Plastic Energy and TotalEnergies to build a second advanced recycling plant in Sevilla

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Plastic Energy and TotalEnergies have announced a new agreement to promote the development of advanced plastic recycling, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Under this agreement, Plastic Energy plans to build a second advanced recycling plant in Sevilla, Spain, in addition to their existing operational plant, which will transform end-of-life plastic waste into a recycled feedstock called TACOIL using Plastic Energy’s patented recycling technology. TotalEnergies will convert this raw material into virgin-quality polymers, which can be used for food-grade packaging.

The plant will process and convert 33,000 tons of post-consumer end-of-life plastic waste yearly, that would otherwise be destined for landfill or incineration. The plant is expected to become operational in early 2025, with TACOIL to be used for the manufacturing of high-quality polymers in TotalEnergies’ European-based production units, following a successful processing experimentation in TotalEnergies’ petrochemical platform in Antwerp. With identical properties to virgin ones, the recycled polymers will be suitable for use in food-grade applications, such as flexible and rigid food packaging containers.

Plastic Energy and TotalEnergies are both firmly committed to develop plastics recycling to address the issue of plastic waste, and to build a circular economy in Europe and globally. In line with this commitment, TotalEnergies and Plastic Energy have announced in September 2020 a JV to build a plastic waste conversion facility with a capacity of 15,000 tpy at the TotalEnergies Grandpuits zero-crude platform in France. The project is expected to be operational in 2023.

Additionally, Plastic Energy, Freepoint Eco-Systems and TotalEnergies announced a strategic partnership in October 2021 for a similar recycling plant in Texas, U.S. This plant, which is a JV between Plastic Energy and Freepoint Eco-systems, will have the capacity to recycle 33,000 tons of plastic waste per year, and is expected to be operational by mid-2024. Under the agreement, TACOIL will be converted by TotalEnergies in its Texas-based production units.

This new project with Plastic Energy in Spain follows two collaboration projects already announced in France and the U.S. Those projects contribute to addressing the challenge of the circular economy and to our ambition of producing 30% recycled and renewable polymers by 2030,” said Valerie Goff, Senior Vice President, Polymers at TotalEnergies.

As MRC informed before, TotalEnergies has recently inaugurated the extension of Synova in Normandy, the French leader in recycled polypropylene production. TotalEnergies is therefore doubling its mechanical recycling production capacity for recycled polymers, to meet growing demand for sustainable polymers from customers, such as Automotive Manufacturer (Auto OEM) and the construction industry.

As per MRC, TotalEnergies said that it expected a big rise in renewable-based electricity, solar and wind forms of energy, partly due to a general increase in electrification in the industrial and business world. TotalEnergies added it expected that oil in general would plateau before 2030, while natural gas would continue to play a role as a transition fuel.

TotalEnergies is a broad energy company that produces and markets energies on a global scale: oil and biofuels, natural gas and green gases, renewables, and electricity. The company rebranded itself from Total to TotalEnergies during Q2 2021. The French firm has announced allocating part of surplus revenues to share buybacks. Its 105,000 employees are committed to energy that is ever more affordable, clean, reliable and accessible to as many people as possible. Active in more than 130 countries, TotalEnergies puts sustainable development in all its dimensions at the heart of its projects and operations to contribute to the well-being of people.

CP Chem completes first commercial sales of Marlex Anew Circular PE

CP Chem completes first commercial sales of Marlex Anew Circular PE

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Reaching a significant milestone in its efforts to strengthen the circular economy for plastics, Chevron Phillips Chemical (CPChem) has announced the first commercial sales of its Marlex Anew Circular Polyethylene (PE), according to BusinessWire.

Using advanced recycling technology to process pyrolysis oil, a feedstock made from difficult-to-recycle waste plastics, CPChem is delivering on its commitment to bring a fully certified circular polyethylene product to market in the US.

“We are thrilled to add Marlex Anew Circular PE to our portfolio and make this product available to customers,” said Benny Mermans, CPChem’s vice president of sustainability. “Enhancing the sustainability of our products is one of CPChem’s key focus areas. Filling the first orders of our circular polyethylene is tangible proof of our work to accelerate change for a sustainable future.”

CPChem has already begun delivering Marlex Anew Circular PE and is working to further expand production volumes. Since announcing the launch of its advanced recycling program in October 2020, CPChem has been certified by International Sustainability & Carbon Certification (ISCC) PLUS, a globally recognized sustainability certification system. The company has also scaled production volumes and signed long-term feedstock supply agreements with several producers of high-quality feedstocks.

In addition to establishing a network of suppliers, CPChem worked with Chevron to successfully process pyrolysis oil at Chevron’s Pascagoula Refinery in a certified commercial-scale trial. As a result, this enables CPChem to source feedstock derived from plastics waste to produce Marlex Anew Circular Polyethylene. Additionally, CPChem is evaluating future collaborative opportunities with Chevron to reinforce both companies’ sustainability-related efforts and to support CPChem’s annual production target of 1 billion pounds of Marlex Anew Circular PE by 2030.

As MRC reported earlier, in December 2021, Six Pines Investments LLC, a wholly-owned, sustainable investment subsidiary of CPChem, announced its equity investment in two leading circular plastics recyclers, Nexus Circular LLC (Nexus) and Mura Technology Ltd. (Mura).

We remintd that Chevron Phillips Chemical will make a final investment decision on a new cracker in far southeast Texas in 2022, followed by an FID in 2023 on an USD8 billion joint venture petrochemical complex along the US Gulf Coast in 2023, said Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland in early August.

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 2,265,290 tonnes in the first eleven months of 2021, up by 14% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased.

CP Chem is a joint venture of Phillips 66 and Chevron.

Headquartered in San Ramon, California, Chevron Corporation is the the second-largest integrated energy company in the United States and among the largest corporations in the world. Chevron is involved in upstream activities including exploration and production, downstream activities including refining, marketing and transportation, and advanced energy technology. Chevron is also invested in power generation and gasification processes.

PepsiCo invests USD15m in Closed Loop Partners

PepsiCo invests USD15m in Closed Loop Partners

MOSCOW (MRC) -- PepsiCo Beverages North America announced that it is investing USD15m in Closed Loop Partners' Leadership Fund, to strengthen recycling infrastructure and build circular supply chains, said the company.

Closed Loop Partners is a New York-based investment firm focused on building the circular economy. The Leadership Fund a private equity fund that acquires and grows companies, including in the packaging value chain. PepsiCo has collaborated with Closed Loop Partners for several years, beginning in 2014 as a founding member of the original Closed Loop Infrastructure Fund. Additionally, they are an investor in the Closed Loop Partners Beverage Fund, sponsored by the American Beverage Every Bottle Back Initiative.

Through investments in recycling infrastructure, PepsiCo hopes to achieve several sustainable packaging targets. By 2030, all Pepsi-branded products will be offered in 100% recycled polyethylene terephthalate (R-PET) bottles, with Pepsi Zero Sugar beginning to be sold in 100% R-PET bottles by 2022. Demand for post-consumer recycled (PCR) content has significantly increased in recent years, as fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies have pledged to use PCR content in their packaging over the next five to 10 years.

Low recycling rates in the US may not be able to keep up with demand. "The recycling landscape in America continues to be challenging, and as companies - including PepsiCo - set ambitious goals to use more recycled content in their packaging, there is more need than ever for partnerships and action to increase access to recycled material,” said Jason Blake, Chief Sustainability Officer and SVP at PepsiCo Beverages North America.

US PET bottle recycling rates dropped to 26.6% in 2020, down from 27.9% in 2019, according to NAPCOR’s 2020 PET Recycling Report. Low collection, coupled with strong demand has pushed R-PET prices to record highs in 2021.

As per MRC, PepsiCo wants to cut the use of virgin plastic by 50% serving and use 50% recycled content in plastic packaging by 2030. Beverage and food supplier PepsiCo has announced a new goal to cut virgin plastic per serving by 50 per cent across its global food and beverage portfolio by 2030 as part of its new “pep+,” or PepsiCo Positive, company initiative.

Also, we remind, RT-Invest (Moscow, part of Rostec) will invest 6 bn rubles. in the construction of a new plant in the Moscow region for the production of recycled polyethylene terephthalate (r-PET) from packaging waste, which will be in demand from Mars, PepsiCo and Danone operating in Russia.

Crude oil prices rise to almost USD84 as Omicron variant impact expected to be short-lived

Crude oil prices rise to almost USD84 as Omicron variant impact expected to be short-lived

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Oil rose to nearly USD84 a barrel on Tuesday, supported by tight supply and expectations that rising coronavirus cases and the spread of the Omicron variant will not derail a global demand recovery, reported Reuters.

A lack of capacity in some countries has meant that supply additions by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) are running below the increase permitted under a pact with its allies.

On the demand side, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said on Tuesday he expects the economic impact of Omicron to be short-lived, adding that ensuing quarters could be very positive for the economy after the surge driven by the variant subsides.

Brent crude gained USD2.85, or 3.52%, to USD83.72 a barrel, its highest price since early November, after having lost 1% in the previous session.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) rose USD2.99, or 3.8%, to USD81.22, also its highest price since mid-November. On Monday, it fell 0.8%.

"Combination of facts - that demand is going to be stronger than anticipated and that OPEC's supply may not grow as fast as the demand - is why prices are climbing," said Phil Flynn, senior analyst at Price Futures Group.

Major economies have avoided a return to severe lockdowns, even as COVID-19 infections have soared. European jet fuel refining margins, for example, are back to pre-pandemic levels as supplies in the region tighten and global aviation activity recovers despite the spread of Omicron.

"Omicron has yet to wreak the havoc of the Delta variant and may never do so, keeping the global recovery on track," said Jeffrey Halley, analyst at brokerage OANDA.

The US government on Tuesday also estimated that US oil output would be lower this year than previously expected, while total oil demand would be higher than earlier forecast.

Production is estimated to rise by 640,000 barrels per day this year, lower than the previous month's forecast of a 670,000 bpd rise, and expected to increase by another 610,000 bpd in 2023.

Total oil demand is now expected to rise by 840,000 bpd for the year, higher than the 700,000-bpd increase expected last month. It is estimated to rise by another 330,000 bpd in 2023.

Brent rose by 50% in 2021 and has rallied further in 2022, with investors expecting increasing demand while OPEC and its allies, collectively known as OPEC+, slowly ease record output cuts made in 2020.

Recent outages in Libya have also buoyed prices, and the National Oil Corp said on Tuesday it was suspending exports from the Es Sider terminal. A weaker US dollar also helped to support oil because it makes oil cheaper for buyers holding other currencies and tends to reflect higher risk appetite among investors.

Upcoming reports on US inventories are expected to show crude stockpiles fell by about 2 million barrels.

As MRC informed before, US commercial crude stocks fell 3.48 million barrels to 413.96 million barrels in the week ended Sept. 17, to more than 8% below the five-year average, Energy Information Administration data showed. Stocks were last lower Oct. 5, 2018.

We remind that in late August, 2021, US crude stocks dropped sharply while petroleum products supplied by refiners hit an all-time record despite the rise in coronavirus cases nationwide, the Energy Information Administration said. Crude inventories fell by 7.2 million barrels in the week to Aug. 27 to 425.4 million barrels, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 3.1 million-barrel drop. Product supplied by refineries, a measure of demand, rose to 22.8 million barrels per day in the most recent week. That's a one-week record, and signals strength in consumption for diesel, gasoline and other fuels by consumers and exporters.

We also remind that US crude oil production is expected to fall by 160,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2021 to 11.12 million bpd, EIA said in a monthly report earlier last year, a smaller decline than its previous forecast for a drop of 210,000 bpd.

ExxonMobil Q4 2021 earnings poised to exceed pre-pandemic level

ExxonMobil Q4 2021 earnings poised to exceed pre-pandemic level

MOSCOW (MRC) -- ExxonMobil's fourth quarter profit should top Wall Street's consensus and surpass its pre-pandemic levels, lifted by better-than-expected earnings from oil and gas, reported Reuters with reference to analysts.

Credit Suisse, Scotiabank and JPMorgan have raised their fourth quarter earnings estimates following Exxon's flagging of sharply higher oil and gas operating profit last week. Official results are due on Feb. 1.

The higher earnings outlooks lifted Exxon shares 3.8% on Monday to USD63.51 on top of Friday's less than 1% gain. The stock rose 48% last year but remains below where it traded two years ago.

In 2020, the largest US oil producer suffered a historic USD22.4 B loss from falling oil prices and lower refining margins. Cost cuts and energy price hikes allowed it to pay down debt and plot a share buyback program this year.

An Exxon securities filing signaled quarterly results "above the midpoint" of prior guidance and "well above pre-pandemic levels," Credit Suisse analyst Manav Gupta wrote in a note on Friday.

The company could earn USD8.2 B, or USD1.93 per share, according to the mid-point average estimate of the three banks that have updated their estimates, excluding one-time items. That is above analysts' adjusted profit of USD1.79 per share as tallied by Refinitiv IBES.

As MRC wrote before, Exxon also signaled mark-to-market gains of up to USD1.1 B for oil and gas and refined products. Proceeds from asset sales including its U.K. North Sea assets could deliver up to USD500 MM, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

We remind that ExxonMobil said on Dec. 27, its Baytown, Texas, refinery continued to operate at reduced rates following a fire on Dec. 23, and that the unit involved remained shut down. The company has not yet determined the cause of the fire, but said it was continuing to empty the unit so it could safely enter the facility and assess what impact it would have on production. A filing with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality said the fire occurred at the facility's hydro desulfurization unit 1.

Exxon's Baytown facility is home to a chemical plant, an olefins plant and the country's fourth-biggest oil refinery, with capacity to process 560,500 bpd of crude.

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 2,265,290 tonnes in the first eleven months of 2021, up by 14% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 1,363,850 tonnes in January-November, 2021, up by 25% year on year. Supply of homopolymer PP and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas supply 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.