Global energy giant Royal Dutch Shell has joined a consortium of energy companies to build Europe’s first advanced waste-to-chemicals facility in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
The Port of Rotterdam said in a statement Friday that Shell will join the consortium consisting of France's Air Liquide, Dutch Nouryon and Canadian Enerkem to become an equal equity partner in the planned project, which will be the first of its kind in Europe to make chemicals and biofuels out of non-recyclable waste materials.
The Rotterdam facility is expected to convert up to 360,000 tons of waste into 220,000 tons of biomethanol - a renewable fuel and chemical that is used to manufacture everyday products.
While methanol is generally produced from natural gas or coal, the project aims to convert non-recyclable mixed waste, including plastics, into clean methanol for use in the chemical industry and for the transportation sector, according to the statement.
"This represents the total annual waste of more than 700,000 households and represents a CO2 emission savings estimated at about 300,000 tons when compared to the production of methanol from fossil fuels," the statement said.
The statement also explained that the aim of the project is to have Nouryon and Shell purchase its sustainable methanol output.
"The project can help the Netherlands realize its ambition to become virtually carbon-neutral by 2050," it added.
By Ovunc Kutlu