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The Future Is Here: Turning Plastic Waste Into Fuel

September 17th, 2009 · 1 Comment

plastic to oil
Plastic waste into fuel? (Photo: Envion)

If you’ve been following this blog for a while now, you know that plastic recycling is one of the environmental initiatives that we support in this site. That’s why when I came across this news about a company that proposes to convert plastic waste into fuel, I simply couldn’t contain my excitement.

Could this be the answer to the world’s plastic pollution problem?

Envion, a company in Washington, D.C. recently unveiled a $5 million plant that they say would convert 6,000 tons of plastic into nearly a million barrels of liquefied substance, which could be blended with other components to produce gasoline or diesel.

Watch: The Conversion Process at a plant in Chungnam, Korea

The process involves heating the plastic with infrared energy in a carefully-controlled environment, agitating the mixture, controlling oxygen amount, etc. and would convert 82% of the waste material into fuel. Envion says they will take in all types of plastic, except PET (plastic recycling symbol 1), which has a higher recycling value, at present. Three tons of plastic waste could be converted into 1 barrel of fuel, costing $10 per barrel, in electricity used during conversion.

“This could be transformational in how we handle plastics,’’ Todd Makurath, Envion’s global brand manager, said. Indeed, it could potentially free us all of the plastic burden. Whatever this plastic-to-oil innovation portents, it’s reassuring to see people hard at work at finding solutions to environmental problems through cutting edge technology.

via: Green Inc.

Tags: Plastic Recycling

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Nic // Dec 26, 2009 at 12:11 pm

    T-Technology invented by a chap called Zbigniew Tokarz in Poland is much more efficient, with a output ratio of .65:1; i.e. for every 100T of plastic waste the output is 65T of fuel. The method takes 100% of all waste plastic products and transforms them via catalytic depolymerization, returning them to a form of crude oil. It is well worth a look,