Green news: Danimer/CP Chemical expand PHA collaboration; TotalEnergies to build recycling unit in France

Danimer/CP Chemical expand PHA collaboration

Bioplastics firm Danimer Scientific says it is expanding its collaboration with Chevron Phillips Chemical (CPChem) to explore development and commercialisation of cast extrusion films, blown extrusion films, injection moulded parts and rotational moulded parts using its Rinnovo polymers produced in a loop slurry reactor process.

Rinnovo is a type of polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) synthesised from lactones produced using Danimer’s proprietary Novo22 catalyst technology, which can be used in the production of biodegradable alternatives to traditional plastics. The collaboration expands on Danimer and CPChem’s previously announced agreement, in which Danimer is evaluating the use of CPChem’s loop slurry reactor design to develop a continuous reactor system in the manufacturing process for Rinnovo.

Stephen E. Croskrey, CEO of Danimer, said, “Our business relationship with CPChem continues to yield results, and we’re excited for the further opportunities that lie ahead. CPChem’s research and technology lab in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, is a premier facility staffed with world-class talent that we believe will accelerate the path toward adoption of Rinnovo materials in high-volume applications that will assist in lowering the cost to serve key markets.”

Opened in 1950 by Phillips 66, CPChem’s Bartlesville facility contains research equipment allowing for rapid testing of products across various processing conditions. Additionally, the facility’s testing and analytical capabilities provide a more rapid feedback loop, accelerating the development and optimisation of resin formulations.

TotalEnergies to build recycling unit in France

In other news, French energy firm TotalEnergies has announced the building of a new mechanical recycling unit for plastic waste at its Grandpuits site southeast of Paris. This new investment follows those announced in June 2023 — the doubling of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) production and construction of a biomethane production unit — in line with the company’s ambition to develop low-carbon energy and the circular economy.

The new unit should enter service in 2026 and produce 30,000 tonnes/year of high value-added compounds containing up to 50% recycled plastic material.
In addition to the mechanical recycling unit, a specific centre will be established that provides technical assistance to customers and develops new products, in order to provide sufficient support for the commercialisation of the new range of hybrid compounds.

One year after investing in a new production line that makes high-performance recycled polypropylene for the automotive sector in its plant at Carling, the company is now expanding its recycled polymer offering with this new unit at Grandpuits. It will target the high-performance packaging market, in particular for pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.

In September 2020, in line with its aim to get to net zero by 2050, TotalEnergies launched a project to convert this industrial site. The "zero-crude" project, which will cost an estimated total of over EUR500 million, is based on the development of several future-oriented activities in biomass, renewables and the circular economy:

  • SAF production: the biorefinery’s output capacity of 210,000 tonnes/year by 2025 and 285,000 tonnes/year by 2027 will allow the company to keep pace with the gradual rise in EU blending mandates, set at 6% in 2030.

  • Biomethane production: the biomethane unit, which will receive feedstock in the form of organic waste from the biorefinery, will prevent the emission of almost 20,000 tonnes/year of CO2. Its annual capacity of 80 gigawatt-hours (GWh) represents the average annual demand of 16,000 people.

  • Advanced and mechanical recycling: with two recycling units, one for advanced recycling with capacity to treat 15,000 tonnes/year of waste, and another a mechanical recycling unit announced recently, Grandpuits is establishing itself as a major French recycling site.

  • Green electricity generation: Grandpuits is home to the largest solar farm in the Île-de-France region, equipped with a battery energy storage system. Since coming onstream in July 2023, it has been generating 31 GWh of green electricity a year, enough to supply 19,000 people. This power generation required the installation of 46,000 solar panels and adds to the 28 GWh facility built at Gargenville, west of Paris, which was launched in 2022.


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