Supervisory Board extends Christian Hartel Executive Board Contract until 2028

Supervisory Board extends Christian Hartel Executive Board Contract until 2028

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Wacker Chemie AG’s Supervisory Board re-appointed Christian Hartel (51) for another five years as President and CEO. He has been CEO since 2021 and his current Executive Board contract expires on October 31, 2023, said the company.

Dr. Christian Hartel studied chemistry at the University of Constance and did his Ph.D. at the universities of Geneva and Frankfurt am Main. Having joined Wacker Chemie AG in 2003, he initially worked at the Corporate Development department. After various managerial positions in WACKER FINE CHEMICALS and WACKER SILICONES, he became head of Raw Materials Procurement in 2010. In 2012, he became President of WACKER SILICONES.

Christian Hartel was appointed to WACKER’s Executive Board in 2015 and has been its President and CEO since May 2021.

As per MRC, Wacker Chemie AG is accelerating the expansion of its production capacities. Investment projects to this end are either in the planning stage or are nearing completion. Significant capacity expansions for liquid silicone rubber (LSR) will be available in the second half of this year, and will come into full effect in 2023. Increasing production volumes for high con¬sistency rubber (HCR) are also scheduled. With expansion measures at several other sites, Wacker will gradually in¬crease its capacities for HCR and LSR grades significantly in the next few years. Over EUR100 million have been earmarked for this capacity boost.

Wacker Polymers is a leading producer of state-of-the-art binders and polymeric additives based on polyvinyl acetate and vinyl acetate copolymers and terpolymers. These take the form of dispersible polymer powders, dispersions, solid resins, and solutions. They are used in construction chemicals, paints and surface coatings, adhesives, sealants, carpet applications and nonwovens, as well as in fiber composites and polymeric materials based on renewable resources.

Wacker Polymers operates production sites in Germany, China, South Korea and the USA. The business division also maintains a global sales organization and runs technical centers in all key regions.

North American chemical rail traffic fell by 19.7%

North American chemical rail traffic fell by 19.7%

MOSCOW (MRC) -- North American chemical rail traffic fell by 19.7% year on year to 40,951 railcar loadings for the week ended 3 December – marking an 11th consecutive decline, said Association of American Railroads (AAR).

Increases in Canada and Mexico were more than offset by a 26.6% decline in the US. The four-week average for North American chemical rail traffic was at 45,756 railcar loadings.

Despite the 11th decline in a row, for the first 48 weeks of 2022 ended 3 December North American chemical railcar traffic was still up 0.7% year on year to 2,196,301 railcar loadings.

Shipments of chemicals, coal, motor vehicles and parts, nonmetallic minerals, and oil and oil products rose for the first 48 weeks, while shipments in all other freight railcar categories fell. For the month of November, combined US carload and intermodal originations were 2,393,027, down by 3.3% or 80,544 carloads and intermodal units from November 2021.

“Thanksgiving week is one of the lowest volume weeks of the year for rail traffic, which means November rail volumes frequently do not clearly demonstrate underlying sequential trends,” said AAR senior vice president John Gray in commenting on the traffic in the US last month.

As has been the case for months, some sectors continued to show strength while others faced headwinds, he said. For example, relatively slow lumber carloads were consistent with the weak market for new home construction, he said.

Conversely, volumes of motor vehicles and vehicle parts shipped on rail have been rising as automakers have increased output thanks to greater parts availability, Gray said. In related news, the US averted a potential strike of rail workers that could have begun as early as 9 December.

In the US, chemical railcar loadings represent about 20% of chemical transportation by tonnage, with trucks, barges and pipelines carrying the rest. In Canada, producers rely on rail to ship more than 70% of their products, with some exclusively using rail.

We remind, North American chemical rail traffic fell by 3.2% year on year to 40,467 railcar loadings for the week ended 26 November – marking a 10th consecutive decline. An increase in Canada was more than offset by declines in the US and Mexico. The four-week average for North American chemical rail traffic was at 45,860 railcar loadings.

Green Hydrogen truck means Zero CO2 emissions for INEOS Inovyn PVC deliveries between Tavaux and Dijon

Green Hydrogen truck means Zero CO2 emissions for INEOS Inovyn PVC deliveries between Tavaux and Dijon

MOSCOW (MRC) -- 60 tonnes of CO2 will be saved every year when INEOS Inovyn brings its new Hydrogen truck into service to deliver PVC from its production plant in Tavaux to Benvic’s PVC compound plant in Dijon, said the company.

From April 2023, this carbon dioxide emissions from the deliveries will be reduced to zero. To make this possible, INEOS Inovyn partnered with Benvic and leading industrial logistics company GCA Trans Service to produce a new hydrogen-powered truck. The new truck will be built based on a DAF chassis in which the diesel motor will be replaced by hydrogen fuel cells. The truck, which will be refueled at a local station in Dijon providing 100% green hydrogen, has a range of 500 km between two refills.

Geir Tuft, CEO of INEOS Inovyn, said, “This is a historical moment for our company. The use of hydrogen trucks for product deliveries is a key part of our sustainability roadmap which aims to drastically reduce our CO2 footprint over the next few years. The Tavaux truck will be leading the way, and we have already planned similar projects with other customers in Benelux."

Luc Mertens, CEO of Benvic, said, “This initiative between BENVIC and INEOS Inovyn is a perfect fit with all our ESG actions, and also improves the environmental performance of our product. We work continuously to innovate our range of sustainable compounds in every way and logistics is a key factor so we very proud to be one of the first INEOS Inovyn partners to engage in hydrogen-based technology for our deliveries."

All customers and partners are welcomed to join the initiative and work together with INEOS Inovyn to ensure CO2-free deliveries across sites.

Geir Tuft, CEO of INEOS Inovyn, says, “Supplying hydrogen to the transport market is a key step in our new INEOS Hydrogen business strategy which also includes new hydrogen production from water electrolysis, as well as hydrogen storage and development of downstream supply into chemicals.”

We remind, INEOS Enterprises has completed the acquisition of ASHTA Chemicals Inc, from Bigshire Mexico S. de R.L. de C.V. The deal, consists of a 100ktpa Potassium Hydroxide (KOH)/65 kte Chlorine plant, said the company.
ASHTA Chemicals will now be known as INEOS KOH and will be part of the INEOS Enterprises business. INEOS KOH will continue to manufacture and market chlorine and a range of potassium-based chemicals to a variety of end use markets including liquid fertilizers, runway de-icers, food ingredients, pharmaceuticals, and agricultural applications.

INEOS is one of the world’s largest chemical producers and a significant player in the oil and gas market.

Founded in 1963 as a subsidiary of Solvay, Benvic develops, produces and markets highly customized, innovative thermoplastic solutions based on PVC, engineering compounds, and bio-polymers, utilized across a wide range of rigid and flexible end-applications including building and construction, medical, aerospace, cabling, consumer, packaging and fluid transport.

One dead after accident at Phillips 66 Wood River refinery

One dead after accident at Phillips 66 Wood River refinery

MOSCOW (MRC) -- One contract employee died, and another was injured after a crane overturned on Tuesday at Phillips 66's 356,000-bpd Wood River, Illinois, refinery, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The injured employee was transported to an area hospital, while the refinery remains operational, the spokesperson said in an email, adding that an investigation into the incident is under way.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in an email said OSHA has opened an investigation into the fatality and "initial reports are that a crane fell over crushing an employee and injured another."

We remind, Refiner Phillips 66 said on Wednesday, it plans to reduce its employee headcount by 1,100 to help cut costs and meet its savings target of USD500 MM by end-2022. Phillips, which had 14,000 employees in 2021 according to a company presentation, expects to cut staff to 12,900 by the end of this year.

ALPLA Canupak reduces carbon emissions by around 71%

ALPLA Canupak reduces carbon emissions by around 71%

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The packaging and recycling specialist ALPLA has realised a carbon-optimised prototype solution as a showcase for future products with its innovative Canupak beauty care packaging.

The ultralight packaging system with a bottle made entirely of recycled HDPE (rHDPE) underscores the company’s global sustainability strategy. ALPLA is therefore offering its customers further potential to reduce emissions as well as expertise for future developments.

Around 71 per cent less carbon consumption than with comparable packaging types, complete recyclability of the bottle and cap, and a total weight of approximately just 14 grams – with its ultralight Canupak packaging system, the global packaging and recycling company ALPLA has realised carbon-optimised packaging for the field of beauty care. The bottle is made entirely of recycled HDPE (rHDPE) sourced from the company’s own plants in the EU. It is also produced exclusively using renewable energies.

Canupak is a prime example of how the potential to minimise emissions can be explored with high-quality packaging systems. ‘We are gradually reducing carbon emissions and are expanding our expertise across the board of processes, from design and production through to logistics. The carbon-optimised Canupak is the next milestone on the path to the sustainable packaging of the future,’ emphasises Karina Polzl, Innovation Project Manager at ALPLA.

The carbon footprint was calculated in cooperation with ClimatePartner. The product carbon footprint (PCF) comprises all the emissions throughout a product’s life cycle, including its disposal. The areas of package contents, retail and use phase were not taken into account as these are not relevant to the climate impacts of packaging. As no clear standards currently exist for climate-neutral products and offsetting certificates, ALPLA is focusing on reducing emissions within its own sphere of influence. ‘We are focusing on further optimising our products and on maximum recyclability based on design for recycling, and are on the lookout for partners who wish to take the next step in reducing their carbon footprint together with us,’ reports Project Manager Karina Polzl.

‘There is increasing demand for sustainable products – among our customers as well as the end consumers. Carbon-optimised packaging has a key part to play here. We already have the expertise and experience in producing future-oriented solutions,’ says ALPLA’s delighted CEO Philipp Lehner.

At ALPLA, the development of carbon-optimised packaging solutions with a high PCR proportion, maximum recyclability and minimum material consumption goes hand in hand with investments in sustainable projects and the global expansion of renewable energy and the circular economy. All packaging is to be fully recyclable by 2025, with post-consumer recycled material (PCR) accounting for 25 per cent of the materials processed. The company is investing 50 million euros a year in recycling activities to this end. ALPLA already widely uses renewable energies and high-quality own-production recycled materials at its plants and is minimising transport journeys with in-house plants directly at the customers’ premises.

ALPLA is one of the leading companies involved in plastic packaging and recycling. Around 22,100 employees worldwide produce custom-made packaging systems, bottles, caps and moulded parts at 177 sites across 45 countries. The high-quality packaging is used in a wide range of areas, including for food and drinks, cosmetics and care products, household cleaning products, detergents and cleaning agents, pharmaceutical products, engine oils and lubricants.

ALPLA operates recycling plants for PET and HDPE in Austria, Germany, Poland, Mexico, Italy, Spain, Romania and Thailand. Other projects are being realised elsewhere around the world.

We remind, ALPLA Group opened a state-of-the-art production site in Lanseria near Johannesburg. In the new headquarters for Sub-Saharan Africa, the internationally active plastic packaging specialist is merging five previous locations in South Africa under one roof. All ALPLA technologies, processes and materials are combined in the Lanseria plant and the first apprenticeship programme of ALPLA in Africa will start at the beginning of 2023.