We will work with our suppliers and contractors to help end plastic waste in the environment:
- By 2030, we will increase the amount of recycled plastic in Shell-branded packaging to 30% and ensure that the packaging we use for our products is reusable or recyclable.
- We will increase the amount of recycled materials used to make our products, starting with plastics.
Shell supports the need for improved circularity of global plastics markets and encourages reduction, reuse and recycling of plastics. We are a founding member of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, which helps governments to assess and improve waste collection and waste management. In 2021, we set a commitment to work with our suppliers and contractors to help end plastic waste in the environment.
Due to market factors, such as lack of available feedstock and progress in technology development, Shell’s ability to profitably meet its 1 million tonne plastic waste ambition by 2025 is unfeasible. Consequently, we expect to provide further insights later in 2023.
Reducing, reusing and recycling our packaging
We continue to explore ways to reduce, reuse and recycle packaging across our supply chains and introduce sustainable packaging.
In 2022, more than 30% of Shell-owned service stations had eliminated unnecessary single-use plastic including cutlery, straws and stirrers; and almost 40% had completely removed single-use plastic bags. In China and North America, our bag-in-box lubricants use 89% less plastic than 1-litre plastic bottles; and in Europe, around two-thirds of the packaging used for our Shell Car Care products (screenwash, wax, shampoo, coolant and others) is recyclable.
Recycling plastic waste as chemical feedstock
We are focusing on chemical recycling where we break down hard-to-recycle plastics into raw materials through a technique called pyrolysis. The pyrolysis oil can then be used as feedstock in our chemical plants, replacing traditional hydrocarbon feedstock. This contributes to our circular economy ambition and prevents waste that would otherwise have gone to landfill or incineration.
In 2022, we announced plans to build a new pyrolysis oil upgrader at the Shell Chemicals Park Moerdijk in the Netherlands. The plant, which is expected to start operating in 2024, will have the capacity to produce up to 50,000 tonnes of pyrolysis oil per year.
We are also building a pyrolysis oil upgrader, with a production capacity of 50,000 tonnes per year, at our Shell Energy and Chemicals Park Singapore. Along with our joint-venture partner BlueAlp, we are building two hard-to-recycle plastic waste conversion units in the Netherlands, which are designed to convert more than 30,000 tonnes of plastic waste a year into pyrolysis oil. All three facilities are expected to start production in 2024. Shell companies also have pyrolysis oil agreements with companies in Europe, Singapore and the USA.
Find out more about how we transform plastic waste into chemical feedstock at Chemical recycling: tackling plastic waste | Shell Global.
Discover more about waste and our circular economy approach at www.shell.com/sustainability/environment/circular-economy-and-waste.