Valorisation of CO2 waste streams into polyester for a sustainable circular textile industry (Threading-CO2)

February 2023 – January 2027
The textile industry is the fourth largest industry in the world with the global volume of fiber production for textile manufacturing reaching 110 million metric tons in 2020. At the same time, the textile industry is one of the most polluting industries worldwide with the highest greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions corresponding to 10% of the global emissions. Polyester (PET) is the most widely used fibre in the industry, making up 52% of the global market volume. No technology available today is capable of addressing the textile industry’s sustainability and virgin PET produced from primary petrochemical sources remains predominant with a fossil fuel consumption of 98 Mt annually which is expected to reach 300 Mt by 2050. Addressing the key challenges of carbon neutrality, circularity, cost, value chain adaption, and textile properties is the ambition of Threading-CO2, a disruptive project that will demonstrate on an industrial scale a first-of-its-kind technology that converts CO2 waste streams into sustainable PET textiles. Threading-CO2 aims to scale-up and demonstrate its first-of-its-kind technology producing high-quality commercially viable sustainable PET textile products from CO2 waste streams at industrial scale (TRL7) using a circular manufacturing approach and running on renewable energy sources. The overall outcome of the Threading-CO2 project is a 70% GHG emissions reduction compared to existing PET manufacturing processes. In addition, Threading-CO2 will enable the creation of a European value chain for sustainable PET textiles, from feedstock to final textile products in the clothing, automotive and sports/outdoor industries.