A joint project to convert water-based waste into energy at the Maasvlakte site of Covestro and LyondellBasell has officially reached completion, the two companies announced during an onsite ceremony held 25 October.
The project, which kicked off in September 2018, involved the construction of a new bio plant and incinerator at the Maasvlakte site, in which the production waste generated by the two partners is treated and transformed into steam. This steam serves as an energy source to power the existing on-site production plant, creating a circular process that takes the production process to a higher level of efficiency and sustainability and achieving an overall annual reduction in energy consumption of some 0.9 Petajoules, or 140.000 metric tons of CO2. This is equal to the annual emissions of 31,000 cars, said Covestro CTO Klaus Schaefer, and represents almost half of the Dutch Port of Rotterdam’s total energy reduction target of 2 Petajoules per year.
The new installation will also avoid the release of 11 million kilograms of salt residue into the surface water.
"Climate change is one of the most important global challenges both now and for future generations,” said Jean Gadbois, Senior Vice President Manufacturing Europe, Asia and International of LyondellBasell. “I am proud that today, we are saving more energy at our Maasvlakte site, equal to the electricity use of 90,000 households. The Circular Steam Project is a great example of how we reduce the use of energy at our manufacturing facilities."
“This new plant is a big step towards a truly sustainable chemical industry,” added Schaefer. “We have shown once more how working together can pave the path for circularity.”
The official ceremony marking the completion of the project was attended by Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate and the Port of Rotterdam. The joint venture chose to limit attendance in the wake of the global pandemic.