From An Environmental Challenge to Valuable Feedstock: Growing our Sustainable Solutions

At LyondellBasell, we believe that ending plastic waste in the environment is a critical issue of our time. By helping to advance a circular economy, we meaningfully address this challenge and also reduce resource use enabling a more sustainable future. Earlier this year, we laid out a bold ambition to produce and market 2 million tons of recycled and renewable source-based polymers per year by 2030.

To help this vision become reality, in 2018, with our partner SUEZ, we purchased a company called Quality Circular Polymers (QCP) in The Netherlands. QCP takes post-consumer plastics, cleans and processes the material and converts it to pellets which ultimately can be used in a wide range of applications ranging from electrical appliances to washing detergent bottles and luggage.

Yesterday, we announced the expansion of this innovative joint venture through the purchase of TIVACO, a Belgian recycling business based in Blandain. By combining our well-established facility in the Netherlands with the TIVACO plant in Belgium, QCP will now have an annual capacity of approximately 55,000 tons of premium plastic pellets from both pre-and post-consumer plastic waste.

In addition to our mechanical recycling work, earlier this year, we successfully started up our MoReTec molecular recycling pilot facility in Ferrara, Italy. MoReTec is LyondellBasell’s proprietary technology for returning plastic waste to its molecular form so that it can be used as a feedstock for new plastic materials. Using LyondellBasell’s state-of-the-art catalysts, we believe that MoReTec has the potential to open a world of new possibilities for breaking down post-consumer plastics such as multi-layer films.

Working in tandem, both molecular and mechanical recycling offer excellent, and complimentary, potential to prolong the value of plastic. We aim to change the perception of plastic waste where people view it as a feedstock resource and not just a societal challenge. LyondellBasell’s recent investments in these two recycling technologies signals our commitment to plastics-to-plastics conversion, and to playing our part in the creation of complementary innovative sustainability solutions while also delivering products that society needs.

We are ready to challenge the way we think and to imagine a future different than today. We look forward to collaborating with others on these and other initiatives as we pursue our sustainability strategy.

Take care,

Jim Seward, Senior Vice President, R&D, Technology and Sustainability