Mitsubishi Chemical to cease MMA production in UK

Mitsubishi Chemical to cease MMA production in UK
Mitsubishi Chemical Group Corporation announced the start of labormanagement consultation on cessation of the production of methacrylates (MMA) at Mitsubishi Chemical UK's Cassel, said the company, said the company.

Site, and announced today that its Corporate Executive Officers Committee resolved in the day to cease the
production of methacrylates at its Cassel Site subject to completion of the labor-management consultation.

The production of methacrylates at the site have been offline since January 2022, initially to undertake a
planned overhaul, and since then due to the impact of rapidly escalating natural gas prices caused by the situation
in Ukraine, a significant downturn in the European economy as a result of high inflation, and the weak demand
in the methacrylates market.

A comprehensive business review was undertaken which concluded that the company does not believe that
the UK manufacturing operation of methacrylates can be economically sustainable for the foreseeable future in
an increasingly competitive global market. The Group therefore resolved today to cease the production of
methacrylates at the site subject to completion of the labor-management consultation.

We remind, Mitsubishi Chemical Group (MCG) has announced that it will postpone the final investment decision by 6 to 18 months for its new 350,000 tonnes/y methyl methacrylate (MMA) plant in Geismar, LA, US due to the current market volatilities. The project is currently in the process of applying the required wetland and air permits and is anticipated to be granted in 2023 and FID is projected in FY 2023.

TotalEnergies wins a new exploration license

TotalEnergies wins a new exploration license

TotalEnergies, and its co-venturers QatarEnergy and Petronas Petroleo Brasil Ltda (PPBL) have won the Agua Marinha block today in the Open Acreage under Production Sharing Regime – 1st Cycle held by Brazil’s National Petroleum Agency (ANP), said the company.

Petrobras has exercised their right to take 30% Participating Interest and Operatorship. Agua Marinha is a large block of 1,300 km2, about 140 km from onshore, located in the pre-salt Campos Basin.

“TotalEnergies is pleased to expand its presence in the Campos Basin with this new exploration block, alongside three strategic partners. This is in line with our strategy to focus exploration on selected high potential basins which can deliver material low cost, low carbon intensity resources,” said Kevin McLachlan, Senior Vice President, Exploration of TotalEnergies.

TotalEnergies will participate in the block with a 30% interest, alongside Petrobras operator (30%), QatarEnergy (20%) and PPBL (20%).

The entry into this block follows the entry into 2 blocks, S-M-1815 and S-M-1711, in the South Santos basin during the 3rd Cycle of the Permanent offer that took place on 13th April 2022.

We remind, Saudi Aramco and TotalEnergies have made a final investment decision (FID) about the construction of a petrochemicals complex in Saudi Arabia which will include a 1.65m tonne/year ethylene cracker. The complex will comprise a mixed feed cracker as well as two polyethylene (PE) units and a butadiene (BD) extraction unit, plus “other associated derivatives” units. TotalEnergies said capital expenditure (capex) for the project was around USD11bn.

LG Chem and GS EPS to build biomass power plant

LG Chem and GS EPS to build biomass power plant

LG Chem will team up with the eco-friendly energy company GS EPS to convert heat sources into biomass fuel, said Businesskorea.

The company announced on Dec. 20 that the two companies signed the main contract for establishing a biomass power plant that will produce industry-use steam and electricity using waste wood at the Yeouido LG Twin Tower with the attendance of executives from both companies. This agreement follows up the conclusion of the heads of agreement (HOA) signed by the two companies in June of last year.

LG Chem and GS EPS will establish the biomass power plant called “Yeosu Green Power” by investing a total of 320 billion won at the LG Chem Hwachi Plant in Yeosu with the goal of beginning operations by the first half of 2026.

The biomass power plant will turn waste wood from homes and industrial sites in Korea, which are usually incinerated or buried, into the form of woodchips to be used as raw materials. As waste wood is treated as a resource that cannot be recycled, power generation using it is not viewed as using forest resources as energy. Therefore, it is recognized as sustainable biomass.

GS EPS is Korea’s first private power producer, and it possesses accumulated business capacity and operational know-how in the eco-friendly energy and generator sector, as well as a domestic woodchip supply chain network.

Yeosu Green Power is expected to produce steam (heat source) and electricity needed for LG Chem’s Yeosu Hwachi Plant, thereby reducing carbon emissions by 400,000 tons annually. This is equivalent to planting 2.8 million pine trees.

The two companies anticipate that this will accelerate the age of carbon neutrality by using sustainable fuels and contribute to constructing a circular economy.

Also, the electricity produced by the power plant will be sold directly to LG Chem through the renewable energy power purchase agreement (PPA).

Regarding this cooperation, GS EPS CEO Jung Chan-soo said, “We will continue our partnership with LG Chem, which is the leading company for net-zero in Korea based on the core eco-friendly energy capacities of GS EPS.”

LG Chem Petrochemicals Company President Noh Kug-lae commented, “Carbon reductions through this biomass will become a key element for achieving 2030 carbon neutrality together with major initiatives currently being promoted such as recycling, biomaterials, etc.," while adding, “LG Chem will continue its efforts to become a company that leads eco-friendly innovation.”

We remind, with the launch of its eco-friendly, highly functional bio-based ABS, LG Chem has added a further product to its growing portfolio of LetZero materials. LetZero is the brand name under which the company has brought its range of sustainable materials together, and includes PCR made of reprocessed waste plastics, renewably-sourced biomaterials, and biodegradable materials made of glucose and waste glycerol extracted from corn.

Borealis and VERBUND sign first long-term hydropower PPA to supply Borealis operations in Austria

Borealis and VERBUND sign first long-term hydropower PPA to supply Borealis operations in Austria

Borealis has signed a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) with Austrian power firm VERBUND for hydropower supply from sites on the Danube, said the company.

The 10-year PPA will start in January 2023 and will supply 220GWh/year of electricity from renewable sources from VERBUND sites in Aschach and Abwinden-Asten on the Danube to power Borealis’ production in Schwechat, Austria.

This deal brings Borealis closer to its goal of powering operations in its polyolefins and hydrocarbons business with 100% renewable electricity by 2030, the company said.

Through the PPA, Borealis will reduce Scope 2 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions – those generated on site using electricity or generated by steam, heat, and cooling – by approximately 75,000 tonnes/year, it said.

Borealis and VERBUND recently installed a second photovoltaic facility in Schwechat.

VERBUND is one of the largest producers of hydroelectricity in Europe and generates around 97% of its electricity from renewable energy sources, primarily from hydro.

We remind, Borealis is designing a first-of-its-kind commercial-scale advanced mechanical recycling plant to be located in Schwechat, Austria. The plant will be based on Borealis’ own Borcycle™ M technology, which transforms polyolefin-based post-consumer waste into high-performance polymers suitable for demanding applications. This represents another tangible step forward on Borealis’ path to net zero.

Versalis acquires DSM Proesa technology

Versalis acquires DSM Proesa technology

In Italy, Versalis, Eni’s chemical company, has acquired the technology to produce enzymes for second-generation ethanol from DSM, said Biofuelsdigest.

The agreement has a strategic value for Versalis as it integrates with proprietary Proesa® technology, applied at the Crescentino plant for the production of sustainable bioethanol and chemical products from lignocellulosic biomass, improving the competitiveness of technology and production.

The acquisition of this technology strengthens Versalis’ position as a leader in chemistry from renewable sources. This agreement also provides an important boost to both the Crescentino plant development program and the Proesa technology, which bolsters the path towards decarbonization for the Eni chemical company.

DSM enzymes have already been successfully tested at Versalis research centers for their use in conjunction with the proprietary Proesa technology. Furthermore, starting from the technology acquired, Versalis plans to proceed with research activities to ensure further development in this area.

We remind, Versalis Dunkerque cracker offline after fire. A major fire broke out this Friday evening, around 10:50 p.m. on the site of the petrochemical plant based in Mardyck, classified Seveso, in the industrial port of Dunkirk, said Francebleu. Firefighters extinguished the fire overnight at 1:30 a.m. No injuries are reported. A significant number of firefighters from the North lent a hand to the plant's own fire department, as required by procedure in this type of situation. The operation lasted from 10:50 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.