The environmental impacts of the polypropylene (PP) manufacturing process are not fully understood in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region. There is a growing interest in assessing the environmental impacts of this highly demanded product, especially for the petrochemical industry sector. This research examines the environmental impacts of the polypropylene manufacturing process using a life cycle assessment (LCA) approach. Gabi software is selected to carry out this research study and quantify the risks associated with manufacturing one ton of polypropylene, chosen as the functional unit for this LCA study. This work has the following merits: (i) an evaluation of environmental impacts specific to GCC region based on actual plant data; (ii) the results in this work can be used to evaluate LCA impacts of PP based products; and (iii) emphasizing the importance of waste management in reducing environmental impacts. This study shows that the polypropylene manufacturing process releases numerous pollutants into the environment, as the gross CO2 emissions for the manufacturing process of PP in the plant located in the GCC region were estimated to be 1.58 kg CO2 eq./kg-PP. The manufacturing process of propylene has extremely high impacts on global warming potential, fossil resource depletion (1.722 kg Oil eq./kg-PP), human toxicity (0.077 kg 1,4-DB eq./kg-PP), acidification (0.0049 kg SO2 eq./kg-PP), and petrochemical oxidant formation (0.0042 kg NMVOC/kg-PP). Additionally, based on the results of this present research, this study proposes possible improvements and alternative solutions such as applying advanced technologies, clean energy, and safe recycling processes in the GCC that are environmentally friendly.
Bibliographical noteGenerated from Scopus record by KAUST IRTS on 2023-02-14
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Chemistry
- Polymers and Plastics