12 June 2018 by Joshua Doherty

Scottish plastics plant receives further funding

Zero Waste Scotland has announced further funding worth more than £3 million for ‘Project Beacon’, which will see an “advanced” plastics reprocessing facility implemented in Perthshire.

The government backed group say that once operational later this year, the facility will enable householders to recycle all plastics at the kerbside, including crisp packets, black trays and broken plastic toys.

A trial pyrolysis plant in Swindon, with a full version to be operational in Perth, Scotland, later this year

The funding is made up of £1.7 million from Zero Waste Scotland, matched by the same amount from the private sector.

Project Beacon is based at a Binn Group facility in Perthshire, Scotland, and will see three companies work together to “chemically recycle” plastics back to oil to make new material or other chemical products.

Companies

The three companies involved in the process, according to Zero Waste Scotland, are PI Polymer Recycling, Recycling Technologies and Impact Recycling.

Recycling technologies of Swindon is the company behind the RT7000 machine, which the company claims can turn all post-consumer plastics into Plaxx, a type of oil which the company claims can be worth up to £300 a tonne.

Prior to the latest instalment announced this week, Zero Waste Scotland gave £1 million of funding to Recycling Technologies earlier this year.

Impact Recycling was formed out of BP Chemicals and says it has over 40 years’ experience in the plastics industry.

The company claims that through its research and innovation, it developed a “density separation technology” to recycle mixed polyolefins.

Polyolefins are generally used for things such as toys and juice cups, which Zero Waste Scotland says can be taken at the new facility.

Pi Polymer Recycling was founded by John Ferguson, director of Perthshire-based Eco ideaM. Eco Idea. On its website, the company claims to act as development partners to gear value with project partners, either as an invited party or as a project initiator.

Facility

It’s intended that the first demonstration facility will be up and running later this year, according to Zero Waste Scotland.

“By locating state-of-the-art recycling technologies together, significantly more plastic is kept in the economy and diverted from landfill and incineration, contributing towards Scotland’s ambitious recycling targets,” the government group said in a statement.

John Ferguson, the Pi Polymer Recycling founder, previously explained that the first facility will be able to take any large rigid plastics including broken toys, crates, plastic pipe, garden furniture and drums.

In the second phase, Mr Ferguson said the premise will be accepting all types of plastics collected at the kerbside.

This ties in to a pledge made previously by a Recycling Technologies director. Adrian Haworth explained to letsrecycle.com that Scottish authorities have agreed to collect this type of plastic providing that the facility can take it (See letsrecycle.com story).

Cabinet Secretary Roseanna Cunningham and Zero Waste Scotland chief executive Iain Gulland at the Project Beacon site

Reaction

Iain Gulland, chief executive of Zero Waste Scotland, explained that the project has the ability to “transform” plastics recycling.

Mr Gulland said:  “I am delighted not only that our financial support is helping create a potentially world-leading recycling facility here in Scotland, but that Zero Waste Scotland’s expertise has been instrumental in bringing it about. Project Beacon has the potential to transform plastics recycling in Scotland and beyond.”

The funding from Zero Waste Scotland comes as part of the £18million Circular Economy Investment Fund, administered by Zero Waste Scotland.  This aims to offers investment for small-medium sized businesses based in Scotland and supports work that will deliver circular economy growth. It is supported by the European Regional Development Fund through the £73million Resource Efficiency Circular Economy Accelerator Programme.


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