Doubling down on advanced recycling in Baytown

Key takeaways:

  • Startup of a second unit is planned for 2025.
  • Certified-circular plastics help our customers meet their sustainability goals.
  • Growing global demand is 'far outpacing' current supply.

Our advanced recycling unit in Baytown is barely a year old, and we’re already planning for another one.

The second unit is part of our plan to have more than 1 billion pounds of plastic waste processing capacity globally by 2027. The extra output will help meet rising demand for certified-circular plastics from companies working to reach their sustainability goals.

“This is a big step forward in adding capacity,” said Ray Mastroleo, ExxonMobil’s market development manager for advanced recycling. The unit is expected to start up in 2025.

The first unit, which started up in December 2022, is one of the largest of its kind in North America. As of March 2024, it had processed more than 45 million pounds (22,000 metric tons) of discarded plastic. 

As we’ve ramped up the unit, we’ve evaluated what’s working and what to do better. Those lessons will be applied to future advanced recycling facilities around the world.

“The interest from our customers for certified-circular plastics is far outpacing our ability to supply them, so we’ve almost doubled the amount of plastic we can process through reliability improvements,” Mastroleo said. 

“Industry supply is critical to support customers’ sustainability pledges,” Mastroleo said. “And advanced recycling is being seen as a scalable, real solution that helps support circularity more broadly.” 

How advanced recycling works

ExxonMobil’s advanced recycling process breaks down discarded plastic to the molecular level. Here’s how we do it: 

  • Discarded plastic goes through sorting and processing before it arrives at the plant as feedstock.
  • Every ton of usable raw materials made by processing that feedstock through advanced recycling is freely attributed through a mass balance approach to a ton of the plastic end product we sell as “certified-circular plastics .”* Buying those plastics is similar to buying renewable energy; the money goes to support renewable energy providers even though many sources contribute to the energy mix.
  • An independent third party, International Sustainability & Carbon Certification, certifies the process.
  • We use the output from the advanced recycling facility at our existing integrated site, enabling us to quickly scale up capacity without building a new plant.
  • Companies that buy certified-circular plastics know they’re helping divert used plastic from landfills or incinerators. Instead, they’re helping to turn waste to value, creating a more circular economy for plastics. 


* We take the ISCC PLUS mass balance approach using the “determined by mass” option with “certified free attribution” applied. Learn more


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