Shell seeks to exit petrochemicals in Singapore

Shell seeks to exit petrochemicals in Singapore

As Shell proceeds with its Energy Transition initiative that will see it become more of a natural gas giant than an oil major, its petrochemical assets in Singapore have come under the spotlight, with talk of divestiture, “repurposing,” or even closure if a suitable buyer or buyers cannot be found, said Plasticstoday.

Shell operates or has stakes in multiple petrochemical plants producing ethylene, propylene, butadiene, styrene, benzene, polyols that can be used to make polyurethanes, and ethylene glycol, among other products. It also has an equity stake in The Polyolefin Company (TPC), a leading regional producer of polypropylene (PP), low-density polyethylene (LDPE), and ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA). TPC is particularly strong in random copolymer and terpolymer grades of PP for sealant film applications and solar module encapsulant film grades of EVA.

Shell is targeting net zero emissions by 2050 and, like other petrochemical and plastics suppliers, it sees reducing its dependence on these two energy-intensive product groups as a way to shrink its carbon footprint. The company’s Energy Transition Campus Amsterdam was launched in July 2022, creating opportunities for others to join in finding solutions to the world’s energy challenges. One such project is a collaboration between Shell and Dow to electrify steam cracking furnaces with renewable energy. Steam cracking is one of the most carbon-intensive processes in petrochemical production. E-cracking furnaces operated using renewable electricity have the potential to reduce Scope 1 emissions from steam cracking by up to 90%.

The issues with petrochemical and plastics operations in Singapore, however, are the space restrictions and unfavorable wind patterns that give the city-state little scope to establish renewable energy resources such as wind and solar. There had been talk of transmission of solar-generated electricity from Australia to Singapore over a distance of 2,800 miles, but the project collapsed. An exit from petrochemicals and plastics in Singapore, thus, appears to be the easiest solution.

We remind, Shell (London) has agreed to pay nearly USD 10 mn (EUR 9.3 mn) for breaking emissions rules at its Monaca polyethylene complex in the US state of Pennsylvania, according to the office of governor Josh Shapiro, which said the resin maker had formally acknowledged the violations.

BASF China boss Kamieth leads race for new CEO

BASF China boss Kamieth leads race for new CEO

BASF SE board member Markus Kamieth is leading the race to succeed Martin Brudermuller as BASF chairman, according to Reuters.

BASF chief technology officer Melanie Maas-Brunner is still a possible candidate alongside Kamieth, according to an anonymous source, Reuters said. BASF’s supervisory board will pick a successor at the beginning of October at the earliest, it said.

Kamieth is responsible for the company’s catalysts, coatings, dispersions and resins and performance chemicals divisions, as well as for the Greater China, South and East Asia, ASEAN and Australia and New Zealand regions and is closely associated with BASF’s EUR10 billion investment project at Zhanjiang, China.

“Kamieth is said to be the clear favorite for the post and is backed by Brudermuller, after Saori Dubourg, who headed BASF’s European business, left the company in February,” said the Financial Times report, citing people familiar with the matter.

A BASF spokesperson, quoted by Reuters, said there has been no decision yet on Brudermuller’s succession. Brudermuller has been chairman of BASF since 2018 and his contract ends in about May 2024. He was also re-elected president of Cefic for another two-year term in October 2022. Brudermuller started his first term as president of Cefic in October 2020.

Earlier this month, BASF cut its full-year guidance because of lower-than-expected demand. BASF will publish its second-quarter results on July 28.

We remind, BASF celebrated the opening of Europe’s first co-located center of battery material production and battery recycling in Schwarzheide, Germany. The inauguration of a state-of-the-art production facility for high-performance cathode active materials and the unveiling ceremony for a battery recycling plant for the production of black mass represent important steps toward closing the loop for the European battery value chain – from the collection of used batteries and the recovery of mineral raw materials to their use in the production of new battery materials. Major step in Europe to participate in the rapidly growing global battery market.

Axalta Appoints Karl Anderson Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Axalta Appoints Karl Anderson Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Axalta Coating Systems Ltd., a leading global coatings company, today announced that Carl Anderson has been appointed Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”) effective August 14, 2023, said the company.

Mr. Anderson will replace Sean Lannon, who will be leaving the company to pursue other pursuits. Occasion. Mr. Anderson is a seasoned financial executive with decades of corporate strategy and financial leadership experience in the global industrial and automotive sectors. He is the CEO of XPO, Inc., one of the largest freight transportation providers in North America. from Axalta, where he has served as CFO since November 2022. He has extensive experience building finance and investor relations functions and a demonstrated track record of leading growth and shareholder value creation initiatives including M&A, increasing supply chain efficiency and successful expansion into new end markets.

Mr. Anderson said, “It is a privilege to step into the role of CFO and join a company with such a rich and renowned history. Axalta has built something special over the past 150-plus years and I look forward to working with the rest of the executive team and Axalta’s exceptional finance organization to further Excelta’s outstanding performance and drive the company forward on its profitable growth path.

Mr. Vilavarayan said, “On behalf of our Board and our entire management team, I would like to thank Sean for his many contributions to Axalta during his 10 years with the company. Their efforts in advancing our strategic objectives have set us up for continued strong performance in the years to come. We wish him all the best for his future endeavours.

As previously reported, Axalta will release its second quarter 2023 financial results after the close of business on August 1, 2023, with Mr. Vilavarayan and Mr. Lannan hosting a call to discuss the results on August 2.

Indorama Ventures and SMBC inaugurate Thailand’s first sustainability-linked Trade Finance facility

Indorama Ventures and SMBC inaugurate Thailand’s first sustainability-linked Trade Finance facility

Indorama Ventures Public Company Limited, a global sustainable chemical company, and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC), a leading international financial institution, yesterday signed Thailand’s first sustainability-linked Trade Finance facility of USD50 million to support Indorama Ventures’ day-to-day contributions to its ambitious sustainability commitment, said the company.

This new facility reflects Indorama Ventures’ leadership in leveraging sustainable financing in Thailand. The new facility is short-term working capital finance linked to the company’s sustainability performance targets1, including reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions intensity by 10% by 2025 (from a 2020 base), increasing post-consumer PET bale input for recycling to 750,000 tons by 2025, and boosting renewable electricity consumption to 25% by 2030.

We remind, Indorama Ventures Public Company Limited, a global sustainable chemical producer, and Carbios, a biotech company developing and industrializing biological solutions to reinvent the life cycle of plastic and textiles, announce today the signing of a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to form a Joint Venture for the construction of the world’s first PET biorecycling plant in France.

Indorama Ventures has secured a total US$2.4 billion in long-term sustainable financing from various national and international financial institutions between 2018–2022. The funds are supporting the company’s expansion and sustainability projects in line with its strategy under Vision 2030 as a purposeful company with ESG at its core.

NOVA Chemicals announces company’s first mechanical recycling facility operated by Novolex

NOVA Chemicals announces company’s first mechanical recycling facility operated by Novolex

NOVA Chemicals Corporation has made a significant expansion of its Circular Solutions business today by announcing an investment into developing its first mechanical recycling facility in Connersville, Ind., said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The facility will process post-consumer plastic films to produce the company’s SYNDIGO recycled polyethylene (rPE) at commercial scale as early as 2025, delivering over 100 million pounds of rPE to the market by 2026.

NOVA Chemicals plans to expand its recycling footprint over the next several years to help it reach its industry-leading 2030 ambition of 30 per cent recycled content as a share of its total polyethylene sales.

The company recently announced its 2030 Roadmap to Sustainability Leadership aspirations, including its anticipated investment of between USD2-4 B by 2030 to expand its sustainable product offerings, decarbonize its assets, and build a state-of-the-art mechanical recycling business while exploring new advanced recycling technologies.

We remind, NOVA Chemicals Corporation ("NOVA Chemicals") and Plastic Energy have entered into an agreement to explore the feasibility of developing a pyrolysis-driven advanced recycling facility in the Sarnia, ON, Canada, region. If constructed, the facility would be the largest of its kind in Canada with a potential initial capacity of 66,000 tonnes/y.