situations.
  2. Identify urgent shipments and consider alternative shipping modes, such as air freight.
  3. Utilize the UPS Forwarding Hub for a one-stop self-service portal to quote, book, and track air and ocean shipments.
  4. Have a contingency plan in place to ensure business continuity in the event of delays or disruptions.  Electric car

Freight rates and delays continue to climb as Red Sea violence continues

Electric car

Recycled content – In the initial half of January 2024, the German polyamide market witnessed a notable decline in prices, primarily attributed to feeble demand in key downstream industries 20-01-2024

Recycled content – In the initial half of January 2024, the German polyamide market witnessed a notable decline in prices, primarily attributed to feeble demand in key downstream industries 20-01-2024

Recycled content

ALPLA Group, a leading global packaging entity, is significantly elevating its processing capabilities for recycled PET and HDPE, marking a crucial step towards achieving its 2025 voluntary recycled content goals

In a comprehensive review of its 2023 activities, the Austrian-based plastic packaging and recycling firm reported processing 386,000 short tons of recycled resin in-house, doubling the amount from just two years prior, showcasing a robust commitment to sustainability. ALPLA plans additional investments in 2024 to further strengthen its recycling capabilities.

In a notable achievement, the company integrated 20% recycled content into its packaging materials in 2023, underlining its dedication to advancing sustainable practices. ALPLA is strategically concentrating on internally processing higher-quality recycled PET and HDPE to achieve its ambitious target of 25% recycled content in packaging materials by 2025. Recycled content

To spearhead this effort, the company established a dedicated recycling-focused branch in 2023, named ALPLArecycling.

The company’s commitment to recycling growth is evident in its actions, actively expanding capacities to emphasize sustainable practices and circular economy principles. The surge in demand for recycled HDPE validates the effectiveness of ALPLA’s strategy, with the company expressing confidence in its approach.

ALPLA’s recent strides in recycling underscore its continuous dedication to integrating recycled materials into production processes. In 2022, the company used 361,000 short tons of recycled resin, and in 2021, this figure was 311,000 short tons, emphasizing the ongoing commitment to increasing the utilization of recycled materials and fostering a circular approach to plastics.  Recycled content

ALPLA’s recycling operations have a global footprint, with PET and HDPE recycling plants strategically located in Austria, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Poland, Romania, Spain, and Thailand. This extensive presence positions ALPLA as a key player in advancing global recycling practices and contributing to the circular economy.

As ALPLA advances its recycling initiatives, the company stands at the forefront of the packaging industry’s transition to more sustainable and environmentally friendly practices. Strategic decisions to enhance in-house processing capacities, establish a dedicated recycling branch, and set ambitious recycled content targets underline ALPLA’s leadership in embracing a circular economy model. These efforts not only align with evolving consumer preferences for eco-conscious products but also position ALPLA as a trailblazer in sustainable packaging solutions.  Recycled content

Recycled content

Black Swan Graphene announces a range of Graphene Enhanced Masterbatch (“GEM”) products

Black Swan Graphene has announced a range of Graphene Enhanced Masterbatch (“GEM”) products. These GEMs offer different performance and attributes of products aimed at multiple applications in the polymer industry. This announcement follows a recent commercial agreement ratified with Hubron International, a global leader in black masterbatch manufacturingRecycled content

Black Swan stated that its products are the results of extensive internal development efforts, including independent verification using the expertise at the Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (“GEIC”) and a strategic partnership with Hubron. The primary objective of the product development endeavors extends beyond performance; it strives for consistency, a pivotal factor in the commercialization of additive products.

Initial production volumes are focused on polypropylene; a widely used polymer known for its versatility and cost-effectiveness. However, its relatively low impact resistance has often posed a challenge in various applications. By incorporating only 1% of graphene into the polypropylene (loading ratio), an impressive 30% improvement in impact resistance was achieved in a Notched Izod test, which assesses the amount of energy absorbed by a material when struck by a notched sample.  Recycled content

Graphene enhanced products, with the addition of Black Swan’s product, reportedly demonstrate multiple performance benefits, including enhanced processability and therefore cost-effectiveness. Masterbatches with a loading ratio of up to 20% are available in various polymers. This repeatable performance in enhancing the impact resistance of polypropylene enables new possibilities across multiple industries, notably for different packaging and lightweighting in the transportation industry, a key driver for range increase and fuel efficiency.

Hubron and Black Swan are also working with the polymer matrix of a world-leading industrial polymer manufacturer, which launched an aggressive initiative to develop plastic materials for electric vehicles aimed at reduced weight, expand design freedom, reduce complexity, enhance thermal management, and reduce environmental impact. The development program resulted thus far in a 20% improvement in tensile strength, based on a loading ratio of only 0.2%.  Recycled content

Robert Laurent, Technical Director at Hubron, commented: “These results further add weight to the potential benefits of incorporating graphene materials into thermoplastics. A 30% impact resistance improvement is exciting, and we are looking to expand these trials into commercial applications. We are also able to fine-tune compound properties to deliver customer specific solutions.”

Simon Marcotte, President and Chief Executive Officer of Black Swan, commented: “This development marks a substantial leap in advancing the performance of polymer materials. The enhanced capabilities of graphene-enhanced polypropylene not only signify a breakthrough but also have the potential to reshape entire industries. We are confident that this innovation will spark creativity and drive transformative solutions across a diverse range of products and applications.”  Recycled content


Recycled content

Volkswagen is intensifying its pursuit of solid-state batteries, doubling down on its commitment after a strategic partnership with QuantumScape

The German automaker is now engaging in negotiations with Blue Solutions to expedite the development process.

Seeking to avoid delays experienced with QuantumScape, in which Volkswagen has invested, the company aims to secure a reliable source for solid-state batteries.

Blue Solutions, associated with the Bolloré group, already holds a contract to supply these batteries to Mercedes for use in electric buses.  Recycled content

The negotiations between Volkswagen and Blue Solutions, as reported by Reuters from insider sources, center on a collaborative effort to develop solid-state batteries.

These batteries, based on the technology utilized in Mercedes buses, will be adapted for integration into Volkswagen’s electric vehicles.

The lithium-metal battery, known for its flexible structure called FlexFrame, addresses the stresses encountered during charging and discharging phases.

In a video presentation, QuantumScape’s executives, including Chief Product Officer Chris Dekmezian and Senior Director of Cell Design and Manufacturing Daniel Braithwaite, along with University of Michigan’s Associate Professor Venkat Viswanathan, shed light on the battery’s chemistry and architecture.  Recycled content

Volkswagen’s determination to advance solid-state battery technology underscores its commitment to the electrification of its vehicle fleet, emphasizing a proactive approach to secure a robust and timely supply chain.

Recycled content

StoreDot has introduced a groundbreaking advancement in extreme fast charging (XFC) technology with its innovative I-Beam XFC cell-to-pack (CTP) concept

At the heart of this concept lies StoreDot’s exclusive 100in5 cell technology, capable of providing a remarkable 100 miles (160 kilometers) of range in just 5 minutes of charging. The 100in5 electrodes are intricately integrated into the newly developed I-Beam XFC cells, designed for direct incorporation into the battery pack.

While conventional cell-to-pack architectures primarily target enhancing range and energy density, StoreDot’s focus extends to the acceleration of extreme fast charging. The I-Beam XFC concept overcomes the complexities and cost challenges associated with integrating XFC capability at the vehicle level, facilitating even faster charging for electric vehicles (EVs).  Recycled content

Diverging from traditional cooling systems, the I-Beam XFC introduces the patented Structural Cooling concept embedded within each cell’s structure. This innovative thermal management approach prevents localized hotspots, ensuring uniform temperatures throughout the battery pack. This capability allows the acceptance of ultra-high currents required for fast charging, minimizing system overhead. Recycled content

Although currently a conceptual framework, StoreDot has already secured multiple patents related to the I-Beam XFC architecture. The company perceives this design as pivotal in unlocking the full potential of XFC technology on a mass scale. Dr. Doron Myersdorf, CEO of StoreDot, affirms their commitment to advancing XFC battery technology from the cell level to the vehicle level, with the I-Beam XFC representing a holistic approach to improving packing efficiency, battery life cycle, and enabling rapid EV charging, likening it to the speed of refueling with petrol. As part of its ambitious plans for 2024, StoreDot aims to demonstrate the world’s first EV equipped with XFC technology, ship prismatic B-samples to OEMs, and expand operations in the US. Recycled content

StoreDot has introduced a groundbreaking advancement in extreme fast charging (XFC) technology with its innovative I-Beam XFC cell-to-pack (CTP) concept

In the initial half of January 2024, the German polyamide market witnessed a notable decline in prices, primarily attributed to feeble demand in key downstream industries

Over the past fortnight, the pricing trajectory of polyamide has been unfavorably impacted by subdued consumption in sectors vital to Germany’s economy, including textiles, electrical, and automotive.

This downturn has given rise to a bearish market environment, exerting downward pressure on polyamide prices.

The consumption patterns and pricing trends of polyamide are intricately linked to various factors, encompassing economic conditions, industrial activities, and global market dynamics.  Recycled content

A pivotal factor contributing to this market shift is the weakness observed in feedstock prices, particularly Adipic Acid and Caprolactam, which has reverberated through the largest economy in the Eurozone.

This influence has permeated downstream derivative sectors, such as Polyamide 6 and 66. The subdued pricing of essential components like Adipic Acid and Caprolactam has cast a broader impact on the dynamics of Polyamide 6 and 66.

Consequently, the German Polyamide market found itself in a situation where ample supply met domestic requirements, prompting merchants to operate based on existing stock levels, leading to a decline in fresh orders.  Recycled content

The abundance of supply and reliance on existing stock fostered a cautious approach among merchants, thereby hampering the generation of new orders in the market.

The European market, in general, is grappling with the repercussions of global economic volatility and diminished purchasing power due to elevated interest rates and inflation.

The decline in purchasing activity observed in December 2023 extended into January 2024, as manufacturers sought to optimize their stock levels.

Notably, the automotive sector experienced a sharp reduction in new car registrations, with 241,883 fewer registrations nationwide compared to the previous year, marking a substantial 23% decline.  Recycled content

Authorities in the industry attributed this disruption to the premature discontinuation of incentives for purchasing electric cars, contributing to a year-long decline in registrations. These events signify a decreased utilization of Polyamide in the automotive industry during this specific timeframe.

Forecasts indicate that the demand for Polyamide from downstream sectors, particularly automotive and textiles, is expected to further decrease in the coming weeks.

This projection is grounded in the prevailing weak demand conditions across Europe, influenced by ongoing economic factors and market dynamics.

The anticipation is that subdued demand will lead to a reduction in the utilization of Polyamide within sectors such as automotive and textiles.  Recycled content

In the initial half of January 2024, the German polyamide market witnessed a notable decline in prices, primarily attributed to feeble demand in key downstream industries

Avantium, Helios Resins sign multi-year FDCA agreement

Helios plans to partially or fully replace petro-based terephthalic acid, the key building block for polyester resins, with FDCA

Renewable chemistry company Avantium and Helios, a Slovenia-based manufacturer of  coating resins, composite resins, and polyester polyols for PU flexible foams, have signed a ‘multi-year’ capacity reservation agreement. Avantium will supply Helios with FDCA (furandicarboxylic acid) from its flagship plant that is currently under construction in Delfzijl, the Netherlands.  Recycled content

Production at the new facility – the world’s first  commercial facility for the production of FDCA from plant-based sugars – is expected to commence in 2024.

Avantium has developed a proprietary YXY technology that uses catalysts to convert plant-based sugar (fructose) into FDCA, the key building block for a wide range of plant-based chemicals and plastics such as polyethylene furanoate (PEF). PEF is a 100% plant-based and recyclable plastic. Applications include polyesters, polyamides and polyurethanes, as well as coating resins, plasticisers, and other chemical products.

Avantium will sell FDCA and PEF directly from its FDCA flagship plant to its customers, in parallel to selling technology licences to industrial partners.

Helios plans to partially or fully replace petro-based terephthalic acid, the key building block for polyester resins, with FDCA.  Recycled content

“This capacity reservation for FDCA developed by Avantium provides assurance that we can use FDCA widely in the future for our resins and coatings,” said Dr. Martin Ocepek, director R&D synthetic resins at Helios Resins.

Avantium, Helios Resins sign multi-year FDCA agreement

Loop Industries, a Canadian company specializing in chemical recycling technology for PET and polyester fiber waste, is set to receive a significant boost with a $66 million investment from Reed Management

This strategic collaboration aims to propel the adoption of Loop’s innovative depolymerization process in Europe.

Reed Management’s investment, outlined in a non-binding memorandum of understanding, includes a $11 million equity investment in a joint venture to acquire commercialization rights for Loop’s technology in Europe. Recycled content

Additionally, a $22 million loan from the joint venture to Loop, divided into two tranches, will further support the company’s initiatives.

The remaining $33 million commitment will cover the initial costs of chemical recycling projects in Europe, including a joint venture with Suez and SK Geo Centric for a new plant in Saint-Avold, France.

Loop Industries Founder and CEO, Daniel Solomita, highlights the strategic significance of the partnership with Reed, leveraging their financial relationships and experience in major capital investments.  Recycled content

This collaboration aims to facilitate Loop’s penetration of the European market, aligning with stringent regulatory requirements for plastic material recycling.

Solomita emphasizes the financial structure’s accretive nature to shareholder value, minimizing dilution while maximizing the potential for future projects.

Loop Industries’ innovative technology focuses on depolymerizing PET and polyester waste, transforming it into high-quality monomers suitable for polymerization into new, virgin-like polyester, providing a sustainable solution for the plastics industry.

Loop Industries, a Canadian company specializing in chemical recycling technology for PET and polyester fiber waste, is set to receive a significant boost with a $66 million investment from Reed Management

Austria’s Lenzing introduces an innovative processing technique for TENCEL Lyocell fibers, designed specifically for stretch fabrics with enhanced recovery properties

These fabrics, known for their ease of care, not only provide superior comfort but also open up endless design possibilities for lightweight apparel. Lenzing actively supports its mill partners in achieving the “BS EN 14704-1” standard for TENCEL Lyocell stretch fabrics, demonstrating a commitment to quality and industry standards.  Recycled content

The groundbreaking processing technique involves the re-engineering of woven fabric composed of TENCEL Lyocell fibers, combined with a fabric pre-treatment. This technique results in increased yarn crimps in the widthwise direction during the wet process, leading to exceptional stretch and recovery properties. The fabric maintains a smooth appearance even after home laundering, showcasing its durability and resistance to shrinkage or wrinkles.

Rex Mok, Vice President of Fiber Technical Marketing and Development at Lenzing, emphasizes the technical innovation’s ability to unlock the inherent potential of TENCEL Lyocell fibers, providing stretch fabrics that move harmoniously with the body.

This not only enhances comfort but also aligns with responsible production practices, offering a fossil-free alternative that adheres to sustainable and transparent supply chain principles.  Recycled content

Lenzing extends comprehensive support to its mill partners, ensuring that the stretch fabrics made with TENCEL Lyocell fibers meet international standards for fabric stretch and recovery properties. This collaboration empowers mills and brands to explore unlimited design possibilities, meeting the growing consumer demand for comfortable and responsibly produced apparel across various sectors.

TENCEL Lyocell fibers used in these stretch fabrics serve as a sustainable alternative to conventional synthetic materials. Derived from certified wood sources and produced through a resource-saving closed-loop process, these fibers contribute to reduced carbon emissions and water consumption. The traceability of these fibers back to their sources ensures greater accountability and transparency in the textile supply chain, aligning with Lenzing’s commitment to sustainable practices. Recycled cont Recycled contentent

Austria's Lenzing introduces an innovative processing technique for TENCEL Lyocell fibers, designed specifically for stretch fabrics with enhanced recovery properties

Red Sea Crisis – In a significant development, ERCA Textile Chemical Solutions (TCS) has officially emerged as an independent entity within the ERCA Group, exclusively dedicated to the textile industry 19-01-2024

Recycled content

Red Sea Crisis – In a significant development, ERCA Textile Chemical Solutions (TCS) has officially emerged as an independent entity within the ERCA Group, exclusively dedicated to the textile industry 19-01-2024

Red Sea Crisis

Maritime Security and Geopolitical Tensions: A Comprehensive Overview

In recent developments, the Houthi rebels in Yemen have assured the safe passage of Russian and Chinese ships transiting through the Red Sea. Mohammed al-Bukhaiti, a senior Houthi official, emphasized in an interview with the Russian agency Izvestia that the waters around Yemen remain safe for navigation, provided the ships are not connected to certain countries, particularly Israel. Al-Bukhaiti’s assurance underscores the Houthi commitment to ensuring free navigation, a crucial aspect for their country.

However, amidst these assurances, the Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for a missile attack on the American ship Chem Ranger off the coast of Yemen. They asserted that the attack was in retaliation for American and British actions, warning of further aggression if their interests are targeted. Red Sea Crisis

The United States Central Command confirmed the attack, stating that two anti-ship ballistic missiles were launched, but fortunately, no injuries or damage to the vessel were reported, allowing the tanker to continue its journey.

Despite the Houthi leader Abdel-Malek al-Houthi’s vow to continue naval attacks in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden, he specifically highlighted their intention to strike ships linked to Israel. This follows recent air attacks by the United States and Britain on Houthi targets in Yemen, escalating tensions in the region.

In a surprising turn of events, the Houthi rebels, whose attacks have disrupted maritime traffic in the Red Sea, offered a guarantee of “safe passage” to Chinese and Russian ships on this strategically important route. This move raises questions about the geopolitical dynamics at play, with the Houthi leadership seemingly distinguishing between nations and their vessels based on political affiliations.

The Houthi leadership criticized the military actions of the United States and the United Kingdom, claiming that their “folly and idiocy” have backfired, resulting in losses greater than those suffered by Yemen. According to Mohammed al-Bukhaiti, member of the Houthi political leadership, ships from China and Russia are not under threat, and the rebels are prepared to ensure the safe passage of their vessels in the Red Sea.

The exclusion of Israeli ships or those with any link to Israel from safe passage through the Red Sea reflects the Houthi rebels’ strategic objective of increasing the economic cost for the state of Israel, aiming to draw attention to the situation in Gaza and curb what they perceive as a humanitarian crisis. Red Sea Crisis

As tensions escalate, Al-Bukhaiti also warned of various scenarios, including the possibility of an American ground operation in Yemen. This highlights the complex and precarious nature of the geopolitical landscape in the region and the potential for further military engagements.

In conclusion, the assurance of safe passage for Russian and Chinese ships, coupled with the Houthi rebels’ continued naval attacks and warnings of potential scenarios, underscores the volatile situation in the Red Sea and the broader implications for maritime security and international relations. The geopolitical complexities in the region demand careful consideration and diplomatic efforts to prevent further escalation and protect the interests of all nations involved. Red Sea Crisis

Maritime Security and Geopolitical Tensions: A Comprehensive Overview

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

MEGlobal has announced a $10/tonne increase in the Asian Contract Price (ACP) for monoethylene glycol (MEG) for February 2024

The new nominated price stands at $850/tonne, reflecting a rise from the previous month’s ACP, as reported by the company. This adjustment is based on the CFR (cost & freight) Asia basis.

In January 2024, MEGlobal had set the ACP for MEG at $840/tonne, maintaining stability compared to the December ACP, according to information provided by a company source. During that period, the ACP was also determined on a CFR Asia basis.

The decision to raise the February ACP by $10/tonne aligns with market dynamics and may be influenced by factors such as production costs, supply and demand trends, and global economic conditions. MEGlobal’s proactive approach to periodic pricing adjustments reflects its responsiveness to the dynamic nature of the MEG market.

As MEGlobal continues to navigate market fluctuations, stakeholders will monitor how these adjustments impact the broader industry and whether they are indicative of wider trends in the global MEG market.

MEGlobal has announced a $10/tonne increase in the Asian Contract Price (ACP) for monoethylene glycol (MEG) for February 2024

TotalEnergies Corbion, based in Gorinchem, Netherlands, has unveiled the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) for recycled Luminy® PLA, titled “Life Cycle Assessment of PLA through Advanced Recycling – Utilizing Waste Streams as Feedstock for a Biobased Polyester”

The study reveals that the advanced recycling of PLA significantly reduces environmental impact compared to its production from virgin feedstock.

Specifically, the Global Warming Potential (GWP) of Luminy 30% rPLA, factoring in its biogenic carbon content, stands at 0.19 kgCO2/kg of PLA, whereas virgin Luminy PLA emits 0.51 kgCO2/kg of PLA. Seven impact categories were assessed in the report, including GWP, water consumption, and land use. Luminy recycled PLA, with 20% and 30% recycled content, effectively mitigates impacts across these categories, showcasing environmental benefits over traditional virgin production methods.

The report underscores the significance of considering temporary carbon storage in biobased materials, emphasizing the role of biogenic carbon content in PLA. Recycling PLA extends the storage of biogenic carbon from the atmosphere, contributing to reduced GWP. Notably, the GWP of 30% recycled PLA is reduced by 300 kgCO2/tPLA compared to virgin PLA, marking a substantial stride towards global climate targets.

Maelenn Ravard, Regulatory and Sustainability Manager at TotalEnergies Corbion, emphasizes the energy-efficient depolymerization process via hydrolysis in advanced recycling, closing the loop and enhancing circularity for biobased materials. The LCA results validate the efficiency of this process.

The LCAs evaluate the environmental impact of a product across its defined life scope. TotalEnergies Corbion’s commitment to sustainability aligns with its recent announcement of aligning with the United Nations Global Compact initiative. This collaboration emphasizes the company’s dedication to universal sustainability principles, actively supporting the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals through responsible production practices and collaborative initiatives across its value chain.

For those interested in the comprehensive analysis, the Life Cycle Assessment of PLA through Advanced Recycling can be accessed through the provided link.

TotalEnergies Corbion, based in Gorinchem, Netherlands, has unveiled the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) for recycled Luminy® PLA, titled "Life Cycle Assessment of PLA through Advanced Recycling - Utilizing Waste Streams as Feedstock for a Biobased Polyester"

In a significant development, ERCA Textile Chemical Solutions (TCS) has officially emerged as an independent entity within the ERCA Group, exclusively dedicated to the textile industry

Fabio Locatelli, CEO of ERCA TCS and an Associate of the ERCA Group, announced the decision, highlighting the company’s commitment to focusing solely on textile solutions while maintaining a robust foundation from ERCA S.p.A.

The strategic move to establish ERCA TCS as a distinct company is driven by the aspiration to prioritize the textile industry, fostering agility in research and production with a steadfast commitment to ethical, social, environmental, and economic responsibility. With an agile organizational structure and an amplified research and development department, ERCA TCS aims to swiftly address customer needs, fostering an engaging dialogue that results in pioneering developments and innovative chemical solutions.

As a pioneering force, ERCA TCS seeks to be the premier global reference for sustainable innovation in the textile sector, contributing to reducing the industry’s environmental impact while upholding performance and competitiveness. Red Sea Crisis

Fabio Locatelli emphasizes the company’s dedication to well-being, responsible resource usage, and the initiation of education and training initiatives, ensuring transparent and professional communication.

ERCA TCS employs “green chemistry” principles in its operations, exemplified by its flagship product, REVECOL®. This innovative chemical auxiliary, derived from critical waste materials like used vegetable oils, demonstrates immediate success in the textile industry. The establishment of ERCA TCS will further propel research and investment, expanding the product range available to the textile industry.

ERCA Group, with six plants across Europe, Latin America, and Asia, embodies responsible innovation in chemical specialties and auxiliaries, covering diverse markets. With a turnover of 150 million euros and a global workforce of 350 employees, ERCA Group is poised to address the challenges and opportunities in the textile industry, positioning ERCA TCS as a catalyst for responsible and high-quality productions.  Red Sea Crisis

Red Sea Crisis

Baltex Plans to Expand Polyamide Fabric Manufacturing in Russia

Baltex, also known as Balashovsky Textile Plant situated in Saratov, Russia, has embarked on a substantial investment project with a total value exceeding 800 million rubles to augment the production of polyamide fabrics. The inaugural phase of this expansive initiative, surpassing 300 million rubles, was successfully executed in 2023. This initial phase involved the installation of cutting-edge equipment, renovation of both production and residential facilities, and endeavors to enhance operational processes.

Citing a robust domestic demand for technological fabrics coupled with state support in the form of preferential financing from the Industrial Development Fund (IDF) of Russia, Baltex foresees commencing the second stage of production modernization in 2024. The projected investment for this stage focuses primarily on main equipment and is estimated to reach 500 million rubles.  Red Sea Crisis

The anticipated outcome of this ambitious investment project is a noteworthy 50% increase in production capacity, fortifying Baltex’s standing in the consumer market, particularly within the Saratov region.

It is noteworthy that the company’s strategic vision aligns with the broader industry trend of expansion and modernization. Recently, the Kotovsky Plant of Nonwovens in the Tambov Region announced plans to double the production of polyester, signalling a collective effort within the Russian textile sector to meet growing market demands.

Financial commitments to Baltex’s project are substantial, amounting to almost 141 million rubles. Notably, 91 million rubles of this sum are sourced from a preferential loan provided by VEB.RF, carrying an interest rate of merely 1% per annum. These funds are earmarked for the acquisition and deployment of state-of-the-art equipment critical to the success of the modernization efforts.  Red Sea Crisis

Baltex, as a comprehensive textile enterprise, boasts a full-cycle operational model, covering the spectrum from material development to the serial production of functional textiles. The company specializes specifically in the manufacturing and supply of high-strength polyamide fabrics, a niche that aligns with the increasing demand for advanced and durable materials in various industries.


Red Sea Crisis

Red Sea Crisis Casts a Shadow on Asian Polyester Staple Fiber (PSF) Exports in Early 2024

The recent crisis in the Red Sea and the subsequent changes in shipping routes through the Suez Canal are posing significant challenges on the export of Asian garments and textiles, particularly those made from Polyester Staple Fiber (PSF). This development comes at a time when these nations had anticipated improved prospects for 2024, but the crisis threatens to extend the slowdown in garment and textile exports due to the surge in freight charges, particularly to Europe.  Red Sea Crisis

Shinhan Securities Vietnam reports that Vietnamese firms exporting PSF to Europe and the East Coast of North America are facing disruptions due to the altered Red Sea routes. Vietnamese PSF exporters are expressing concerns about escalating transportation fees as shipping lines divert their routes to ensure safety amidst tensions in the Red Sea. This situation places an additional burden on exporters of PSF who were already grappling with the repercussions of the global economic slowdown in 2023.

Truong Dinh Hoe, the general secretary of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), notes that transport fees to the West Coast of the US surged by approximately 55-60% in January compared to the previous month. For the East Coast, the increase ranges from 58-73%. Notably, transportation fees to Hamburg, Germany, have skyrocketed to 3-4 times higher, jumping from USD 1200-1300 to USD 4350-4450.

The prevailing tension in the Red Sea area is causing an increase in oil prices, thereby positively affecting the upstream sector, and feedstock linked to oil like Purified Terephthalic Acid (PTA) and Mono-Ethylene Glycol (MEG), which serve as crucial feedstock for PSF.

At the beginning of 2024, there is a slowdown in the rate of growth in the demand for PSF in Asia, specifically in the home textiles sector. Nonetheless, there is an anticipated continuation of replenishment demand across the PSF industrial chain.

Concurrently, the outlook for foreign trade to Europe and the US is cautiously optimistic, marked by sluggish growth in PSF market, weakened economic strength, and an anticipation of reduced prices. Red Sea Crisis

More.. Red Sea Crisis

Newcleo and Naarea partners for fourth generation nuclear power

Newcleo and Naarea, two companies that are working on fourth generation nuclear reactors that can use waste as fuel, have announced a strategic and industrial partnership with the goal of “helping all the stakeholders involved in the fourth nuclear generation in their industrial, technological, scientific and regulatory progress”.

The partnership, according to a statement, is in line with the industrial alliance for Small Modular Reactors, which the European Commission will launch soon. Red Sea Crisis

The two companies, which were the first to win the France 2030 competition for innovative nuclear reactor projects, will collaborate to speed up the development of their technologies: newcleo is working on a mini-reactor with lead cooling and fast neutrons (a 30MWe prototype and a 200MWe commercial unit) and NAAREA is working on a micro-generator with molten salt and fast neutrons (40MWe, 80MWth).

Although they are different technologies, both solutions are fourth generation and can use the spent fuel from conventional reactors, ensuring the full closure of the fuel cycle. Newcleo and Naarea aim to bring their solutions to the market by 2030.

The partnership, the statement adds, “will enable the creation of joint initiatives with the whole French nuclear sector to make the decision-making process easier for the successful completion of the energy transition through a mix that includes sustainable and innovative nuclear energy”.  Red Sea Crisis

Newcleo and Naarea partners for fourth generation nuclear power

Braskem And WEAV3D Automotive Component To Showcase At The 2024 JEC World Trade Show In Paris, France, March 5-7, 2024

Braskem, a leading producer of polyolefins and biopolymers in the Americas, and WEAV3D, a startup specializing in advanced materials and manufacturing, have announced that their novel automotive door component prototype has been chosen as one of the top three finalists in the JEC Composites Innovation Awards 2024, under the Automotive and Road Transportation – Process category. Red Sea Crisis

The prototype uses WEAV3D composite lattice reinforcement with Braskem PP to create lighter and cheaper thermoplastic solutions than traditional organosheet, opening up new possibilities for replacing sheet metal structures with thermoplastics in vehicles.

“We are very proud to be a finalist for the JEC World Innovation Awards and to offer our clients innovative solutions and partnerships based on high-performance polypropylene materials with the WEAV3D lattice technology, which we launched in 2023.

The automotive industry needs to adopt new performance materials and sustainable end-of-life options as it develops new electric vehicle designs.

The WEAV3D technology can be used for both thermoforming and injection molding of parts, depending on the complexity.

By combining Braskem’s PP portfolio with WEAV3D composite lattices, we achieve a ‘win-win’ situation of improved material performance and reduced environmental impact, with the possibility of incorporating natural fibers,” said Amanda Zani, Technology Platform Manager, Braskem. Red Sea Crisis

Advantages of using WEAV3D’s Rebar for Plastics® and Braskem Polypropylene over conventional composite organosheet:

• LIGHTWEIGHT – Cuts sheet blank weight by ~50% and final part weight by ~23%

• COST EFFECTIVE – Lowers costs by ~50%

• EFFICIENT – Boosts sheet yield from 25% to 45% by weight, resulting in a 62% decrease in trim waste “WEAV3D and Braskem are showing the great potential of the WEAV3D lattice material with this automotive door prototype and we are delighted to be selected a finalist by the Innovation Awards jury,” said Chris Oberste, President of WEAV3D.

“With the help of Altair Engineering, we developed a simulation workflow that allowed us to optimize the lattice structure for cost and performance, using the same organosheet tooling and forming process equipment at the Clemson Composites Center at Clemson University.”  Red Sea Crisis

The winners of the JEC Composites Award 2024 will be revealed during an online ceremony on February 8, 2024, from 13:30 to 15:30 CET, at www.jec-world.events. The Braskem-WEAV3D prototype part will also be exhibited in the JEC Innovation Planets section of JEC World, in Paris, France, from March 5-7, 2024.

To learn more about the prototype part, visit WEAV3D’s booth 6P32e in the American Pavilion.

Braskem And WEAV3D Automotive Component To Showcase At The 2024 JEC World Trade Show In Paris, France, March 5-7, 2024

The mLLDPE market saw a sharp increase in spot prices in both Europe and the US in the first half of January 2024

This was due to various factors, such as sellers raising prices, material shortages, geopolitical conflicts, and shipping issues.  Red Sea Crisis

The US market also recovered from the holiday slump, with more trading activity and higher prices.

In Europe, mLLDPE spot prices rose significantly, despite the stable feedstock Ethylene prices. This was because sellers announced price hikes, breaking the previous downward trend.

They also lowered their offers to attract buyers, as the market was weak and demand was low.

However, the situation in the Middle East added more uncertainty to the market. The shipping disruptions in the Red Sea led to higher freight rates, as ships had to take a longer and more costly route through the Cape of Good Hope. Red Sea Crisis

This posed many challenges for exporters, such as longer transit times, higher fuel costs, and possible delays.

In the US, mLLDPE prices also went up during the same period. They bounced back from the low levels in mid-December, as the market regained momentum after the New Year holiday.

Spot resin trading picked up gradually, as more participants returned to the market. Some processors bought resin to secure their operations, resulting in a decent volume of business.

The low inventories held by traders also helped to push up the average prices in the US.

ChemAnalyst predicts that mLLDPE prices will remain high in the near future, due to the supply chain problems and freight rate increases in both regions. Red Sea Crisis

Moreover, the anticipated rise in the costs of Ethylene and Naphtha may also drive up the production costs, leading to higher mLLDPE prices.

The mLLDPE market saw a sharp increase in spot prices in both Europe and the US in the first half of January 2024

The US dollar enjoys a special status as the world’s reserve currency, which gives the US a huge advantage in the global economy

However, this status is not guaranteed, and recent events have challenged the dominance of the dollar. Red Sea Crisis

Many countries that are not aligned with the US are looking for ways to reduce their dependence on the dollar.

This was triggered by the US’s decision to impose harsh sanctions on Russia for invading Ukraine in February 2022.

The sanctions aimed to cut off Russia’s access to the dollar and weaken its currency, the rouble.

US treasury secretary Janet Yellen said this was an “unprecedented action” that would “significantly limit Russia’s ability to use assets to finance its destabilising activities”.

But this also had the effect of pushing Russia and other countries to seek alternatives to the dollar.

One of these alternatives is the Chinese renminbi, which is gaining popularity as a currency for international trade and investment. Red Sea Crisis

Russia is now using the renminbi for a quarter of its foreign trade, and most of its trade with China is done in their own currencies.

China has also made deals with the UAE and Saudi Arabia to use the renminbi instead of the dollar for gas and oil transactions.

These moves are undermining the demand for the dollar, which is reflected in the decline of its share in central banks’ foreign exchange reserves.  Red Sea Crisis

The dollar’s share has fallen from over 70 per cent in the early 2000s to under 60 per cent today, the lowest level in decades.

This is not a temporary dip, but a long-term trend that reflects the changing balance of power in the world economy.

The US is losing ground to emerging economies, especially China, which is now the largest trading partner for more than 120 countries and exports more than US$3.6 trillion (£2.8 billion) worth of goods.

China’s share of the global economy has more than doubled from 8.9 per cent to 18.5 per cent in the last 20 years, while the US’s share has dropped from 20.1 per cent to 15.5 per cent, based on purchasing power parity (which compares the prices of specific goods across countries). Red Sea Crisis

The shift in economic power is also reflected in the rise of the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa), which have surpassed the G7 countries (US, Canada, UK, Germany, France, Italy, Japan and Germany) in terms of their share of world GDP, based on purchasing power parity.

This means that the dollar is facing more competition from other currencies in the global market.

The US dollar enjoys a special status as the world’s reserve currency, which gives the US a huge advantage in the global economy

Red Sea Crisis

Battery technology – Polyamide 6.6: A Versatile Material in Automotive Applications 18-01-2024

Battery technology – Polyamide 6.6: A Versatile Material in Automotive Applications 18-01-2024

Battery technology

Red Sea Crisis and Auto Production: What’s Really Happening

The Red Sea Crisis, specifically the tensions escalating into assaults on merchant ships by Houthi rebels, is causing production halts across various sectors, and the automotive industry is far from exempt.

This crisis has halted several automobile factories, posing a tangible threat following the 2023 chip crisis. Escalating tensions in the Red Sea, stemming from the Israel-Hamas conflict, directly involve the Red Sea and the Suez Canal, with rebel Houthi attacks on merchant ships (armed group in Yemen supported by Iran).

The global and particularly European automotive sector is significantly affected by this new crisis, as the sea route, usually taken by container ships, has become hardly accessible, if not risky. Battery technology

For incoming goods, especially auto components from China, the current alternative is circumnavigating Africa, impacting both time and costs substantially.

In response to the Red Sea Crisis, Volvo and Tesla have taken a stand among the first automotive brands. They’ve decided to temporarily halt production in their European facilities. The reasons are straightforward, directly linked to significant supply shortages.

Stellantis, aiming to bypass the issue, opted for air transport. However, this may impact costs and prove to be an unsustainable solution over time.

Volvo’s Belgian Gent plant, producing models like the XC40 and C40, will pause production for a few days. Tesla’s leadership also announced a suspension of most production in Berlin. Battery technology

Suzuki is another brand temporarily halting production, in this case, at its Hungarian factory, allowing time to assess the evolving situation.

Rerouting ships and closely monitoring the situation are possible but complex measures that may not be sustainable in the long term.

Origin of the Red Sea Crisis: Houthi militant attacks, in solidarity with Palestinian group Hamas against Israel in Gaza, forced container ships to avoid the strategically crucial Suez Canal. This canal is a vital passage for goods traveling from Asia to Europe.

Red Sea Crisis and Auto Production: What's Really Happening

Covestro and Encina have forged a long-term agreement for the sustainable supply of circular raw materials

Under this collaboration, Encina will provide Covestro with chemically recycled raw materials derived from post-consumer end-of-life plastics, enabling the production of circular MDI, TDI, and polycarbonate, commencing by the close of 2027.

This landmark deal marks a significant step for Covestro, a global leader in high-performance polymers, in its pursuit of circularity. The circular feedstock supplied by Encina, namely benzene and toluene, will play a crucial role in Covestro’s manufacturing processes for MDI and TDI, essential components for producing rigid and flexible polyurethane foams.

These foams find applications in various industries, including household appliances, building insulation, furniture, and automotive seating.

Encina’s cutting-edge catalytic technology ensures the production of circular feedstock with a lower carbon footprint compared to fossil-based alternatives, aligning with Covestro’s commitment to sustainability and reducing Scope 3 emissions. The agreement signifies Covestro’s inaugural major procurement involving chemically recycled, circular-based raw materials, bolstering its journey towards a fully circular economy.

Thorsten Dreier, Chief Technology Officer at Covestro, emphasized the pivotal role of sourcing raw materials from recycled plastics, stating, “This is because such raw materials not only enable the reuse of used plastics but also have a lower carbon footprint, which leads to more sustainable end products.”

Benzene and toluene, supplied by Encina, are vital components not only for MDI and TDI production but also for the synthesis of phenol and acetone, essential raw materials for manufacturing polycarbonate plastics like Makrolon®. These plastics find applications in high-quality products in industries such as automotive, electronics, and IT.

David Roesser, Chief Executive Officer of Encina, expressed pride in collaborating with Covestro and highlighted the potential for a lasting partnership. He stated, “This agreement represents the beginning of what we hope to be a long-standing partnership between our companies as we work to create a truly circular economy and realize a future in which nothing is wasted.”

Covestro’s commitment to achieving full circularity is driven by four key pillars: the utilization of alternative raw materials, innovative recycling, renewable energy, and collaborative solutions. The agreement with Encina exemplifies a groundbreaking milestone in integrating innovative recycling technologies, specifically chemical recycling of end-of-life plastics, into Covestro’s production processes.

Covestro and Encina have forged a long-term agreement for the sustainable supply of circular raw materials

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Polyamide 6.6: A Versatile Material in Automotive Applications

Polyamide 6.6, also known as nylon 6.6, is a versatile and widely used engineering plastic that offers a unique combination of properties that make it ideal for a wide range of automotive applications. From engine components to interior trim, polyamide 6.6 plays a crucial role in modern cars.

Key Properties of Polyamide 6.6

Polyamide 6.6 is characterized by its excellent mechanical strength, toughness, and abrasion resistance.

It also exhibits good chemical resistance, particularly to fuels and lubricants, making it a suitable choice for components exposed to harsh environments. Additionally, polyamide 6.6 is lightweight, making it an effective material for reducing vehicle weight, which contributes to improved fuel efficiency and emissions reduction. Battery technology

Common Automotive Applications of Polyamide 6.6

Polyamide 6.6 finds extensive use in various automotive components, including:

  • Engine components: Polyamide 6.6 is commonly used for engine parts such as gears, bearings, valve covers, and oil pans. Its high strength and wear resistance make it ideal for applications that require durability and resistance to heat and fluids.
  • Interior trim: Polyamide 6.6 is a popular choice for interior trim pieces, including door panels, dashboards, center consoles, and armrests. Its ability to withstand wear and tear, as well as its aesthetic appeal, makes it a suitable material for these applications. Battery technology
  • Cooling systems: Polyamide 6.6 is used in various cooling system components, such as radiator tanks, heater hoses, and thermostat housings. Its resistance to heat and chemicals makes it suitable for these applications, which are exposed to high temperatures and various fluids.
  • Electrical connectors: Polyamide 6.6 is often used for electrical connectors due to its electrical insulation properties and its ability to withstand vibration and impact. It is also flame-retardant, making it a safe choice for these applications.

Benefits of Using Polyamide 6.6 in Automotive Applications

The use of polyamide 6.6 in automotive applications offers several benefits:

  • Reduced weight: Polyamide 6.6 is lightweight compared to metals, such as steel or aluminum, making it an effective material for reducing vehicle weight. This contributes to improved fuel efficiency and emissions reduction.
  • Improved durability: Polyamide 6.6 is a durable material that can withstand the rigors of automotive use, including exposure to heat, chemicals, vibration, and impact.  Battery technology
  • Enhanced safety: Polyamide 6.6 is often flame-retardant and can be formulated to meet specific safety requirements.
  • Cost-effectiveness: Polyamide 6.6 is a relatively inexpensive material, making it a cost-effective choice for many automotive applications.


Polyamide 6.6 is a valuable material in the automotive industry, offering a combination of properties that make it suitable for a wide range of applications. Its strength, durability, and resistance to harsh environments make it an ideal choice for components that need to withstand the rigors of everyday driving. As the automotive industry continues to strive for lighter, more fuel-efficient, and safer vehicles, polyamide 6.6 is expected to play an even more significant role in future automotive designs.  Battery technology

Additional Notes

  • Polyamide 6.6 is often blended with other plastics or reinforcements to enhance specific properties. For instance, glass fiber reinforcement can be added to improve stiffness and strength, while mineral fillers can be used to reduce weight and improve flame retardancy.
  • Polyamide 6.6 is a recyclable material, and many automotive manufacturers are incorporating recycled polyamide into their products to reduce their environmental impact.  Battery technology

Battery technology

The landscape of electric vehicle (EV) batteries is undergoing a transformative shift, driven by continuous advancements in battery technology

Serving as the linchpin for EV functionality, batteries play a pivotal role in determining driving range, charging efficiency, overall cost, and environmental impact. Despite the rising popularity and affordability of EVs, current battery technologies grapple with challenges like low energy density, prolonged charging times, elevated costs, and safety concerns. Consequently, concerted efforts from researchers and industry players are directed towards developing innovative battery solutions capable of surmounting these impediments, facilitating the widespread adoption of EVs.  Battery technology

Among the frontrunners for the next generation of batteries is the solid-state battery, which replaces the liquid electrolyte found in traditional lithium-ion batteries with a solid substance. This substitution presents notable benefits, including heightened energy density, accelerated charging capabilities, extended lifespan, and reduced fire risks. Renowned automakers like Toyota and Mercedes have already articulated plans to integrate solid-state batteries into their EV models by the mid-2020s.

An additional promising battery technology on the horizon is the lithium-sulfur battery, featuring sulfur as the cathode material instead of conventional cobalt or nickel.

Sulfur, being abundant, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly, boasts a higher energy storage capacity per unit mass.  Battery technology

However, challenges such as low conductivity, limited cycle life, and volume expansion have prompted recent breakthroughs, such as the discovery that adding sugar to sulfur enhances its performance and stability. This breakthrough holds potential for the development of more economical and efficient batteries for EVs.

Beyond exploring novel battery chemistries, efforts are underway to enhance battery performance by optimizing cell and pack design and engineering. Strategies involve increasing electrode surface area, reducing internal resistance, improving thermal management, and integrating intelligent sensors and controllers. These innovations promise to elevate battery efficiency, reliability, and safety. Battery technology

The future of automotive batteries is marked by promise and excitement, fueled by emerging technologies and innovations to meet the escalating demand for EVs. However, challenges loom, including concerns about the availability and sustainability of raw materials, the scalability and cost-effectiveness of manufacturing processes, the compatibility and interoperability of charging infrastructure, and the need for regulation and standardization in the battery industry. Realizing the full potential of future batteries will necessitate collaborative efforts from diverse stakeholders, encompassing researchers, manufacturers, policymakers, and consumers.  Battery technology

Battery technology

Global PC and PP Markets Navigate Turbulent Waters Amidst Supply Chain Disruptions

In the aftermath of recent supply chain disruptions due to Red Sea crisis, the global markets for Polypropylene (PP) and Polycarbonate (PC) are on high alert for potential price fluctuations. The suspension of production by automotive giants Tesla and Geely-owned Volvo Car in Europe, attributed to a shortage of components linked to Red Sea shipping attacks, is poised to impact the consumption and pricing of these crucial chemical commodities like PP and PC.  Battery technology

The conflicts in the Red Sea, coupled with shifts in transport routes and disruptions in key canals such as the Suez Canal and the Panama Canal, have set off a ripple effect across the production and transportation of chemical commodities such as PC and PP. The resulting longer transportation times and logistical challenges are contributing to uncertainties in supply chains, further influencing the dynamics of the PC and PP markets.

While global freight rates showed a bullish trend in the past month, a recent slight decrease in freight between China and the U.S. West Coast in the second week of 2024 has been observed.  Battery technology

This dip is attributed to a slowdown in demand for PP and PC manufactured in Asia, prompting ocean carriers to adjust freight rates accordingly. The broader context of supply chain disruptions, compounded by the geopolitical events in the Red Sea, adds a layer of complexity to the pricing dynamics of PC and PP.

The attacks on shipping in the Red Sea have triggered concerns about extended shipping route disruptions, particularly through the Suez Canal. Consequently, the automotive industry’s supply chain has been directly affected, leading to reduced production and a potential oversupply of PP and PC in the market.

This oversupply may exert downward pressure on prices in the European and US regions in the coming weeks.  Battery technology

Vessels traversing the Red Sea have faced attacks over the past several weeks from Yemen-based Houthis, prompting shipping companies to alter routes, resulting in a spike in freight rates. Embarking on longer detours around the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa has pushed ocean freight rates up, diverting container ships carrying over $200 billion worth of goods away from the Red Sea waterway to avoid potential strikes by Houthi militants.

Industry experts are closely monitoring these developments, anticipating potential shifts in market conditions and urging stakeholders to remain adaptable to the evolving situation. The extent of the impact on PC and PP prices will depend on the duration and severity of the supply chain disruptions caused by ongoing geopolitical tensions and their subsequent effects on global trade routes.  Battery technology

Battery technology

The latest report of The Recycling Partnership shows that only 28% of PET bottles are recycled in the US

The Recycling Partnership, a non-governmental organisation committed to building a better recycling system, released a report analysing the state of recycling in the US. One of the key takeaways of the report, titled “State of Recycling: Present and Future of Residential Recycling in the U.S.”, is that every material type of residential recyclables is under-recycled, including PET-bottles.

The data reveals where the gaps are greatest, and where policy, investment, and action will have the largest impact. The report is based on multi-year field measurement studies conducted across the US and The Recycling Partnership’s National Database; it employs an updated methodology for determining recycling rates that tracks materials throughout the system.  Battery technology

We will focus on the recycling rates for PET bottles only. While PET bottles rank among the most effectively recycled plastic packaging, the authors of the report come to the conclusion that still seven out ten PET bottles are not recycled. The reasons for the insufficient recycling rates of PET bottles are manifold.

Recycling Access

Only 73% of all households have access to recycling. The numbers vary depending on the state. In Delaware, 97% of all households have access to recycling containers, whereas in Mississippi only 37% of households are able to conveniently recycle their trash. For those with access, some locations do not collect all packaging types thus limiting the amount of recyclable material collected.  Battery technology


The latest report of The Recycling Partnership shows that only 28% of PET bottles are recycled in the US

MyRemono, an Italian company specializing in innovative PMMA (polymethylmethacrylate) technology, has successfully entered the preparatory phase for small-scale projects under the European Innovation Fund

With 51% ownership by Maire Tecnimont via the NextChem division, MyRemono’s NXRe PMMA technology focuses on chemical recycling through catalytic depolymerization of plastic waste, specifically targeting acrylic (PMMA) and styrenic resins.

The company’s admission to the third call for small-scale projects by the European Innovation Fund was based on rigorous evaluation criteria, including its potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, innovation level, project maturity, scalability, and cost efficiency. The grant agreement is anticipated to be finalized in the second quarter of 2024.  Battery technology

MyRemono’s proposed project involves the industrial scale-up of NXRe PMMA technology, intending to construct a demonstration plant with a treatment capacity of approximately 5,000 tonnes per year of polymethylmethacrylate-based waste. Collaborating with Biorenova, the continuous depolymerization process employs thermal energy and a specific catalyst to break polymer bonds, returning plastics to their original monomers. Already operational in a pilot plant in Montorio al Vomano (TE) with a treatment capacity of around 1,600 tonnes, the technology has shown promise.

The European Innovation Fund, a significant supporter of innovative projects in clean technologies, allocated an overall budget of 100 million euros for its third call on small-scale projects, ranging from 2.5 to 7.5 million euros in capital costs. Out of 72 applications, only 17 projects, including MyRemono’s NXRe PMMA technology, were selected for the preparatory phase of the grant agreement.  Battery technology

MyRemono, an Italian company specializing in innovative PMMA (polymethylmethacrylate) technology, has successfully entered the preparatory phase for small-scale projects under the European Innovation Fund

NextChem selected for grant agreement under EU innovation fund

NextChem’s subsidiary dedicated to plastic depolymerisation has been pre-selected for the grant agreement preparation related to the ‘Innovation Fund 3rd call for Small Scale projects’. The Innovation Fund stands among the world’s largest funding programmes for the deployment of innovative clean tech projects.

The selected initiative is related to the industrial scale-up of MyRemono’s NXRe PMMA modular technology through the implementation of a first-of-its-kind plant with a processing capacity of up to approximately 5000 tpy. Battery technology

This solution, jointly developed with Biorenova, is a plastic depolymerisation technology which recovers monomers (building blocks for the plastic value chain) with ultra-high levels of purity from sorted plastic waste, particularly polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) through a continuous chemical recycling process. The project intends to increase the recycling rate of PMMA waste and scraps within the EU and reduce dependence on fossil raw materials for the production of these intermediates, embracing a fully circular model.


NextChem selected for grant agreement under EU innovation fund

What happens to biodegradable plastics if they enter the sea? New study

Our new study investigates what happens when biodegradable plastics enter the ocean, and whether these increasingly popular alternatives to conventional plastics are safer for marine ecosystems, or whether they come with their own risks.  Battery technology

When the first full synthetic plastic was invented in 1906 – over 100 years ago – widespread use of the material for consumer products soon arose in the post-war period. Plastic was cheaper to produce than the more expensive paper, glass and metal materials used in throwaway items – such as consumer packaging – and was also stronger, lighter, safer and more durable, and it shifted the way that we use materials forever.

However, the properties of plastic that make it such an attractive material, such as durability and strength, also make it a lasting problem once it reaches the end of its useful life. Some types of plastic can take thousands of years to degrade, and it is estimated that a truckload of plastic enters the ocean every minute.  Battery technology

In response to such concerns, biodegradable plastics – that is, plastics that can break down or ‘biodegrade’ – have been in development since the end of the last century, to achieve similar usage and convenience of traditional plastics, but with the goal of breaking down quickly and harmlessly.

But, as the global production of biodegradable plastics increases – from 1.5 million metric tons in 2023 to almost 5.3 million in 2028 – it is critical that we understand the impacts of these materials on the environment.  Battery technology


What happens to biodegradable plastics if they enter the sea? New study

The Versatile Role of Nylon 6.6 in Automotive Textiles: Driving Innovation on the Road


In the dynamic world of automotive engineering, materials play a pivotal role in enhancing performance, durability, and overall efficiency. One such material that has revolutionized the automotive industry is Nylon 6.6. This synthetic polymer, known for its exceptional strength, durability, and versatility, has found numerous applications in various components of modern cars, particularly in textiles. In this article, we’ll explore the diverse applications of Nylon 6.6 in automotive textiles, showcasing how this resilient material is driving innovation on the road.  Battery technology

Nylon 6.6: A Brief Overview

Nylon 6.6, a type of polyamide, is a synthetic thermoplastic material that exhibits remarkable mechanical properties. Its structure is formed through the polymerization of hexamethylene diamine and adipic acid, resulting in a robust and resilient polymer. The exceptional strength, heat resistance, and durability of Nylon 6.6 make it an ideal candidate for automotive applications, especially in textile components.

Automotive Textiles and Nylon 6.6

  1. Seat Fabrics: Nylon 6.6 is widely used in the production of seat fabrics due to its high tensile strength and resistance to wear and tear. Car seats endure constant use, including exposure to sunlight, friction, and spills. Nylon 6.6’s ability to resist abrasion and fading makes it an excellent choice for manufacturing seat covers that maintain their aesthetic appeal and structural integrity over time.
  2. Carpeting and Floor Mats: The interior of a car experiences high foot traffic, necessitating robust and durable materials for carpets and floor mats. Nylon 6.6 is favored for its resistance to stains, moisture, and heavy wear. Its ability to retain color and texture, even in high-traffic areas, contributes to the longevity and visual appeal of automotive interiors. Battery technology
  3. Safety Belts and Airbag Fabrics: In critical safety components like seat belts and airbags, strength and reliability are paramount. Nylon 6.6’s high tensile strength and energy-absorbing properties make it an excellent choice for weaving the fabrics used in safety belts and airbags. These textiles play a crucial role in ensuring the safety of passengers during sudden stops or collisions.
  4. Convertible Tops: For convertible vehicles, the top material needs to withstand exposure to various weather conditions while maintaining flexibility and durability. Nylon 6.6, with its excellent weather resistance and flexibility, is often employed in the production of convertible tops, providing a reliable barrier against rain, sunlight, and other environmental factors.  Battery technology
  5. Engine Compartment Textiles: Beyond the interior, Nylon 6.6 is utilized in various engine compartment textiles, such as cable wraps and protective covers. Its resistance to high temperatures, chemicals, and abrasion makes it suitable for applications where exposure to harsh conditions is common.


Nylon 6.6 has emerged as a driving force in automotive textiles, offering unparalleled strength, durability, and versatility. As the automotive industry continues to evolve, the demand for materials that can meet the rigorous requirements of modern vehicles becomes increasingly vital.  Battery technology

Nylon 6.6, with its impressive set of properties, has proven to be a valuable asset in enhancing the performance, safety, and aesthetics of automobiles. As technology advances, we can expect to see further innovations in automotive textiles, with Nylon 6.6 at the forefront of these developments.

The Versatile Role of Nylon 6.6 in Automotive Textiles: Driving Innovation on the Road

Battery technology

European economy – Oil prices slipped on Tuesday, January 16, as investors balanced the risks of Middle East tensions with a firmer dollar and lower expectations of US rate cuts 17-01-2024

European economy – Oil prices slipped on Tuesday, January 16, as investors balanced the risks of Middle East tensions with a firmer dollar and lower expectations of US rate cuts 17-01-2024

European economy

The United States has re-designated Yemen’s Houthi rebels as specially designated global terrorists, announcing fresh financial sanctions alongside military strikes in an effort to curb the group’s attacks on global shipping

The move by the Biden administration, aimed at countering the Iran-backed Houthis, is part of ongoing measures to address the conflict in Yemen. In addition to military actions, the administration vows to impose financial penalties strategically to minimize adverse impacts on Yemen’s 32 million people, who already face extreme poverty and hunger due to the prolonged conflict between the Houthis and a Saudi-led coalition.

Despite the pledge to mitigate harm, concerns have been raised by aid officials, including Scott Paul, associate director at Oxfam America, who fears the decision will introduce further uncertainty and threats for Yemenis. The country is grappling with one of the world’s largest humanitarian crises. European economy

The sanctions accompanying the terrorist designation are intended to disrupt the financial support networks of violent extremist groups. Notably, this move reverses a decision made during the final days of the Trump administration, where the Houthis were labeled as global terrorists and a foreign terrorist organization. President Joe Biden initially overturned this designation, citing the potential humanitarian consequences.

The United States has re-designated Yemen's Houthi rebels as specially designated global terrorists, announcing fresh financial sanctions alongside military strikes in an effort to curb the group's attacks on global shipping

The UN urges Houthis to stop Red Sea attacks

The United Nations has called on the Houthis of Yemen to comply with the Security Council resolution passed last week, which demands an immediate halt to the assaults on vessels crossing the Red Sea.
The UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said the attacks were “very worrying”.
The Houthis, backed by Iran, are fighting a civil war against their own government, which has international recognition since 2014.
They also claimed to have attacked ships heading to the Suez Canal in support of the Gaza Palestinians, during the war sparked by Hamas’s surprise attack on Israel on October 7.
The UN stance on the Houthis The UN resolution denounces the Houthi actions that have affected one of the most important trade routes in the world and raised the cost of shipping. European economy
Dujarric said that the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres talked to the Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian on Monday about the situation in the Red Sea and Gaza. The UN leader “repeated his appeal for all sides to avoid any more escalation” in Yemen and follow the resolution of last week, and also stressed the need for more humanitarian aid to Gaza and the prompt release of all Israeli captives, the UN spokesperson said.
The UN special envoy for Yemen, Hans Grundberg, who has met with all parties, had a conversation with the senior adviser to Iran’s foreign minister, Ali Asghar Khaji, on Tuesday morning, Dujarric said.
They discussed “the necessity to keep an environment that fosters positive dialogue and continuous joint regional efforts for peace in Yemen”, the UN spokesperson said. Grundberg and others then updated the Security Council in a private meeting. Red Sea in flames Meanwhile, working in the region is becoming more difficult.
Japan’s Nippon Yusen announced that it would follow other big shipping companies in stopping routes through the Red Sea due to the attacks by the Houthi rebels on the ships passing by. European economy
“We have stopped sailing through the Red Sea with all the ships we run”, a Nippon Yusen spokesperson told AFP, adding that the decision was made to “guarantee the safety of the crews”.
US and British forces have hit many targets in Houthi-controlled Yemen since Friday in response to the attacks by the rebels, who say they are aiming at vessels linked to Israel in the Red Sea in solidarity with Gaza.
The main route between Asia and Europe markets usually carries around 12% of the global maritime trade.
Other shipping companies have also decided the same as Nippon Yusen. The Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) stopped the passage of its ships from the Red Sea in December.
The French Cma CGM, the Danish Maersk, and the German Hapag-Llyod did the same thing. Meanwhile, the Biden administration has declared that it will put the Yemeni rebels on the list of global terrorist groups.
The US military has carried out a series of strikes in Yemen against anti-ship missiles in a part of the country controlled by the Houthis, in response to the attacks by the rebel group that disturbed shipping in the Red Sea. European economy
The Houthi militia has warned that it will extend its attacks to include US ships in retaliation for the American and British strikes on its locations in Yemen.
The UN urges Houthis to stop Red Sea attacks

Anti-ship missiles displayed at the Houthi armed military parade

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

EcoBlue, a prominent recycler specializing in post-consumer and post-industrial polyolefins and PET, situated in Rayong, Thailand, has significantly enhanced its PET recycling capabilities, marking a milestone achievement just a year and a half after initiating operations at its new facility

In a strategic move to bolster its processing capacity, the company recently integrated its second cutting-edge Starlinger viscotec solid-state polycondensation (SSP) machine. This state-of-the-art machinery, commissioned in December 2023, is dedicated to the production of food-grade PET, positioning EcoBlue as a major player in sustainable packaging solutions. Following the successful commissioning, EcoBlue has achieved an annual capacity of an impressive 30,000 tonnes of food-grade recycled PET (rPET).

Pranay Jain, the visionary CEO and Founder of EcoBlue, expressed his enthusiasm about the significant development, stating, “The successful commissioning of the Starlinger viscotec SSP is a testament to our unwavering dedication to the cause of sustainable packaging.  European economy

This investment solidifies our standing as the largest recycler of high-quality resins in Thailand. We are well-positioned to meet the burgeoning demands of environmentally conscious customers globally. Our overarching goal is to promote resource circularity by diverting post-consumer and post-industrial waste away from landfills and channeling it into the recycling stream.”

EcoBlue’s augmented production capacity is a noteworthy achievement, especially considering the backdrop of European PET recyclers scaling back their capacities due to prevailing challenges such as low prices and reduced profitability in the market.

The augmented production volume by EcoBlue is poised to contribute significantly to the manufacturing of beverage bottles.  European economy

Notably, global giants Pepsi and Nestlé made headlines in August 2023 by introducing the first-ever 100% recycled PET bottles in Thailand. This move aligns with the growing global emphasis on sustainable practices and serves as a testament to EcoBlue’s commitment to fulfilling the needs of environmentally responsible customers.

As the demand for recycled PET materials continues to rise, EcoBlue’s expanded capabilities position the company as a key player in meeting this demand.

By actively participating in the circular economy, EcoBlue aims to divert waste away from landfills, thereby fostering a sustainable and responsible approach to resource management.  European economy

This achievement not only reinforces EcoBlue’s commitment to sustainability but also underscores its dedication to pioneering innovations in the field of PET recycling.

European economy

Electric cars and lithium: a global competition

The electric car market is heating up, with China’s BYD surpassing Tesla as the world’s top seller of battery-only vehicles in the last quarter of 2023. BYD, backed by Warren Buffett, is also eyeing the largest lithium reserve in Brazil, a key metal for making batteries.

This could spark a rivalry with Elon Musk, who also wants to secure the Brazilian mine.

The current owner of the reserve is Sigma Lithium, a Canadian company that is struggling financially and may be open to selling.  European economy

Other players, such as Volkswagen and Catl, are also interested in Sigma’s lithium.

China has an advantage in the electric car industry, as it controls the entire supply chain, from raw materials to batteries and microchips.

It is also the third largest producer of lithium in the world, and has a strong presence in South America, the main source of the metal.

In contrast, North America faces challenges, such as higher production costs and protectionist policies.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has blocked Chinese investments in Canadian mining companies, citing human rights concerns.  European economy

The electric car and lithium war is not only a clash between the US and China, but also a personal battle between Musk and Buffett.

European economy

Oil prices slipped on Tuesday, January 16, as investors balanced the risks of Middle East tensions with a firmer dollar and lower expectations of US rate cuts

A worsening shipping crisis in the Red Sea and Iranian missile attacks on Syria and Iraq increased the geopolitical uncertainty on oil prices earlier today.

Brent crude futures fell 46 cents, or around 0.59 per cent, to $77.69 a barrel.

The contract had risen more than $1 above its Monday close earlier in the session. US West Texas Intermediate crude dropped 90 cents, or 1.24 percent, from Friday at $71.78 a barrel, as per news agency Reuters.

On the domestic front, on the Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX), crude oil futures for January 19 delivery, traded 0.72 per cent higher at ₹6,051 per bbl, after fluctuating between ₹5,969 and ₹6,109 per bbl during the session, compared to a previous close of ₹6,008 per barrel.

What’s dragging down crude oil prices? -Analysts say that oil prices may face a limit unless output is disrupted.

Oil markets remain vulnerable to tensions in the Middle East, but the main scenario is that there will be no major interruption to supplies, according to OANDA analysts. -Without a clear and tangible effect on oil production, prices will stay within the current $72-$82 range, said Tamas Varga, an analyst at PVM in a note.

Oil prices surrendered to a stronger dollar and weaker stocks on Tuesday, due to reduced hopes that US Fed would begin lowering interest rates by March. -Investors are also looking forward to a speech by Fed Governor Christopher Waller for hints about when the US central bank might start to lower rates.

The European Central Bank’s interest rates are expected to decline this year, but officials have refrained from making definite statements on the timing of such moves. -In the Red Sea, a missile hit a Malta-flagged bulk carrier off Yemen on Tuesday.

NYK, Japan’s biggest shipper by sales, ordered all vessels it operates to avoid the Red Sea, while Sovcomflot, Russia’s top tanker group, is also exploring alternative routes. -Fears of the conflict spilling over the region also rose on Tuesday, as Iran’s targeting of the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region of Iraq sparked a diplomatic row.

Iran also struck Islamic State positions in Syria. Where are prices headed? Crude oil saw some profit-taking before key US economic data and a stronger dollar index.

The market also watched for possible backlash by the Iran-backed Houthi group for recent attacks by US and UK forces.

Worries about a ripple effect in the Israel-Hamas conflict due to air-strikes in Yemen added to the market’s unease.

The Houthi Group declared its plan to widen its targets in the Red Sea, including US ships, after the latest attack, adding to tensions that are supporting oil prices at lower levels, according to analysts.

‘’We expect continued fluctuations in crude oil prices during today’s session.

Crude oil has support at $71.80–71.20, with resistance at $73.05-73.80. In INR, crude oil has support at ₹5,920-5,840 and resistance at ₹6,110-6,190,‘’ said Rahul Kalantri, VP Commodities, Mehta Equities Ltd.

Oil prices slipped on Tuesday, January 16, as investors balanced the risks of Middle East tensions with a firmer dollar and lower expectations of US rate cuts

Germany, the locomotive of the European economy, is now stuck in a recession, marked by a sudden 0.3% drop in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2023

This decline was mainly caused by rising energy costs, high interest rates and a slowdown in foreign demand, which have negatively affected industry, exports and private consumption. Ruth Brand, president of the federal statistics office Destatis, said economic performance in Germany has faltered due to multiple persistent crises in 2023.
Although the upward revision of GDP in the third quarter avoided a technical recession, the situation remains worrying compared to the growth of 1.8% in 2022 and the European average of 0.6%. Household consumption, gross value added in the manufacturing sector and public spending are declining, reflecting the gradual elimination of anti-pandemic measures.  European economy
The negative indicators worry analysts, with projections of zero growth in German GDP in 2024. The Federal Court declared the transfer of funds to the Climate Fund unconstitutional, further worsening the situation. While the Berlin Central Bank urges us not to give in to alarmism, Llbw Bank analysts predict prolonged stagnation, and the German Chamber of Commerce believes another year of recession is possible.
Chancellor Olaf Scholz, already dealing with record unpopularity and many structural challenges, now faces an economic recession, with the risk of further slowdowns due to labor shortages, declining investment and an aging population.  European economy
European economy

Circular Plastics Case Competition aims to increase recycled PET supply

The second edition of the competition prompt participants to explore how to increase the supply of recycled polyethylene (rPET)

The Circular Plastics Case Competition is back for a second round. Organised by non-profit organisation Net Impact in partnership with Hillenbrand Inc and The Coca-Cola Company, the competition encourages emerging business professionals to rethink the plastics value chain by designing innovative solutions that help keep plastics in the economy and out of the environment.  European economy

This year, the case competition will prompt participants to explore how to increase the supply of recycled polyethylene (rPET). The organisers hope the solutions presented will contribute to solving current rPET supply challenges due to low recycling rates, spurred by falling prices and profitability.

The deadline for submissions is March 29. Participating teams must have between two to five members and may include undergraduate students, graduate students, and professionals from around the world. Existing businesses and start-ups who are currently worth or raised more than $100,000 in capital cannot participate.  European economy

Finalist teams will be paired with an expert mentor to refine their final pitch presentation before presenting virtually to a panel of experts at NPE in May. The first-place winner will be awarded $10,000, followed by $2,500 for second place, and $1,000 for third place.

“We initiated this competition to engage the next generation to think creatively and develop solutions that promote a circular plastics economy,” said Kim Ryan, president and CEO of Hillenbrand.


European economy

Towards zero plastic waste in 2050

Plastic consumption is still rising. Versatile compounds! But plastic recycling isn’t well organized. Therefore, the mountain of plastic waste is still growing. The world needs to find a solution to that problem, A subject addressed at Wageningen University. Their goal: no more plastic waste in year 2050.

Towards zero plastic waste  European economy

Global plastics production is still growing, even exponentially; as highlighted by an article on the site of Wageningen University and Research (WUR). But our goal is to arrive at a circular economy. Meaning: recycling all plastic waste. New plastic will then be produced from biobased resources. How do we get there? Researchers from Wageningen delved into that subject.

An appreciable part of plastics that aren’t reprocessed, end up as litter. The amount of litter is still growing. As does the amount of plastics produced. If policy doesn’t change, we will produce twice as many plastics in 2050 than we do now. Growth will primarily take place in Asia and Africa.  European economy

Europe’s role

In its combat against plastic waste, Europe plays an important part. The European Commission issued guidelines intended to curb the use of plastics. The most ambitious one is the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR). This requires high recycling percentages, high amounts of recyclate in new products and reuse of plastic articles. Moreover, this guideline puts a maximum to the number of plastic bags that a European consumer is allowed to use daily. Some countries, like the Netherlands, have even formulated stricter goals: a fully circular economy. Meaning that almost all paper, plastics and textiles should in due course be processed for reuse. And that the resource should be biobased.  European economy


Towards zero plastic waste in 2050

The European Union’s recent prohibition on exporting plastic waste within and beyond its borders poses a significant threat to the plastic packaging recycling market, according to warnings from Belgian industry association Valipac

The EU’s decision, part of an agreement on waste shipment regulation reached on November 17, mandates that plastic waste collected in EU nations must be stored and, if no buyers emerge for recycling, ultimately incinerated within Europe. Valipac highlights the risk of market collapse due to the inability to export collected plastic and insufficient recycling capacity within the EU. Belgium alone, with an annual consumption of 100,000 tons of commercial plastic packaging, faces challenges in processing around 24,000 tons currently exported outside the OECD.  European economy

The association stresses the genuine risk of the plastic packaging waste market collapsing due to limited recycling capacity in the EU and insufficient demand for recyclate. Valipac emphasizes the economic factor, stating that manufacturing packaging from virgin plastic remains cheaper than using recyclate, leading to the majority of Europe’s plastic waste being exported for recycling into secondary products. Without addressing this issue, the plastic packaging waste market is at risk of collapse, hindered by a lack of sales outlets in Europe and the ban on exports to non-OECD countries.

In response, the European recycling industry confederation (EuRIC) advocates for binding recycled content targets as the sole solution to stimulate demand for recycled materials, creating markets for circular materials.  European economy

Valipac encourages businesses by offering financial bonuses for using plastic packaging containing a minimum of 30% recyclate. However, EuRIC Secretary General Emmanuel Katrakis emphasizes the need for more recycled content targets across various materials, citing stagnation in the circular material use rate at the EU level. The trade association Plastics Europe echoes these sentiments, emphasizing the importance of a waste management system favoring plastic reuse and recycling, while also addressing challenges posed by the rise in imports of plastics labeled as recycled.  European economy

The European Union's recent prohibition on exporting plastic waste within and beyond its borders poses a significant threat to the plastic packaging recycling market, according to warnings from Belgian industry association Valipac

Startup Resynergi raises $6.4 million to advance plastic recycling technology

Resynergi, a California-based startup with a focus on circularity, has successfully secured $6.4 million (USD$7 million) in series B funding. The funds will be utilized to scale its cutting-edge plastic recycling technology, which efficiently transforms plastic waste into reusable, eco-friendly materials.

Established in 2015, Resynergi employs Continuous Microwave Assisted Pyrolysis (CMAP) technology to convert plastic molecules into building blocks for creating new materials. The company collaborates with recycling organizations to acquire and process challenging-to-recycle plastics, such as high-density polyethylene (HDPE), low-density PE (LDPE), polypropylene (PP), and polystyrene (PS), constituting around 60% of the total plastic types produced.  European economy

Resynergi asserts that its modular CMAP technology outpaces traditional pyrolysis methods by converting plastic waste into reusable materials at a rate 20 times faster. Additionally, it claims to achieve a significant CO2 reduction of up to 68% in the generated products.

The raised capital will be allocated to expanding the production of Resynergi’s CMAP technology and enhancing its executive team to support further growth. Brian Bauer, CEO of Resynergi, expressed the company’s commitment to promoting plastic circularity and safeguarding the environment by diverting plastic from landfills and oceans.

The funding round was co-led by Transitions First, an international industrial deep tech seed-stage venture capital fund, and Lummus Technology, a global provider of process technologies and energy solutions.  European economy

Marianne Abib-Pech, Managing Partner at Transitions First, and Leon de Bruyn, President and CEO of Lummus Technology, will join Resynergi’s board of directors. Abib-Pech emphasized the importance of supporting Resynergi in scaling their recycling process technology to drive innovation and contribute to a more sustainable future, while de Bruyn highlighted the alignment of the investment with their commitment to a circular, low-carbon future and clean energy solutions in the downstream energy industry.

Startup Resynergi raises $6.4 million to advance plastic recycling technology

Supercomputer Leonardo – The Kotovsky Plant of Nonwovens, located in the Tambov Region, is set to embark on an ambitious expansion strategy aimed at doubling its polyester production by 2025 16-01-2024

European econom

Supercomputer Leonardo – The Kotovsky Plant of Nonwovens, located in the Tambov Region, is set to embark on an ambitious expansion strategy aimed at doubling its polyester production by 2025 16-01-2024

Supercomputer Leonardo

Holzmann’s warning sinks Chinese stocks to 7-year low

Asian markets plunged on Tuesday 16 January, following the downward trend in Europe on Monday amid growing economic worries (with Germany’s GDP shrinking by 0.3% in 2023) and the likelihood of prolonged higher interest rates. By 7.30 am Italian time, the Nikkei was down 0.8%, giving up its highest level since 1990, the Hang Seng dropped over 2% and Shanghai slipped 0.15%.

The Shanghai 50 Index hit a 7-year low today at 2225.00 points. It has lost 1% in the last 4 weeks and 21.16% in the last 12 months. The yuan also fell to above 7.19 per dollar, its lowest point in the last month, affected by deflationary forces in China. The euro declined 0.3% to 1.0919, while the ten-year US T bond traded at 3.999% and Nasdaq futures were down 0.6%. Supercomputer Leonardo

Chinese stocks face pressure Investors remain cautious due to economic and political uncertainties. The PBoC kept its one-year medium-term lending rate at 2.5% on Monday, disappointing markets that were looking for more monetary policy easing. Meanwhile, IMF chief Kristalina Georgieva said at the World Economic Forum on Monday that China needs structural reforms to prevent “a fairly significant decline in the growth rate.” Investors are now waiting for Chinese GDP data that will be released this week for more clues. Holzmann: Markets should not expect rate cuts in 2024 In a TV interview with Bloomberg, German ECB Governing Council member Joachim Nagel joined a group of economists who are open to cutting interest rates this summer, indicating that the eurozone’s economic outlook is improving.  Supercomputer Leonardo

But Robert Holzmann, Nagel’s Austrian colleague, cautioned that persistent inflation risks will stop the central bank from lowering rates this year. In the US, markets are expecting cuts of at least six quarter points this year, leading BlackRock Vice Chairman Philipp Hildebrand to warn that such expectations could be excessive once inflation turns out to be more complicated than expected. US quarterly reports in focus US stock futures fell on Tuesday as investors look for more data this week to measure the state of the US economy. Markets will pay close attention to December retail sales on Wednesday, which are expected to show a slight slowdown in consumer spending last month. More banking quarterly reports are due this week, including from Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Charles Schwab.  Supercomputer Leonardo

The main US indexes ended mixed on Monday, with the Dow losing 0.31%, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite rose 0.08% and 0.02% respectively as investors evaluated the previous series of corporate earnings reports.

Holzmann’s warning sinks Chinese stocks to 7-year low

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

China has urged an end to attacks on civilian vessels in the Red Sea due to concerns about the widening Hamas-Israel conflict, which poses a threat to China’s commercial interests along the Suez Canal

The Iran-backed Houthi militia from Yemen, known for its anti-Israel stance, is challenging China’s ability to safeguard its strategic investments in Egypt. Since President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi assumed power in 2014, China has increased investments in Egypt’s Suez Canal, a crucial route for its west-bound goods.

Beijing has encouraged state-owned companies to invest billions in Egypt’s logistics, transport, and energy sectors. Chinese and Hong Kong firms pledged over $20 billion for various projects along the Suez Canal before the recent attacks. Commercial shipping disruptions in the region could impact Chinese investors committed to the canal’s development.

Notable investments include state-owned shipping giant COSCO’s $1 billion investment in Egypt’s port infrastructure and CK Hutchison Holdings’ plan to invest $700 million in new container terminals. China’s broader commercial interests in Egypt involve investments in iron and steel plants, ammonia and hydrogen projects, and potassium chloride production.

The situation also challenges President Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), of which Egypt, Yemen, and Iran are members. China faces the dilemma of balancing non-interference principles with addressing issues that undermine the BRI’s purpose. Beijing is under pressure to play a constructive role in global hotspot issues, particularly in light of its involvement in the Saudi Arabia-Iran detente.

Beyond financial stakes, China’s reputation is on the line, especially after its involvement in the regional detente in 2023. The U.S. has urged China to use its influence over Iran to prevent the conflict between Hamas and Israel from escalating. China, while practicing non-interference, aims to enhance its international influence through restrained diplomacy. Chinese vessels in the Red Sea are reportedly taking precautions, signaling their nationality to avoid attacks. China has expressed support for a larger Israeli-Palestinian peace conference and a two-state solution, emphasizing its desire to shape events through diplomacy.

China has urged an end to attacks on civilian vessels in the Red Sea due to concerns about the widening Hamas-Israel conflict, which poses a threat to China's commercial interests along the Suez Canal

The Kotovsky Plant of Nonwovens, located in the Tambov Region, is set to embark on an ambitious expansion strategy aimed at doubling its polyester production by 2025

This initiative involves a significant investment of approximately 141 million rubles, with a preferential loan of 91 million rubles secured from VEB.RF at a nominal interest rate of 1% per annum. The allocated funds will be utilized for acquiring and deploying essential equipment, crucial for augmenting polyester production from 26 million to an impressive 50 million linear meters annually.  Supercomputer Leonardo

Motivating this expansion is a focused endeavor to address the shortage of polyester in the domestic market, exacerbated by sanctions imposed by unfriendly nations, resulting in reduced supply of polyester-containing goods like clothing, bed linen, furniture, and soft toys. Recognizing the escalating demand for such products among domestic manufacturers, the Kotovsky Plant of Nonwovens aims to bridge this gap by significantly enhancing its production capacity. The successful execution of this project is anticipated to play a pivotal role in meeting the surging demand for polyester-based products within the country.

Beyond immediate market concerns, the project aligns with the broader goal of import substitution, crucial in the current geopolitical landscape. The increase in polyester production is seen as a strategic move to reduce dependence on external sources, contributing to import substitution—an imperative for the Russian economy. Guided by entrepreneur Andrey Letuchev, the Kotovsky Plant emphasizes the strategic significance of initiatives like these in fostering economic growth and sustainability. Supercomputer Leonardo

Regional head Maxim Egorov highlights the importance of new investment projects as drivers of regional economic growth. Effective support measures, coupled with the initiative and responsibility of entrepreneurs and investors, are identified as key factors in making such expansions feasible. This collaborative effort reflects a commitment to bolstering the regional economy and supporting the overall development of the Russian economy.

This expansion plan aligns with a broader regional trend, exemplified by the Neotex nonwovens plant in the Tula region. With a substantial loan of 704.7 million rubles from the Industrial Development Fund, Neotex aims to establish a production complex for polypropylene nonwovens, projecting an annual capacity of 12.2 thousand tons. This concurrent initiative underscores the industry’s commitment to diversification and the development of various nonwoven materials.  Supercomputer Leonardo

As of the end of 2022, the Kotovsky Plant of Nonwovens reported robust financial performance, boasting a revenue of 4.4 billion rubles and a net profit of 160.4 million rubles.

Supercomputer Leonardo

Global MEG Market Struggles, Weighs on Supply Constraints and Reduced Demand

The global Mono-Ethylene Glycol (MEG) market is currently facing challenges due to high production costs and low profits, creating a tough environment for suppliers. January usually sees increased demand, especially in the antifreeze sector. However, weak macroeconomic conditions and the ongoing shipping crisis are causing uncertainty in buying activities, affecting the MEG market. Supercomputer Leonardo

The Suez Canal, a critical waterway for global trade, is under threat from Houthi rebels in Yemen. The rebels have launched attacks on shipping vessels in the Red Sea, causing disruptions and delays for cargo and oil shipments. This situation has also increased security risks and costs for the maritime industry. The attacks on vessels have led to serious concerns about the stability of the Suez Canal, which is crucial for the transportation of goods between United States and Asia.

The turmoil in the Red Sea has had a cascading effect on global crude oil prices, exerting pressure on downstream commodities like MEG. This has prompted MEG manufacturing firms to take measures to balance supply and demand, with some operating at reduced rates, ranging from 60%-70%. Supercomputer Leonardo

The bottleneck in the Red Sea, which started in mid-December, has continued to worsen, and is affecting spot freight rates for container shipping. The heightened tension in the region has led to significant increases in MEG spot rates, especially for routes from US to Asia that rely on the Red Sea as a transit route. Surprisingly, even routes unaffected by the crisis have witnessed surges in freight rates.

As a consequence of these developments, the impact of the shipping crisis is reverberating through global trade, affecting Chinese MEG imports from the US. Ocean freight rates have doubled or even tripled on a spot basis since the crisis began in mid-December.

This surge in freight costs adds an additional layer of challenge for trade between the two nations, influencing the cost dynamics of imported goods and potentially impacting supply chains and pricing strategies for businesses involved in the Chinese-US trade route.

On the demand side, there are fewer inquiries for MEG from downstream industries like Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) Bottle, due to weakened consumption in end-user packaging and the plastic industry during the off-season. Supercomputer Leonardo

Overall, the shipping crisis is affecting the MEG market dynamics, from increased costs to disruptions in supply chains and decreased demand from downstream industries.


Supercomputer Leonardo

Supercomputer Leonardo: What It Is, How It Works, and Its Purpose

Ranked sixth in the world’s list of the most powerful supercomputers, the renowned TOP500, updated in June and November each year, features an Italian system. Meet the supercomputer Leonardo, inaugurated on November 24, 2022, and physically located at the Bologna Technopole. Managed by CINECA, an Italian interuniversity non-profit consortium with 69 Italian universities, 2 Ministries, and 27 National public institutions as members, Leonardo propels Italy into the exascale-class computing for research and technological innovation.  Supercomputer Leonardo

Leonardo employs a versatile system architecture to serve scientific communities and meet industrial clients’ R&D needs. Its capabilities extend to maximizing applications based on artificial intelligence, utilizing parallelized GPUs, dedicated Tensor cores, and an I/O-focused system architecture.

A supercomputer is a high-performance computing system used for complex problem-solving and intensive calculations. They operate at billions of operations per second, powered by thousands of processors maximizing parallelism.

Leonardo utilizes both x86 and ARM architectures, relying on Xeon Platinum 8358 processors, NVIDIA A100 SXM4 64 GB GPUs, and Infiniband Quad-rail NVIDIA HDR100 interconnection. Its computing modules, Booster and Data Centric, enhance computational capacity and expand application possibilities.  Supercomputer Leonardo

As of January 2024, Leonardo is at full capacity, reflecting the growing demand for supercomputing, particularly in AI training. CINECA looks towards the future, with the European Commission and the Italian Government providing additional funding for Leonardo’s evolution, introducing its successor, Lisa, by June 2024. Leonardo’s journey continues, contributing significantly to various fields and laying the groundwork for post-exascale computing between 2026 and 2028.

Supercomputer Leonardo

Leonardo supercomputer: what it is, how it works and what it is used for

100 Metric Tons of PET Recyclate Per Day

Herbold Meckesheim supplies fifth PET washing line to Türkiye – Doğa will produce rPET flakes for bottle-to-bottle applications

The first truck has left the yard. Another 20 will follow. They will deliver the newest washing line from Herbold Meckesheim to Kırklareli, Türkiye, almost 2,100 kilometers away. There, in the European part of Türkiye, the latest recycling plant of the Meckesheim-based special machinery manufacturer is being built for the company Doğa. After commissioning, the washing line is expected to produce a daily output of 100 metric tons of PET recyclate. Doğa, a company hitherto active in the construction industry, intends to sell the recycled PET flakes for bottle-to-bottle applications. Supercomputer Leonardo

“As the Doğa Group, we are proud to add the recycling sector to our activities of fields such as real estate, construction, mining and textiles,” explains Ömer Ayvacı, Chairman of the Board of the Doğa Group. “In today’s world, where the concepts of environmentally friendly production are becoming increasingly important, we aim to start rPET flakes production with completely environmentally friendly solutions with our state-of-the-art machinery park as of the beginning of next year.”

Ömer Ayvacı emphasizes: “We are confident that we will meet the needs of the sector with Herbold Meckesheim, a company that has mechanical recycling technology accepted all over the world. With the technical information, support and know-how provided by Herbold Meckesheim, we know that we will realize the highest quality rPET flakes production in the most efficient way.”  Supercomputer Leonardo


100 Metric Tons of PET Recyclate Per Day

HeiQ to showcase its bio-based textile technologies 

In Switzerland, HeiQ said its bio-based textile technologies HeiQ Skin Care, HeiQ Allergen Tech, HeiQ Cool, and HeiQ Mint are going to be showcased at the Heimtextil show in Frankfurt in January.

HeiQ presents a complete set of tailored textile technologies designed to enhance the quality of a comfortable night’s rest through sustainable and bio-based solutions, the firm said.  Supercomputer Leonardo

Mike Abbott, Head of HeiQ Textiles & Flooring business unit, said: “HeiQ has developed a way to turn textile technologies into sleep-enhancing elements through its innovative approach to biobased ingredients, incorporating their benefits into bedding and home textile items..”

The flagship products are the 100% biobased cosmetic technology HeiQ Skin Care, the plant-based deodorizer HeiQ Mint , the dual action cooling solution HeiQ Cool, and HeiQ Allergen Tech that reduces exposure to inanimate allergens through active probiotics, HeiQ said.

HeiQ to showcase its bio-based textile technologies 

Marelli Launches Lightweight, Sustainable Headlights at CES 2024

The automobile lights feature up to 20% fewer components, a 20% reduction in weight, and a 6 kg reduction in CO2 emissions.  Supercomputer Leonardo

Mobility technology supplier to the automotive sector Marelli selected CES 2024 in Las Vegas to launch its LeanLight headlight and rear light concepts. Compared with traditional automotive lighting, the products feature up to 20% fewer components, a 20% reduction in weight, and a 6 kg reduction in CO2 emissions.

Systems based on Marelli’s Lean platforms are primarily pre-developed, leaving room for automakers to customize certain features. This module-based platform approach targets entry-level vehicles, brands, and trim levels, and is designed to appeal to budget-oriented consumers and fleet buyers.  Supercomputer Leonardo

The introduction of a new injection molding process for the LeanLight contributes to lighter weight and reduced energy consumption, while a newly developed surface treatment solution eliminates the need for a chemical coating, further contributing to sustainability benefits.


Marelli Launches Lightweight, Sustainable Headlights at CES 2024

Heimtextil Ends With An Increase In Exhibitors, A Plus In Visitors And Sets New Standards For A Sustainable And AI-Driven Textile Industry

New contacts with decision-makers, global business opportunities and worldwide streams of visitors: Heimtextil 2024 ended with 46,000 visitors[1] from around 130 nations and 2,838 exhibitors from 60 nations with 25 per cent growth. With a plus in visitors, the show overcame difficult travel conditions due to nationwide rail strikes and regional demonstrations. Supercomputer Leonardo

The response from international buyers to the quality and variety of the new Carpets & Rugs product segment was overwhelming. In numerous talks, tours and workshops, Heimtextil as well focused on two of the most important key topics of the coming decades: sustainable production and action as well as artificial intelligence. At the leading trade fair for home and contract textiles, transformations could be experienced more intensively than ever before.  Supercomputer Leonardo

With intercontinental strength, Heimtextil 2024 laid the foundation for a record year for Messe Frankfurt. 46,000 buyers from around 130 nations took the opportunity to participate in the global textile market – from upholstery and decorative fabrics, bed and bathroom textiles, mattresses, functional textiles and carpets to wallpapers, outdoor fabrics, artificial leather, curtains, fibres, yarns, sleeping systems and decorative cushions.


Heimtextil Ends With An Increase In Exhibitors, A Plus In Visitors And Sets New Standards For A Sustainable And AI-Driven Textile Industry

Naphtha rPET – Mercedes: Solid-State Batteries “May Not Be Necessary” Solid-state batteries? For Mercedes, they might no longer be necessary given the progress of lithium-ion batteries 15-01-2024

Supercomputer Leonardo

Polyester BCF-yarns – All maritime navigation in danger on Suez Canal for Houthi attacks 15-01-2024

Polyester BCF-yarns

Naphtha rPET – Mercedes: Solid-State Batteries “May Not Be Necessary” Solid-state batteries? For Mercedes, they might no longer be necessary given the progress of lithium-ion batteries 


Polyester BCF-yarns

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

All maritime navigation in danger on Suez Canal for Houthi attacks

The Suez Canal, one of the world’s most important waterways for global trade, is facing a serious threat from the Houthi rebels in Yemen, who have launched a series of attacks on shipping vessels in the Red Sea. The attacks have caused major disruptions and delays for cargo and oil shipments, as well as increased security risks and costs for the maritime industry.

What are the Houthi attacks?

The Houthi rebels are an Iran-aligned group that have been fighting a civil war against the internationally recognized government of Yemen since 2014. They control most of the western coast of Yemen, including the port of Hodeidah, which gives them access to the Red Sea and the Bab al-Mandab Strait, a narrow chokepoint that connects the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean.  Polyester BCF-yarnsSuez Canal attacks

The Houthis have claimed responsibility for several attacks on ships in the Red Sea, using drones, missiles, and mines. They have said they are targeting ships linked to Israel or bound for Israeli ports, in solidarity with Hamas in its conflict with Israel in Gaza. However, many of the attacked ships have had no connection to Israel, and some have been carrying humanitarian aid or civilian passengers.

The Houthis have also seized a Japanese-operated vehicle carrier, the Galaxy Leader, on 19 November 2023, along with its 25 crew members. Suez Canal attacks

The ship is reportedly linked to an Israeli businessman, and the Houthis have demanded a ransom for its release. Polyester BCF-yarns


Polyester BCF-yarns

B.I.G. Yarns, A New European Producer Of PET BCF Yarns For Automotive Carpet

To expand its support for high-end and luxurious automotive interiors, B.I.G. Yarns has completed its first industrial production runs of virgin polyester BCF yarns for automotive carpet to complement its line of polyamide PA6 superior yarns.

There is a growing market in PET for automotive interior applications, with polyester allowing automotive OEMs and Tier 1 to develop products that, from the outset, consider eco-design by building MONO-polymer carpets and flooring that are 100% recyclable at End of Life (EOL ). Polyester BCF-yarns

These materials are helping to ensure improved and more sustainable EOL recycling of electric vehicles that are driving the future of the car industry.

The new PET BCF Yarns offer high-performance for automotive carpets, including abrasion and stain resistance, and durability, passing all stringent automotive tests including the Taber test for abrasion performance, compressibility and recovery ability test, light fastness in automotive (DIN EN ISO 105-B06) and VOC (fogging) according the VDA 278 test on VOC and FOG emission. The yarns can be color solution dyed, have a dTex between 1300 – 1500, 81 filaments and are ideally for mats with a composition of 400 to 800 gram per m², while the yarns for molded carpets have a dTex of 1200, 144 filaments for 380 gram per m².  Polyester BCF-yarns

“As the industry continues its transition towards circularity, making the right material choice is crucial from the outset to ensure the best possible eco-design and recyclability. Our newcomer, PET BCF yarns, brings virgin material to automotive carpets, creating a new systemic approach towards MONO-polymer-based automotive applications,” said Glenn Hyzak, Global Sales Director Yarns.


Polyester BCF-yarns

Stellantis Ventures, the venture capital fund of Stellantis N.V., has announced its strategic investment in Tiamat, a French company specializing in sodium-ion battery technology

Sodium-ion batteries are anticipated to bring about cost reductions, increased sustainability, improved low-temperature performance, and faster charging capacity compared to current lithium-ion battery technology.

This investment aligns with Stellantis’ commitment to providing clean, safe, and affordable mobility as part of its Dare Forward 2030 strategic plan. The Dare Forward 2030 plan focuses on achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2038 and emphasizes electric propulsion as a key pillar.  Polyester BCF-yarns

The sodium-ion battery technology developed by Tiamat is highlighted for its lower cost per kilowatt-hour and the absence of lithium and cobalt. The abundance of sodium as a raw material is seen as a strategic advantage, offering greater sustainability and reducing dependence on scarce resources.

Ned Curic, Chief Engineering and Technology Officer of Stellantis, emphasized the importance of finding sustainable and affordable battery options as part of their strategic plan. The goal is to meet customer expectations for zero-emission vehicles that provide autonomy, performance, and convenience.  Polyester BCF-yarns

As part of the Dare Forward 2030 plan, Stellantis aims to transition to electric propulsion, targeting 100% of Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) passenger car sales in Europe and 50% in the United States for both BEV passenger cars and light commercial vehicles by 2030. To achieve this, Stellantis is securing approximately 400 GWh of battery capacity and investing in various alternative energy storage technologies.

Tiamat, a spin-off of the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), plans to use the investment to construct a sodium-ion battery plant in France. Initially, the batteries will be used for electrical appliances and stationary storage applications, with plans to expand production for second-generation products specific to Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV) in the future.  Polyester BCF-yarns

The investment in Tiamat is part of Stellantis’ broader strategy to support innovation in battery technologies and move towards a zero-carbon emission future.

Polyester BCF-yarns

NEVEON has successfully finalized the sale of its OEM automotive business to the Trèves Group of France, following the receipt of antitrust approval on December 31, 2023

The economic transition of the divested entities, which include Greiner Perfoam GmbH in Enns and Linz (Austria), Greiner Perfoam s.r.o. in Tabor and Valašské Meziříči (Czechia), Greiner Perfoam Automotive Components, S. de R.L. de C.V. in Mexico, and the joint ventures Shen-yang Greiner Automotive Components Co., Ltd. and Tianjin Greiner Automotive Components in China, is now complete.  Polyester BCF-yarns

This strategic move signifies NEVEON’s exit from the OEM automotive sector, allowing the company to concentrate on its vertically integrated foam core business in Living & Care (mattresses, upholstered furniture, and healthcare applications) and Mobility & Specialties (including Aviation, Railway, and various specialized foam applications such as boiler insulations, technical foams, and composite foams).

Simultaneously, Henning Frings, aged 35, assumes the role of Executive Vice President for the Mobility & Specialties business unit. He replaces Martin Etzlstorfer, who remains in his position as Managing Director of Perfoam within the Trèves Group. Jürgen Kleinrath, NEVEON’s CEO, expresses confidence in Frings, recognizing his exceptional management skills and welcoming his appointment from within the company.  Polyester BCF-yarns

Frings, who holds an MBA from the University of St. Gallen, brings a wealth of experience from his tenure at international companies such as Amcor Flexibles, Jindal Films, and Edelmann Group. Having joined NEVEON in 2020 as Director of Corporate Development and later becoming the General Manager for Aviation & Railway in 2022, Frings expresses eagerness to contribute to NEVEON’s success in his new role, overseeing areas like Aviation, Railway, Turnkey Solutions, and Base Materials.

Polymer Process, a prominent authority in the field of polymer technology, has recently unveiled an extensive examination elucidating the revolutionary impact and diverse applications of superabsorbent polymers (SAPs)

This groundbreaking analysis provides in-depth insights into the distinctive properties and chemical composition of SAPs, spotlighting their exceptional capacity to absorb and retain substantial amounts of water.  Polyester BCF-yarns

Key Observations from Polymer Process’s Study

Unprecedented Water Absorption and Retention: SAPs exhibit the remarkable capability to absorb and retain significant quantities of water, distinguishing them across various industries.

Diverse Types with Distinctive Characteristics: The study accentuates various types of superabsorbent polymers, each tailored with unique features catering to specific applications.  Polyester BCF-yarns

Chemical Composition: Predominantly composed of polyacrylate compounds, SAPs contribute to their elevated absorbency and operational efficiency.

Porous Architecture for Liquid Absorption: The review elucidates how the porous structure of SAPs plays a pivotal role in facilitating effective liquid absorption.

Versatile Applications: Superabsorbent polymers find diverse applications in agriculture, personal care, industrial processes, and waste management, showcasing their adaptability across sectors.  Polyester BCF-yarns

Revolutionizing Industries through Advanced Polymer Technology

Polymer Process’s comprehensive review underscores the transformative impact of superabsorbent polymers on contemporary technology and industry. In agriculture, SAPs play a crucial role in water conservation and enhancing crop yields. Within personal care products like diapers and adult incontinence items, SAPs contribute to heightened comfort and absorbency.

In industrial settings, SAPs facilitate fluid control and spill management, while in waste management, they aid in containing and processing liquid waste. The review accentuates the potential of SAPs to revolutionize these sectors through innovative applications and sustainable practices, positioning them as key players in the advancement of modern industries.  Polyester BCF-yarns

Polymer Process, a prominent authority in the field of polymer technology, has recently unveiled an extensive examination elucidating the revolutionary impact and diverse applications of superabsorbent polymers (SAPs)

Prime Minister Edi Rama has elucidated that the textile industry’s crisis cannot be solely attributed to the appreciation of the Lek and the depreciation of the Euro in the currency exchange

He stressed that viewing the predicament through the lens of currency fluctuations is fundamentally flawed. Rama dismissed the notion that the crisis arose solely due to the strengthened Lek and the resultant shift in the Euro’s dynamics, asserting that relying on labor as a competitive advantage is an antiquated strategy.  Polyester BCF-yarns

In urging a paradigm shift, the government leader emphasized that fashion companies must alter their approach, cautioning against expecting governmental intervention in the form of “serums.” Rama emphatically declared that no magical remedy exists, and taxing measures cannot artificially prolong the life of an unsustainable entity. He characterized the industry’s plight as a form of clinical death but underscored that solutions exist for entrepreneurs willing to adapt and change the game.

The Prime Minister emphasized the need for resilience and adaptation, citing examples within the industry where successful transformations have occurred. He highlighted that these changes are not merely theoretical discussions but tangible instances where actors within the textile sector have embraced adaptation, becoming competitive entities in the contemporary market.  Polyester BCF-yarns

Prime Minister Edi Rama has elucidated that the textile industry's crisis cannot be solely attributed to the appreciation of the Lek and the depreciation of the Euro in the currency exchange

Technology allows for fibers to be separated and re-used

Recycling used by still-usable clothing is a great thing – but when textiles are torn, hopelessly dirty or worn, they have to be thrown out. Many types of clothing today can’t be recycled because natural fibers like cotton or wool are mixed with synthetic ones, and they have to be burned or buried.  Polyester BCF-yarns

When you go running in the woods in your running tights, elastane — also known as spandex or Lycra, a synthetic fiber that is exceptionally stretchable – is often used in combination with other fibers. That is why athletic wear fits you so comfortably; is adopts to your body.

But when these synthetic fibers are mixed with cotton, wool, nylon or others, as is the case in many clothes today, the clothes become almost impossible to recycle. It is extremely difficult to separate out the different ones.

This may change, says Assistant Prof. Steffan Kvist Kristensen from the Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center at Denmark’s Aarhus University.  Polyester BCF-yarns

Together with a number of colleagues, he is behind a new technology that can separate out fibers in mixed fabrics. They just published their findings in the journal Green Chemistry under the title “Selective chemical disassembly of elastane fibers and polyurethane coatings in textiles.”

“We’ve developed a method to remove elastane completely from nylon. We’re not quite there yet with cotton, because some of the cotton fibers are broken down in the process, but we believe that, with some minor adjustments, we can solve this problem,” he declared. “In other words, we can disassemble the fabric so that we can recycle far more textiles in the future.”  Polyester BCF-yarns

Is it easy to separate fibers?

It is not easy to separate elastane and other fibers once they’ve been woven together. Clothing is made by winding the main fibers such as nylon or cotton around the elastane fibers, which consist of long chains of molecules. The fibers break apart only if we break the long chains of molecules, Kristensen, explained.


Technology allows for fibers to be separated and re-used

Gasification-of-tires – Lummus Technology has announced a significant investment in Resynergi, a trailblazer in plastic recycling technology 13-01-2024

Polyester BCF-yarns

Gasification-of-tires – Lummus Technology has announced a significant investment in Resynergi, a trailblazer in plastic recycling technology 13-01-2024


Lummus Technology has announced a significant investment in Resynergi, a trailblazer in plastic recycling technology

This strategic move aims to amplify the production of Resynergi’s groundbreaking Continuous Microwave Assisted Pyrolysis (CMAP) technology, as reported by Hydrocarbonprocessing.

CMAP sets itself apart by converting plastic waste into reusable materials at a rate 20 times faster than conventional pyrolysis methods. To further strengthen this collaboration, Leon de Bruyn, President and Chief Executive Officer of Lummus, will assume a position on Resynergi’s board of directors.  Gasification-of-tires

According to Leon de Bruyn, “Lummus is not only injecting funds into Resynergi; we are forging a partnership with genuine innovators to create and expand sustainable solutions that drive progress in the circular economy. By combining our extensive global licensing expertise with Resynergi’s proven CMAP technology, we aim to expedite the transformation of plastic waste into high-quality, reusable materials.”

He expressed anticipation about working closely with Resynergi’s team and board of directors to contribute to reducing the carbon footprint of traditional plastics production, meeting the rising demand for recycled plastics. Brian Bauer, Chief Executive Officer of Resynergi, emphasized the positive impact of Lummus’ investment and global licensing expertise, envisioning a collaborative effort to diminish reliance on fossil fuels by addressing plastic waste and advancing plastic circularity.

Given the projected 70% growth in plastic waste by 2050, Resynergi’s modular CMAP technology is well-positioned to scale waste conversion, generating favorable social and environmental outcomes.  Gasification-of-tires


As the world’s largest licensor of polyolefin technologies, LyondellBasell recently announced a significant licensing agreement with China Coal Shaanxi Yulin Energy & Chemical Co., Ltd. (China Coal Shaanxi)

The Chinese company has chosen LyondellBasell’s cutting-edge technologies—Spherizone, Hostalen Advanced Cascade Process (Hostalen ACP), and Lupotech T—for their upcoming chemical complex in Yulin City, Shaanxi Province, P.R. China.

Under this agreement, LyondellBasell’s Spherizone technology will be employed in a 300 KTA polypropylene plant, while the Hostalen ACP high-density polyethylene plant will have a capacity of 300 KTA. Additionally, a 250 KTA Lupotech T vinyl acetate copolymer plant will be part of the new facility. The selection of these advanced technologies reflects China Coal Shaanxi’s commitment to achieving ambitious growth targets in both production expansion and delivering differentiated resins to the polyolefin market in China and beyond.  Gasification-of-tires

Patrik Schneider, Director of Licensing at LyondellBasell, emphasized the significance of licensing superior and distinctive technology in a highly competitive landscape. Mr. Zhou Yongtao, Vice General Manager and Chief Project Director of China Coal Shaanxi, expressed the value of obtaining a license and related know-how, citing the acceleration of learning and reduction of complexity. He highlighted the importance of the Spherizone process’s differentiated polypropylene grades and the durable infrastructure resins from Hostalen ACP and Lupotech T for their portfolio development.

The Spherizone process, with its multi-zone circulating reactor (MZCR), allows for the production of polypropylene products with novel architecture and enhanced properties. The Hostalen ACP process technology is known for manufacturing high-performance, multi-modal HDPE resins, while the Lupotech T process is preferred for LDPE/EVA production due to its high conversion rates and energy efficiency.

LyondellBasell’s portfolio also includes Spheripol, Avant, and other polyolefin process and catalyst technologies. New licensees can opt to join the LyondellBasell Technical Service Program, benefiting from continuous production improvement, sustainable product development, and catalyst expertise.  Gasification-of-tires

As the world's largest licensor of polyolefin technologies, LyondellBasell recently announced a significant licensing agreement with China Coal Shaanxi Yulin Energy & Chemical Co., Ltd. (China Coal Shaanxi)

American Lithium has tripled the estimated value of its Falchani lithium project, revealing a new valuation of $5.11 billion

This significant increase surpasses the previous forecast and highlights the project’s growing potential. In addition to lithium carbonate, the project may yield potential byproducts such as potash sulfate and cesium sulfate, elevating the after-tax value to an impressive $5.58 billion.  Gasification-of-tires

The remarkable surge in net present value, coupled with a low initial capital expenditure and robust economics outlined in the updated preliminary economic assessment for Falchani, marks the successful outcomes of extensive work programs and flow sheet optimization conducted over the past few years. CEO Simon Clarke expressed this achievement in a statement, attributing it to the culmination of effective efforts at the site.

Situated in southern Peru near the border with Bolivia, the Falchani project holds a unique position as the sole lithium project in the country. It strategically lies between major lithium producers like Chile, Argentina, and Bolivia. Currently, the project awaits government approval for an early environmental permit study, underscoring its significance in the regional lithium landscape. Gasification-of-tires

American Lithium has tripled the estimated value of its Falchani lithium project, revealing a new valuation of $5.11 billion

European Market Witnesses Sustained Low Demand for MEG

The European monoethylene glycol (MEG) market finds itself entangled in a web of persistent challenges that stretch across the entire supply chain, presenting formidable obstacles for suppliers. The ongoing predicament is exacerbated by the confluence of high production costs and meager profits, creating a complex and demanding environment for those operating within the industry.  Gasification-of-tires

Traditionally, January heralds an uptick in demand, primarily fuelled by restocking activities in the antifreeze sector. However, the prevailing weak macroeconomic conditions cast a shadow of uncertainty over the trajectory of buying activities. This uncertainty, notably, extends its grip to the sales of polyethylene terephthalate (PET), thereby compounding the intricacies of the market landscape.

The packaging sector, a critical component of the MEG market, undergoes a transformative shift in dynamics, anticipating a reduction in packaging recycling needs. This shift is driven by the impact of reduced disposable income amid the ongoing cost-of-living crisis. A notable change in consumer buying habits further adds to the evolving narrative, characterized by a discernible trend toward “conscious purchases.” Consumers increasingly opt for bulk purchases of non-perishable essentials, driven by a desire for better deals and, consequently, necessitating less packaging. Meanwhile, the European Union’s (EU) food and beverage production, which includes contributions from the UK, is poised to witness growth of 1.3% in 2024. Gasification-of-tires

The negotiation landscape for MEG contract prices during the fourth quarter of 2023 posed substantial challenges. Reaching a compromise between sellers and consumers proved to be a time-consuming endeavor, exacerbated by varying expectations regarding discounts, volumes, and pricing mechanisms. Contract prices, reflective of these challenging negotiations, have experienced a notable decline, witnessing a drop of approximately 11% since the beginning of January 2023.

European Market Witnesses Sustained Low Demand for MEG

New paper-based packaging solution from SEE® can reduce plastic usage

SEE® has introduced a groundbreaking paper-based bottom web, the CRYOVAC® brand Barrier Formable Paper, as an innovative solution to address the growing need to reduce plastic consumption in packaging. Comprising 90% FSC® certified fibers, this new packaging material offers an impressive 77% reduction in plastic usage in bottom web packaging when replacing traditional PET/PE webs.  Gasification-of-tires

Aldo Galbusera, Senior Marketing Manager, Europe at SEE®, emphasized the industry’s shift towards sustainable packaging to meet circularity goals and consumer preferences for paper-based options. The Barrier Formable Paper is designed for compatibility with Vacuum Skin Packaging (VSP) and Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) top webs, catering to various packaging needs for fresh and processed meats, fish, seafood, cheese, and alternative proteins.

This innovative solution delivers on the renowned CRYOVAC® brand’s commitment to superior barrier protection, ensuring prolonged freshness, extended shelf life, and reduced environmental impact through minimized spoilage and waste. Aldo at SEE® highlighted the packaging’s appeal to sustainability-conscious consumers, featuring leak-proof seals for improved presentation and maintaining product quality.  Gasification-of-tires

The CRYOVAC® brand Barrier Formable Paper is available in white and kraft colors, compatible with CRYOVAC® brand Darfresh® vacuum skin films, and designed for easy integration with rollstock, thermoforming, and VSP equipment. Boasting a composition of 90% renewable fibers and 10% plastic, this bottom web can be recycled with paper, aligning with environmental responsibility standards such as Aticelca® 501 UNI 11743. The product’s attributes, including ease of opening and enhanced product aesthetics, aim to meet consumer demands for both sustainability and convenience.


City of Youngstown, Ohio, Adopts Moratorium on Pyrolysis and Gasification of Tires, Plastic, and Electronic Waste

Threats to Environmental Justice and Human Health Should Prevent Construction of SOBE Pyrolysis Facility

The city of Youngstown, Ohio, has adopted a one-year moratorium on pyrolysis or gasification or combustion of tires, chipped tires, plastics, and electronic waste in the city of Youngstown, Ohio. The city council voted unanimously on December 20, 2023; Mayor Jamael Tito Brown signed the bill on December 26, 2023; and it went into effect immediately on December 26, 2023.  Gasification-of-tires

The new local law establishes a moratorium on the construction and operation of any facility that converts — or attempts to convert — plastics, tire derived chips, tire chips, and/or electronic waste into fuel or feedstock through various conversion processes, including pyrolysis or gasification, for one year. The local law declared an emergency measure for the immediate preservation of the public peace, welfare, and safety.

“The moratorium on waste pyrolysis and gasification passed unanimously by the Youngstown City Council sends a strong message, echoing the concerns of Youngstown residents who are opposed to the proposed SOBE project.

The safety and environmental risks of waste pyrolysis are particularly troubling, and the facility’s proposed location adjacent to our downtown and vulnerable neighborhoods is not in alignment with our city’s comprehensive plan,” said Tom Hetrick, president of Youngstown City CouncilGasification-of-tires

“The 12-month moratorium gives the council the necessary time to evaluate safety concerns, analyze zoning issues, gather additional public input, prioritize environmental justice, and fully exercise the City of Youngstown’s local control over land-use decisions within city limits in order to protect the health, safety, and well-being of our residents.”



New Technology Enables Recycling of Used Clothes

When you go running in the woods in your running tights, elastane is the reason they fit you so comfortably. Elastane is an elastic material that allows the fabric to stretch and adapt to your body.

But when elastane fibres are mixed with cotton, wool, nylon or other fibres, as is the case in many clothes today, the clothes become almost impossible to recycle. It is extremely difficult to separate out the different fibres, and therefore the materials in the clothes cannot be recycled.  Gasification-of-tires

For this reason, clothes and other textiles are among the materials that we are the worst at recycling. Only about six per cent of clothes thrown away by Danish households are recycledIn comparison, 32 per cent of all plastic packaging is recycled in Denmark.

But this may change, says Assistant Professor Steffan Kvist Kristensen from the Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center at Aarhus University. Together with a number of colleagues, he is behind a new technology that can separate out fibres in mixed fabrics.

“We’ve developed a method to remove elastane completely from nylon. We’re not quite there yet with cotton, because some of the cotton fibres are broken down in the process.




Nuclear Battery – Escalating Sea Freight Causes Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) Import Prices to Boom in the USA 12-01-2024

PET bottles – Ocean freight disruptions threaten domestic supply, push US PET import prices higher – 11-01-2024

PET bottles

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Maschinenbau, a manufacturer of extrusion blow molding machines, has found a buyer following its declaration of insolvency in August of the previous year

The company will now come under the control of the German subsidiary of an unnamed Chinese investor, as disclosed by AndresPartner, a legal and tax firm specializing in industrial restructuring transactions.

The transfer encompasses not only the brand but also the Bonn facility in Germany, where Kautex Maschinenbau is headquartered. This facility is crucial for the development and assembly of the majority of plastic container blow molding machines. However, with 155 employees affected, there is a possibility of job cuts.  PET bottles

Apart from the German base, Kautex Maschinenbau has a second production facility under the independent subsidiary Shunde Kautex Plastics Technology in Shunde, China, which remains unaffected by insolvency. In Germany, the company also has a commercial subsidiary in Berlin. Additionally, independent branches are situated in Shanghai (China), Bangalore (India), Treviso (Italy), Jakarta (Indonesia), Mexico City (Mexico), and Moscow (Russia). The purchaser, being a Chinese investor, marks a strategic shift in ownership and may bring about changes in the company’s operations and global presence.

PET bottles

California market development payments prioritize PET bottles

A long-running post-consumer plastic market development program in California has been modified to further incentivize PET container recycling.

The Plastic Market Development Payment Program uses government funding to make payments to reclaimers and plastic product manufacturers that use recycled content, with the goal of spurring market development in the state.

The program only covers plastic containers that are part of the state’s California Refund Value (CRV) deposit system.  PET bottles

In-state reclaimers who process deposit containers, and in-state manufacturers who purchase the resulting flake, pellet or other output from those processed containers, can be reimbursed at a rate that’s set each program year, up to $150 per ton of material handled.

The market development payment program was created in 2006 and is regularly renewed by state lawmakers. A frequent priority for plastics recycling stakeholders in the state, it was most recently renewed through Senate Bill 1013, passed in 2022, and is set to run until at least July 2025. PET bottles

Lawmakers budgeted $10 million for market development payments during the current program year. Overall, they’ve allocated $47 million for the program to be used through June 30, 2027.

New in 2024, the program has been modified to use a three-tier payment structure, whereas previous years paid one rate for PET and one rate for HDPE. The new system creates a hierarchy within the PET payments to pay more for certain types of manufacturing and processing.  PET bottles

“The payment restructuring will incentivize participants who produce PET #1 or use PET #1 for new beverage containers,” CalRecycle stated in a public notice of the change.


PET bottles

According to American media, Stellantis and CATL’s LFP batteries may find a home in Spain for electric vehicle production

Following Italy, France, and Germany, Spain could potentially become the birthplace of the next Stellantis electric vehicle batteries. Foreign press rumors suggest the Iberian Peninsula as the chosen location for the Group’s fourth European facility dedicated to accumulator production.

While the American publication Teslarati first reported the speculation, there is currently no mention of official sources or confirmations from the companies. The rumored Spanish plant would be dedicated to manufacturing lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries in collaboration with the Chinese company CATL.  PET bottles

Stellantis had previously announced an alliance with CATL in November, signing a memorandum of understanding for the supply of cells and modules in Europe without specifying the location for the batteries involved in the agreement.

Now, American media leans towards Spain as the next destination for Stellantis. The Group already owns three vehicle factories in Madrid, Vigo, and Zaragoza, with the latter two being converted for the production of coveted affordable electric cars based on the STLA Small platform.  PET bottles

Among the upcoming models, the Citroen e-C3 may be one of the creations featuring CATL’s LFP batteries, priced at €23,300 and expected to hit the market in 2024. However, it will be built on a different architecture, namely the Smart Platform.

PET bottles

Ocean freight disruptions threaten domestic supply, push US PET import prices higher

Imports of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) to the US have experienced price increases of 30-40% due to the global ocean freight disruptions and delays, according to market participants.

Last week, rates for shipping containers from east Asia to the US surged after rebel attacks on vessels in the Red Sea. Additionally, disruption of traffic through the Suez Canal is putting upward pressure on freight rates and increasing concerns of delayed shipments.

As a result, many companies are altering their shipping routes to avoid the disruptions from the Suez Canal and dangers of the Red Sea, opting to divert cargoes around the Cape of Good Hope. However, this route is adding significant delays, as well as reducing the availability of shipping containers.  PET bottles

The European PET and purified terephthalic acid (PTA) market is experiencing shortages as a result of diverted shipments combined with multiple outages. The Asia polyester market is also experiencing negative impacts from the Suez Canal and Red Sea diversions, as rising freight rates have dampened buying on the market.

In addition to the Suez Canal and Red Sea disruptions, commodities markets continue to grapple with issues at the Panama Canal due to low water levels as a result of a local drought. The Panama Canal Authority (PCA) has been limiting the number of vessels able to pass through the canal since early November.  PET bottles


Ocean freight disruptions threaten domestic supply, push US PET import prices higher

The Composition and Evolution of Lithium-Ion Pouch Cell Batteries

Lithium-ion batteries, commonly used in electric vehicles, traditionally employ cylindrical cells. However, pouch cells, characterized by their flattened and flexible structure, have emerged as an alternative. First introduced in 1995 by the U.S. company Li-Polymer, these pouch cells have found applications not only in consumer electronics but also in energy storage systems and electric vehicles.

Similar to conventional lithium-ion cells, pouch cells consist of an anode, a cathode, a separator, and an electrolyte. The anode and cathode, serving as the negative and positive electrodes, are coated with conductive materials.  PET bottles

The separator prevents their direct contact, while the electrolyte facilitates ion movement during charge and discharge cycles.

Internally, pouch cells feature neatly arranged layers of anode-separator-cathode, sealed to form a compact unit resembling a bag or pouch. The negative and positive poles are externally connectable through tabs extending from the pouch.

Pouch cells offer advantages such as compactness, lightweight design, and flexibility, making them initially popular in consumer electronics. Their flexible design allows for greater design freedom, adapting to irregular shapes. Additionally, pouch cells boast higher energy density, exceeding 90%, making them appealing for emerging electric mobility.  PET bottles

Despite their benefits, pouch cells face a durability challenge. Their flexible external structure is susceptible to deformation and mechanical stress during charge and discharge cycles, leading to a shorter lifespan compared to cylindrical or prismatic cells. Factors such as gas production during cycles, sensitivity to humidity, and high temperatures contribute to observable cell swelling.

However, advancements are underway, particularly with the growing use of pouch cells in solid-state battery technology. Companies like Factorial, Solid Power, and QuantumScape are employing stacked layers of pouch cells, reaching up to 24 layers, to create next-generation batteries. Solid-state electrolytes offer improved temperature management and eliminate gas formation, addressing the longevity concerns associated with traditional pouch cells.  PET bottles

As a result, pouch cells are gaining traction, proving ideal for solid-state battery innovations with extended lifespans comparable to cylindrical or prismatic cells.

The Composition and Evolution of Lithium-Ion Pouch Cell Batteries

Heraeus Precious Metals enters hydrogen business

Heraeus Precious Metals has announced the establishment of a new dedicated Business Line, Hydrogen Systems, effective 1 January 2024.

The company aims to offer a comprehensive range of precious metal-based products for electrolysers and fuel cells, in particular state-of-the-art electrocatalyst solutions for next-generation applications. In addition to the supply of precious metals, the new business will offer a comprehensive range of technologies and production capabilities for the recovery of precious metals from production scrap and end-of-life materials such as catalyst-coated membranes.  PET bottles

Heraeus Precious Metals also continues to expand its R&D efforts to the United States and China and beyond PEM (Proton Exchange Membrane) technology. In addition, resources have been established to support customers in the development of inks and electrodes.


Heraeus Precious Metals enters hydrogen business

Newcleo has entered into a partnership with NextChem and Tecnimont, subsidiaries of Maire, to leverage cutting-edge reactors for the decarbonization of the chemical industry, including hydrogen production

The agreement entails the exclusive development of a conceptual study on the sustainable, zero-emission production of hydrogen and chemicals, combining Newcleo’s nuclear technology with Maire’s chemical expertise.

This collaboration will enable the production of electrolytic hydrogen and zero-emission chemical products such as ammonia, methanol, e-fuel, and derivatives. It aligns with the European Union’s decision to incorporate innovative nuclear technologies, like that of Newcleo, into the EU taxonomy of environmentally sustainable economic activities.

Additionally, Tecnimont will provide consultancy services for Newcleo’s nuclear power plant based on small nuclear reactors (SMRs), applying Tecnimont’s modularization approach to optimize construction and planning methodologies, reducing production and construction times and costs.  PET bottles

This supports Newcleo’s vision of realizing a fully modular, accessible, and easy-to-install plant.

Stefano Buono, President and CEO of Newcleo, emphasized that small or advanced modular reactors (SMRs/AMRs) have the potential not only to generate electricity but also for industrial applications. The safety-by-design feature of Newcleo’s reactors, based on the laws of physics, ensures the safety of lead fast reactors (LFR) even in unlikely severe accidents or sabotage scenarios. This enhanced safety, coupled with the favorable physical properties of lead, allows for cost reduction compared to third-generation SMRs, paving the way for a competitive “e-Factory for zero-carbon chemistry” as envisioned by Maire. Buono expressed enthusiasm for the collaboration with Maire and looks forward to advancing their shared vision for sustainable, zero-emission hydrogen and chemical production.  PET bottles

Newcleo has entered into a partnership with NextChem and Tecnimont, subsidiaries of Maire, to leverage cutting-edge reactors for the decarbonization of the chemical industry, including hydrogen production

Solid-State Batteries – Bottled water contains hundreds of thousands of potentially dangerous plastic fragments 10-01-2024

PET bottles

Solid-State Batteries – Bottled water contains hundreds of thousands of potentially dangerous plastic fragments 10-01-2024

Solid-State Batteries

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Volkswagen – Solid-State Batteries: Half a Million Kilometers Without Degradation

Solid-state batteries, a highly promising technology for the electric cars of the coming years, take a significant step towards mass production. QuantumScape, an American startup in collaboration with Volkswagen for over a decade, has successfully completed endurance tests on its solid-state cells. These tests involved over a thousand recharge cycles, after which the cells retained 95% of their nominal capacity. The trials took place at the laboratories of PowerCo, the battery company within the Volkswagen Group.

Beyond industry standards, QuantumScape’s cells have surpassed the standard objectives for this development phase, which anticipate a maximum loss of 20% after 700 recharge cycles.  Solid-State Batteries

With this technology, an electric car achieving a range of 500-600 km in the Wltp homologation cycle could potentially last at least half a million kilometers without any noticeable decline in autonomy. The American company’s batteries have also excelled in rapid charging, safety, and self-discharge tests.

Ready for mass production, the solid-state cell tested by PowerCo consists of 24 layers and already corresponds to the version intended for serial production. The next steps involve refining large-scale production processes for market introduction. Jagdeep Singh, founder and CEO of the American startup, emphasizes that there is still much work to be done to bring this technology to the market.

Nevertheless, as of now, there is no knowledge of any other lithium-metal battery for automotive use demonstrating such high discharge energy retention over a comparable number of cycles and under similar conditions.  Solid-State Batteries

Solid-State Batteries

Turkey seeks Saudi partnership Cooperation as it plans to be an energy hub to Europe, minister tells Arab News

Turkey is seeking more cooperation with Saudi Arabia and other countries as it plans to be an energy hub to Europe, its finance minister said.

“Turkey from its geographical position is an energy corridor from Russia, Iran, and Saudi Arabia. Any kind of natural gas or oil that is going to be transported or shipped, will cost less and will be more safely shipped,” Nureddin Nebati told Arab News in an interview.

Speaking on the sideline of the 6th edition of Future Investment Initiative forum in Riyadh, the minister didn’t elaborate further on how the two countries might cooperate but said that peace in the region will bring energy costs down.  Solid-State Batteries

“Turkey and Saudi Arabia are also assisting each other, which will bring peace in the region. That peace will bring more affordable gas prices, the energy prices, and will allow both countries to look ahead,” he added.

Saudi Arabia is the largest exporter of oil in the world. Its gas reserves amounts to nearly 300 trillion cubic feet, making it the largest fifth gas reserve in the world. However, the Kingdom doesn’t export gas and it intends to expand production to meet local demand and eliminate the use of oil and other liquids in power generation.


Solid-State Batteries

Bottled water contains hundreds of thousands of potentially dangerous plastic fragments: Study

A new study has found that the average bottle of water contains nearly a quarter million fragments of “nanoplastics” — plastic particles so small they can potentially gum up the machinery of human cells.

The findings published on Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences open a disturbing window into a largely unmapped corner of plastic pollution — a region marked by plastics the approximate size of viruses or vaccine particles.

“We know microplastics are always in the environment,” coauthor Beizhan Yan of Columbia University told The Hill. “They are high up in the alpine, and down in the Marianas Trench, and quite a lot in New York City water as well.”  Solid-State Batteries

But microplastics are comparatively large and easy to measure, he said — measurable in millionths of a meter, they can be viewed using technology like a scanning electron microscope.

The team was concerned by nanoplastics, which are particles thousands of times smaller – measurable in billionths of a meter. These smaller sizes can translate to greater danger, Yan said, “because the smaller the particle size, they are easy to get into the human bodies and then cross different barriers.”

The tiny compounds, Yan added, “can cross into the blood, and then can cross the different barriers to get into the cells,” interfering with the organelles — cellular organs — “and causing them to malfunction.”  Solid-State Batteries

Both micro- and nanoplastics have been found to have a wide array of dangerous impacts on a staggering array of key systems in the human body, as a December article in The Lancet found.

That survey of recent research found that tiny plastics can interfere with the chemistry of the human body — causing impacts both on and from the communities of microbes in our gut that help us digest food.


Solid-State Batteries

BYD, the first stone for the production of sodium batteries, cheaper (but less efficient) than NMC and LFP

BYD has initiated the construction of a new production site dedicated to sodium batteries in Xuzhou, a city in the Jiangsu province of China. This move is part of an agreement with Huaihai Group, specializing in motorcycles and tricycles, signed on November 18 in Shenzen for a 10 billion yuan (€1.28 billion) investment and a production capacity of 30 GWh. The groundbreaking ceremony took place on January 4, and this facility joins another nearing completion in the same location, focused on Lithium Iron Phosphate (LFP) batteries with “blade” cells, initiated in early 2023.  Solid-State Batteries

The sodium batteries are intended for low-end vehicles produced by BYD and its customers, as well as for motorcycles from Huaihai Group. These batteries, utilizing sodium instead of lithium, offer superior sustainability from both an environmental and economic perspective compared to traditional Nickel Manganese Cobalt (NMC) and LFP batteries. They boast a lower cost (one-third of NMC), albeit with a 50% lower energy density and power. Noteworthy advantages include safety, recyclability, charge retention, durability, and operability in a broader temperature range (-20°C to +60°C).

This sodium battery technology is gaining traction in the market, targeting low-cost vehicles for emerging markets, motorcycles, tricycles, and stationary systems. The sodium-ion battery market is poised for significant growth, with a projected 600% increase by 2033, reaching a total capacity of 67.7 GWh. BYD’s ambitious plans contribute to this trend, challenging initial projections by industry experts.

Despite previous use in space shuttles, the technology’s success hinges on its adaptation to affordable and sustainable solutions, potentially reshaping the dynamics of the electric vehicle battery market.  Solid-State Batteries

BYD, the first stone for the production of sodium batteries, cheaper (but less efficient) than NMC and LFP

Equinor and Linde have signed an agreement to develop the H2M Eemshaven low carbon hydrogen project

Equinor and Linde have signed a project development agreement to develop the H2M Eemshaven low carbon hydrogen project in the Netherlands as partners.

Equinor will secure access to carbon transport and storage capacity and offer low carbon hydrogen to the market. Linde will build, co-own and operate the hydrogen production and carbon capture and transfer facility.

The aim is to build a facility in the Eemshaven industrial area to reform natural gas from the Norwegian continental shelf to low-carbon hydrogen with CO2 capture and storage (CCS). More than 95 percent of the CO2 will be captured and stored safely and permanently under the seabed offshore Norway. The aim is to start production in late 2028 and the hydrogen plant will be connected to onshore hydrogen pipelines planned in both the Netherlands and Germany.  Solid-State Batteries


Equinor and Linde have signed an agreement to develop the H2M Eemshaven low carbon hydrogen project

Advanced Petrochemical to Temporarily Pause Jubail Polypropylene Production in February

Saudi Arabia’s Advanced Petrochemical, a major player in the Asian petrochemical industry, has announced plans for the temporary shutdown of two polypropylene (PP) production lines in Jubail, Saudi Arabia. This scheduled pause in production is set to commence on February 4, allowing for routine maintenance activities to be carried out. The maintenance work will be conducted on enterprises with a combined annual capacity of 270,000 tons of PP and 210,000 tons of PP. The shutdown period is expected to extend until February 27 of the current year, ensuring a comprehensive and thorough maintenance effort.  Solid-State Batteries

It’s worth noting that the last instance of Advanced Petrochemical closing its PP plant in Jubail for scheduled maintenance occurred from February 28 to March 22, 2022. This periodic shutdown strategy aligns with industry best practices, emphasizing the company’s commitment to maintaining optimal operational efficiency, reliability, and safety standards.

Advanced Petrochemical, formerly known as Advanced Polypropylene, operates as a joint-stock company, established in October 2005. The company embarked on the construction of petrochemical plants in May 2005, with its facilities strategically located in the industrial city of Jubail on the east coast of Saudi Arabia. The production output includes 455,450 tonnes of propylene annually and an additional unspecified tonnage of polypropylene per year.  Solid-State Batteries

The decision to undertake routine maintenance activities on the two PP production lines in Jubail reflects Advanced Petrochemical’s dedication to ensuring the long-term sustainability and effectiveness of its operations. By proactively addressing maintenance needs, the company aims to enhance equipment reliability, prevent potential issues, and align with industry standards and regulations.

As part of its commitment to transparency and industry best practices, Advanced Petrochemical has provided advance notice of the scheduled maintenance period.


Advanced Petrochemical to Temporarily Pause Jubail Polypropylene Production in February

In the northwestern Galicia region of Spain, sandy beaches have become the focal point for hundreds of volunteers armed with colanders and shovels

Their mission: to tackle the aftermath of an environmental crisis as millions of plastic pellets, also known as mermaid tears or nurdles, inundated the coast.

These tiny pellets, utilized in the production of everyday items like water bottles and shopping bags, contribute to the pervasive issue of plastic pollution in oceans and rivers globally.  Solid-State Batteries

The onslaught of plastic pellets in Spain traced back to at least one container that fell from the Toconao, a Liberia-registered vessel chartered by shipping giant Maersk, off the neighboring Portuguese coast last month, according to a statement from Bedeko Europe, the manufacturer of the pellets.

Deputy Prime Minister Maria Jesus Montero expressed the government’s concern about potential “serious repercussions” and admitted uncertainty regarding the exact impact, particularly on the fishing industry. The cleanup efforts evoked memories of Galicia’s 2002 environmental disaster, a fuel oil spill that closed Spain’s lucrative fishing grounds.

An estimated 10 trillion plastic pellets contaminate marine ecosystems annually, as reported by the Pew Charitable Trusts in 2020.  Solid-State Batteries

Environmentalist group Ecologistas en Accion criticized the regional government’s delayed response and announced plans to file an environmental crime complaint against Toucan Maritime, the Dutch owner of the vessel. Political blame games ensued, with Galicia’s regional leader accusing the central government of withholding information for over two weeks, while Madrid’s representative in Galicia countered that the maritime rescue service had alerted regional coast guards about the incident on December 20.

In the northwestern Galicia region of Spain, sandy beaches have become the focal point for hundreds of volunteers armed with colanders and shovels

Recycling Guide – Brics countries shake up world order 09-01-2024

Solid-State Batteries

Recycling Guide – Brics countries shake up world order 09-01-2024

Recycling Guide

Crude Oil Prices Trend

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

World Packaging Organisation (WPO) launches Recycling Guide

The ‘Packaging Design for Recycling Guide’, a product of WPO (World Packaging Organisation), has recently been translated into Japanese, and is now available through WPO website. This is the 11th translation besides the versions in English, German, Spanish, Arabic, Portuguese, Thai, Latvian, Czech, Hungarian and Georgian. Developed by WPO, Circular Analytics, FH Campus University of Applied Sciences and ECR Community, the Guide is a starting point to understand best practice examples, using state-of-the-art technology that can be applied and tailored to suit the recovery and recyclability capabilities and infrastructure on a regional and local level.

The formal launch of the Japanese version was undertaken during WPO Board Meeting (Nov 23), in South Africa, with the presence of the former President, Pierre Pienaar, the current President, Luciana Pellegrino, the representative of Japan Packaging Institute (JPI), Hiroko Akieda, and Vice President Sustainability & Save Food, Nerida Kelton.

“The ‘Packaging Design for Recycling Guide’ is a very important tool for the global packaging community to ensure that our industry is taking steady steps, based on scientific foundations, to achieve a circular economy model. It contributes to address the challenges that face the world in terms of climate change, environment and preservation of natural resources”, states Luciana Pellegrino, WPO President. She adds: “We highly recommend the industry to explore this Guide in a way of driving efforts based on a common voice of the packaging industry in terms of recycling and circular economy.”


Recycling Guide

World Packaging Organisation (WPO) launches Recycling Guide

Honda considering $18.4B electric vehicle and battery plant in Canada: media report

Honda Motor Co. Ltd. could invest upwards of $18.4 billion in an electric vehicle plant in Canada, according to a report from a Japanese news outlet.

Nikkei Asia said on Sunday that Honda is considering building both a vehicle and battery plant in the country as part of efforts to catch up in the electric vehicle market.

The report says Honda is looking at several sites, including next to its existing plant in Alliston, Ont., with a potential investment decision expected by the end of the year.

A spokesperson for Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne did not confirm whether any talks were going on between the company and the government.

The minister said in a statement that the report about Honda’s potential investment is a “testament to Canada’s growing reputation as a green supplier of choice and global EV leader.”  Recycling Guide

“Reports about Honda looking to make a significant investment in Canada speaks to the quality of workforce and the strength of our industry,” Champagne said in the statement.

The Nikkei report says the abundance of renewable energy in the country is part of the reason Honda is considering Canada, while in December the federal government mandated that all passenger vehicle sales would be electric by 2035.

Honda is retooling a production plant in Ohio to produce electric vehicles and has an agreement in place to build an electric vehicle battery plant in the state with LG Energy Solution, but the report says the company might go it alone on the battery plant in Canada.  Recycling Guide

LG is already in a partnership with automaker Stellantis to build a $5 billion battery plant in Windsor, Ont., one of numerous major EV investments Canada has secured after offering generous subsidies.

Volkswagen is building a battery plant in St. Thomas, Ont., and Northvolt is building one about 30 kilometres east of Montreal, with the three plants expected to cost tens of billions of dollars in subsidies linked largely to production volumes. Recycling Guide


Recycling Guide

Antimicrobial Hospital Textiles Market worth $9.4 billion by 2025 | Key players Atlas Milliken & Company (US), Trevira GmbH (Germany), Unitika Trading Co. Ltd. (Japan)

According to recent market research the “Antimicrobial Hospital Textiles Market by Material, Usability (Disposable, Reusable), FDA Class (Class I, Class II, Class III), Application (Attire, Surgical supplies & Wipes, Sheets & Blankets), Hospital Department, Region – Global Forecast to 2025”, size is estimated at USD 7.1 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 9.4 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 5.8%. Increasing population, medical infrastructure development & health promotion by government authorities, and increasing affordability are major key driving factors for the growth of the antimicrobial hospital textiles industry.  Recycling Guide

Cotton was the largest material type in the overall antimicrobial hospital textiles market. This is because cotton is susceptible to microbial attack, as is it a naturally occurring plant fiber. Cotton is very soft in nature and renders comfort when it is in contact with the skin. Due to comfort property, it is used more as compared to other antimicrobial hospital textiles material. This factor is driving the demand for cotton in the antimicrobial hospital textiles market.
Attire is the largest application during the forecast period. The attire worn by the doctors, patients, and staff members in a hospital should be hygienic as it can act as a source of HAIs. Patients with lower immunity are highly susceptible to infections. Attire is used to protect hospital staff and prevent HAIs and is a mandatory practice in hospitals. Hence, the demand for antimicrobial textiles is high in the attire application. Recycling Guide


Recycling Guide

Western LLDPE Market Confronts a Decline in December Amidst Trade Challenges

In December 2023, the Linear Low-Density Polyethylene (LLDPE) market experienced a depreciation in Western markets, particularly in the US and Europe. The weakening in prices can be primarily attributed to the global weak demand for LLDPE and the abundant availability of stock. The decrease in feedstock Ethylene and upstream Naphtha costs in the region has also played a role in pushing down the prices. Furthermore, various factors such as the holiday season, geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, supply chain disruptions caused by low water levels in the Panama Canal, and an attack by Houthi rebels affecting transportation in the Red Sea amid an economic slowdown, have collectively influenced market dynamics and contributed to the pricing fluctuations of LLDPE during this period.  Recycling Guide

Thus, the price of LLDPE Film Butene-based FOB Texas(USA) fell by 2% while the LLDPE Film FD Hamburg(Germany) declined by 5% this month.

The LLDPE market in the United States experienced a plummeting trend due to sluggish demand from downstream packaging and construction industries this month. Despite fluctuations in feedstock Ethylene, influenced by improved market activity before the holidays, and a continued decrease in upstream Naphtha amid easing Crude oil prices, LLDPE prices saw an overall decrease. Initially, the month witnessed steady market activity with a consistent flow of customer orders for LLDPE. Recycling Guide

However, as the year approached its end, some buyers reduced their purchasing efforts, maintaining a positive outlook and anticipating the possibility of December discounts extending into January. Further, export demand from the United States remained steady in Europe and Latin America. Sellers were willing to consider fair offers, leading to reduced prices in exchange for larger quantities, although there were some limitations on the extent of discounts which overall led to a slump in the price of LLDPE.


Recycling Guide

Revolutionary indigo dye makes denim more ecofriendly

Two Israeli companies team up to bring a new level of sustainability to the highly polluting textile industry.The indigo dye market for the jeans industry is estimated at $1.5 billion a year. However, traditional indigo yarn dyeing processes require an average 60,000 liters of water per process and use polluting chemicals such as hydrosulfite.

Israeli green-tech company Sonovia developed a chemical-free, ultrasonic indigo dyeing technology, D(y)ENIM, which drastically reduces water usage, chemical waste and energy expenditure in the dyeing process, without hydrosulfites. Recycling Guide

Two European denim makers, France’s Kering and Italy’s PureDenim, have already integrated Sonovia’s yarn-dyeing technology into their production lines.

Now, D(y)ENIM will be scaled up significantly thanks to a collaboration with a fellow Israeli company, industrial chemicals company Avco.

The collaborative will focus on producing an industrial quantity of the dye. Avco will leverage its expertise in marketing chemical products internationally to promote and sell the ecofriendly indigo dye and technology to global textile and fashion companies.

According to Sonovia cofounder Shay Herchcovich, “The successful completion of the first phase is contingent upon achieving key criteria, including reaching a production rate of at least one ton of the indigo dye per week, meeting quality requirements defined by Sonovia’s first customer, confirming the sale of 80 tons of the material, and mutual agreement between the parties.”  Recycling Guide


Revolutionary indigo dye makes denim more ecofriendly

Green Innovation: Progress Report – Third Edition highlights:

  • In 2021 plastic recycling patent filings have reached an all time high.
  • Drop in filings from previous highest filer Eastman, but the rest of the sector show growth.
  • Pyrolysis is still by far the main source of chemical recycling innovation, and continues to grow rapidly, but there is also growth in other emerging technologies such as biodegradation and electrolysis.  Recycling Guide
  • Strong growth is also found in innovation for the downstream processing of the treated polymer waste.

The evolution of innovation and patents in chemical recycling

The variety of plastics and compositions containing plastic have produced a reliance on them in a considerable range of applications. Traditional petrochemical-derived plastics, such as polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), polyesters, polyacrylics, polystyrene and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) have evolved over decades, offering highly-specialised properties for such applications. They remain highly valuable materials, essential in many areas, and this seems set to continue until greener alternatives can sufficiently replicate their performance.  Recycling Guide

However, continued use will also likely require that such plastics become easier to recycle because the majority of plastic waste takes decades to biodegrade.

Recycling non-biodegradable plastic is one way to partially mitigate its environmental impact.

In 2019, of the approximately 350 million tonnes of plastic waste worldwide, nine percent was recycled, 19 percent incinerated, 49 percent went to landfill, and 22 percent was uncollected litter, with 6.1 million tonnes (Mt) of plastic waste leaking into aquatic environments, such as rivers, and 1.7 Mt flowing into the oceans. Recycling Guide


Green Innovation: Progress Report - Third Edition highlights:

Brics countries shake up world order

The Brics constellation of countries is growing both in influence and membership. Expansion will require careful handling but is set to further increase the role of the group
Brics is an acronym from the world of investment banking that has become a global movement. Originally just ‘BRIC’, coined by the investment bank Goldman Sachs at the beginning of the century, it stood for Brazil, Russia, India and China, to describe a significant cluster of the world’s emerging economies with considerable potential for investors. The projection was that the four countries would dominate the global economy by the mid-21st Century.  Recycling Guide

The ‘S’ stands for South Africa, which was added soon after. This year will see nations from the Gulf Co-operation Council join the club. There are around 20 countries applying to join, although one member-elect, Argentina, announced late last year that it would not be joining as planned, following Javier Milei’s win in the presidential election.
Since 2009 the five countries have formed themselves into a formal grouping with annual summits aimed at assisting co-operation among non-Western nations, the most recent of which took place in Johannesburg, South Africa in August 2023. It was the 15th meeting of the bloc. Recycling Guide

Brics countries shake up world order

PET-Bottle Nylon – Germany delays plastic tax to 2025 08-01-2024

Recycling Guide

Red-Sea crisis – Amidst prevailing market weakness, Saudi Arabia has announced a reduction in key crude prices for buyers across all regions in February 08-01-2024

Red-Sea crisis

PET-Bottle Nylon – Germany delays plastic tax to 2025 


Red-Sea crisis

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Amidst prevailing market weakness, Saudi Arabia has announced a reduction in key crude prices for buyers across all regions in February

This decision encompasses the primary Asian market, where oil prices for the flagship Arab Light have been lowered by $2 to $1.50 above the benchmark. This adjustment is more substantial than the estimated $1.25 reduction projected in a Bloomberg survey of refiners and traders. Saudi Aramco, the state producer, has also implemented price cuts for February deliveries to Northwest Europe, the Mediterranean, and North America.

The oil industry traditionally experiences decreased consumption during February and March, as refiners often conduct periodic maintenance by temporarily shutting down some facilities. Concurrently, a surplus in global supply, including contributions from the United States, heightens the risk of an oversupply. Consequently, the OPEC+ group, led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, extended output cuts into the current year.  Red-Sea crisis

In 2023, global crude prices registered a decline for the first time since 2020. Despite ongoing geopolitical concerns such as the Israel-Hamas conflict and escalating turmoil in the Middle East, as well as Houthi militant attacks in the Red Sea, the market has not witnessed significant disruptions in supply.

The OPEC+ group’s production cuts aim to prevent an accumulation of oil in storage amid apprehensions of a sluggish global economy affecting demand. Saudi Arabia bears the major responsibility, voluntarily implementing cuts of 2 million barrels per day through the first quarter, potentially extending into subsequent periods.  Red-Sea crisis

Red-Sea crisis

Wendel completes sale of Constantia Flexibles to One Rock affiliate 

The move follows a definitive agreement signed by the parties in August 2023.

An affiliate of private equity investment management company, One Rock Capital Partners, has completed the acquisition of packaging company Constantia Flexibles.

One Rock acquired Constantia from European investment company Wendel, Maxburg Capital Partners, and other shareholders.

Headquartered in Vienna, Austria, Constantia supplies flexible packaging solutions to more than 4,000 global customers in the pharmaceutical, food, and consumer goods sectors.

The company operates a network of 28 sites in 15 countries, with more than 7,150 employees.  Red-Sea crisis

One Rock partner Kurt Beyer said: “Constantia’s commitment to product innovation, sustainability and quality underscores its position as a market leader in the flexible packaging industry.

“We look forward to working alongside Constantia’s management team to enhance its operational capabilities and suite of packaging solutions to maximise its potential.”


Red-Sea crisis

Container shipping rates spike as Red Sea crisis draws first blood

Maersk halts Red Sea transits (again) after US military kills Houthi attackers

Maersk, the world’s second-largest ocean carrier, gambled that a U.S.-led military force, Operation Prosperity Guardian, would allow safe passage through the Red Sea. That gamble has failed.

On Tuesday, Maersk said it will suspend Red Sea transits indefinitely and reroute ships around Africa’s Cape of Good Hope. The decision followed attacks on the container ship Maersk Hangzhou, which was struck by a Houthi rebel missile on Saturday and threatened by four Houthi boats on Sunday.  Red-Sea crisis

Armed guards on the Maersk Hangzhou exchanged fire with the Houthis, whose boats approached within 70 feet of the container ship before U.S. military helicopters intervened. After the Houthis fired on U.S. forces, the helicopters took out three of the four boats, killing 10 Houthi rebels.

The attacks in the Red Sea continue. U.S. Central Command confirmed that the Houthis fired two anti-ballistic missiles on Tuesday that landed in the vicinity of passing commercial ships. The Houthi spokesperson confirmed Wednesday that the missiles were targeting the container ship CMA CGM Tage.

As supply chain issues mount and missile launches persist, there is an increasing likelihood of ground strikes in Yemen by the U.S.-led coalition.  Red-Sea crisis


Container shipping rates spike as Red Sea crisis draws first blood

Svensk Plaståtervinning has recently inaugurated “Site Zero,” the world’s largest plastic sorting facility located in Motala, Sweden

Equipped with cutting-edge technology from Sutco and Tomra, this state-of-the-art plant efficiently categorizes all Swedish plastic packaging waste into 12 distinct fractions. WASTE MANAGEMENT WORLD covered the grand opening of this groundbreaking facility.

Motala, with a population of around 30,000, situated on the eastern shore of Lake Vättern, might seem an unlikely choice for the global epicenter of plastic sorting. However, the town’s industrial history, dating back to the 19th century and marked by the construction of the Göta Canal, has paved the way for Site Zero’s establishment. Red-Sea crisis

Housed in a repurposed industrial hall that once manufactured appliances for Elektrolux, the facility spans 60,000 square meters, embodying the principles of a circular economy.

Mattias Philipsson, CEO of Svensk Plaståtervinning, emphasizes the plant’s significance as a pioneer in producing top-tier material quality while minimizing environmental impact. The facility, known as Motala II, is an expansion of the earlier Motala I plant, making it the largest and most advanced plastic sorting plant globally.  Red-Sea crisis

Philipsson envisions a future with “no waste, no downcycling, and no emissions.” Currently recycling 33% of plastic packaging in Sweden, the plant’s advanced technology, including 500 tons of steel, nearly five kilometers of conveyor belts, infrared sensors, screening drums, ballistic separators, and state-of-the-art air purification systems, allows it to process 42 tons of material per hour, recovering 12 different plastic types. Plans for additional washing and pelletizing systems by 2025 aim to further enhance recycling capabilities and contribute to Sweden’s journey towards a closed-loop economy.

Svensk Plaståtervinning has recently inaugurated "Site Zero," the world's largest plastic sorting facility located in Motala, Sweden

SmartFactory – Developement of Smart Factories in textile industry with Industrie 4.0 approaches

Aim of the project SmartFactory is to frame the special demands of Product and Process Quality Management of Indusrtie 4.0 in Textile Industry and derive concrete approaches and possible potentials. To do this the current status in Production of Home Textiles with Jacquard Weaving is analyzed by Institute of Textile Technology (ITA) of RWTH Aachen University. As result the typical processes and structures for a Smart Textile Fabric of Future are expected. Red-Sea crisis

As shown in the picture the project is divided into two main parallel branches on the mend to Smart Textile Fabric. The first goal is to develop the Smart Weaving Factory. In the smart weaving factory the weaving machines are upgraded to so-called Cyber-physical systems and are able to intelligently interact with their environment. The project is focused on automatic Process and Product Quality Control. The second goal is to develop a consistent Communication Strategy to link the Production Chain as a basis for the Smart Textile Fabric.  Red-Sea crisis

To do this an existing strategy from other industrial branches is picked and concretized for a weaving company with an implementation recommendation. It is used as a guideline for further developments and includes vertical and horizontal communication.


SmartFactory – Developement of Smart Factories in textile industry with Industrie 4.0 approaches

NREL researchers produce first macromolecular model of plant secondary cell wall; more efficient utilization of biomass for fuels, chemicals, and materials

Researchers with the US Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have defined quantitatively the relative positioning and arrangement of the polymers in Populus wood and to create a computer model that details the findings.

The research into solving this macromolecular puzzle, which appears in an open-access paper in the journal Science Advances, may hold the key to disentangle and deconstruct biomass efficiently for conversion to fuels, chemicals, and materials.

Scientists have long known that the secondary cell wall of hardwoods involves three major biopolymers—cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin—but detailed and quantitative understanding of how these polymers are arranged relative to each other has remained elusive.  Red-Sea crisis

The researchers capitalized on advances in the field of solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (ssNMR) technology to infer refined details about the structural configuration of the cell wall, the intermolecular interactions, and the relative positions of the biopolymers within the wood. Solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is an atomic-level method to determine the chemical structure, 3D structure and dynamics of solids and semi-solids.


NREL researchers produce first macromolecular model of plant secondary cell wall; more efficient utilization of biomass for fuels, chemicals, and materials

Bio-nylon fiber – Volkswagen has achieved a significant milestone in the development of solid-state batteries through successful testing with QuantumScape 06-01-2024

Red-Sea crisis

Bio-nylon fiber – Volkswagen has achieved a significant milestone in the development of solid-state batteries through successful testing with QuantumScape 06-01-2024

Bio-nylon fiber

Toray and Porter™ unveil groundbreaking initiative with bio-nylon fiber

Volkswagen has achieved a significant milestone in the development of solid-state batteries through successful testing with QuantumScape

As the major shareholder and primary customer of QuantumScape, Volkswagen has reported promising results from tests conducted on the solid-state batteries supplied by the U.S. startup. The prototype demonstrated performance exceeding expectations, indicating that the technology is theoretically ready for commercialization.

In laboratory tests conducted by PowerCo, Volkswagen’s battery-focused subsidiary, the QuantumScape solid-state battery exhibited only a 5% storage loss after 1,000 charge cycles.  Bio-nylon fiber

This unexpected durability implies that the battery could power an electric vehicle for 500,000 km, losing only 5% of its initial capacity over the entire distance. This result surpasses industry benchmarks, where a solid-state battery is typically considered market-ready if it loses 20% after 700 cycles.

Frank Blome, Head of PowerCo, expressed optimism, stating, “We are facing very encouraging information. This battery is a prelude to energy storage systems with high autonomy, fast charging capabilities, and slow aging.”

QuantumScape’s CEO, Jagdeep Singh, shares the enthusiasm, expressing the company’s commitment to bringing their batteries to market as quickly as possible. Their strategy involves an initial focus on consumer electronics and later expanding into the automotive sector, adapting production capacity accordingly.  Bio-nylon fiber

Bio-nylon fiber

GAIKER has a new pilot plant for the chemical recycling of complex PET waste

This equipment makes it possible to scale up chemical recycling processes to a suitable size between laboratory processes and industrial plants.

The GAIKER Technology Centre, a member of the Basque Research & Technology Alliance (BRTA), together with the Swiss company POLYMETRIX AG have developed an innovative technology and built a new pilot plant for the chemical recycling of PET waste.

This equipment has a 150 L chemical reactor and a series of batch and continuous post-treatment and purification stages that allow it to produce high purity chemical monomers, valid for the synthesis of new PET, even food grade, and other high added value products such as PU resins, unsaturated polyester resins, paint resins, etc. Thus, it can respond to the needs of different sectors such as plastic waste recycling, petrochemicals and polymer synthesis, while promoting the circular economy.  Bio-nylon fiber

Thanks to this plant, GAIKER can assess the suitability of complex PET waste for the production of high purity chemical monomers and define the design bases for industrial plants for the treatment of this waste. In addition, it can generate samples of the various process flows for the different stages that allow the scaling and quality parameters to be defined in each one of them.


Bio-nylon fiber

As the world swims in plastic, some offer an answer: Ban the toxic two

China Aims to Create the World’s Largest Decentralized Power Grid with 3,000-Cycle Batteries

China is taking significant strides toward building the world’s largest decentralized power grid, focusing on electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrids. With a foresight surpassing other markets transitioning to future mobility, China outlined objectives for bidirectional charging, specifically emphasizing vehicle-to-grid (V2G) capabilities. The initiative recognizes the need for an integrated ecosystem capable of supporting the increasing volumes of EVs on the road.  Bio-nylon fiber

Key aspects of the plan include:

  1. Durable Batteries: China seeks next-generation batteries capable of enduring 3,000 cycles without cost increases. This durability is crucial for utilizing EVs as distributed energy storage systems during idle periods, contributing to more efficient energy management, particularly from renewable sources.
  2. Intelligent V2G Implementation: By 2025, China aims to launch numerous pilot projects studying the interaction between EVs and the power grid. The goal is for battery-powered vehicles to provide 60% of their own charging power by 2030, potentially reaching 80% in certain cities. This ambitious target could revolutionize China’s energy system, harnessing wind and solar power with millions of kWh available from parked EVs connected to charging stations.
  3. Role of Battery Swap Stations: Thousands of battery swap stations, each with multiple batteries, are expected to play a crucial role. Companies like NIO, focusing on swappable battery technology, envisioned their stations as virtual power plants actively managing the grid’s load. This vision appears to be on the verge of realization.  Bio-nylon fiber

In summary, China’s comprehensive strategy aligns EVs with the power grid, emphasizing durable batteries and intelligent V2G implementation, potentially reshaping the nation’s energy landscape.

China Aims to Create the World's Largest Decentralized Power Grid with 3,000-Cycle Batteries

Wang Chuanfu, 56, founder of Byd, emerges as a formidable challenger to Elon Musk’s dominance in the electric vehicle market

In contrast to Musk’s flamboyance, Chuanfu maintains a reserved demeanor, avoiding social media and embodying understatement. While Musk mocks events like Davos, Chuanfu quietly attends. Both share humble beginnings and a messianic belief in science serving society.  Bio-nylon fiber

Chuanfu, a chemistry-physics graduate with a metallurgy Ph.D. from Central South University of Technology, epitomizes a leader molded by the “people’s policy.” He grew up in rural China, orphaned at an early age, emphasizing a redemptive drive for the underprivileged.

In contrast, Musk represents the American dream, leaving a physics Ph.D. program for entrepreneurial pursuits after an economics degree. Both, however, prioritize disruptive technology. Chuanfu’s Byd, initially a battery factory funded by relatives, thrives on self-reliance, mirroring Musk’s early reliance on family support for his startup.

Their management styles converge in cost control, strict in-house production, and demanding work conditions. Chuanfu’s division of production into “increasingly smaller phases” mirrors Musk’s preference for specialized tasks. Both exhibit a ruthless approach to labor, with Musk eschewing unions and enforcing demanding schedules, while Chuanfu’s workforce specializes in narrowly defined roles.  Bio-nylon fiber

Chuanfu, married to Li Ke, Byd’s early marketing manager, exemplifies resilience and commitment to a shared vision, reflecting in both personal relationships and business strategy. As Byd outpaces Tesla in the last quarter of 2023, the clash of these automotive titans intensifies, contrasting the reserved “zero social” Chuanfu against the flamboyant Musk in the evolving electric vehicle landscape.

Wang Chuanfu, 56, founder of Byd, emerges as a formidable challenger to Elon Musk's dominance in the electric vehicle market

“Groundbreaking Achievement: World’s First Graphene Semiconductor Unveiled by Georgia Tech Researchers”

A team of researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology has announced a groundbreaking achievement in the realm of electronics – the creation of the world’s first fully functional graphene semiconductor. This development marks a significant leap forward as it presents a tangible alternative to silicon, capable of overcoming its limitations and potentially revitalizing Moore’s Law.  Bio-nylon fiber

The primary challenge in semiconductor production revolves around the extreme miniaturization of transistors, leading to unwanted effects such as electron migration through the isolation barrier between the electrical channel and the gate. This results in current loss, contributing to energy consumption and chip overheating. Additionally, quantum effects become relevant at atomic transistor sizes, introducing unpredictable variations in device behavior.

The use of graphene as a semiconductor offers a promising alternative to silicon due to its unique properties. The epitaxial graphene developed by the Georgia Tech researchers has demonstrated superior electron mobility, enabling increased efficiency and computational speed compared to silicon.  Bio-nylon fiber

Led by Professor Walter de Heer, the research team spent a decade perfecting graphene on silicon carbide wafers, resulting in epitaxial graphene bound to silicon carbide. Tests indicate that this material exhibits ten times higher electron mobility than silicon, translating to significantly faster electronic calculations.

The significance of this achievement is underscored by the material’s superiority to other two-dimensional semiconductors in development. Professor de Heer likened it to the first flight by the Wright brothers in aviation history.  Bio-nylon fiber

Epitaxial graphene production is compatible with conventional microelectronics processing methods and holds potential for future advancements in quantum computing. The breakthrough opens new possibilities for the electronics industry, promising increased speed, efficiency, and compatibility with existing manufacturing processes.

"Groundbreaking Achievement: World's First Graphene Semiconductor Unveiled by Georgia Tech Researchers"

Plastic Waste – Problems at world’s largest existing green hydrogen project will not be solved until late 2025, Sinopec admits 05-01-2024

Bio-nylon fiber

Enzymatic recycling – Scientists developed a new family of polymers that can kill bacteria 04-01-2024

Enzymatic recycling

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Onset of 2024 Sees Asia’s Naphtha Prices Falling Below $100 per Tonne

The naphtha markets in Asia commenced 2024 on a downtrend, responding to the surge in crude oil benchmarks fueled by geopolitical tensions in the Gulf of Aden. The crack experienced a significant dip, plummeting by approximately $19 to $88.85 per metric ton relative to Brent crude.

On the Singapore trade window, naphtha witnessed no trading activity. However, the cracks found support from a series of transactions involving the benchmark-grade of gasoline. Enzymatic recycling

Unipec, a prominent trader, acquired 200,000 barrels of the 92-octane grade of transportation fuel. Simultaneously, Vitol secured 300,000 barrels of the same grade.

In the realm of refined fuel export quotas, China took a notable step by issuing its initial quotas for 2024, totaling 19 million metric tons. This volume remained unchanged from the previous year and aligned closely with market expectations. The stability in export quotas indicates a consistent approach from China in navigating the refined fuel landscape.

Oil prices experienced a surge in the first trading session of the New Year, propelled by several factors. Enzymatic recycling

The possibility of disruptions in Middle East supply chains following a naval clash in the Red Sea contributed to the upward momentum. Additionally, optimistic sentiments arose from expectations of robust holiday demand and economic stimulus in China, the world’s leading importer of crude oil.


Onset of 2024 Sees Asia's Naphtha Prices Falling Below $100 per Tonne

Scientists developed a new family of polymers that can kill bacteria

A major step in the fight against superbugs like E. coli and MRSA.

The World Health Organization has recognized the swift emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria as a global threat, urging the urgent development of new antibiotics. Cationic polymers, a promising class of bioactive agents, induce bacterial cell death by physically disrupting their membranes. However, the polymerization processes must be carefully designed to optimize the therapeutic potential of cationic polymers.

Scientists, led by Texas A&M University, have made progress in addressing the threat of antibiotic resistance by developing a new family of polymers. These polymers can kill bacteria without disrupting the microorganisms’ membranes without inducing antibiotic resistanceEnzymatic recycling

The recently synthesized polymers hold potential in combating antibiotic resistance by offering antibacterial molecules that operate through a mechanism resistant to development by bacteria.

The Michaudel Laboratory, operating at the intersection of organic chemistry and polymer science, synthesized the new polymer. This involved designing a positively charged molecule that could be repetitively stitched to create a large molecule with the same repeating set motif using a catalyst named AquaMet. The catalyst’s unique capability to tolerate high concentrations of charges while being water-soluble proved crucial for this process.  Enzymatic recycling


Enzymatic recycling

Bizente project evaluates enzymatic recycling for resins, composites

Among the latest advances are toxicity tests, used to evaluate the effect of different resins and plastic degrading on aquatic and terrestrial organisms, and thus determine the technology’s long-term sustainability.

The EU project Bizente, coordinated by the Aitiip Technology Centre (Zaragoza, Spain), is facing its last months of work. The 3-year research, aided by an international consortium made up of a dozen partners, has announced the development of an enzymatic technology for recycling thermoset composites, to give them a second life. Through protein engineering, Bizente has successfully molecularly modified enzymes and resins, making them suitable for controlled biodegradation in a bioreactor. Sectors such as aviation and construction could benefit.  Enzymatic recycling

Among the latest advances are the toxicity tests being carried out by a group of scientists from the University of Cadiz (Spain), in collaboration with the rest of the project consortium, with the aim of evaluating the effect of different resins and plastic degrading products developed within the framework of the project on aquatic and terrestrial organisms, such as earthworms. The laboratory is studying these invertebrates as model organisms of great importance in the terrestrial ecosystem and as indicators of soil health. They are also beginning to work with artemia (brine shrimp), as they are considered the base of the trophic chain in aquatic systems.

In this way, the environments in which these materials could biodegrade are being recreated, and their degree of toxicity measured, taking into account possible anomalies in the different organisms. In the case of the worms, the observation examines whether external alterations occur, such as changes in weight, swelling, lesions, spasms, coiling, attempts to escape, lethargy and a host of strange behaviors, in addition to whether mortality is reached. Enzymatic recycling


Enzymatic recycling

World’s largest economy US holds strong despite challenges: CEBR

  • In 2023, the world’s largest economy showcased resilience with a PPP-adjusted GDP per capita of $80,412, and growth rates of 2.1 per cent in 2022 and 2.2 per cent in 2023, despite aggressive rate hikes.
  • Consumer spending, bolstered by employment, fuelled this growth, but cooling is expected due to fiscal reductions and interest rate effects.

In a year filled with economic hurdles, the world’s largest economy stood resilient, boasting an estimated Purchasing Power Parity (PPP)-adjusted GDP per capita of $80,412 in 2023. Despite the Federal Reserve’s aggressive interest rate hikes totalling a full percentage point, the nation’s economy surpassed expectations with a growth rate of 2.1 per cent in 2022, accelerating slightly to 2.2 per cent in 2023, the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) said in a recent report. Enzymatic recycling

Consumer spending, buoyed by employment strength, played a pivotal role in the year’s economic narrative. However, as 2024 approaches, the economic landscape appears more subdued. The delayed effects of interest rate hikes and reductions in fiscal spending are expected to cool consumer expenditure and overall economic momentum, as per the CEBR report titled ‘World Economic League Table 2024’.

Inflation, which moderated to an estimated 4.1 per cent in 2023, remains a focal point. Despite a downward trend, prices are projected to stay above the Federal Reserve’s 2 per cent target into 2024, keeping policymakers and consumers watchful.

Enzymatic recycling

“Electric Cars and Environmental Impact: A Detailed Study Reveals the True Picture”

In the ever-expanding landscape of European and global transportation, electric cars have become a well-established reality. However, a recent study by the VDI, the Association of German Engineers, has shed light on the environmental impact of electric cars compared to conventional ones, examining various parameters. Enzymatic recycling

The study reveals that currently, Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs) face a disadvantage due to the substantial carbon dioxide emissions associated with battery production. The “break-even point” for CO2 emissions between an electric car and a conventional one is shifted over the years and mileage. While electric cars compensate for emissions during operation by producing no exhaust emissions, this only partially offsets the environmental impact linked to vehicle production.

The VDI’s expert group conducted a detailed study comparing the ecological balance of electric cars, plug-in hybrids, and conventionally fueled diesel and gasoline vehicles in the German market. Results show that electric cars in this category reach an emissions equilibrium after approximately 90,000 km. Looking further, up to a mileage of 200,000 km, electric and hybrid cars outperform diesel and gasoline cars in terms of carbon footprint. Enzymatic recycling

However, it’s crucial to note that electric cars, like hybrids, carry a significant CO2 burden from their inception. This is primarily attributed to production in Asia, where most battery cells originate, causing substantial greenhouse gas emissions during transport. To address this, the VDI President, Joachim Damasky, suggests a solution: a substantial and rapid expansion of renewable energy production, green battery development, and sustainable fuel for existing vehicles.

For electric cars to truly become environmentally friendly, Damasky proposes producing them as close to the factories as possible, minimizing transportation emissions and utilizing cutting-edge fuel technologies. This approach could potentially lower the emissions break-even point, currently set at 90,000 km, encouraging more motorists to embrace the environmentally friendly aspects of electric vehicles. Enzymatic recycling

"Electric Cars and Environmental Impact: A Detailed Study Reveals the True Picture"

Breakthrough in Solid-State Batteries: A More Powerful and Affordable Future

Researchers at MIT and German engineers have developed innovative solid-state batteries with crystallized electrolytes. The pursuit of innovation in batteries is driven by two key priorities: performance and cost. The market demands increasingly powerful products while also seeking affordable energy storage solutions for the anticipated rise of economical electric vehicles. Enzymatic recycling

While lithium-ion batteries continue to improve in energy density and production cost reduction, the U.S. Department of Energy believes additional technologies are crucial for a definitive leap into the future. This is where MIT and the University of Munich researchers come into play.

Led by Jennifer Rupp from MIT, the team collaborated with German engineers from the Faculty of Engineering in Munich.  Enzymatic recycling

They created a new battery type utilizing solid-state electrolyte cells and lithium metal anodes instead of conventional graphite.

The groundbreaking aspect of this new battery lies in its solid electrolyte, derived not from traditional ceramic type but from a liquid containing lithium oxide, crystallized through a novel synthesis process.

Advantages of the New Production Method:

As reported in Angewandte Chemie, the solid electrolyte, produced through lithium ion crystallization, enables the creation of high-performance batteries at lower costs, ensuring safer energy storage without the formation of dendrites and without containing flammable elements.  Enzymatic recycling

These results have attracted the interest and funding support of the U.S. National Science Foundation, highlighting the potential of these innovative production methods. Thanks to the collaborative efforts of MIT and the University of Munich, solid-state batteries might be a step closer to reality.

Breakthrough in Solid-State Batteries: A More Powerful and Affordable Future

China Launches Trials for World’s Largest Plant Converting Coal-to-Ethanol

In a groundbreaking development, southeastern China has witnessed the initiation of test operations at the world’s largest coal-based ethanol production facility. With an impressive annual capacity of 600,000 tonnes, this pioneering plant marks a departure from conventional practices by harnessing coal, rather than crops, as the primary raw material for ethanol production.

Ethanol, valued as both a basic chemical and a petrol additive, stands out as a renewable energy source with properties akin to petrol. This move represents a significant stride in China’s endeavor to alleviate pressure on food sources while concurrently reducing dependence on fuel ethanol imports. Enzymatic recycling

The strategic choice of coal, specifically low-grade coal abundantly available in China, breaks away from traditional ethanol production methods that often involve corn or sugar cane. This shift addresses the critical concern of potential competition between ethanol production and the global food supply, a concern amplified by China’s escalating grain prices. In response to these challenges, China, endowed with vast coal reserves, seeks to carve out a sustainable and secure pathway by diverting from traditional raw materials, potentially saving millions of tonnes of grain annually.

The ramifications of this new production pathway extend beyond the realm of food security, encompassing broader implications for China’s energy security and the chemical industry supply chain. Enzymatic recycling


China Launches Trials for World's Largest Plant Converting Coal-to-Ethanol

Postponement of Italian Plastics Tax to July 2024

Italy has once again delayed the implementation of the Single-Use Plastics Consumption Tax (MACSI), marking the sixth extension. The Italian Parliament, in its year-end Budget Law, granted another postponement for the tax on single-use plastic products, originally scheduled to take effect on January 1, but now rescheduled to commence on July 1, 2024, along with the ‘sugar tax’.  Enzymatic recycling

Initially approved in the 2020 Budget Law, the Italian plastics tax imposes a levy of 450 euros per ton (0.45 euros per kg) on single-use plastic packaging made from virgin plastic, including films and preforms. The scope of the tax excludes compostable plastics compliant with UNI EN 13432, recycled plastics, and all medical devices and pharmaceutical packaging.

Despite six consecutive delays, the enforcement of the regulation is still pending the issuance of guidelines by the Director of the Customs and Monopolies Agency (ADM) to define the application rules.

The continual postponements raise questions about the readiness and consensus on the implementation of the plastics tax in Italy.  Enzymatic recycling

Postponement of Italian Plastics Tax to July 2024

Pyrolysis Plastic – BRICS to double membership on January 1 as UAE, others join 03-01-2024

Enzymatic recycling

Recycling Nylon – UBE now supplying nylon 6 resin for high-pressure hydrogen tanks in new crown FCEV 28-12-2023

Recycling Nylon

Crude Oil Prices Trend 

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Crude Oil Prices Trend by Polyestertime

Recycling Nylon with New Catalyst from Northwestern University

Northwestern University chemists have developed a new catalyst that quickly, cleanly and completely breaks down Nylon-6 in a matter of minutes — without generating harmful byproducts. Even better: The process does not require toxic solvents, expensive materials or extreme conditions, making it practical for everyday applications.

Not only could this new catalyst play an important role in environmental remediation, it also could perform the first step in upcycling Nylon-6 wastes into higher-value products.

The research was published in the journal Chem.

Marks is the Charles E. and Emma H. Morrison Professor of Chemistry and Vladimir N. Ipatieff Professor of Catalytic Chemistry at Northwestern’s Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences and a professor of materials science and engineering at Northwestern’s McCormick School of Engineering.Recycling Nylon

He also is a faculty affiliate at the Paula M. Trienens Institute for Sustainability and Energy. Northwestern co-authors include Linda J. Broadbelt, the Sarah Rebecca Roland Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering and senior associate dean of McCormick, and Yosi Kratish, a research assistant professor in Marks’ group.

Recovering building blocks for upcycling
To bypass these issues, the researchers looked to a novel catalyst already developed in Marks’ laboratory. The catalyst harnesses yttrium (an inexpensive Earth-abundant metal) and lanthanide ions. When the team heated Nylon-6 samples to melting temperatures and applied the catalyst without a solvent, the plastic fell apart — reverting to its original building blocks without leaving byproducts behind. Recycling Nylon


Recycling Nylon

Changan and Ganfeng Collaborate for Solid-State Battery Development

Changan Automobile and Ganfeng Lithium have announced their collaboration to manufacture solid-state batteries for electric vehicles (EVs) 1

Solid-state batteries are considered a next-generation energy storage device because of their superior performance and safety compared with the current batch of liquid-state electrolyte lithium-ion batteries 1.

 The two companies are among several international automakers that have bet on solid-state batteries, with leading promoter Toyota reportedly projecting adoption by 2027 1.

Ganfeng Lithium has already begun construction of a solid-state battery production facility in Chongqing, which will be the largest of its kind in China to date 2

The factory will offer annual capacities of 10 GWh each for the production of battery cells as well as battery packs 2Recycling Nylon

The company is also working on solid-state battery technology, and its first-generation solid-state battery has an energy density of 260Wh/kg 3.

This collaboration between Changan Automobile and Ganfeng Lithium is a significant step towards the commercialization of solid-state batteries and the electrification of transportation 1.

  Recycling Nylon

Polyester is not stain resistant

Recently, we attended a webinar about how to keep your home free of toxins.  In the conversation about which fabrics to choose for your furniture, one of the panelists suggested using a synthetic (polyester) fabric to avoid stains.

People often think synthetic fiber fabrics are naturally stain resistant. They are not. They are stain resistant because of the addition of chemicals which you do NOT want to bring into your home.   Recycling Nylon

Now, the situation is a little more complicated than: They are NOT.  Synthetic fibers are both hydrophobic, meaning that they resist absorbing liquids; and oilophilic, meaning that they more readily absorb oils and greas