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INEOS Styrolution and Trinseo Advance Plans for First European Polystyrene Recycling Plant in France

FRANKFURT, Germany & BERWYN, Pa. - Thursday, September 17, 2020
  • Planning process progresses to conceptual design phase

  • Reaffirmation of the companies’ commitment to drive up styrenics recycling for food contact applications

  • This plant will mark a step change in polystyrene recycling in Europe

INEOS Styrolution and Trinseo, global leaders in the manufacturing of polystyrene and other styrenic materials, announced today that they are advancing plans to build the first-of-its-kind polystyrene recycling plant based on depolymerisation in Wingles in the north of France.1 The planned full commercial scale recycling facility will be capable of processing up to 50 tons-per-day of post-consumer polystyrene feedstock and is expected to be fully operational by mid-2023.

In previous project milestones, the depolymerisation of polystyrene has proven to be an ideal recycling process showcasing polystyrene’s unique intrinsic capability for full circularity. The plastics-to-plastics depolymerisation technology converts polystyrene food packaging waste directly back into its original liquid monomer, which then can be repolymerised into recycled polystyrene for the same high-quality end applications, including food contact applications much like virgin polystyrene.

During the conceptual design phase two technology concepts from Agilyx and Recycling Technologies will be evaluated with regards to quality, efficiency and adaptation to different waste streams. 

“We are excited to move to the next phase of engineering of this plant, as we are well on track to deploy the game-changing depolymerisation technology with the construction of this recycling plant in France,” said Nicolas Joly, Vice President, Plastics & Feedstocks at Trinseo and President of Styrenics Circular Solutions. “This plant will be part of establishing a novel recycling infrastructure for styrenics in Europe together with key players from across the entire value chain, which will mark a step change in polystyrene recycling.” 

Sven Riechers, Vice President, Business Management, Standard Products EMEA at INEOS Styrolution, said: “Our collaboration between Trinseo and INEOS Styrolution is a significant commitment of capital and resources and a major milestone in truly closing the loop with food grade recycled content. It forms part of INEOS Styrolution’s and Trinseo’s commitments to use, on average, 30% recycled content in products destined for polystyrene packaging in Europe by 2025.”

Trinseo and INEOS Styrolution are founding members of Styrenics Circular Solutions (SCS), the value chain initiative to increase the circularity of styrenics. Jens Kathmann, Secretary General of SCS, concludes, “The construction of a polystyrene depolymerisation plant is much awaited by the market and brings our joint vision one step closer to fruition to deliver on the unique circularity potential of styrenics. In parallel, SCS, its members and partners are continuing to advance our food contact mechanical recycling and dissolution technologies that complement our portfolio of plastics-to-plastics recycling to jump start the availability of recycled polystyrene.”

Background:
AmSty, INEOS Styrolution and Trinseo have signed a Joint Development Agreement (JDA) to accelerate the introduction of circularity for one of the most recyclable polymers, polystyrene. The JDA targets advancements in all technical aspects to enable scaled investment in advanced commercial recycling solutions and optimize recycling technologies for large-scale commercial use.

Polystyrene is a unique polymer suitable for multiple advanced recycling solutions like depolymerisation. Its properties make it ideal for a circular economy – even enabling food contact compliancy of the recycled material, often considered the holy grail of polymer recycling.

About INEOS Styrolution

INEOS Styrolution is the leading global styrenics supplier, with a focus on styrene monomer, polystyrene, ABS Standard and styrenic specialties. With world-class production facilities and more than 90 years of experience, INEOS Styrolution helps its customers succeed by offering innovative and sustainable best-in-class solutions, designed to give them a competitive edge in their markets, and at the same time, help make the circular economy for styrenics a reality. The company provides styrenic applications for many everyday products across a broad range of industries, including automotive, electronics, household, construction, healthcare, packaging and toys/sports/leisure. In 2019, sales were at 5 billion euros. INEOS Styrolution employs approximately 3,600 people and operates 20 production sites in ten countries. More information: www.ineos-styrolution.comFollow us on Twitter (@styrolution).

About Trinseo

Trinseo (NYSE:TSE) is a global materials solutions provider and manufacturer of plastics, latex binders, and synthetic rubber. We are focused on delivering innovative and sustainable solutions to help our customers create products that touch lives every day — products that are intrinsic to how we live our lives — across a wide range of end-markets, including automotive, consumer electronics, appliances, medical devices, lighting, electrical, carpet, paper and board, building and construction, and tires. Trinseo had approximately $3.8 billion in net sales in 2019, with 17 manufacturing sites around the world, and approximately 2,700 employees. For more information visit www.trinseo.com.

Note on Forward-Looking Statements

This press release may contain “forward-looking statements” including, without limitation, statements concerning plans, objectives, goals, projections, expectations, strategies, future events or performance, and underlying assumptions and other statements, which are not statements of historical facts. Forward-looking statements may be identified by the use of words like “expect,” “estimate,” “will,” “may,” or expressions of similar meaning. Forward-looking statements reflect management’s evaluation of information currently available and are based on the Company’s current expectations and assumptions regarding the impact from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Company’s business, the economy and other future conditions. Specific factors that could cause future results to differ from those expressed by the forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, risks related to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and those discussed in the Company’s Annual Report for the year ended December 31, 2019 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), in subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and in other filings and furnishings made by the Company with the SEC from time to time. Other unknown or unpredictable factors could also have material adverse effects on the Company’s performance. As a result of these or other factors, the Company’s actual results may differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements included in this press release are made only as of the date hereof and are not a guarantee of future performance. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as otherwise required by law.

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