OUR GREEN CHEMISTRY: FROM PLASTICS UPCYCLING TO CIRCULAR HYDROGEN PRODUCTION
Green chemistry enables and accelerates the next phase of the energy transition by improving the recycling and recovery of waste in an increasingly circular economy, by using biological components as feedstock for biofuels and chemicals and reducing industrial process emissions through green and circular chemicals and fuels and carbon capture technologies. The raw materials and processes of the decarbonization era are changing: fossil fuels are increasingly being substituted by renewable sources, and recycled materials are integrating and partially substituting the mining and extraction of new materials from the environment. Recycling plastic wastes has become a priority. We own a proprietary plastic waste Upcycling technology which allows the production of compounds which can substitute virgin polymers with excellent performances. We also develop chemical solutions for recycling, which enable the treatment of a wider range of otherwise non-recyclable plastics, turning them into valuable chemicals for a true circular economy. We are also developing technologies for advanced or 2nd generation biofuels. These types of biofuels will be a driving force of decarbonization in the transportation sector, especially for long-haul road-transport and air travel and for agriculture, where electrification is more challenging. Based on our expertise we have furthermore developed a portfolio of technologies for the production of hydrogen that intercepts the demand of those industrial sectors which need more to proceed towards decarbonization, like petrochemicals, steel and waste management.
NEXTCHEM: THE GREEN ACCELERATION CONTINUES
In early 2018, NextChem was born, consolidating Maire Tecnimont capabilities, technologies, patents and projects in green chemistry. We aim to develop solutions for scaling technologies in the industrial sector and for the widespread substitution of traditional transport fuels, petrochemicals and fertilizers with biobased feedstock alternatives. NextChem is specialized in the development of new processes, technologies and products from non-fossil feedstocks and from renewable energy sources, aiming to make the economy circular and low carbon intensity, by focusing on mechanical recycling, on chemical recycling (waste to fuels and chemicals), biobased chemical products and carbon capture.
Circular Economy. We have developed a portfolio of plastic waste recovery solutions. Our proprietary MyReplast Upcycling technology allows to produce new raw materials which can substitute virgin polymers to produce new plastic goods. Non-recyclable plastics can be used in chemical processes converting their basic molecules (carbon and hydrogen) into syngas and, from that, into new chemical feedstocks.
Biofuels. NextChem is also active in the biofuel sector with proprietary and licensed technologies. In partnership with Saola Energy, NextChem has introduced in its portfolio an innovative solution for small scale hydrogenated vegetable oil (HVO, also called Renewable Diesel) plants, tackling feedstock availability limitations while reducing logistics, transportation costs and operations complexity. The partnership with GranBio introduced into the portfolio, with a worldwide licence, also the 2G ethanol technology that converts lignocellulosic, non-food biomass to renewable, low carbon intensity biofuels. NextChem’s waste-to-chemicals conversion technology allows the production of “circular/bio” fuels like circular hydrogen, methanol and ethanol, the latter of which is produced through the LanzaTech biological technology, licensed by NextChem for the Italian market. Our electrolysis technology allows the production of green hydrogen from renewable energy.
This new environment will require much greater collaboration across large scale and distributed green companies and projects. Therefore, production, recycling and energy generation sites of the near future will be interconnected – in a virtual or real sense – into integrated clusters for waste recycling, bio feedstock and fuel production, renewable power generation, hydrogen production, oil biorefining and petrochemicals production. We see a world of opportunities from the co-development of disruptive technologies and we are ready to invest in the emerging golden era of green chemistry..
MAIRE TECNIMONT AND ENI
NextChem has partnered with ENI to strengthen the competitiveness of the Porto Marghera (Venice), Livorno and Taranto sites as chemical green hubs. For Porto Marghera, the two companies have signed a partnership agreement to develop and implement a conversion technology to produce hydrogen from refuse derived fuel (RDF) and non-recyclable plastics (plasmix) while reducing environmental impact. In Livorno, NextChem expanded its collaboration with ENI by launching a cooperation agreement for the engineering project of a waste-to-methanol plant fueled by syngas, a direct output of chemical conversion process. As far as Taranto is concerned, the companies signed an agreement aimed at assessing the feasibility of a plant for the production of synthesis gas from plasmix and RFD through a chemical recycling process, with a significant contribution to decarbonization and recycling targets, and to the social and economic relaunch of the territory.
NEXTCHEM’S CIRCULAR DISTRICT
NextChem has developed a model of “Circular District” in which integrates Upcycling technology and chemical recycling of plasmix and dry waste into syngas and “circular” chemicals with technologies for the production of hydrogen from renewable sources by electrolysis. This model integrates proprietary and licensed technology already proven, available and ready to be industrially implemented, and it allows to realize industrial projects which are environmentally, socially and economically sustainable. Circular District model is mainly aimed at green recovery of industrial brownfield sites, above all in petrochemical and steel sectors. The aim of the Circular District is to replace fossil sources in industrial processes (as natural gas or hydrogen from methane) with feedstocks (renewable or circular) with a lower carbon footprint, which allow to reduce CO2 emissions of industrial sites and to increase the recycling, improving circular economy. NextChem’s model is a virtuous one for the economy green relaunch: it combines circular economy with decarbonization goals, for the development and sustainable recovery of traditional sites based on fossil sources, it is useful for a green relaunch of local economy, to create employment and new skills. Finally, the production of chemicals which are building blocks for the industry using existing sites and waste as feedstock, allows to reduce virgin raw materials supply, cutting down the reliance of importing countries (like Italy) from abroad.
WE ARE FOCUSED ON RENEWABLE POWER GENERATION
We operate worldwide in the wind and solar power sectors through our dedicated Neosia Renewables subsidiary. Neosia Renewables provides high quality services along the whole value chain, from development and design to engineering, procurement and construction, leveraging our Group’s global network. Renewable energy projects have been increasing in size in many countries and our wide and deep project management experience in the engineering and contracting sectors for large projects positions us well to satisfy the most stringent requirements of all international operators.
NEOSIA RENEWABLES: GROUP’S COMMITMENT TO RENEWABLE ENERGIES
The Group strategy is based on the view that renewable energy projects have been increasing their size in many geographies and the project management experience of a reputable engineering contractor as Maire Tecnimont can be positively recognized by international operators. Neosia Renewables provides high quality services along the whole value chain, from development and design to EPC, leveraging the Group global network.