Declining energy consumption in plastics production

Intelligent processes

From panorama roofs on cars to laptop housings and home insulation – plastic products make daily life more comfortable, safe and environmentally friendly. Covestro is constantly developing and producing new polymers for these applications. That requires raw materials and energy. The company does everything it can to conserve these and also to cut emissions – with new plants, production processes, measuring methods and the use of alternative resources.
Processes
Covestro does everything it can to conserve raw materials and energy and also to cut emissions – with new plants, production processes, measuring methods and the use of alternative resources.
The greatest energy-saving potential lies in buildings, the traffic and transportation sector, and industry itself. The chemical industry has already done a great deal to reduce the amounts of electricity, gas, water and oil it uses. Materials producer

Covestro plays a leading role in efficiency improvement in particular in its numerous production processes, including some that the company has developed itself. In concert with the chemical and plastics industries, Covestro can help to make energy systems more sustainable and pave the way for a low-carbon future.

Electricity-saving chlorine production

If, for instance, all chlorine manufacturers in Germany used a new process co-developed by Covestro, it would reduce the total amount of electricity the country consumes by one percent.

Chlorine is used at an early stage of plastics production. Yet energy consumption and emissions can also be reduced at higher levels – such as in the manufacture of isocyanates, a direct precursor of polyurethanes. Gas-phase technology developed by Covestro helps to reduce energy use here by 60 percent.

Optimal plant management

Moreover, the company has introduced a measurement and management system it developed itself in several sites around the world. As a result, energy consumption per facility has declined by an average of 10 percent.

All in all, Covestro is targeting a 40 percent improvement in energy efficiency between 2005 and 2025. Over the same period, it aims to cut CO2 emissions per metric ton of material produced by 50 percent throughout the company.

To achieve these targets, however, Covestro is not just focusing on production processes. Alternative raw materials are another lever. One example is carbon dioxide, which can replace part of the crude oil that is otherwise the foundation for plastics.