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Dow to use more ethane to make plastics

December 06/2010

(Bloomberg) -- Dow Chemical Co., the worlds second- biggest chemical company, plans to use more ethane to make plastics and may form a venture to separate it from natural gas because of low U.S. prices.

Dow plans to increase cracking of ethane by 20 percent to 30 percent at ethylene plants on the U.S. Gulf Coast over the next two to three years, Midland, Michigan-based Dow said in its statement. That will increase Dows global use of ethane for making ethylene to as much as 65 percent, from about 55 percent, said Rebecca Bentley, a spokeswoman. Costs havent been determined, she said.

Ethane is an advantaged feedstock in the United States and we anticipate a favorable oil to gas ratio to continue, Raja Zeidan, global business vice president for Dow Hydrocarbons, said in the statement.

Dow, the worlds largest producer of ethylene and polyethylene plastics, also said it is reviewing joint-venture options to build a natural-gas liquids fractionator, a plant that separates the components of natural gas, to secure supplies of ethane. 


Dow to use more ethane to make plastics
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