Russian seaborne diesel exports rise by 7% in August

Russian seaborne diesel exports rise by 7% in August

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Russia's seaborne diesel and gasoil exports rose by 7% to about 1.7 million metric tons in the first 14 days of August from the same period in July on strong production volumes after seasonal refinery maintenance eased, data from traders and Refinitiv Eikon showed, said Reuters.

In August so far, Turkey remains the top destination for diesel exports from Russian ports, taking about 42% of total supplies, or nearly 720,000 metric tons, Refinitiv shipping data showed. Diesel loadings from Russia to Brazil totaled about 140,000 metric tons since the start of this month.

Among the leading Russian diesel importers to Africa in August, Refinitiv data showed Ghana (75,000 metric tons), Morocco (68,000 metric tons) and Togo (60,000 metric tons). No Russian diesel cargoes were seen heading to Saudi Arabia this month, with only one going to the kingdom in July, according to shipping data.

About 180,000 tons of Russian diesel are destined in August for ship-to-ship (STS) loadings near the Greek port of Kalamata. The final destinations for those volumes are as yet unknown, but usually those cargoes end up in Turkey and Middle East countries.

Another 230,000 tons of diesel loaded in Russian ports since the start of August do not yet have a confirmed destination. All the shipping data above are based on the date of cargo departure.

We remind, most Russian fuel exports from the Baltic and Black Sea regions are now pricing above a price cap set in February by a G7-led coalition designed to limit Moscow's revenues in the aftermath of its invasion of Ukraine.

EQUATE announced August MEG India contract price

EQUATE announced August MEG India contract price

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Global monoethylene glycol (MEG) producer EQUATE has nominated its August 2023 MEG India Contract Price (ICP) at USD472/tonne CFR (cost & freight) India Main Ports, said the company.

The August nomination was USD17/tonne higher than the July number.

We remind, EQUATE has nominated its June 2023 MEG India Contract Price (ICP) at USD501/tonne CFR (cost & freight) India Main Ports. The June nomination was USD7/tonne lower than the May number.

Texas sues Shell over massive fire at Houston chemical plant

Texas sues Shell over massive fire at Houston chemical plant

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Texas is suing Shell and is seeking more than USD1 million, alleging a fire at the oil giant’s Houston-area petrochemical plant damaged the environment, said WSJ.

The May 5 fire at the plant in the suburb of Deer Park resulted in nine workers being treated at and released from a hospital.

The lawsuit, filed Aug. 7 in Travis County by the Texas attorney general’s office, alleges air and water contamination and violations of state laws at the plant, including those of the Clean Air Act, the Solid Waste Disposal Act and the Water Code.

A Shell spokesperson said the company is aware of the lawsuit but does not comment on pending litigation. “The Deer Park chemicals facility remains in a recovery phase as we continue to investigate the cause of the fire and rebuild the damaged portion of the plant,” spokesperson Natalie Gunnell said.

The lawsuit contends that heavy black smoke contaminated the environment and that millions of gallons of water used to cool the areas and extinguish the flames were later discharged unlawfully into a lake, a stormwater pond and a wastewater treatment facility, making its way into the Houston Ship Channel.

“This is a lawsuit to enforce Texas laws enacted to safeguard the state’s air resources, human health and the environment against pollution and to protect the quality of water in the state,” it said. The fire started during routine maintenance work when oils and gases ignited, Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said at the time.

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 strengthens its dispersant business in Europe

BASF strengthens its dispersant business in Europe

MOSCOW (MRC) -- BASF is set to double its production capacity for water-soluble dispersants based on acrylic acid at its Dilovasi, Turkey location with the introduction of a new production plant, said the company.

This investment aims to support BASF’s customers in the detergent, cleaning and chemical processing industry across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The additional capacities are expected to be fully operational by the third quarter of 2023.

In 2020, BASF had already taken steps to enhance flexibility and expand its production plant for water-soluble dispersants and other functional additives at the Ludwigshafen site. Soeren Hildebrandt, Senior Vice President Home Care, I&I and Industrial Formulators Europe at BASF, commented: "Through this additional investment at our Dilovasi site, we are addressing the rising demand for these products for modern formulations. The capacity expansion will especially benefit our European customers, supporting them in their growth while providing them with even more flexible and reliable supply options."

These water-soluble dispersants and functional additives are marketed by BASF’s Care Chemicals operating division under the brand Sokalan® and have a wide range of applications. Sokalan® PA and Sokalan® CP grades facilitate dirt removal, disperse dissolved dirt in water and prevent lime deposits on laundry, dishes and in washing machines and dishwashers. Additionally, they find use in various technical processes to prevent fouling. The latest class of products in the Sokalan® range is represented by Sokalan® NR grades, which are highly effective mineral dispersing agents because of their narrow molecular weight distribution and are optimized for the hydrophilization of pulp fibers.

We remind, BASF, Huntsman and their Chinese partners in the joint venture Shanghai Lianheng Isocyanate Co (SLIC) complete the planned separation of their joint MDI production in Caojing. The two MDI (diphenylmethane diisocyanate) plants at the Caojing site in China will be operated independently by the two companies in the future. Huntsman, together with Shanghai Chlor-Alkali Chemical, and BASF, together with Shanghai Hua Yi (Group company) and Sinopec Shanghai Gaoqiao Petrochemical, will each take over one of the MDI plants.

European PVC recycling increases 0.3% in 2022

European PVC recycling increases 0.3% in 2022

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The European recycling rates remained at about 27% in 2022 to 813,266 tonnes of PVC wastes in EU-27, Norway, Switzerland and the UK, said Amiplastics.

In 2021, Europe recycled 810,775 tonnes of PVC wastes. Recycling of profiles grew to around 15% to 408,000 tonnes while pipes and fittings recycling grew by 12% to about 50,000 tonnes in 2022.

The organisation is committed to recycle 900,000 tonnes/y of PVC by 2025 and 1 M tonnes/y by 2030.

We remind, Olin shut the 835,000 metric tons per year unit July 12, citing equipment failures, according to its chief customer, US polyvinyl chloride (PVC) producer Shintech. Olin announced in June that the VCM plant had been restarted but was running at reduced rates.