MOSCOW (MRC) -- Royal Dutch Shell said it plans to shift its Shell Rheinland refinery at Wesseling in Germany away from crude oil and towards low or zero carbon products from 2025, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.
Shell has set a goal of net zero emissions by 2050 and is under increased pressure after a Dutch court ruled it must drastically deepen planned greenhouse gas cuts. Under its transformation plans, the complex will become Shell Energy and Chemicals Park Rheinland, a venture focused on renewable energy-derived hydrogen, sustainable aviation fuels and renewable liquefied biogas (bio-LNG).
Wesseling is one of two sites that make up the Shell Rheinland refinery complex and out of a total 340,000 bpd capacity, it accounts for 150,000 bpd. Godorf, the other site, will continue to distill crude oil into mineral oil products under the plans, which have not yet received a final investment decision (FID), Shell's German business said in a statement.
The plants employ a total 3,000 people, of which half are with Shell and the rest with contractor firms and Shell said it would try and avoid redundancies as workers could be switched to other jobs, retrained, or retired. In July, Shell launched Europe's biggest hydrogen electrolysis plant of 10 megawatts (MW) called Refhyne at Wesseling to produce green fuels.
A FID for scaling up the 10 MW size to 100 MW has not yet been received but European Union funding has been approved. A power-to-liquid plant for synthetic aviation fuel and naptha from renewables and biomass at Wesseling is also awaiting an FID, while a bio-LNG plant at Godorf has received one already.
Marco Richrath, General Manager of the Shell Energy and Chemicals Park Rheinland, said on a call with reporters that he intended to maintain the refinery's important role with a completely new portfolio.
As MRC informed earlier, Royal Dutch Shell plans to reduce its refining and chemicals portfolio by more than half, it said in July 2020 without giving a precise timeframe. The move is part of the Anglo-Dutch company's plan to shrink its oil and gas business and expand its renewables and power division to reduce greenhouse gas emissions sharply by 2050.
Ethylene and propylene are the main feedstocks for the production of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), respectively.
According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 1,868,160 tonnes in the first nine months of 2021, up by 18% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 1,138,510 tonnes in January-September 2021, up by 30% year on year. Supply of propylene homopolymer (homopolymer PP) and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas supply of injection moulding statistical copolymers of propylene (PP random copolymers) decreased significantly.