About Chemicals

The chemical industry comprises the companies that produce industrial chemicals. Central to the modern world economy, it converts raw materials (oil, natural gas, air, water, metals, and minerals) into more than 70,000 different products. Polymers and plastics, especially polyethylene, polypropylene, polyvinyl chloride, polyethylene terephthalate, polystyrene and polycarbonate comprise about 80% of the industry_s output worldwide. Chemicals are used to make a wide variety of consumer goods, as well as thousands inputs to agriculture, manufacturing, construction, and service industries. The chemical industry itself consumes 26 percent of its own output. Major industrial customers include rubber and plastic products, textiles, apparel, petroleum refining, pulp and paper, and primary metals. Chemicals is nearly a $3 trillion global enterprise, and the EU and U.S. chemical companies are the world's largest producers.

Contributions by Materialscientist, Gairderek, and Rjensen.

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