Knowing that a kilo of plastic is made from a litre of oil, it is easy to imagine how much has been wasted in the 38% of plastics waste still landfilled in Europe!
Over 10 years ago, this simple thought encouraged Cynar PLC founder and CEO Michael Murray to recover waste plastics and convert them into diesel fuel.
He recovers uncollected and non-recycled waste plastics that are crushed and washed, then gradually heated from 100 to 300°. When heated, they take on the appearance of hot chewing gum, and the resulting substance is introduced into a pyrolysis chamber in which it will be heated to 400°, without oxygen. At this stage, the paste will be turned into steam that is then distilled into liquid fuel.
For the time being, production costs for this brand-new industrial process are around 30 to 35% lower than those for fuel derived from fossil energy.
Michael Murray's company, located in the south of Spain, is able to produce over 950 litres of diesel with a ton of waste, which is almost a one-for-one conversion. The 90,500 litres of fuel produced by the factory on a daily basis can fill up the tanks of 400 to 500 small town cars.
Michael Murray's company, Cynar Plc, currently has a presence in Ireland and Spain. A second unit should soon be opened in the south of Spain.