£8m plant set to help turn company green

Going green: An artist's impression of hoe the new plant would look
Going green: An artist's impression of hoe the new plant would look
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A Thornton company is to invest up to £8m in a new plant to make it more efficient.

AGC Chemicals Europe is poised to build an extension to its facility at the former Hillhouse ICI site.

The thermal treatment facility would enable the company to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 80 per cent, helping to fight climate change, bosses say.

It will also deal with the company’s waste products from manufacturing on site.

AGCCE said the new plant will make it more sustainable, cleaner and safer, and ensure its emissions levels meet EU legislation that comes into place beyond 2015, thereby secure jobs for the future.

A planning application has not yet been submitted, but the company has started to consult residents with a series of public meetings at Thornton Cleveleys Football Club, in nearby Bourne Road.

AGCCE makes hi-tech, durable plastics. Products are used in such things as in non-stick coatings on frying pans, in magazines to stop the ink coming off on your hands, in the fabric of raincoats and in car engines.

The treatment plant, to be built on spare land next to the existing factory, will have a 25m chimney and will clean up the current emissions into the atmosphere. The gases released would comprise nitrogen, carbon dioxide and water vapour, along with very small amounts of nitrogen dioxide and hydrogen fluoride.

Stuart Ede, of AGC Chemicals Europe, said: “Next year, we are hoping to invest between £6m and £8m in our site here at Thornton.

“Our proposed facility will allow us to treat our current by-products safely, in a more simplified process, all on one site. This will reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, making us more sustainable and the air cleaner, as well as ending the need for lorries taking away our liquid by-product by road.

“Building this facility will ensure that our operations meet upcoming EU legislation and we safeguard the jobs of 150 people in the local area.”

AGCCE, which is par t of the Asahi Glass Company of Japan, won a Green Heroes award earlier this year for a series of workshops run in local schools on energy saving and green issues.