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Chementator Briefs

By Gerald Ondrey |

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Waste to chemicals

A consortium of companies, including Air Liquide (Paris, France; www.airliquide.com), AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals (Amsterdam, the Netherlands; www.akzonobel.com), Enerkem Inc. (Montreal, Canada; www.enerkem.com) and the Port of Rotterdam, has signed a project development agreement covering initial investments in an advanced waste-to-chemistry facility in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. The facility will be the first of its kind in Europe to provide a sustainable alternative solution for non-recyclable wastes.

An initial €9-million investment covers detailed engineering, the setup up of a dedicated joint venture (JV) and completing the permitting process. The consortium aims to take the final investment decision (FID) for the estimated €200-million project later this year and has appointed Dutch Rabobank as the lead advisor for the financing process.

The facility will convert up to 360,000 tons of waste into 220,000 tons (270 million L) of methanol. The facility will be built within the Botlek area of the Port of Rotterdam using Enerkem’s proprietary bubbling fluidized-bed gasification technology, and will convert non-recyclable mixed waste, including plastics, into synthesis gas (syngas), which is then used for making methanol. The plant will have two production lines, or twice the input capacity of Enerkem’s commercial-scale plant in Edmonton, Canada (Chem. Eng., October 2010, p. 14; www.chemengonline.com/worlds-first-commercial-plant-to-produce-biofuel-from-municipal-waste).

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