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Agreement signed on Rotterdam waste-to-methanol plant

London — An agreement for initial investments for an advanced waste-to-chemicals plantin Rotterdam that will convert waste materials into methanol has been signedby AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals, Air Liquide, Enerkem and the Port ofRotterdam, Enerkem said Friday.

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Canada-based Enerkem, which produces renewable chemicals and biofuels fromwaste, said that the Botlek, Rotterdam site will be able to produce as much as220,000 mt of "green" methanol from 360,000 mt of waste, which is equal to theamount of annual waste produced by over 700,000 homes.

The new plant should also generate CO2 emission savings of around 300,000 mt.

The plant, which should have two production lines, will be able to covertnon-recyclable waste and plastics into syngas and then methanol.

"This is another exciting and important step getting us closer to launchingthe construction of our very first advanced biorefinery facility in Europe in2018," Enerkem CEO and President Vincent Chornet said.

According to Enerkem, AkzoNobel will be a methanol customer, while alsosupplying hydrogen to the site. Air Liquide will supply oxygen to the site,which will use Enerkem technology.

Initial investments of Eur9 million ($11 million) are expected to cover theset-up of a joint venture, engineering and the completion of permittingprocesses.

A final investment decision on the project, estimated at Eur200 million, isexpected later in 2018.

--Luke Milner, luke.milner@spglobal.com

--Edited by Jonathan Dart, jonathan.dart@spglobal.com