Swedish Plastic Recycling (Svensk Plaståtervinning), which is owned by a large part of the Swedish business community, is now investing heavily in building the world's largest and most modern facility for plastic recycling, Site Zero. The facility will be able to recycle all plastic packaging from Swedish households and make plastics circular – completely without any CO2 emissions.
Plastic is a valuable material with unique properties. In fact, the modern world wouldn’t exist without it. It is therefore necessary to recycle plastic packaging and ensure that it becomes part of the circular economy with no negative climate impact. Site Zero, in the city of Motala, is a major step in the right direction. Swedish Plastic Recycling is investing a record SEK 1 billion in the state-of-the-art facility that will be completed in 2023. It is the existing facility in Motala, which is already the most efficient in Europe, that is now being developed with next-generation technology.
- We are doubling our capacity and will be able to handle 200,000 tonnes of plastic packaging per year. This creates the conditions needed for receiving and eventually recycle all plastic packaging from Swedish households, says Mattias Philipsson, CEO of Swedish Plastic Recycling.
Thanks to cutting-edge 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 make it possible to sort and recycle twelve different types. Any small parts of plastic that remain after the sorting process are separated to be sent to chemical recycling, or to become new composite products. At Site Zero, zero packaging goes to incineration.
- There is today no other facility in the world that has that capability. We are also preparing for washing and granulation of the plastic in phase two, which is planned for 2025. Then our entire plastic flow in Sweden can become circular, explains Mattias Philipsson.
Site Zero will be completely climate neutral with zero emissions. The facility is powered by renewable energy, and the small amount of plastic and other waste that cannot be recycled will be sent to energy recovery without climate emissions, so-called CCS (Carbon Capture Storage). There are also plans to produce renewable energy by covering the building’s large flat roof with solar panels.
- This investment creates the prerequisites needed for making Sweden a world leader in plastic recycling. Being able to do it together with our producer customers and owners, who consist of large parts of the Swedish business community, is very inspiring, says Mattias Philipsson.
The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (Naturvårdsverket) also contributes with a financing of just over SEK 180 million through the climate investment aid programme known as Klimatklivet.
This is Site Zero
Location: Motala Business Park (owned by Swedish Plastic Recycling)
Zero Site Area: Approx. 60,000 sqm
Receiving capacity: 200,000 tonnes of plastic packaging per year. Site Zero will be able to receive all plastic packaging from Swedish households
Sorting capacity: PP, HDPE, LDPE, PET tray, PET bottles (coloured and transparent), PP film, EPS, PS, PVC, two grades of Polyolefin mix, metal and non-plastic waste
Agglomeration output: Chemical recycling, composite products, energy recovery with CCS
Other: Fully automated process, 60 Near Infra Red (NIR) sensors, approx. 5 km conveyor belt, washing and granulation in phase two
Number of employees: 150-200 employees by year 2023 (today Swedish Plastic Recycling has about 80 employees and the investment in Site Zero means about a hundred new employees)
Total investment: Approximately SEK 1 billion (year 2019–2023)