Finland-headed waste plastic aggregator Riverrecycle Oy and UK waste plastic recovery technology developer Pyroplast Energy Ltd, currently trading as Clean Planet Energy (CPE), have entered into a partnership agreement in a bid to support global efforts of removing non-recyclable plastics from rivers and the environment in Southeast Asia (SEA) and then re-purposing the waste as new ultra-clean fuels. The focus of the partnership begins in Indonesia and the Philippines.
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Clean Planet Energy builds and operates “ecoPlants”, environmentally-friendly facilities which can convert non-recyclable plastic waste, such as that collected by Riverrecycle, into circular products, which can act as fossil fuel replacements.
Founded in 2019, Helsinki headquartered Riverrecycle installs waste management systems on the shores of the most polluted rivers, enabling the collection of plastic waste and floating debris, thereby creating a local circular economy.
Rivers primary conduits for plastic waste
The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) estimates that at least 8 million tonnes of plastics end up in the oceans every year, which now makes up 80 percent of all marine debris, from surface waters to deep-sea sediments.
Studies over the last 10 years have identified rivers as a major pathway for plastic pollution entering the oceans, with around 80 percent of ocean plastic having traveled there via land. According to a report published in National Geographic this year, of 50 of the most polluting rivers, 44 are in Asia or Southeast Asia.
With our focus in Southeast Asia, Riverrecycle takes action by closing the loop on plastic waste in the most affected areas close to rivers. To generate a perfect circular economy, we must create a waste management system that supports local municipalities to effectively manage plastic waste, and from that waste reintroduce the recovered material back into the economy; this latter part is where we’re excited to work with our partners at Clean Planet Energy, said Anssi Mikola, Founder, and CEO of Riverrecycle.
First ecoPlant under development
With local offices already operating in seven countries, including Indonesia and the Philippines, Riverrecycle has recently been awarded funding from the ICTSI Foundation to support the removal of discarded plastics along the river Pasig in Manila.
This work already underway, among expanded efforts, will be complemented by the partnership with Clean Planet Energy, whose ultra-clean fuels made from the waste plastics can, the company says, reduce carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2eq) emissions by 75 percent in comparison to fossil fuels.
Riverrecycle and Clean Planet Energy have already begun the development phase of the first ecoPlant and collection system in Manila, the Philippines with a view to begin construction in early 2022, with work in Indonesia to follow.
We are in a global plastic and carbon crisis, and no one single company, group, individual, or foundation can solve it alone. Both Riverrecycle and Clean Planet Energy hold advanced and complementary technologies which together can help reduce these problems. Riverrecycle’s technology will remove difficult plastics from the environment which would otherwise end up in our oceans, and by delivering this to our ecoPlants, we can convert these plastics into ultra-clean fuels that can replace dirty fossil fuels in transport vessels that have no other alternative means of power. To beat this crisis you need technologies to unite, and this partnership is a perfect example of such synergy, said Bertie Stephens, CEO of Clean Planet Energy.