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Chexpress - September 10, 2013

North America

Fertilizer plant

Northern Plains Nitrogen is buying land next to Grand Forks’ municipal sewage lagoons. The group is planning a $1.5 billion nitrogen fertilizer plant. The plant will receive gas through an existing pipeline near the project site or directly from the western oil patch through a proposed pipeline.

Cracker plant

Shell Oil Co. is seeking ethane suppliers for its proposed petrochemical complex at an industrial site about 40 miles north of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Shell is still a year or more away from making a final decision on whether to build the multi-billion dollar plant. Shell says securing enough ethane for the potential cracker plant is a key step. The plant would convert ethane from Marcellus Shale natural gas into more profitable chemicals such as ethylene.

Phosphates plant

Hubei Xingfa Chemicals Group plans to open a facility in Effingham County in Georgia. The company expects to develop its plant on 83 acres and will establish a production line to produce phosphates, which will be exported through the port of Savannah.




Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC) will close one of its two crackers at its Netherlands plant for maintenance later this month. The Olefins 3 cracker at its Geleen site will close for six weeks beginning September 15 for routine maintenance work. This is part of a $178 million upgrade to increase energy efficiency. The upgrade will reduce the cracker’s energy consumption by 8 percent and increase production by 2 percent.


Total has confirmed that it plans to close down its last ethylene-making unit at is Carline site in eastern France, effective the second half of 2015. Cheap U.S. ethylene is forcing European and Asian plants to rethink their output mix.

Oil refinery

Aliko Dangote, president of Dangote Group, signed a loan worth $3.3 billion from 12 Nigerian and international banks toward a $9 billion project that will give Nigeria its largest oil refinery and petrochemical and fertilizer complex. At the completion of the projects, Nigeria is expected to become self-sufficient in fertilizer and refined petroleum products as well as an exporter. The 400,000 barrels/day oil refinery and complex will become operational in 2016. The plant will also produce 2.8 million tons of urea for fertilizing crops and to produce polypropylene.


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