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Agilyx and Ineos Styrolution sign MOU to advance circularity of polystyrene

Jolly Sunshine Limited | Updated: Apr 27, 2018

Agilyx Corp. (Tigard, OR) and Ineos Styrolution (Frankfurt, Germany) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for deploying Agilyx’s de-polymerization technology at or near an Ineos Styrolution facility in North America. The aim is to convert post-consumer polystyrene waste into styrene monomer that can be used to re-manufacture new polystyrene products.

The cooperation objectives defined in the MOU between Agilyx and Ineos are the natural next step to setting up a chemical recycling infrastructure and establishing a circular economy for polystyrene.

Agilyx, an environmental solutions company that extracts value from waste plastic streams, opened its first commercial waste polystyrene-to-styrene oil chemical recycling plant on April 19, 2018. At a ribbon-cutting on April 24, speakers representing Agilyx strategic partners included local government representatives from Tigard City Council and Washington County, and individuals representing the American Chemistry Council (ACC) and American Styrenics LLC. 

Foodservice Packaging Group, noted, “Agilyx is an innovator in finding new ways to capture and convert used plastics into valuable products. Delivery of a polystyrene-to-styrene oil/monomer solution is a major step toward greater sustainability and circularity.” 

Jon Timbers, Senior Manager for Sustainability and Innovation at American Styrenics, congratulated Agilyx on “taking the linear process of plastics and bending the line to close it into a loop—the new circular plastics economy,” said a joint release from Agilyx and Ineos.

The plant is the first commercial-scale closed-loop chemical recycling process for polystyrene in the world. It will recycle up to 10 tons per day of previously unrecoverable polystyrene waste and produce high-quality styrene oil that will be processed by styrene manufacturers Ineos and American Styrenics to manufacture consumer goods, said Agilyx.

The process involves “breaking the chemical bonds in the polystyrene, hence the term ‘chemical recycling’ as opposed to ‘mechanical recycling,’” Agilyx confirmed to PlasticsToday

Ineos Styrolution is committed to driving the advancement of the de-polymerization technology. Together with several research institutions, the company is working on a technical feasibility study and is aiming at the development of a holistic recycling concept in collaboration with waste management companies.