BP to Build Pilot Plant for Technology Testing

One goal is to discover better ways to recycle.

October 29, 2019

LONDON—BP has announced plans to build a $25 million pilot plant in the U.S. for testing new technology, including methods of repeatedly recycling plastic bottles and food packaging, reports Hydrocarbonprocessing.com.

Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is one of the most widely recycled plastics. About 27 million tons of PET are used annually in packaging, with bottles making up about 23 million tons of that total, according to BP. But only 60% of PET used for bottles is recovered, with the vast majority recycled only once before ending up in a landfill or burnt.

BP said that its new recycling technology, named Infinia, can convert used PET plastics into brand-new plastic feedstock, allowing for repeated recycling. The new plant will test the technology before deciding if it can be fully commercialized. BP management believes the progressive, new technology may be a "game-changer" for the plastics recycling industry.