Certification of the recyclability of multilayer films containing polyamide expanded

Certification of the recyclability of multilayer films containing polyamide expanded

MRC -- Following the studies already conducted in 2021 on the recyclability of coextruded polyethylene/polyamide multilayer films, the independent institute cyclos-HTP GmbH has completed further extensive investigations into the recyclability of multilayer films containing polyamide 6 and ethyl vinyl alcohol copolymer, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The subjects of the studies commissioned by BASF SE are coextruded PE/PA6/EVOH high-barrier films as well as and laminated PA6/PE films in household packaging waste. It has now been demonstrated that these two film types are also compatible for recycling in the polyethylene film stream.

“The results show that PE film waste streams containing PA can be processed without significant adjustments to the recycling process. The certification confirms the standard market practice of PA-containing film waste already being recycled by film manufacturers today,” says Dr. Matthias Zorn, Senior Manager Market Development Polyamides for extrusion applications at BASF.”

The compatibilizer, which is incorporated additionally into laminated structures to enable distribution of the PA component in the PE matrix, plays an important role. In coextruded structures, the already present tie layer used to bond PA and PE in the film becomes an effective compatibilizer during the recycling process. “If additional functionalized polyethylene (PE-g-MAH) is also added as a compatibilizer during primary film production, the polyamide is even recognized as a valuable material in the polyethylene recyclate by cyclos-HTP,” says Zorn.

The study on adhesive-laminated PE/PA films, which was set up in cooperation with SUDPACK, a leading manufacturer of high-performance films, clearly shows how these films, which were previously considered non-recyclable, can also be made recycling compatible. In this project, a laminating adhesive from Henkel was used. Based on the new studies, a broad portfolio of PA-containing packaging can now be certified as recycling compatible.

Due to their unique property profile, polyamides reduce the amount of material used in packaging applications and therefore help to reduce packaging waste. They also improve the mechanical, thermal and processing properties of the packaging. While PE/PA/EVOH films are used in many cheese and sausage packagings requiring a high oxygen barrier, laminated structures are mainly found in printed film packaging in this segment.

Last year, the German minimum standard for determining the recyclability of packaging subject to system participation pursuant to Section 21 (3) VerpackG already recognized the recyclability of coextruded PE/PA films. The certification is another important fundament for a fact-based classification of polyamides in packaging. The results are made available both to the CEN standardization group, which is developing a “Design for Recycling” guideline at European level, and to the Central Agency Packaging Register, which sets the German minimum standard for assessing recyclability every year.

We remind, BASF SE, the German chemical giant, has achieved a major breakthrough with the formal approval of $136.2 million state grant dedicated to the establishment of a green hydrogen plant at its Ludwigshafen headquarters. This financial endorsement signals a critical advancement for the Hy4Chem-EI project, a collaborative endeavor between BASF and Siemens Energy, propelling it into the eagerly anticipated construction phase.

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India resumes imports of Venezuelan oil, Reliance seeks direct deal

India resumes imports of Venezuelan oil, Reliance seeks direct deal

MRC -- Indian refiners have resumed Venezuelan oil purchases through intermediaries, with Reliance set to meet executives from state firm PDVSA next week to discuss direct sales following the easing of U.S. sanctions on the South American country, said Reuters.

The resumption in trade between the OPEC producer and what was the second largest destination for its oil comes after Washington in October temporarily lifted sanctions banning Venezuelan oil exports, prompting a flurry of spot sales of crude and fuel through middlemen and traders, mostly to China.

But Venezuela's oil output has been volatile, limiting what it can offer for export. India last imported Venezuelan crude in 2020. Access to Venezuela's heavy oil could cap import costs for India, which has become a major Russian oil buyer, and further reduce its reliance on the Middle East.

Three Indian refiners have bought some 4 million barrels of Venezuelan crude for February delivery at between $7.50 and $8 per barrel below dated Brent on a delivered ex-ship basis, five trade sources said.

Of those, trading house Vitol sold 1.5 million barrels to Indian Oil Corp and 500,000 barrels to HPCL-Mittal Energy (HMEL), a joint venture between state-run Hindustan Petroleum Corp and Mittal Energy Investment, they added.

Reliance had previously received an offer for a prompt cargo at $16 a barrel below dated Brent on a free-on-board basis, another source said, but it was unclear if the deal had gone through as limited tankers were available.

The South American country is producing some 850,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude with a target of soon reaching 1 million bpd, Venezuela's deputy oil minister said last month, a goal it has repeatedly missed. Reliance once was PDVSA's second-largest crude customer and in turn an important supplier of fuel to Venezuela.

"The Reliance team has already scheduled meetings with PDVSA executives in Caracas," one of the people said, adding that the discussions are expected to include crude sales to India and fuel imports for Venezuela. PDVSA, Reliance, IOC, HPCL-Mittal Energy and Vitol did not immediately reply to requests for comment.

The Venezuelan firm is also separately negotiating with PetroChina, which is seeking up to 8 million barrels per month crude, but no deal has been signed.

We remind, seaborne diesel and gasoil exports from Russian ports rose 8.5% in November from a month earlier to about 2.8 Mmt after an export ban was lifted and production grew, data from traders and LSEG showed. Russia temporarily banned exports of diesel from Sept. 21 to cope with a domestic shortage. The embargo was partially lifted on Oct. 9, with Russia resuming ultra-low-sulfur diesel (ULSD) exports via Transneft pipelines. On Nov. 22 Russia lifted a ban on exports of summer diesel.

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Brazil's Petrobras cuts jet fuel prices by around 6%

Brazil's Petrobras cuts jet fuel prices by around 6%

MRC -- Brazilian state-run oil firm Petrobras lowered the average price of the jet fuel it sells to distributors by around 6%, data from the firm's website showed on Friday, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The move marks the second-consecutive monthly cut in Petrobras' jet fuel prices, after four months of hikes.

Brazilian government officials are pushing Petroleo Brasileiro SA to slash jet-fuel prices as part of an intensifying campaign to make the state-owned oil company help control inflation.

Silvio Costa Filho, minister of ports and airports, and tourism minister Celso Sabino are blaming high jet-fuel costs for the roughly 24% jump in airline ticket prices last month in Brazil. Petrobras, they said, should do more to bring them down.

We remind, seaborne diesel and gasoil exports from Russian ports rose 8.5% in November from a month earlier to about 2.8 Mmt after an export ban was lifted and production grew, data from traders and LSEG showed. Russia temporarily banned exports of diesel from Sept. 21 to cope with a domestic shortage. The embargo was partially lifted on Oct. 9, with Russia resuming ultra-low-sulfur diesel (ULSD) exports via Transneft pipelines. On Nov. 22 Russia lifted a ban on exports of summer diesel.

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Petroecuador says crude oil output surpasses 400,000 bpd

MRC -- Ecuador's state oil company Petroecuador said that crude oil output surpassed 400,000 bpd for the first time since January 2021, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The increase in production comes as new President Daniel Noboa faces a deep economic crisis that's pushed thousands to migrate. In a statement, Petroecuador said crude oil production reached 401,852 barrels while barrels of oil equivalent reached 411,873 including natural gas and associated gas.

The company said the Sacha oilfield was its most productive with 78,259 barrels. Another key oilfield Auca saw production at 77,512 bpd while the zone comprising Apaika, Eden and ITT reached 99,852 bpd.

In a separate press release on Sunday, Petroecuador said it had contained an oil spill that affected the Shushufindi river in the Sucumbios province in Ecuador's northeastern Amazon region.

The company said it had begun cleaning operations but did not say how much oil had been spilled. It added that while the cause was still under investigation, the spill could have been related to pitting in a pipeline.

In November, Petroecuador said it will shut down a large drilling project in the Yasuni ecological reserve in the Amazon rainforest in August 2024, following a referendum to end it to protect nature and indigenous people.

The company estimates that lost revenue from the project due to the looming suspension will likely total about $680 MM next year.

We remind, Egypt's Suez Canal economic zone and Scatec ASA have signed a memorandum of understanding worth $1.1 B to supply ships with green fuel, a Suez Canal statement said on Sunday. The MoU agreed on the sidelines of the COP28 conference held in Dubai envisages production of 100,000 tons of green methanol per year by 2027, the statement said.

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Thyssenkrupp Uhde won contract for biopolymer plant from Gulf Biopolymers Industries Ltd

Thyssenkrupp Uhde won contract for biopolymer plant from Gulf Biopolymers Industries Ltd

MRC -- Thyssenkrupp Uhde has secured a basic engineering package and front-end engineering design package for the establishment of a biopolymer plant on the Arabian Peninsula, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The plant is intended to produce an industrial large-scale volume of polylactic acid polymer, utilizing lactic acid from corn as the primary feedstock. While polymer specialist Uhde Inventa-Fischer will perform the BEP for the PLA production based on its proprietary state-of-the-art technology, its sister company thyssenkrupp Uhde India will perform the FEED which covers the complete production complex including associated offsite and utilities.

The design of the biopolymer plant focuses on stringently optimized feedstock utilization during all stages: from starch conversion to lactic acid production, and finally polylactic acid production. An integral aspect of this project is the plant's ability to sustainably produce a range of PLA grades, addressing the diverse requirements of various industries such as packaging, textiles, and hygiene supplies.

"Replacing fossil feedstocks with renewable ones can minimize the ecological impact of entire value chains," stated Dr. Cord Landsmann, CEO thyssenkrupp Uhde. "This project is another proof that we can significantly contribute to a more sustainable production of much-needed materials for global key industries."

Harald Kroll, CEO Gulf Biopolymers Industries: “We are proud to announce the establishment of the first large biopolymer plant in the MENA region. This project is a milestone for the reduction of fossil-based plastics and advancing the adoption of environmentally friendly PLA polymers."

Derived from lactic acid, PLA stands out as a genuine biopolymer. It is produced from renewable biomass sources, and it is also biodegradable. This positions PLA as a sustainable alternative to conventional fossil-based plastics, offering a pragmatic solution for reducing the environmental footprint associated with plastic production and consumption.

We remind, seaborne diesel and gasoil exports from Russian ports rose 8.5% in November from a month earlier to about 2.8 Mmt after an export ban was lifted and production grew, data from traders and LSEG showed. Russia temporarily banned exports of diesel from Sept. 21 to cope with a domestic shortage. The embargo was partially lifted on Oct. 9, with Russia resuming ultra-low-sulfur diesel (ULSD) exports via Transneft pipelines. On Nov. 22 Russia lifted a ban on exports of summer diesel.

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