Green news: Braskem ups biopolymer output by 30% with an investment of US$87 mn; Zeolyst/Valoregan to develop zeolite catalysts for recycling

Braskem ups biopolymer output by 30% with an investment of US$87 mn

Brazilian petchem firm Braskem recently concluded a 30% increase in the production capacity of its bio-based ethylene plant, located in the Petrochemical Complex of Triunfo, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. The US$87 million investment aims to meet the growing global demand for sustainable products. The plant now operates at an increased capacity, from 200,000 to 260,000 tonnes/year. Braskem’s bio-based ethylene is made from sustainably sourced, sugarcane-based ethanol which removes COfrom the atmosphere and stores it in products for daily use.

The initiative is an important advance in the company's ambition to increase the production of biopolymers to one million tons by 2030, and to become carbon neutral by 2050.

"The expansion of bio-based ethylene capacity reinforces Braskem’s commitment to sustainable development and innovation and proves the success of the strategy we engaged in 13 years ago, when we launched the world’s first bio-based polyethylene production at industrial scale, with proprietary technology. We want to meet society's and customers' demand for products with less impact on the environment,” explains Walmir Soller, O/P VP for Europe and Asia and responsible for the I’m green bio-based business globally.

Each tonne of plastic resin made from renewable feedstock represents the removal of 3 tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere. Since the plant's beginning in 2010, more than 1.2 million tonnes of I’m green bio-based polyethylene has been produced. The recent increase in production capacity will remove approximately 185,000 tonnes/year of CO2.

Braskem’s portfolio of bio-based resins is exported to more than 30 countries and is used in products from more than 250 major brands, such as Allbirds, DUO UK, Grupo Boticário, Johnson&Johnson, Natura & Co, Nissin, and Tetra Pak. These bio-based resins are used to manufacture packaging, bags, toys, housewares, industrial cables and wires, packaging films, hockey fields, and reusable water bottles among many other products.

Zeolyst/Valoregan to develop zeolite catalysts for recycling

Meanwhile in other news, Zeolyst International, a 50/50 joint venture between Ecovyst Inc. and Shell Catalysts & Technologies that is a producer of zeolites, and recycler Valoregen, announce their cooperation for the development of advanced recycling technologies utilising Zeolyst International’s portfolio of Opal Infinity Zeolites. Through this collaboration, Zeolyst and Valoregen are focused on the development of solutions for plastic waste recycling necessary to support the further expansion of the plastic circular economy.

Valoregen, with its patent-protected R-LowGen technology, aims to become the world's leading carbon-neutral recycler of flexible plastics, it says. Its disruptive technology is based on the principle of isothermal conversion using catalysts, an integral part of its recycling process.

Zeolyst's Opal Infinity portfolio of zeolites leverage its proprietary Zeolite know-how and its ability to customize differentiated solutions for customer-specific applications. Through the development of tailored solutions, Zeolyst’s technologies enable higher yields and selectivity, supporting the production of value-adding products, it adds.

 “We believe that partnership and close collaboration with our customers is essential in the development of value-enhancing technologies. We have an exceptional opportunity to help our customers meet the evolving clean energy and plastic circularity needs of the global economy,” said Lucy Innes, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Zeolyst International. “Our joint work with Valoregen is extremely exciting and we look forward to demonstrating the value of our Zeolite technology in their advanced plastic recycling process.”

"The partnership with Zeolyst International, a major supplier in this field, will offer our company significant opportunities to improve performance and economic efficiency. We are very pleased with this collaboration, which will enable us to move forward quickly on plastics circularity” said Thierry Perez, Founder/President of Valoregen


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