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SK Geo Centric Plans Second Pyrolysis Plant

SK Geo Centric is joining forces with Plastic Energy, the UK-based plastic pyrolysis specialist, to construct a waste plastic pyrolysis plant in Dangjin, Chungcheongnam-do, Korea. The plant is the second domestic pyrolysis plant after the Ulsan ARC (Advanced Recycling Cluster), which is under construction in the southern district of Ulsan with the goal of operations in 2025.

The two companies signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for the construction of the Pyrolysis Plant 2 in Frankfurt, Germany on October 31. According to the MOU, the companies will establish a joint venture and construct a pyrolysis facility in the Songsan-2 Foreign Investment Zone in Dangjin. The specific timeline for construction and plant operation will be determined through future discussions between the two companies. The annual waste plastic processing capacity of Pyrolysis Plant 2 is expected to be 66,000 tonnes.

As the second plant will be located near the Seoul metropolitan area and Chungcheong regions, not only will its locational feature facilitate efficient waste collection from these areas, there is also the potential connection with the Ulsan ARC. The pyrolysis oil produced at Pyrolysis Plant 2 is expected to be further refined at the Ulsan ARC’s pyrolysis oil post-treatment facility for use in petrochemical processes.

Image Courtesy of SK Geo Centric.

Pyrolysis oil is created by heating waste plastics at high temperatures, and it is considered a crude oil substitute. Therefore, it is regarded as a crucial element in the circular economy for waste plastics, as it can be used in petrochemical processes to produce new petrochemical products. This process is also referred to as “Urban Oil Field” as it is extracting crude oil from waste materials.

Last year, SK Geo Centric continued its collaborative relationship with Plastic Energy by signing a Heads of Agreement (HOA) for the construction of a waste plastic pyrolysis plant in the Ulsan ARC. Building on Plastic Energy’s experience in operating pyrolysis plants in locations including Seville, Spain, and its accumulated technology patents, the partnership aims to open up an era of a circular economy for waste plastics in South Korea.

SK Geo Centric CEO Na Kyung-soo said, “Following Ulsan, operating a waste plastic pyrolysis plant in Dangjin will significantly contribute to establishing a circular economy system in Korea.” He added, “We will continue to make the best efforts to establish a circular economy for waste plastics in order to fulfill our goal to recycle an amount of plastic equivalent to what SK Geo Centric has produced by 2027.”


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