Sumitomo Chemical switches to renewable energy at its Oita site in a move to cut gas emissions by 30%

Sumitomo Chemical switches to renewable energy at its Oita site in a move to cut gas emissions by 30%

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd. (Tokyo, Japan) has decided to switch all of the electricity purchased for its Oita Works (Oita City, Oita Prefecture, Japan) to renewable electricity starting November 2021, as part of its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, according to MarketScreener.

The switch will reduce CO2 emissions from the plant approximately 20% compared to FY2013. In addition, the company has changed fuel used as an energy source at Oita, from heavy oil to natural gas, which has a lower CO2 emission factor, while also working to optimize plant operating conditions to maximize the benefit of the change of fuel. By implementing all these measures, the Company will reduce GHG emissions from the Oita Works approximately 30% in total from FY2013 levels.

The Oita Works mainly manufactures crop protection chemicals, active ingredients and intermediates for pharmaceuticals, and fine chemicals such as resorcinol, a raw material for adhesives for tires. Sumitomo Chemical has long been working to reduce environmental impact and improve unit energy consumption, and has more recently been exploring ways to mitigate GHG emissions related to fuel and electric power used in its operations. The Company has decided to make the electricity purchased for the Oita Works 100% renewable in order to continue to fulfill its obligation as a manufacturing company to reduce emissions from its production while at the same time ensuring safe and stable operations and improving competitiveness.

The Sumitomo Chemical Group has set a goal of reducing GHG emissions 30% by FY2030 compared to FY2013, which was certified by the Science-Based Targets (SBT) initiative in October 2018.

To achieve this target, the Group has been implementing a variety of initiatives, and as a result, by FY2020, GHG emissions were reduced by 2.12 million tons, or 22%, from 9.54 million tons in FY2013. Going forward, additional reductions are expected to come from the switch to renewable electricity and the change of fuel at the Oita Works, as well as from the Group's on-going projects to construct a liquefied natural gas-based thermal power plant at its Ehime Works and introduce high-efficiency gas turbine power generators at its Chiba Works.

Currently, the Group is considering raising its GHG emissions reduction targets in view of the Japanese government's revised target of cutting emissions 46% by 2030, and plans to announce new targets by the end of 2021.

As MRC informed earlier, Sumitomo Chemical Co. has decided to construct a pilot facility for chemical recycling of acrylic resin (PMMA, poly-methyl-methacrylate) at its Ehime Works in Niihama City, Ehime Prefecture, Japan. The new facility is scheduled to begin pilot tests in the fall of 2022 and to start providing samples in 2023. In parallel with this project, the company will work to develop a recycling system for PMMA, from collection of used acrylic resin to recycling and reprocessing into products, aiming for early commercialization of chemically recycled PMMA.

With its own basic technology to pyrolyze acrylic resin and regenerate it as MMA monomer, which is used as a raw material, now successfully established, Sumitomo Chemical has decided to construct a pilot facility. The acrylic resin produced by re-polymerizing MMA monomer obtained by this technology is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the entire product life cycle by more than 60% compared to virgin materials produced from fossil resources, while maintaining the same level of basic properties, such as transparency and strength.

The main sector consuming approximately 75% of MMA is the production of polymethyl methacrylate acrylic plastics (PMMA). Methyl methacrylate is also used to produce methyl methacrylate-butadiene-styrene copolymer (MBS), used as a modifier for polyvinyl chloride (PVC).

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's overall production of unmixed PVC totalled 746,700 tonnes in the nine months of 2021, up by 4% year on year. All producers increased their output.

PVC imports to Belarus rose by 22.5% in January-August

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Overall imports of unmixed polyvinyl chloride (PVC) into Belarus totalled about 40,000 tonnes in the first eight months of 2021, up by 22.5% year on year, according to MRC's DataScope report.

According to the statistics committee of the Republic of Belarus, local converters were unable to replenish their PVC inventories in full in August of this year, due to limited stocks at the main suppliers - producers from Russia.
August imports of unmixed PVC amounted about 4,900 tonnes, while in the previous month they were 4,800 tonnes. Thus, imports of unmixed PVC reached 40,000 tonnes in January-August 2021, compared to 32,600 tonnes a year earlier.

Russian producers with the share of about 92% of the Belarusian market were the key suppliers of resin to Belarus over the stated period.
Producers from Germany with the share of about 7% were the second largest suppliers.

Stavrolen shut PP production for turnaround

Stavrolen shut PP production for turnaround

MOSCOW (MRC) - Stavrolen, a major producer of polyolefins in Russia, shut down its polypropylene (PP) production for scheduled maintenance works, according to the ICIS-MRC Price Report.

The plant's clients said Stavrolen began a scheduled turnaround at its PP production on 17 October. The shutdown will be short and will last for about 24 days. The plant's annual production capacity is 120,000 tonnes.

It is also worth noting that Stavrolen shut its high density polyethylene (HDPE) production from 12 October for scheduled repairs. The outage will last for 36 days. The plant's annual production capacity is 300,000 tonnes.

Stavrolen, Lukoil's subsidiary, is Russia's second largest high density polyethylene (HDPE) producer after Kazanorgsintez and the fifth largest PP manufacturer. Stavrolen's HDPE and PP production capacities are 300,000 tonnes and 120,000 tonnes per year, respectively, the plant also produces 80,000 tonnes of benzene and 50,000 tonnes of vinyl acetate per year.

ExxonMobil may drop several major oil and gas projects

ExxonMobil may drop several major oil and gas projects

MOSCOW (MRC) -- ExxonMobil Corp board is debating whether to continue with several major oil and gas projects amid a global push from investors for fossil fuel companies to be more cost-conscious and green-energy friendly, according to Reuters with reference to WSJ's report.

Activist investor Engine No. 1 in May shocked the oil-and-gas industry when three of its four nominees were elected to the board by Exxon shareholders, who were frustrated by weak returns and the company's flagging attention to climate concerns.

The appointment of activist Jeff Ubben in March put a third of the 12-member board in new hands.

The board members expressed concerns about some projects, including a USD30 B liquefied natural gas development in Mozambique and another multibillion-dollar gas project in Vietnam, the WSJ report said, citing people familiar with the matter.

The Mozambique and Vietnam projects have been stalled for long periods over local fights as well as sour gas and high costs. No final investment decisions have been taken on these projects.

The talks on projects are taking place as part of a review of Exxon's five-year spending plan, on which the board is set to vote at the end of this month, WSJ reported.

Exxon is also analyzing the expected carbon emissions from each project and how they would affect its ability to meet pledges to reduce emissions, the report said.

The annual projected emissions from the Mozambique and Vietnam projects were among the highest in Exxon's planned pipeline of oil and gas projects, according to a pre-pandemic internal analysis by Exxon, which was reviewed by WSJ.

As MRC reported earlier, ExxonMobil plans to build its first, large-scale plastic waste advanced recycling facility in Baytown, Texas, and is expected to start operations by year-end 2022. By recycling plastic waste back into raw materials that can be used to make plastic and other valuable products, the technology could help address the challenge of plastic waste in the environment. A smaller, temporary facility, is already operational and producing commercial volumes of certified circular polymers that will be marketed by the end of this year to meet growing demand.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 1,638,370 tonnes in the first eight months of 2021, up by 10% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 989,570 tonnes in the first eight months of 2021, up by 30% year on year. Deliveries of homopolymer PP and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas shipments of injection moulding PP random copolymers decreased significantly.

ExxonMobil is the largest non-government owned company in the energy industry and produces about 3% of the world's oil and about 2% of the world"s energy.

PPG honored for sustainable innovation, marketing campaign

PPG honored for sustainable innovation, marketing campaign

MOSCOW (MRC) -- PPG announced that it has been honored with British Coatings Federation (BCF) awards in the Sustainable Innovation and Marketing Campaign of the Year categories, said Coatingworld.

The prestigious awards recognize excellence in companies and individuals working in the coatings sector. The novel PPG MOONWALK robotic system for mixing automotive refinish coatings earned first place in the Sustainable Innovation category. The award recognizes commitment to sustainability through the launch of innovative sustainable products, processes or services.

"The innovative PPG MoonWalk system saves labor, reduces waste and transforms the mixing room into a clean and safe environment, setting a new standard for the refinish market,” said Timothy Nevell, PPG regional business solutions manager, automotive refinish. “Paint technicians and body shop managers benefit from the extreme accuracy of the automation of the mixing process, improving speed, quality and color consistency."

The LEYLAND TRADE SMART product range by PPG received the Marketing Campaign of the Year award. The honor recognizes the BCF member company that has produced and delivered the most innovative and effective marketing campaign that makes a demonstrable impact on the target audience.

"The Leyland Trade Smart range by PPG is designed to address the frustrations the multi-skilled tradesperson faces,” said Ben Wilde, PPG marketing manager, architectural coatings. “We designed a simple, jargon-free marketing campaign that shows how the paint saves them time, money and space and delivers a high-quality end result, helping to ensure repeat business."

PPG was also a finalist in four other BCF award categories – Corporate Social Responsibility, Young Leader of the Year, Coatings Care Progress, and Diversity & Inclusion.

As per MRC, PPG Industries announced it will acquired Worwag (Stuttgart, Germany), a producer of liquid, powder and film coatings for industrial and automotive applications.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia"s estimated PE consumption totalled 1,396,960 tonnes in January-July 2021, up by 7% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 841,990 tonnes in the first seven months of 2021, up by 29% year on year. Supply of propylene homopolymers (homopolymer PP) and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas supply of statistical copolymers of propylene (PP random copolymers) subsided.

PPG Industries Group was founded in 1883 in the USA. PPG Industries Inc. is an international American company producing paints and varnishes, chemicals, optical components, specialty materials, glass and fiberglass. The company includes over 150 production units and representative offices in more than 60 countries around the world. PPG is one of the 500 largest US corporations by sales.