Thermochemical recycling of plastics for production of chemical intermediates at a Swedish chemical complex site
Paper in proceedings, 2016

This work investigates the implementation of a waste recycling process for sustainable production of chemicals and plastics with metal recovery at a Swedish chemical complex site. Plastics waste streams and forest residues undergo thermal gasification and the produced syngas is used for the synthesis of methanol and ethanol that serve as chemical intermediates at the site thus reducing the import of fossil-based feedstock. Additionally, two metal-rich waste streams are also considered: automotive shredder residues and electronic waste. These two streams are pre-treated by pyrolysis resulting in a solid residue suitable for metal recovery. The annual potential reduction of global GHG emissions of the proposed process was quantified using a life-cycle perspective. About 120 kt of ethylene per year and about 44 kt of syngas can be produced corresponding to about 15% and 26% of the site demand, respectively. The estimated contribution to global GHG emission reduction of the proposed process concepts lies in a range between 800 and 1300 kt CO2-eq per year.


circular economy



industrial symbiosis


GHG emission reduction

Plastics chemical recycling


Matteo Morandin

Chalmers, Energy and Environment, Industrial Energy Systems and Technologies

Henrik Jilvero

Marianne Gyllenhammar

Lars Pettersson

Simon Harvey

Chalmers, Energy and Environment, Industrial Energy Systems and Technologies

Proceedings of ECOS 2016 - 29th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimization, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems

Subject Categories

Energy Engineering

Areas of Advance




More information