San Francisco-based waste and energy development firm Brightmark Energy on May 22 broke ground on the nation’s first commercial-scale plastics-to-fuel plant in Ashley, Indiana.
A total of 136 full time manufacturing jobs will be created in Northeast Indiana when all phases of the 112,000-sq.-ft. facility are operational, the company said in a statement.
The new plant will utilize a state-of-the-art plastics-to-fuel process that sustainably recycles waste that has reached the end of its useful life directly into useful products, like fuels and wax. The outputs of the technology could also be used to produce the feedstocks necessary for manufacturing plastic again.
The Ashley plant will be the first of its kind to take mixed waste single-use plastics and convert them into usable products at commercial scale. The facility will initially convert approximately 100,000 tons of plastics into over 18 million gallons a year of ultra-low sulfur diesel and naphtha blend stocks and nearly six million gallons a year of commercial grade wax in a process that is expected to be 93% efficient.
“This sustainable technology directly addresses an acute problem facing our nation: more than 91% of the 33 million tons of plastic produced in the U.S. each year is not recycled. These products end up sitting in landfills for thousands of years or littering our communities and waterways. This technology offers a tremendous opportunity to combat a major environmental ill and create positive economic value in the process,” Brightmark Energy CEO Bob Powell stated.
The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered up to $900,000 in conditional tax credits and up to $100,000 in training grants based on the company’s job creation plans. These incentives are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives.