MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sasol has recently released a status update on its USD8.9-billion ethane cracker and derivatives complex and the company’s progress toward its Louisiana First strategy, nearly one year after announcing a final investment decision (FID), as per Hydrocarbonprocessing.
"We are delivering on our commitment to hire Louisiana workers and use Louisiana businesses first for our contracting and procurement needs," said Mike Thomas, senior vice president of Sasol North American Operations. "A local workforce and contractor support team with experience and strong ties to our community adds considerable value to our operations and helps strengthen the local economy."
There are job opportunities available in both the operational and construction phases of the project. Of the more than 500 full-time, Sasol positions to operate the new ethane cracker and derivative units, Sasol has hired more than 200, including operators, processors, engineers, laboratory analysts, chemists as well as operations and maintenance personnel. Close to 80% of these new hires are from Calcasieu Parish; the majority of the remaining hires are from other cities in Louisiana.
Of the 5,000 temporary construction phase positions, approximately 3,300 workers are currently on site through eight major Louisiana construction contractors and Fluor Technip Integrated.
Sasol appointed eight major Louisiana-based contractors to support construction of its ethane cracker and derivatives project, reflecting a commitment of more than USD2.5 billion in contracts to Louisiana businesses to date.
Early works activities, site preparation and civil construction work have been underway since 2014. On-site concrete batch plants are operational and internal haul routes are complete, eliminating a significant amount of off-site public road use for material delivery and earthmoving activities. Site above-ground work and heavy equipment deliveries began this fall.
The first phase of the heavy haul route strengthening project is complete, and widening work is under way with the first Sasol heavy haul transports planned for early December. Other infrastructure improvements will be performed over the next several months throughout the city of Westlake and surrounding areas as agreed with the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury and the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development.
The heavy haul route work and other infrastructure improvement projects, including a significant amount of new water, sewer and gas line infrastructure for the city of Westlake along the heavy haul route, represent an investment of more than USD40 million, with USD35 million in the city of Westlake alone.
Mechanical, electrical and instrumentation work are scheduled to begin in 2016 and continue throughout 2017. Sasol expects the facility to begin a phased commissioning in 2017, with full plant operation expected in 2018.
Once complete, the facility will produce approximately 1.5 MMtpy of ethylene. The ethylene will be used in six new downstream derivative plants to produce a range of high-value derivatives.
As MRC reported before, in late December 2014, Sasol announced the completion of a USD4 billion credit facility for its ethane cracker and derivatives at its existing site in Lake Charles, Louisiana.
Sasol Limited is an integrated energy and chemical company based in Johannesburg, South Africa. It develops and commercialises technologies, including synthetic fuels technologies, and produces different liquid fuels, chemicals and electricity.