Planning application submitted for Quantafuel recycling plant in Sunderland that will create 100 jobs

Dozens of new jobs are to be created as the Port of Sunderland’s green revolution forges ahead.

By Kevin Clark
Monday, 20th June 2022, 4:00 pm

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Quantafuel Sunderland Ltd – part of a specialist recycling company based in Norway – is applying for permission to build a plastics processing plant on a 12-acre site on the eastern edge of the port.

The plant will take plastics that are not currently recycled from across the north of England and melt them down so the raw materials can be used again.

The firm’s first plant in the UK will chemically recycle plastics to produce a substitute for fossil oil, reducing C02 emissions by around 50% compared to incineration. The oil produced will then be used to produce new, high-quality products.

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Quantafuel held a number of consultation events with the local community in March and distributed leaflets to thousands of homes, inviting people to find out more about the plans.

The planning application is expected to be registered by Sunderland City Council in the next few days and will then be available to view online.

Last month, Quantafuel signed an option agreement with the Leader of Sunderland City Council, Councillor Graeme Miller, which gave the company first option to develop the land.

Lars Rosenløv, CEO of Quantafuel, said: “New facilities are needed to help deal with plastic waste and we believe this proposal is a long-term, sustainable alternative to incineration and landfill that will provide significant environmental benefits, whilst also creating new jobs in Sunderland.

An artist's impression of how the new plant will look

“We have considered our plans in detail and have consulted widely with the community and are delighted to have now submitted a planning application. We look forward to further engagement with the community during the summer as we await the outcome of the planning decision in autumn.”

Earlier this year, Norwegian company WasteFront AS was given planning permission to build a new sustainable tyre recycling plant at the port, creating 70 jobs.

Deputy city council leader Coun Claire Rowntree said the authority had worked hard to attract investment into the port: “The port is key to the city’s development plans and we continue to invest in it to develop our rail, road, and sea links, which are vital to attracting such global investment.

"We look forward to working with Quantafuel as it develops its plans through the planning process.”

Quantafuel's Winifred Johansen with Matthew Hunt (left) and Coun Graeme Miller

Subject to planning permission, Quantafuel is planning to have the plastics recycling plant operational in 2024, creating around 100 new, long-term jobs.

It will also support around 200 jobs during construction and create training and apprenticeship opportunities.

The facility will be able to process around 100,000 tonnes of low value plastic waste, such as soft food packaging and a variety of domestic and industrial plastics.

After heating and melting the plastics, it will transform the waste into raw materials that can be used again in the production of high-grade plastic. Currently, this waste is sent to landfill or incinerated.

The raw materials produced will be shipped from the port to customers in the petrochemical industry, while gas produced will be used to power the plant.

For more information about Quantafuel, go to www.quantafuel.com

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