S Korea’s LG Chem to build new hydrothermal plastic recycling plant

Nurluqman Suratman


SINGAPORE (ICIS)–South Korean producer LG Chem is building a 20,000 tonne/year plastic recycling plant which will produce oil from plastic waste using high-temperature steam.

Construction of the plant will begin this year at Dangjin in Chungcheong province, and is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2024, the company said in a statement on 18 January.

LG Chem is collaborating with UK-based Mura Technology for the new recycling plant.

The Korean producer is an investor in Mura and a licensee of its proprietary supercritical pyrolysis technology for the Dangjin plant.

Supercritical pyrolysis is a chemical recycling technology that converts mixed plastic streams into fossil-replacement oils and chemicals using steam at high temperature and pressure beyond a critical point.

Around 80% of the plastic waste from the new facility can be converted into renewable oils that can replace fossil fuels, according to LG Chem.

The remaining 20% of by-product gases can also be re-used as an energy source, it said.

“Once the recycle facility goes into full operation by the first quarter of 2024, LG Chem plans to review additional expansions,” the company said.

The global chemical recycling market is expected to grow at an annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 17% from 700,000 tonnes in 2020 to 3.3m tonnes by 2030 in terms of pyrolysis oil that can be extracted from plastic wastes, according to LG Chem.


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