The Circular Economy concept aims to keep products, components and materials at their highest utility and value at all times. In a circular economy we keep resources in use for as long as possible, extract the maximum value from them whilst in use, then recover and regenerate products and materials at the end of their service life.

The polystyrene loop project

The PolyStyreneLoop recycling project contributes to this concept by introducing a recycling scheme for PS foams containing HBCD. These foams have been used for many years as building insulation and packaging material. A physico-chemical recycling process can now preserve the high quality PS, to be used as raw material for new foams. In parallel, this process safely removes the flame retardant HBCD from PS foam. The HBCD is destructed in a hazardous waste incinerator equipped with a Bromine Recovery Unit (BRU). This facility ensures the safe recovery of the valuable bromine component, to be used for new polymeric flame retardants. This project demonstrates how the polystyrene value chain meets the fundamental requirements of a circular economy, by ensuring a technically, economically and environmentally sustainable closed-loop recycling system.

This project is supported by the EU through the LIFE Financial instrument Environmental and Governance Program LIFE 16/ENV/NL/000271


partnering for progress