DuPont Cuts Emissions at Alapocas

Dupont’s 150-acre complex in Alapocas now using natural gas after cutting dependence on oil.

DuPont’s Experimental Station in Alapocas, once among Delaware’s largest producers of greenhouse gases, has reduced its overall emissions by nearly 30 percent since 2015. And those who live and work near the plant in Wilmington’s Henry Clay neighborhood, which winds around the Brandywine Creek, say they couldn’t be happier.

“I hadn’t noticed a difference, but knowing there is 30 percent less emissions is very important,” said Bobbi Harvey, who works at her husband’s sculpture studio, just a short walk from the research facility.

The Chestnut Run-based chemical company three years ago began to eliminate heavy use of a fuel oil known as Number 6 to power the Experimental Station, a sprawling 150-acre complex off Del. 141 that houses various labs and offices. Since March, the plant has shifted entirely to natural gas, a move that has significantly reduced its emissions since last August.

Carbon Dioxide emissions have been reduced by 29 percent; nitrogen dioxide emissions are down 73 percent; and sulfur dioxide emissions have been eliminated entirely, according to DuPont. The number of particulates — matter that attaches itself to the atmosphere — also are down by 91 percent.

DuPont said the project also will eliminate emissions from the 1,000 fuel trucks annually that delivered oil to the Experimental Station.

The reduction in carbon dioxide alone is enough to offset the emissions of 4,500 vehicles on the road, according to the company. Prior to the shift to natural gas, the Experimental Station emitted more than 400 tons of sulfur dioxide per year.


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