NOVA paving the way forward to achieve plastics circularity
January 27, 2022 By Jeff Cottrill
The road to Circular Economy for plastics will not be an easy one for many plastic companies, but for NOVA Chemicals Corporation, the path to that virtuous goal is literally being paved with awe-inspiring recycling innovation helping to divert huge amounts of plastic waste from landfills.
Teaming up with advanced (chemical) recycling leader GreenMantra Technologies, the plastics processor has just completed a second asphalt paving project at its manufacturing operations near Sarnia, Ont., incorporating the equivalent of 700,000 plastic bags in PCR (post-consumer recycled plastic) materials into two pathways and a parking lot.
The asphalt paving project was completed at the construction site of NOVA Chemicals’ newest polyethylene manufacturing facility, incorporating a polymer additive from GreenMantra that boosts the performance of the asphalt to enable consturction of stronger, more durable roads.
“This is an excellent example of Canadian innovation and collaboration to shape a world that is better tomorrow than it is today,” says Sarah Marshall, vice-president of sustainability at NOVA Chemicals headquarters in Calgary, Alta.
“Together, we are finding new solutions to divert plastic waste from landfill and create a circular economy for plastic materials.”
NOVA Chemicals first approached Brantford, Ont.-based GreenMantra in 2020 to initiate a field paving trial, which included the equivalent of 118,000 plastic bags in two 1,700-feet-long pathways located at its future Rokeby site in nearby Corunna, Ont.
According to NOVA, pilot was aimed at testing the of the Canadian climate and the environmental impact of freeze-thaw cycles, UV rays, and moisture in addition to bearing the load of heavy construction equipment. Based on the positive performance of the test strip in 2020, NOVA Chemicals and GreenMantra proceeded with the expanded paving project.
Operating as a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Mubadala Investment Company of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, NOVA Chemicals develops and manufactures chemicals polyethylene, and sells post-consumer resin, for recyclable applications such as food packaging, caps-and-closures and e-commerce packaging that make everyday life healthier and safer.
Proud to be one of the largest private employers in the Sarnia-Lambton region, NOVA Chemicals expects to create over 150 new full-time jobs at tits second second Advanced SCLAIRTECH Technology facility at the new Rokeby site, which has employed nearly 1,800 people to construct and equip the facility, adding up to well over four million man-hours to date.