A major American plastics recycler will work with a United Kingdom-based firm to divert difficult-to-handle resin from landfills to make fuels and petrochemical feedstock.
KW Plastics is the world's largest recycler of high density polyethylene and polypropylene rigids, but the company cannot recycle all material that ends up at its Troy, Ala., facility.
So Clean Planet Energy's North American division will build a facility in proximity to KW Plastics aimed at using up to 20,000 tons of what is being called plastic residue from KW operations that have the capacity to handle more than 250,000 tons per year, the companies said.
"Despite the advanced nature of KW Plastic's facilities, not all of the rigid plastic received into the KW Facility can be mechanically processed into recycled materials, meaning a proportion of the material must be landfilled," the companies said.
Clean Planet Energy created a joint venture with Fortress Transportation and Infrastructure in November 2021 to develop the company's ecoPlants in North America. These ecoPlants use pyrolysis to create an oil that can be used as fuel or naphtha.
"We have developed processes to handle a wide range of rigid plastics allowing us to work with MRF [materials recovery facility] operators to greatly increase the amount of HDPE and PP containers removed from curb side stream. Working with Clean Planet Energy at our headquarters in Troy, Alabama is an exciting way to continue this journey, now knowing the even harder to reach plastics can be put back into use," said Scott Saunders, general manager of KW Plastics in a statement.
Liquid output from the ecoPlant can either be used to feedstocks to make new plastic or ultra-low-sulfur fuels.