Dow completes construction of ethylene production site in Texas

FREEPORT, Texas – The Dow Chemical Company announced the completion of the construction phase of its new ethylene production facility in Freeport, Texas. The Company reached this milestone within one week of the originally planned date, which was set approximately two years ago. Dow’s ethylene unit is now progressing through the commissioning phase, with start-up expected by mid-year.

Photo Courtesy of Dow Chemical Company.
Photo Courtesy of Dow Chemical Company.

“This tremendous milestone represents the Dow team’s unwavering ability to deliver on our commitments to meet the needs of our customers, generate value for our shareholders and to create opportunities for our employees,” said Andrew Liveris, Dow’s chairman and CEO. “The Freeport ethylene unit is the cornerstone of our $6-B investment in the US Gulf Coast. Our growth investments leverage the advantaged shale gas supply available in the US, and represent thousands of new jobs and significant economic value, including exports of approximately 20% of our US production.” 

At peak activity, the construction phase involved more than 3,000 Dow employees and contractors. The project achieved more than five million consecutive work hours without a lost-time incident. Dow’s new unit also represents one of the least capital-intensive ethylene investments currently announced across the US Gulf Coast.

The production unit – with a nameplate capacity of 1.5 MMt – is a central component of Dow’s $6 billion US Gulf Coast investment program. It will feed Dow’s derivative investments, which will come on-line throughout 2017 and 2018 and include:

  • ELITE Enhanced Polyethylene for high performance flexible food packaging and personal hygiene applications (Capacity: 400 KTA);
  • New specialty low density polyethylene for industrial and supply chain packaging applications (Capacity: 350 KTA);
  • Next Generation NORDEL metallocene EPDM to deliver solutions for higher-margin applications for the transportation, infrastructure and consumer durables end-markets (Capacity: 200 KTA);
  • High Melt Index Specialty and Conventional Polyolefin Elastomers for high-performance flexible packaging, transportation and consumer markets (Capacity: 320 KTA); and
  • Bi-modal gas phase de-bottleneck to enable more offerings for high-performance pipe and fitting applications, as well as the cap and closure market (125 KTA).

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