Covestro and Lanxess cooperate to produce more sustainable raw materials

Covestro and Lanxess cooperate to produce more sustainable raw materials

Covestro and LANXESS are cooperating in the energy-intensive production of basic chemicals at their Lower Rhine sites in Germany and make them more climate friendly, said the company.

LANXESS procures chlorine, caustic soda and hydrogen from the ISCC PLUS-certified sites of Covestro in Leverkusen and Krefeld-Uerdingen. With immediate effect, Covestro is manufacturing around one-third of the volume of products it supplies to LANXESS using energy from hydropower based on guarantees of origin.

“Covestro is pursuing the goal of completely converting its production to electricity from renewable sources on its path to operational climate neutrality in 2035,” says Dr. Klaus Schafer, Chief Technology Officer, Covestro. Schafer adds, “A particular focus is on the energy-intensive production of basic raw materials. In cooperation with LANXESS, we use energy in our electrolysis plants in North Rhine-Westphalia on a pro-rata basis, which enables us to reduce our reported emissions by up to 1,20,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year”.

“The joint project with Covestro is an important building block in making our entire value chain climate-neutral. By sourcing raw materials for these products with a significantly reduced carbon footprint, we will be able to reduce our reported indirect emissions by up to 1,20,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents per year,” says Dr. Hubert Fink, member of the LANXESS Board of Management. With its Net Zero Value Chain Initiative, the specialty chemicals group plans to eliminate Scope 3 emissions within its upstream and downstream supply chain by 2050. This includes indirect emissions, particularly from purchased raw materials, but also in logistics or disposal. For Scope 1 and 2 emissions, the company aims to be climate neutral as early as 2040. Fink adds, “With this program, we are taking the next step towards a climate-neutral product portfolio and also supporting our customers, who are increasingly looking for sustainable solutions”.

Chlorine, caustic soda and hydrogen are basic building blocks for many products in the chemical industry. However, their production is very energy-intensive. LANXESS uses the raw materials supplied by Covestro, for example, for products that are then used in the food and agricultural industries.

We remind, Covestro announced that Samir Hifri will take the reins as chairman and president at Covestro LLC, effective July 1, 2023. In this role, Hifri will lead the U.S. operations of the global materials company, succeeding Haakan Jonsson, who will retire after 30-plus years of service with Covestro.

Covestro produces the three basic raw materials at its North Rhine-Westphalian sites in Leverkusen, Krefeld-Uerdingen and Dormagen. Both the former has already been certified to the internationally recognized ISCC PLUS standard for the production of the strategic raw material chlorine, while this is also planned for Dormagen in the near future. The correct allocation of the electricity to the products is ensured via this certification and the use of the renewable energy is proven by the invalidation of certificates of origin at the Federal Environment Agency.

Covestro is also actively involved in various projects to build a hydrogen economy that uses mainly or exclusively green hydrogen as an energy carrier. Among other things, the company is supporting, in cooperation with Hydrogenious LOHC Technologies, to build the world’s largest plant for storing renewable hydrogen in liquid organic carriers in Dormagen, Germany.

Air Products, Aramco, ACWA close second financial round on Jazan Saudi Arabia JV

Air Products, Aramco, ACWA close second financial round on Jazan Saudi Arabia JV

MOSCW (MRC) -- Air Products announced financial close and transfer of the second group of assets for the USD12 billion gasification and power joint venture (JV) with Aramco, ACWA Power and Air Products Qudra in the Jazan Economic City, Saudi Arabia, said the company.

The JV’s purchase of this second group of assets at Jazan follows the successful asset acquisition and project financing transactions for the first group of assets completed in late October 2021. Some minor final commissioning items are expected to be completed later this calendar year.

Seifi Ghasemi, Chairman, President and CEO of Air Products, said, “We are very proud to mark the close on the second group of assets at Jazan, a world-scale project that is a perfect fit with our growth strategy and which supports the Kingdom’s Vision 2030. Consistent with our commitment, this will deliver significant contributions to our earnings going forward."

Approximately 40 percent of the JV’s capital structure consists of member contributions, and the remaining 60 percent consists of non-recourse project financing.

We remind, Air Products and The AES Corporation announced plans to invest approximately USD4 billion to build, own and operate a green hydrogen production facility in Wilbarger County, Texas.

China orders investigation into explosion at Panjin Haoye chemical factory

China orders investigation into explosion at Panjin Haoye chemical factory

China's State Security Commission has ordered an investigation into the recent explosion at Panjin Haoye Chemical Co Ltd's factory, according to a statement from the Liaoning provincial government, said Reuters.

Twelve people were killed and one is missing after an explosion occurred on Jan. 15 at the refinery and petrochemical complex in China's northern Liaoning province.

We remind, Panjin Haoye Chemical Co Ltd has shut down its entire oil refinery and petrochemical complex after an explosion on Sunday killed five people and left eight missing, according to trade sources and a local consultancy.
The explosion occurred at 3:13 p.m. (0713 GMT) on Sunday at Panjin Haoye while workers were carrying out maintenance work at an alkylation facility.

The company is an independent refinery and chemical producer in the city of Panjin in Liaoning province in northeastern China.

SK Geo, Plastic Energy firm agreement for plastic recycling complex in Asia

SK Geo, Plastic Energy firm agreement for plastic recycling complex in Asia

SK Geo Centric, a subsidiary of SK Innovation’s, has signed a contract with British company Plastic Energy, which specializes in chemical recycling of plastic waste, completing the “last puzzle” of the world’s first plastic recycling complex to be built in 2025, as per Plasticenergy.

Amid a surge in demand for plastic recycled products worldwide, SK Geo Centric’s green business is building momentum.

SK Geo Centric announced on the 6th January (local time) at CES 2023 that it had signed a contract with Plastic Energy to introduce the technology to build a pyrolysis plant in the Ulsan plastic recycling complex. Na Kyung-soo, CEO of SK Geo Centric, Bruno Guillon, Chief Commercial Officer of Plastic Energy, and others attended the signing ceremony.

SK Geo Centric will start the construction process for its pyrolysis plant this year. By introducing Plastic Energy’s advanced pyrolysis technology in Ulsan, South Korea, it will promote an annual capacity of 66,000 tonnes of end-of-life plastic waste input, the largest capacity in Asia. SK Geo Centric plans to improve pyrolysis oil to an even higher quality by creating a pyrolysis oil post-treatment plant that implements the company’s own technologies.

The two companies also signed an MOU for the “strategic partnership to expand the advanced recycling business in selected countries across Asia.” They agreed to respond preemptively to growing global demand by establishing a joint venture to develop opportunities to establish new advanced recycling facilities following Ulsan in the Seoul metropolitan area, China, Japan and other key markets. Plastic Energy’s patented TAC™ process recycles plastics that normally cannot be mechanically recycled, converting them into a feedstock called TACOIL™, used to create virgin-quality plastics that have been deployed in numerous consumer packaging products including for food and cosmetics.

SK Geo Centric announced the official name of the Ulsan plastic recycling complex as the “Ulsan Advanced Recycling Cluster (ARC).” SK Geo Centric gathered the three advanced chemical recycling technologies in one place through strategic collaboration with global companies such as PCT (US), Loop (Canada), and Plastic Energy (UK). This action is expected to enable efficient plastic recycling.

SK Geo Centric is cooperating with PureCycle Technologies in the US on Ultra PP supercritical extraction technology that removes pollutants from waste plastics, and has signed a contract to create a joint venture following an equity investment of 55 million dollars It has also secured exclusive sales rights in Korea and the rights to conduct business in China and Southeast Asia.

We remind, SK Geo Centric and Tokuyama, a Japanese chemical corporation, will form a 50:50 joint venture (JV) in Ulsan, Korea, to generate and market high purity isopropyl alcohol (IPA) for semiconductors with a production capacity of 30,000 tonnes/y (tpa). On 29 Dec 2021, SK Geo Centric reported that the firm and Tokuyama decided to spend nearly Won 120 bn in JV. The facility will finalize construction and start pilot operations in 2023 before commercialization in 2024.

IOC posts strong net profit growth

IOC posts strong net profit growth
Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has recorded an almost 17-fold growth in standalone net profit to Rup 21,836 crore for the financial year ended 31 Mar 2021 (FY 2020-2021), from Rup 1313 crore in FY 2019-2020, said Economictimes.

It attributed the sharp growth in bottomline to higher inventory hikes and petrochemical margins. However, its annual revenue from operations dived year-on-year by more than 9% to Rup 514,890 crore. This was due to the decline in total fuel demand because of COVID-19. For 4Q FY 2020-2021, the standalone net profit stood at Rup 8781 crore.

This is compared to a loss of Rup 5185 crore during 4Q FY 2019-2020. Annual crude processing and pipeline throughput dived by 10% to 62.351 M tonnes (mt) and 76 mt, respectively. However, IOC increased the length of its pipeline network by 2.3% to 15,007 km in FY 2020-2021. Its total local sales plummeted by 11% during 2020-2021 to 72.71 mt. Sale was down by 17% for petrol, 14% for diesel, and 52% for ATF. Local sales of LPG increased by 4.7%.

Even as total revenue dived, the company's contribution to the central exchequer in 2020-2021 escalated by 60% to Rup 153,827 crore. On the other hand, IOC's share in States dived by 1.2% to Rup 84,959 crore. Average Gross Refining Margin (GRM) for the year is USD5.64/barrel, a year-on-year increase from $0.08/barrel. The present cost of GRM for FY 2020-2021 after offsetting inventory hikes comes to USD2.31/barrel.

The refinery run for Apr 2021 has been 96.1% while for 1-17 May 2021 has been 84%. In comparison, the total refinery run rate for FY 2020-2021 stood at 89.5%. IOC has set a capital expenditure goal of Rup 26,000 crore for the ongoing financial year.

We remind, India has announced an extension on the deadline for the implementation of the quality certifications mandated by the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) on purified terephthalic acid (PTA) imports. The Department of Chemicals and Petrochemicals, under the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, via an order issued on 21 December 2022, set 22 June 2023 as the implementation date for the certification to come into effect.