Sweden’s Site Zero becomes “the world’s largest plastic recycling facility”

The facility will be able to recycle all plastic packaging from Swedish households and make plastics circular – without any CO2 emissions.

Plastic is a valuable material with unique properties. In fact, the modern world would not exist without them. It is therefore necessary to recycle plastic packaging and ensure that it becomes part of the circular economy without any negative impact on the climate. Site Zero in the city of Motala is an important step in the right direction. Swedish Plastic Recycling is investing a record SEK 1 billion in the state-of-the-art facility, which will be completed in 2023. It is the existing facility in Motala, already the most efficient in Europe, now being developed with next generation technology.

“We are doubling our capacity and can handle 200,000 tons of plastic packaging per year. This creates the conditions to receive all plastic packaging from Swedish households and finally to recycle it ”, said Mattias Philipsson, Managing Director of Swedish Plastic Recycling, which belongs to a large part of the Swedish business community.

Thanks to the latest technology, it will be possible to recycle practically all types of plastic. Today the facility can manage four types of plastic – in the future, Site Zero will enable the sorting and recycling of twelve different types of plastic. Small plastic parts that remain after the sorting process are separated in order to be sent for chemical recycling or to become new composite products. At Site Zero, no packaging is incinerated.

“There is no other institution in the world today that has this capability. We are also preparing to wash and granulate the plastic in phase two, which is scheduled for 2025. Then all of our plastic flow in Sweden can become circular, ”explained Philipsson.

Site Zero will be “completely climate neutral and emission-free”. The plant is operated with renewable energy, and the small amounts of plastic and other waste that cannot be recycled are fed into an energetic recovery, the so-called CCS (Carbon Capture Storage), without climate emissions. There are also plans to generate renewable energy by covering the building’s large flat roof with solar panels.

“This investment creates the prerequisites for making Sweden the world market leader in plastics recycling. It is very inspiring to do this with our producer customers and owners who are made up of large parts of the Swedish business community, ”said Philipsson.

The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (Naturvårdsverket) is also involved with funding of just over € 180 million.

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