Industry News Editor Christa Semko Every two weeks, Christa will
bring you the latest chemical industry news from around the world. If you have a
press release that you'd like to share with us, please mail it to us through our online
contact form here.
For now, at least, congressional Democrats
appear to be conceding in the standoff with Republicans over more offshore oil drilling as
they prepare to let a quarter-century ban on oil and natural gas drilling off the Atlantic and
Pacific coasts fall by the wayside.A
provision that would bar drilling in federal waters along the two coasts has been left off
of a stopgap spending bill.
Honeywell International Inc. has developed a
fertilizer that can foil bomb-making efforts.The
technology combines ammonium sulfate with ammonium nitrate, providing the nitrogen and
sulfur needed for plant nutrition while ensuring improved safety and storage.Independent tests confirmed that the fertilizer is
more difficult to use as an explosive when mixed with fuel oil, the new fertilizer
did not detonate.Limited quantities will be
available for sale in some regions next year under the Sulf-N 26 name.
Chemical is Safe
Federal regulators defend their assessment
that bisphenol A or BPA, a chemical widely used in plastic baby bottles and food
packaging, is safe, even as the first major study of health effects in people linked it
with possible risks for heart disease and diabetes.Officials
did say, however, that additional research is needed in light of the new studys
Symrise plans to acquire Manheimer Fragrances
and recently purchased Intercontinental Fragrances.These
acquisitions expand the companys air care market expertise.Together, the acquisitions will cost about $100
million.As a result, Symrise is one of the
leading fragrance suppliers for air fresheners in North America and the company says it plans to create a
global air care center in the U.S. next year.
PPG Industries Inc. will buy BASF
Corp.s North American coil and extrusion coating business.This move will result in work transferring to
PPGs Springdale, PA plant, creating 55 jobs.The production transfer will be from BASFs Decatur, AL and Belvidere, NJ operations.PPG will spend $8 million to install equipment needed for the consolidation.
PPG Industries Inc., in response to
weaknesses in the housing and automotive markets, will close three coatings and glass
plants as part of a restructuring plant that will eliminate several hundred jobs and save
$100 million annually.The company is looking
to streamline its worldwide manufacturing footprint and staffing levels following its
Czech lawmakers have overridden a presidential
veto of a law that puts the countrys chemical industry under tougher European Union
rules.The bill implements an EU directive
that requires manufacturers and importers to register chemicals with the new
Helsinki-based European Chemicals Agency.The
new agencys tasks are to collect information and run a public database on chemicals
as well as to evaluate, authorize and restrict use of substances so they pose no hazard to
humans and the environment.
Akzo Nobel will cut 3,500 jobs by 2011.Synergies with ICI, acquired by Akzo Nobel last
year, combined with additional cost savings will cause the job cuts.The company is also postponing a program to buy
back $2.3 billion in shares due to the crisis hitting world banks.
SAFC Pharma has commenced operations of a new
reactor at its Arklow, Ireland manufacturing site.The $4 million investment expands the
facilitys capacity for large-scale active pharmaceutical indgredient (API)
manufacturing by 15%.The new reactor is the
latest in a series of investments designed to enhance production capacity and expand
capabilities at the site.