Proceeding on the target of commercializing chemical recycling of waste plastic, Finnish company Neste is conducting a feasibility study to examine investing in capacity for processing liquefied waste plastic at its refinery in Porvoo.
The goal is to scale up processing capabilities for liquefied waste plastic by implementing proprietary technologies to pretreat and upgrade liquefied waste plastic and integrating the technologies into the refinery operations.
The targeted pretreatment and upgrading capacity of this first step is 400,000 tons per year. This development would be a major step towards Neste’s target to process over 1 million tons of waste plastic per year from 2030 onwards.
To produce drop-in petrochemical feeds from liquefied waste plastic (e.g. pyrolysis oil), intermediate refining is needed to remove detrimental impurities as well as optimize the chemical composition of the material.
Increased flexibility when processing waste plastics
In 2021, Neste concluded the first series of trial runs processing liquefied waste plastic in its Porvoo refinery. Additional trial runs with larger volumes will continue in the course of 2022. While unprocessed liquefied waste plastic is usable for trial-scale runs, continuous processing at industrial scale will require the pretreatment and upgrading step to remove impurities and unwanted components.
To develop and build up the capabilities at its Porvoo refinery, Neste will evaluate possible options for innovation funding and works together closely with local authorities supervising environmental aspects of the investment. Following the feasibility study, investment decision readiness is targeted for 2023 and the gradual implementation is expected to start in 2024.
The Neste company
Neste offers solutions for combating climate change and accelerating a shift to a circular economy. They refine waste, residues and innovative raw materials into renewable fuels and sustainable feedstock for plastics and other materials. In addition, they are the world’s leading producer of sustainable aviation fuel and renewable diesel and developing chemical recycling to combat the plastic waste challenge. They aim at helping customers to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions with our renewable and circular solutions by at least 20 million tons annually by 2030. Their ambition is to make the Porvoo oil refinery in Finland the most sustainable refinery in Europe by 2030.