BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — ExxonMobil held a celebration for the start-up of the Polypropylene Growth Project (PPG Project) new facility at the Baton Rouge Polyolefins plant.

In 2019, ExxonMobil created the Polypropylene Growth Project, known as the PPG Project. The company built its first plant in 2000 and revealed its second Polypropylene facility in Baton Rouge on Thursday.

To keep up with demands, the plant will produce more than 450,000 metric tons of Polypropylene each year. Polypropylene is a plastic used in pretty much everything.

The project will increase the facility’s ability to meet growing global demand for reusable, durable, lightweight plastics used to create automotive parts that make vehicles safer and more fuel efficient as well as consumer products and packaging materials.

ExxonMobil’s second Polypropylene Facility is a $500 million dollar investment. Photo credits to BRPROUD Jacquelyn Kisic.

According to the Venture Executive of the PPG Growth Project, Pamela Rafferty, she works in Houston and Louisiana. Rafferty explains that this new facility doubles the capacity of the Polypropylene production at the site.

Local, state, and federal leaders such as Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, and Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston-Broome attended the celebration event.

“For more than a century, ExxonMobil has been a leader in innovative technology, community investment, and workforce development in Louisiana,” Edwards said in a statement. “The PPG Project is just the latest example of how ExxonMobil’s investments in our state create career opportunities for our citizens, provide new business for local companies, and support community efforts. I’m proud that Louisiana’s strong business climate and competitive incentives programs were able to secure this investment for our state.”

The PPG project is part of ExxonMobil’s Growing the Gulf initiative, a 10-year plan to invest more than $20 billion to expand manufacturing facilities along the U.S. Gulf Coast.

The project is quite an investment of more than $500 million. It has created 65 new direct jobs and 219 new indirect jobs, for a total of 284 new jobs for the capital area. 

“This project at Exxon is positioning our economy for 2050,” says Cassidy.

During construction alone, the project employed more than 650 workers. This generated approximately $51 million in direct employee payroll, $18 million in onsite contractor payroll, and another $67 million in construction payroll.

Weston-Broome says this will bring hope for young people to land a job at ExxonMobil.

“I hope to see more additions happen,” she said. “Certainly the 20-year span before this one was a long time coming, but we’re extremely grateful for it.”