A world-first Teesside firm is making ROADS out of people’s old plastic bottles and carrier bags.
“Breakthrough” technology firm ReNew ELP is tackling the global problem of single-use plastic waste by turning it into valuable oils and chemicals.
It is using plastic that cannot be recycled, such as single-use bags or food-contaminated packaging – putting Teesside at the forefront of the worldwide fight against plastic waste.
One of the bi-products of the process is a “bitumen-like material” that is used for making roads.
Other uses for the material that will be produced at ReNew’s Wilton plant could include everyday products from insulation to protective packaging and even cars.
A world-first commercial plant and UK headquarters is being built at Wilton, creating 40 jobs – and the company will also be hiring soon.
The plant will initially recycle 20,000 tonnes of end-of-life plastic a year but ReNew ELP has planning consent for another three units to eventually process 80,000 tonnes a year.
Richard Daley, Managing Director, ReNew ELP, said: “As the centre of the UK’s chemicals industry, Teesside is the ideal location for our first plant and head office.
“The many benefits of being part of a process industry cluster convinced us to choose the Wilton Centre, as the region boasts a skilled workforce, vital infrastructure and utilities, and a large number of potential feedstock suppliers and customers for our products.”
Steve Duffield, Wilton Centre Site Director said: “ReNew ELP will benefit from our unique facilities and opportunities to collaborate with our other occupiers.”
The company’s patented Catalytic Hydrothermal Reactor (Cat-HTR) technology has been developed by Australian company Licella over the past decade and has been “extensively” tested at a pilot plant in Australia.
It breaks down a range of plastics to their original component molecules and rearranges them to turn the waste plastic into “readily usable chemicals and recycled oils”.
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