SKC to Promote Plastic Waste Recycling Project


SKC president Lee Wan-jae (right) and Ulsan mayor Song Chul-ho pose for a photo after signing an MOU on a plastic waste recycling project.

SKC and SK PIC Global, a SKC affiliate which invests in chemical projects, will work with Ulsan City to promote an eco-friendly chemical recycling project in Korea. Ultimately, they aim to make plastic raw materials with pyrolysis oil made from plastic waste.

SKC signed a memorandum of understanding with the Ulsan City government on Dec. 14 to invest in an eco-friendly chemical recycling plant.

Eight million tons of plastic including vinyl flow into the sea every year. Some predict that by 2050, there will be more discarded plastic than fish in the sea. In response, SKC joined the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW) in 2019, becoming the first Korean company to participate in the global campaign. Global companies such as BASF and Dow Chemical have also joined the alliance.

SK PIC Global will invest about 100 billion won to build a thermolysis oil plant in a site near its Ulsan plant. The plant will be capable of handling 60,000 tons of waste vinyl per year, the largest of its kind in Korea. The company plans to start construction work quickly and complete the plant by 2023.

The new plant will produce 35,000 tons of eco-friendly thermolysis oil every year with plastic waste such as vinyl that cannot be recycled. Although thermolysis oil is used as a boiler fuel for SK PIC Global’s Ulsan plant right now, it will also be used as a material for high-value plastic materials such as naphtha by increasing impurity removal. This will lead to a cyclical economy that makes plastic with plastic waste.

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