Brazil’s Braskem considers larger bio-based PP project

15 March 2012 20:55  [Source: ICIS news]

PRAIA DO FORTE, BRAZIL (ICIS)--Braskem is considering increasing the size of its bio-based polypropylene (PP) project to 50,000 tonnes/year, an executive with the Brazilian resins producer said on Thursday.

Previously, Braskem said the project, which will be based on propylene produced from sugarcane ethanol, will have a 30,000 tonne/year capacity.

Production of the “green” propylene feedstock could begin by the end of 2013, the company said. The PP would be produced at one of Braskem’s existing PP plants in Brazil.

The green PP project is part of Braskem’s renewable chemicals strategy, which will be implemented in three “waves,” Braskem’s institutional marketing director Frank Alcantara told delegates at the 6th EBDQUIM conference hosted by Associquim/Sincoquim (Brazilian Association of Chemical and Petrochemical Distributors).

The first wave will focus on getting to know the market and take place by 2014. Investments include the green PP project plus two completed projects, a 200,000 tonne/year green polyethylene (PE) project and a 170,000 tonne/year ethyl tertiary butyl ether (ETBE) project.

Phase two, taking place between 2015 and 2019, involves new capacities for bio-based PE and PP, while in phase three Braskem, which is controlled by Brazilian conglomerate Odebrecht, aims to become a leader in sustainable chemistry by 2020, Alcantara said.

Braskem’s next green PE investment will be an integrated bio-refinery project, and could involve Odebrecht subsidiary ETH Bioenergia, he said on the sidelines of the conference. “ETH is a big ethanol company, it could be a partner,” he remarked.

Future larger scale green PP capacity would need to use a dedicated on-purpose technology route for propylene production to be competitive, Alcantara noted.

By: Anna Jagger
+44 20 8652 3214

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