MOSCOW (MRC) -- US-based Eastman aims to light a fire under the ecosystem for collecting hard-to-recycle polyester waste with USD2bn in new investments for plastics recycling projects in the US and France, said the company.
“As we demonstrate the value of the technology, there will need to be dramatic changes in the way society works to create circularity - the recycling infrastructure, the recovery, the sortation and the materials chosen to be used. All that is going to have to evolve dramatically,” said Scott Ballard, president, Plastics Division at Eastman.
“We’re catalysing that change – that’s the way we think about it,” he added. Eastman has three major plastics recycling projects using its polyester renewal technology (PRT) in the offing – one under construction in the US and two more planned – one in France and the other in the US.
The company’s PRT technology uses methanolysis to break down polyester waste into monomers dimethyl terephthalate (DMT) and ethylene glycol (EG). This chemical (also called advanced or molecular) recycling process can be applied not only to clear polyethylene terephthalate (PET) drink bottles but also to hard-to-recycle materials such as carpet, polyester clothing and coloured PET bottles that today are mostly going into landfill.
We remind, Eastman Chemical Co. has signed a deal to supply beverage giant PepsiCo Inc. from its proposed third chemical recycling plant. Eastman's first chemical recycling plant is set to open early next year in Kingsport, Tenn., where the firm is based. A second plant will open in Normandy, France, in 2025. Interzero Plastics Recycling of Germany will supply the French plant with PET household packaging waste as feedstock.