For years, OxyChem has been engaged in addressing the global challenge of keeping plastics out of the environment, including oceans and other waterways. This commitment is reflected in our ongoing stewardship of the essential PVC resins we make, and our role as a founding member of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste. To further our vision on this important topic,
we’ve also joined Operation Clean Sweep Blue®.
OCS Blue is a product stewardship program of the Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS) and the American Chemistry Council (ACC) dedicated to helping every plastic resin operation achieve zero plastic loss into the environment. For OxyChem, it provides a useful roadmap to improve management of our essential vinyl resins by building on our current best-in-class industry practices with a focus on enhancing recovery and recycling of these resins within our PVC manufacturing operations.
As part of our OCS Blue commitment, we have agreed to publicly share our best management practices for vinyl resin stewardship. These actions are part of the efforts across the entire plastics supply chain to broaden engagement and prevent plastic losses to the environment.
To give these actions transparency and substance, we will begin publishing data relating to our vinyl resin management, containment and recycling efforts in Occidental’s annual sustainability report starting in the third quarter of 2021.
OxyChem’s PVC resin is used to make medical tubing and IV bags, PVC pipes, construction supplies, and much more. It belongs in these life-enhancing products, not in our environment, and we are excited about the additional steps we are taking to ensure that vision.
Resin Management Best Practices
OxyChem manufactures vinyl resin at four locations in North America, with resin management practices tailored to the specifications and needs of each site. Some of these management activities include:
- Production Areas
- Closed production process until final product loading.
- Use of baghouse and filtration equipment on all pneumatic conveying systems.
- In process recovery and recycling of vessel cleanout material.
- Procedures for equipment opening, immediate response to loss of containment, and reclamation/recycling.
- Loading Areas
- Paved loading areas.
- Use of protective wind screens.
- Vacuum cleaning systems.
- Rinse stations for outbound hopper cars to remove residual resin.
- Loading area drainage is contained for reclamation of residual resin.
- Inbound and outbound railcar inspections.
- All loaded railcar hatches and discharge valves are closed and sealed prior to shipment, including photographic documentation.
- Process wastewater is routed to treatment systems including fine particle filtration prior to discharge.
- Protection of storm water outfalls through use of filters, booms and screens.