A new facility could allow Baton Rouge to recycle more plastics

ExxonMobil is considering Baton Rouge for a new advanced recycling facility that would repurpose traditionally hard-to-process plastics.

Dave Oldreive, ExxonMobil’s Baton Rouge refinery manager, said this week during Business Report’s Louisiana Energy Outlook webcast that the company is considering whether to move forward in the coming months to apply for the state’s economic incentive programs and that a final investment decision is expected to either be announced late this year or early next year.

“I think we can attract additional businesses (to Baton Rouge),” says Oldreive, pointing to a company in California specializing in artificial turf that’s considering opening a location in north Baton Rouge if the advanced recycling facility moves forward.

Currently, only some 9% of plastics are recyclable, he says. The advanced recycling facility would chemically break down hard-to-process plastics, like chip bags, with 20%-to-50% lower gas emissions.

ExxonMobil started operations at its advanced recycling facility in Baytown, Texas, late last year as part of a larger plan to process up to 1 billion pounds of plastic waste annually by the end of 2026. Along with Baton Rouge, ExxonMobil is considering Beaumont, Texas, and Joliet, Illinois, for future advanced recycling capabilities as well as sites in Belgium, the Netherlands, Singapore and Canada.

This story originally appeared in a March 27 issue of Daily Report. To keep up with Baton Rouge business and politics, subscribe to the free Daily Report e-newsletter here.