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Blog / Eastman’s $1 Billion Recycling Facility Seeks to Catalyze the Circular Economy

Eastman’s $1 Billion Recycling Facility Seeks to Catalyze the Circular Economy

by REUZEit Team | Feb 24, 2022 | Circular Economy

In mid-January 2022, global materials company Eastman announced plans to invest up to $1 billion in a state-of-the-art molecular recycling facility. In cooperation with French President Emmannuel Macron, Eastman will be building out their new facility in France. It’s a massive effort to support the broader circular economy just as we do here at REUZEit, with Eastman forecasting an annual recycling rate of 160,000 metric tons of plastic waste. Much of their capabilities are credited to polyester renewal technology, which has proven to be far more efficient than traditional incineration methods for hard-to-recycle plastics. 

REUZEit has been aware of European plastic waste and climate crisis concerns for years now, which is why we have lab equipment warehouses in the Netherlands and the UK. 

Eastman’s Facility Design & Launch Date

The massive project includes technology that will prepare mixed plastic waste for processing, as well as methanolysis capabilities for waste depolymerization. Furthermore, the facility will flaunt polymer lines to offer a variety of quality materials for specialty, packaging, and textile efforts. Eastman has additional plans to build an “innovation center” to develop alternative recycling methods that are more sustainable than plastic incineration. The company’s CEO Mark Costa predicts 2025 to be the year it’s in full operation, at which point they’ll have created 350 job opportunities and 1,500 indirect jobs in recycling, infrastructure, and energy sectors.

Technology for Potentially Infinite Material Value

The secret to Eastman’s new facility is its polyester renewal technology, a much cleaner alternative to incinerating hard-to-recycle plastics. This technology is able to break these plastics down to their molecular building blocks, and then reassemble them without sacrificing materials quality. Most impressively, the use of polyester renewal methods has the potential to bring infinite material value by keeping them in production – a clear example of the circular economy at play. 

Establishing France’s Circular Economy

While Eastman certainly invested $1 billion to improve our rates of recycling, there’s a much larger game at play. The company deeply believes in the circular economy as the key to quelling global plastic waste issues and the resulting environmental impacts. By reducing carbon emissions and using molecular recycling to drive a new circular economy, France could become a shining example of the first genuine circular economy and encourage other countries to follow suit. 

In the long run, we at REUZEit plan to contribute to the circular economy on an increasingly global scale by maintaining and likely expanding our European presence as opportunities arise. 

Join REUZEit In Supporting the Circular Economy

Let’s face it, investing in laboratory equipment for your scientific research is a necessary cost. Luckily, we’re committed to providing you with options that you can fit into your budget. Money saved on one product can be used to finance another resource that is just as important to your progress. Whether you’re searching for innovative chemistry lab equipment or looking to replace broken lab equipment, REUZEit offers low-cost solutions that work as hard as you do. Browse the best surplus and gently used biotech and pharmaceutical equipment on the market! Check out our USA-based store or our European-based store to shop discount laboratory equipment.

Join REUZEit and The Circular Economy


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