DuPont Co. has improved energy efficiency at its materials plant in Orange, Texas, enough that the saved energy could power almost 4,000 homes, as per PlasticsNews. DuPont has upgraded its ethylene furnaces at the plant, which makes ionomers, ethylene copolymers and ethylene acrylic elastomers. The upgrades created fuel savings equal to more than 67 mln British thermal units per hour and annual greenhouse gas emissions of almost 70 mln lbs. Upgrading the site’s 10 ethylene furnaces was part of a process that began in 2009. The overall effort cost less that $5 million and was part of DuPont’s companywide energy-reduction program. The upgrades increased combustion efficiency in the furnaces, which are part of an ethylene cracker where natural gas-based ethane is cracked to make ethylene, which is then used as a feedstock in numerous DuPont materials.
The American Chemistry Council has recognized DuPont’s efforts by naming the firm as a winner of an Energy Efficiency Award. Winners were selected by the energy team of ACC, a Washington-based trade group.