The leaders of a plastics-to-oil plant in Oregon are putting their main business plans on hold and instead processing expanded polystyrene packaging.
According to a report in The Oregonian newspaper, Agilyx will shut down its plastics-to-oil operation to re-tool and begin producing styrene from collected EPS this summer at its Portland-area facility. The site is owned by Waste Management and attracted $25 million in outside investments in 2011 to ramp up operations.
“We’re not giving up on plastic-to-oil,” Ross Patten, the company’s chief executive, told The Oregonian. “But right now the economic conditions of the oil industry don’t allow us to go forward.”
According to the news report, Agilyx produced and sold 800,000 gallons of oil since opening in 2011, but Patten said it could no longer compete with the price of oil on the open market. The site was closed by Waste Management in April 2014.
Patten said his company plans to source EPS from Portland-area businesses. Meanwhile, the company is continuing to plan an additional plastics-to-oil plant in Philadelphia.