German government considers taking Schwedt refinery under state control

German government considers taking Schwedt refinery under state control

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The German government is looking at bringing the PCK Schwedt refinery, partially owned by Russian energy firm Rosneft, under state control, Reuters said.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Economy Minister Robert Habeck are expected to hold a news conference on Friday presenting details of the plans, Spiegel reported, citing government sources.

Options on the table include the government taking a direct stake in the refinery as well as a possible trusteeship or state investment, Spiegel reported without specifying the sources.

We remind, Vienna-based Alcmene Group is interested in taking over the partly Rosneft-owned (ROSN.MM) PCK Schwedt refinery in eastern Germany. Alcmene tried to buy Shell's 37.5% share (SHEL.L) in Schwedt last year but this was pre-empted by Rosneft which sought to increase its holding above its 54% stake, a deal that was put on hold this year by Berlin in the wake of the war in Ukraine.
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Ravago selected as North American distributor for Celanese Santoprene and Geolast TPV

Ravago selected as North American distributor for Celanese Santoprene and Geolast TPV

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Celanese Corporation, a global chemical and speciality materials company, is pleased to announce that it has entered into a strategic agreement with the polymer distributor, Ravago, said the company.

Effective on 1 Jan 2023, Ravago is appointed as Celanese's exclusive distributor for its Santoprene and Geolast TPV portfolio in North American countries including the USA, Canada, and Mexico.

Ravago is currently accepting orders for the Santoprene and Geolast TPV portfolio with fulfilment beginning on 1 Jan 2023. Orders can be placed through one of three Ravago Channels: Amco Polymers, Channel Prime Alliance and Entec Polymers. Any immediate material needs should still be ordered through your current distributor through 31 Dec 2022, and the distribution of Celanese Santoprene medical products remains with Avient Distribution as an exclusive partner.

We remind, Ravago has acquired UK recyclers Venture Polymers and Aurora Manufacturing for an undisclosed sum.
Cheshire-based Venture and Lancashire-based Aurora produce reprocessed PP and HDPE, with a joint 20,000 tonne capacity. Ravago said it intends to grow its operations further in the UK.

As MRC reported earlier, Ravago Group has carried out routine maintenance at its expandable polystyrene (EPS) plant in Schkopau, Germany. Thus, the turnaround at this plant with a capacity of 70,000/tonnes of EPS per year began on April 20, 2021, and was completed on April 28. Thus, the maintenance works at this plant lasted for one week.

Ravago represents more than 6.6 million metric tons of annual polymer sales, serving more than 50,000 active customers through more than 325 locations across more than 55 countries worldwide. Ravago's production capability consists of more than 45 manufacturing facilities, 19 of which are recycling and compounding plants in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa with a combined annual capacity of more than 775,000 metric tons; 13 of which are production plants in Europe that offer finished product solutions for the building sector; and seven of which are chemicals plants and 6 are application laboratories for its chemicals business.
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Clariant Oil Services launches D3 PROGRAM to support carbon reduction and sustainability in the oil industry

Clariant Oil Services launches D3 PROGRAM to support carbon reduction and sustainability in the oil industry

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Clariant Oil Services, a leading provider of chemical solutions, has launched the D3 PROGRAM to introduce more sustainable solutions to the oil and gas industry, said the company.

The initiative leverages advances in the oilfield and helps operators reduce carbon emissions and enhance safe operations, while avoiding disruptions to ongoing operations.

D3 is comprised of three key pillars. Decarb utilizes nanotechnology and ingredients from renewable sources to reduce carbon emissions in customers’ operations; Densify facilitates logistics improvements and furthers sustainability initiatives through a new application with concentrated products; and Detox incorporates formulations with more environmentally acceptable raw materials.

"The oil and gas industry has taken enormous strides to accelerate sustainable development. In response to mounting environmental regulations around the world, we are collaborating with customers to proactively introduce more environmentally friendly solutions and applications to their portfolio,” said Jonathan Wylde, Global Head of Innovation at Clariant Oil Services. “As the energy landscape barrels ahead to meet world energy demands, we are nimbly satisfying customer needs, as they provide critical natural resources and reduce their carbon footprint."

Key benefits of the program include simplifying logistics for both transportation and storage, introducing concentrated ingredients that require smaller dosage in the application, optimizing onshore and offshore operations, introducing more environmentally acceptable formulations, and improving operational safety.

We remind, Clariant has been awarded a major contract by Wanhua Chemical Group to supply catalysts for its new maleic anhydride plant, which will be one of the largest in the world. Designed to produce 200 kilotons of maleic anhydride annually, the plant will rely on Clariant’s SynDane catalyst for the production process. The facility will be located in Yantai city, Shandong province, and is scheduled to commence operation in 2023. Also based in Yantai, Wanhua is one of the largest chemical producers in China and is among the top 30 chemical producers globally by 2020 sales.

Clariant AG is a Swiss chemical company and a world leader in the production of specialty chemicals for the textile, printing, mining and metallurgical industries. It is engaged in processing crude oil products in pigments, plastics and paints.
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Siemens and Shell sign MoU to advance low-carbon, highly efficient energy solutions

Siemens and Shell sign MoU to advance low-carbon, highly efficient energy solutions

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Siemens Smart Infrastructure and Shell Global Solutions International BV have signed an MoU to collaborate on developing low-carbon and highly efficient energy solutions that support the energy transition, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The agreement will focus on projects that produce green hydrogen for industrial applications at Shell and its customers, as well as enhancing collaboration in the areas of biofuels and circular chemistry. Under the MoU, Siemens and Shell will create solutions that increase energy efficiency and generate sustainable power, consisting of, but not limited to, digitalization, efficient networks, and the production, distribution, and application of green hydrogen. The partnership, inked with Siemens’ Electrification and Automation business unit, has the potential to strengthen synergies for both parties. While Siemens intends to work with Shell to accelerate the latter’s transition towards net-zero operations, Shell seeks to supply Siemens and its affiliates with low carbon products that reduce emissions across the supply chain, in Siemens’ operations, and in the use phase of Siemens products, consisting of but not limited to supply of biofuels.

"Siemens is committed to decoupling electrification from fossil fuel resources. Partnerships are key to driving this effort and transitioning towards sustainable energy supplies,” said Stephan May, CEO of Electrification and Automation at Siemens Smart Infrastructure. “The partnership with Shell fits perfectly with Siemens’ vision of electrifying the world, while helping industry and infrastructure customers reduce their carbon footprint and achieve their sustainability goals."

Siemens has been an electrical equipment – switchgears, pumps, transformers, electrical Scada - supplier to Shell for more than a decade. Over the past years, it has evolved into a collaborative solutions supplier, spanning the full range of its electrification and automation portfolio and further enhanced by Joint Industry Program 33 (JIP33) equipment standardization, a set of standardized industry procurement specifications for the oil and gas industry. Shell attaches great importance to the relationship with Siemens, which is paving the way to accelerating the energy transition.

"Deep collaboration with partners is essential for the delivery of low-carbon energy solutions for the future. Building on our existing relation with Siemens, I expect this MoU to enable our teams to work even closer together,” said Graham Henley, Senior Vice President Engineering & Project Capability at Shell. “Siemens’ broad range of expertise in electrification and automation, together with Shell’s engineering and project delivery capability and ambition in the energy transition will prove to be a powerful combination."

The MoU stems from this relationship and from working together on several projects since 2010. One of the key milestones advancing green hydrogen is the recently announced construction of Shell’s Holland Hydrogen 1 (HH1) project on the Maasvlakte in Rotterdam. With a capacity of 200 megawatts and 60 tons of hydrogen per day, HH1 is planned to be one of the largest green hydrogen production plants in the world and the biggest in Europe. Siemens’ Electrification and Automation business plays an important role in the project’s planning, construction, and execution, as the power distribution and substation automation supplier. It will also be involved in the operation of the plant, which is scheduled to go on-line in 2025, through a servicing contract. The plant will produce hydrogen using electricity generated by wind turbines in the North Sea.

Siemens and Shell have adopted a collaborative and agile way of working on this large project. Close consultation and decision-making on a daily basis have helped reduce development time – of the design of the power distribution system - by close to half, from 18 months to 9 months, as of the publication of this release.

As per MRC, Mitsui Chemicals has asked Shell Catalysts & Technologies for its Shell S-896 catalyst, which is expected to provide important economic benefits from raw material (ethylene) savings and also help the organization meet the decarbonization goals for their ethylene oxide (EO) refinery in Osaka, Japan.
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Orthex Group moves toward more sustainable raw materials in cooperation with INEOS Styrolution and BASF

Orthex Group moves toward more sustainable raw materials in cooperation with INEOS Styrolution and BASF

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Orthex, a leading Nordic producer of household products, has selected a range of INEOS Styrolution’s sustainable Luran ECO raw materials for its range of SmartStoreTM Compact storage products, said the company.

Luran ECO is a styrene acrylonitrile copolymer (SAN) resulting from a cooperation between INEOS Styrolution and BASF. It is built on BASF’s production of styrene monomer derived from renewable feedstock based on a mass balance approach. INEOS Styrolution uses the material as feedstock in its production of new sustainable styrenics solutions. According to an independent third-party assessment, the carbon footprint of the new material is 93% lower compared to the fossil-based Luran version.

Orthex Group is a leading Nordic houseware producer that strives to make consumers’ everyday lives easier with its products. The company has long championed sustainability with a focus on long-lasting products and increasing the use of recycled and bio-based materials to replace fossil-based plastic.

As a next step, Orthex’s storage solutions brand SmartStore will start using new biomass balance based Luran ECO raw material for the entire SmartStore Compact storage range. Orthex Group’s main criteria for selecting this material by INEOS Styrolution are easy processability, compliance with food contact regulations, and a reduced carbon footprint.

Alexander Rosenlew, CEO of Orthex Group, comments: “This new raw material solution will support our long-term carbon neutrality target. INEOS Styrolution and BASF make it possible for us to offer consumers more sustainable products. This supports our target to increase the share of sustainable raw materials in our production to 80% by 2030."

BASF’s biomass balance (BMB) based styrene is used by INEOS Styrolution in the production of bio-attributed styrenics specialties, mainly transparent styrenics materials such as the company’s NAS® family of styrene methyl methacrylate (SMMA) products and the Luran family of SAN products. The BASF and INEOS Styrolution processes within the end-to-end mass balance based production of the new solution portfolio are certified by ISCC+.

Artur Sokolowski, Director Sales Electronics & Household EMEA at INEOS Styrolution, comments: “Orthex is an innovative and fast-moving company. I am pleased to see that we have been able to provide a solution to Orthex that helps them to reach their ambitious sustainability target."

We remind, INEOS Styrolution, the global leader in styrenics, has today announced the introduction of a comprehensive range of sustainable solutions for its specialty ABS product group Novodur. The individual grades come with a significant product carbon footprint (PCF) saving of up to -71% as compared to the respective non-ECO product reference.

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