Dow Plastics Recycling

C&EN provides info–

“Dow expects sales of packaging materials made from recycled resins to yield another $500 million in new earnings. The company aims to sell 3 million t per year of recycled and renewable resins by 2030.

To this end, Dow unveiled several initiatives at the investor event. The company announced that it would procure 65,000 t per year of pyrolysis oil from a plastics recycling plant that Freepoint Eco-Systems is planning for Eloy, Arizona. That plant, expected to be completed in 2026, will process 90,000 t of postconsumer plastics per year.

[The 65,000 t/yr works out to 848 bbl of oil per day as a replacement for crude oil at 420 lb/bbl.]

Dow also intends to form a partnership with SCG Chemicals to develop recycling facilities in Thailand. The partners aim to process 200,000 t per year of waste plastic by 2030.”

By pyrolysis oil, they are probably cracking polyethylene and polypropylene. Usually it goes to an oil refinery for distillation to fuels. By implying they will make plastics from it, you can speculate it will be fed to their ethylene cracker, which can use naptha as feedstock. That would make for recycling into packaging.

Eastman Chemical has technology to depolymerize polyethylene glycol terephthalate but Dow has no position in polyesters. So ethylene cracker seems more likely.

This looks like a drop in the bucket compared to the volumes we need to recycle, but it’s a step in the right direction especially if they can make it profitable.


The primary data source on the generation of plastics is the American Chemistry Council. In 2018, plastics generation was 35.7 million tons in the United States…


The mysterious Facebook algorhithm throw some interesting “industrial” videos at me from time to time - this is one which shows 3rd world workers transforming plastic bottles (billions of them) into plastic pipe.

It’s about 10 minutes long, but you miss little by skipping ahead now and then, or just let it play while you eat a sandich or something. It actually gives me hope.