Plans submitted for £157m 'waste to chemical feedstock' plant in East Yorkshire to help reduce the UK's 'plastic legacy'

Plans have been submitted for a £157m plant near Hull to process up to 180,000 tonnes a year of packaging and household waste, helping reduce the UK's "plastic legacy".

The sun setting behind Saltend Chemicals Park, near Hull Picture: James Hardisty

The “waste to chemical feedstock” facility is earmarked for a 9-acre plot on Saltend Chemicals Park, to the east of Hull.

Applicants Terrae Novo Ltd say the plant will create 50 to 60 permanent skilled jobs once fully operational.

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Documents submitted online state that it is planning to build three production lines over the next four years, each capable of converting 60,000 tonnes of waste a year into around 22,000 tonnes of chemical feedstocks.

The site proposed for the new facility

The company proposes sourcing the feedstock from within a 25 mile radius, a move they say will help deal with local waste in an environmentally sensitive manner.

Adding extra HGV traffic on already busy Hedon Road could be a cause of concern for local residents.

However the applicants claim there will be “minimal” extra lorry movements, as the waste would otherwise be taken to landfill, to the docks for export or to processing plants for incineration.

If given the go-ahead, the first production line would be scheduled for commissioning in the second half of 2023 with the other two production lines scheduled for construction and commissioning before 2026.

The plans add: “Feedstocks for the proposed facility are plentiful, as the UK is currently estimated to be producing circa 2 million tonnes of plastic packaging waste per year, with over 1 million tonnes of plastic not being recovered or treated in an environmentally friendly way.

“The UK is also producing 15 million tonnes of municipal waste, which is mostly currently sent to landfill.

"By constructing this proposed facility at the SCP site, TN will be helping reducing the UK’s plastic waste legacy and helping produce low carbon feedstocks for both chemical processing, for the aggregate and agricultural industries, via a process within a ‘circular economy’."

A capital investment of around £157m "will not only provide construction and operations jobs, but also help local businesses financially who provide support to the Salt End Chemicals Plant site in the form of providing plant, equipment, fabrication, supplies, food, transport, and accommodation."

The plot earmarked for the facility in the centre of Saltend Chemicals Park currently houses light industrial buildings and a laydown area, used by another company.

The plans say unlike an energy to waste plant the “syngas” produced from the rubbish will be “recycled into the process itself, thus minimising the straight burning of hydrocarbons and the resultant emissions into the atmosphere”.

Emissions will have to meet UK Environmental and Air Quality Legislation.