Environment & Recycling
Synbra and the environment
The environment is very important for Synbra. It is an integral and important part of our quality philosophy, starting with the raw material EPS, which is totally CFC-free.
- EPS consists of 98% air, with only 2% synthetic material
- EPS provides a major contribution to energy saving and the reduction of CO2 gas emissions
- it helps save fossil fuels
- EPS is fully recyclable
- EPS produces no harmful residues during incineration
- it is groundwater neutral
- it contains no binding agents
Recycling taken seriously
Synbra’s consciousness of, and responsibility towards, the environment is a serious claim. For example, it has led us to establish our own recycling plants with which we recycle used EPS products into new (expanded) polystyrene products. Furthermore, Synbra’s participation in numerous (inter-)national recycling projects, for example our participation in EPS Garden trays International, demonstrates our concern for the environment.
As early as in 1993 the Minister of the Environment Ed Nijpels formally opened our recycling plant. Figures from Stybenex-Verpakkingen show that the recycling of EPS in the Netherlands is one of the highest in Europe and is rated at 64% of new production (2013). More details on these recent figures for 2013 are also available. Refer to this EPS recycle document for more information (Dutch).
We are also an approved recycler according to the stringent Dutch VIHB system, with certificate number NB506750VIXX.
Recycling is included in the scope of Synbra’s ISO certification:
Development, manufacturing, sales, and recycling of expandable polymer beads based on Polystyrene (EPS) and Polylactic acid (PLA), polymer compounds (PS and PLA), and products made thereof.
We take EPS waste from many sources as members of EPS-Gardentrays, Stybenex- Verpakkingen and their bag recycling system as well as waste supplied by the Knapzak system, in any shape compacted or loose. We supply the plastic bags of Stybenex-Verpakkingen on request at cost.
Looking for New ways of EPS recycling
Synbra Technology is always looking for novel ways of recycling and has participated in the 2003-2005 green loop recycling and is now a proud partner of Polystyrene Loop Coöperatief U.A.
PolyStyreneLoop is developing an elegant solution with a physical recycling process, based on the CreaSolv® Technology. In this process, PS foam is turned into high quality PS recyclate, which can be re-used as raw material for new insulation foams. The flame retardant HBCD is safely removed to be destroyed, and the valuable bromine component is recovered. A key project deliverable will be an industrial scale demonstration plant located in the Netherlands.
The PolyStyrene Loop Coöperatief U.A. is a non-profit organisation founded by Synbra and ICL in the Netherlands. The focus is on demonstrating that PS foams can contribute to a circular economy. Members of the cooperative are industry representatives from the whole PS foam value-chain. The main goal of the cooperative is the building and operation of the demonstration plant.
The PolystyreneLoop initiative is funded through the entire value chain, is supported with a loan from RABO bank and has received a grant under the umbrella of the EU initiated LIFE Subsidy program, the project is known under LIFE-PSLoop LIFE16ENV/NL/000271.
For a summary refer to the section: From Creasolv® over Polysolve back to Creasolv®
Explanation of the CreasSolv® process
In 2003 -2004 Fraunhofer Institute in Freising (BRD) carried out a “chemical” recycling project of EPS waste. Partners were: FIW, Joma, IsoBouw, Neue Herbold, DKR, Interseroh, E&E, MAKSC, Synbra and CreaCycle. The German Government (Innonet) funded this recycling headed by the Fraunhofer Institute in Freising Germany.
The summary can be found here.: Green Loop EPS
A more detailed description on the Creasolv® process: Creasolv® process.
In cooperation with the Fraunhofer Institute IVV, CreaCycle GmbH developed the Creasolv® Process. This "selective extraction" is based on standard process technology (patented by Fraunhofer Institute).
Proprietary Creasolv® Formulations dissolve selectively the target polymer and the desired polymer precipitates when a special Creasolv® Precipitation Formulation is added after the cleaning from impurities.
Source from: http://www.creacycle.de/en/projects/electro-nic-waste-recycling/poly-ressource-project-2010
The above pictured Poly-Ressource project was started in 2010 and targeted at WEEE plastic wastes and the separation of flame retardants and their dangerous degradation products. For this undertaking a consortium was founded by five enterprises with a project budget of approximately € 1.000.000 in order to realize this ambitious goal and wherein all members brought in valuable key competencies:
Fraunhofer IVV & CreaCycle GmbH – Creasolv® Process
sat. Recyclingtechnik GmbH & Tulicon GmbH – Processing of waste plastics and separation of contaminated fractions
LÖMI GmbH – Recycling of solvents and polymer upgrading
After the process was optimized in phase 1 and in phase 2 the equipment capacity was provided for the pilot plant, actually in phase 3 (summer 2012) the sample production started with subsequent evaluation of the results.
In November 2012 LÖMI delivered a pilot plant RWA-250 for medium and large distillation rates to Fraunhofer IVV in a special design for the CreaSolv® process. In the course of the project Electrolux as international producer (OEM) of domestic appliances was integrated and analyszed the quality of the recycled plastics and their potential use in new equipment.
In 2013 the project was successfully completed and concluded.