Medicines, detergents, textiles and plastics. Just a few of the thousands of finished products in which petrochemicals are a key ingredient – and which an increasing number of people around the world enjoy and need. Shell produces base chemicals (ethylene, propylene, and aromatics), which are the raw materials for these finished products.
Plastics provide important health, safety and sustainability benefits. They help to improve living standards, hygiene and nutrition around the world. They are used widely in healthcare, construction, transport, electronics, agriculture and sport. Plastics are often associated with disposable and throwaway packaging. But many products have different and long-term uses, as pipes, window frames, sports equipment and roofing, for example.
Most use fewer resources and have a lower-carbon footprint than the glass, paper and metal they have replaced. For instance, efficient plastic insulation and lightweight plastic parts in cars and planes save energy and avoid CO2 emissions. And plastics are integral in the construction of renewable energy, such as wind turbines and solar panels.