BASF obtains long-term access to bio-based 1,4-butanediol QIRA

BASF obtains long-term access to bio-based 1,4-butanediol QIRA

MOSCOW (MRC) -- BASF is obtaining long-term access to QIRA bio-based 1,4-butanediol (BDO) from Qore LLC (Qore), a joint venture of Cargill and HELM AG, said the company.

BASF and Qore have concluded an agreement to this effect. Qore will produce the bio-based BDO at Cargill’s biotechnology campus and corn refining operation in Eddyville, Iowa. With QIRA, BASF will expand its existing offer of BDO derivatives with bio-based variants of, for instance, polytetramethylene ether glycol (polytetrahydrofuran, PolyTHF) and tetrahydrofuran (THF). The first commercial quantities are expected to be available in Q1 2025.

Qore produces bio-based BDO under the QIRA brand. QIRA is made through the fermentation of plant-based sugars obtained from field corn and will be of the same quality as fossil-based BDO with the same specification.

“QIRA is the perfect drop in product, enabling the industry to switch to more sustainable alternatives fast and seamless,” explains Jon Veldhouse, CEO of Qore and continues: “By switching to QIRA the product carbon footprint (PCF) can potentially be reduced by up to 86% compared to fossil-based BDO.”

Using QIRA enables BASF to produce BDO derivatives with a PCF lower than the corresponding fossil-based chemicals. BDO derivatives based on QIRA have the same physical and technical properties compared to those based on fossil-based BDO.

We remind, BASF announced the launch of the industry’s first biomass balance offerings for plastic additives, said the company. The initial offerings, including Irganox 1010 BMBcert and Irganox 1076 FD BMBcert, are certified by TUV Nord for mass balance according to the International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC PLUS). These industry-first solutions support the use of renewable feedstock to replace fossil feedstock and help BASF’s customers meet their sustainability targets.

Brenntag acquires US-based stabilizer manufacturer

Brenntag acquires US-based stabilizer manufacturer

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Brenntag entered an agreement to acquire Colony Gums, Inc., a US-based manufacturer of stabilizer blends and a blending services provider, said the company.

Colony Gums is a family-owned distributor headquartered in Monroe, N.C. The company has grown into a specialty ingredients supplier and blending services provider over several generations, with now more than 30 employees, servicing customers in North America. In 2022, the company reported annual sales of USD38 million.

The acquisition is expected to complement and expand Brenntag’s product portfolio and services in Life Sciences, primarily in nutrition. Closing of the transaction is expected in Q4 of 2023.

We remind, Brenntag has signed an agreement to acquire the operating business of Chemgrit cosmetics (Pty) Ltd., headquartered in Johannesburg, South Africa. The company, part of the larger Chemgrit chemicals group, is an independent specialty chemical distributor in South Africa with a focus on personal care and cleaning markets.

Russian oil producers send CPC Blend to UAE, open new export route

Russian oil producers send CPC Blend to UAE, open new export route

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Russian oil producers supplied their first cargoes of CPC Blend crude to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in August and September, traders told Reuters, opening up a new export route as Moscow looks to find new customers and skirt Western sanctions.

Moscow has found new markets for its oil despite sanctions imposed by G7 countries since the start of the war in Ukraine, which Moscow calls a special military operation. The world's third largest oil exporter, Russia has rerouted most of its oil to China, India and Turkey over the past year, and has also sent cargoes to countries including Brazil, Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

In August and September two Russian firms - oil major Lukoil and independent producer CenGeo - sold their oil to the UAE. Both supplied CPC Blend, a grade that is being mostly produced in Kazakhstan and supplied to global markets through Russia's Black Sea port of Yuzhnaya Ozereyevka.

However, some crude from Russia is also being added to the CPC pipeline in Russia. The tanker Pola loaded a cargo supplied by CenGeo and marketed by Dubai-based Paramount Energy Trading from Yuzhnaya Ozereyevka on Aug. 14-15, the traders said. This was offloaded at ADNOC's Ruwais refinery terminal on Sept. 14, LSEG data shows.

Early in August, Lukoil's trading arm Litasco supplied 123,000 tons of CPC Blend oil on Delta Hellas tanker also to Ruwais terminal, LSEG data shows. ADNOC declined to comment on the purchase. CenGeo, Paramount Energy and Lukoil did not reply to Reuters requests for comment.

UAE, which is itself a large producer and supplies Murban oil to international markets, sometimes imports different grades for its refineries to optimize price differences, traders said. The UAE has not imposed sanctions against Russia and is not part of the Western moves over the Ukraine war.

CPC Blend oil delivered to UAE's ports in September would be cheaper than the UAE's Murban oil, traders said. The U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) said earlier that CPC Blend oil was not subject to sanction limitations if it was of Kazakh origin and suggested that buyers of the blend seek certificates of origin.

The U.S. warning on CPC Blend only applies to buyers which are observing sanctions. The two traders, who declined to be named, said that the CPC crude from Russia was sold at discount to Kazakh cargoes.

Dutch firms get up to USD49 bn annually in fossil fuel subsidies

Dutch firms get up to USD49 bn annually in fossil fuel subsidies

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Industrial companies in the Netherlands get USD42-49 B in tax breaks and subsidies annually for using fossil fuels, the Dutch government said in a report aimed at spurring international debate on such subsidies, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The 'fossil subsidies' range from tax exemptions on fuels used in aviation and as input in industrial processes, to relatively low energy tax rates for industries that use large quantities of gas.

"We have mapped out how many billions of fossil subsidies are in our system. Now I'd like to know how that is in other countries. And whether we find that acceptable," outgoing climate minister Rob Jetten said in an interview with Dutch newspaper Trouw.

The overview comes amid ongoing protests by climate activists, who on Tuesday blocked a section of a major traffic artery in The Hague for the 11th straight day, demanding an immediate end to all fossil subsidies.

We remind, Russia's Sakhalin Energy, which produces liquefied natural gas and oil, has fully resumed production following maintenance. The company has said it planned maintenance in July without providing a timeframe. Sakhalin Energy's Sakhalin-2 operating company was transformed into a Russian entity via a presidential decree amid Western sanctions against Moscow over its actions in Ukraine.

Britain delays ban on new petrol and diesel cars to 2035

Britain delays ban on new petrol and diesel cars to 2035

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Britain will push back a ban on new petrol and diesel cars and vans to 2035 from 2030, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said on Wednesday, adding that the cars would still be available to buy on the secondhand market thereafter, said Reuters.

Back in 2020, then Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that the sale of new petrol and diesel engined cars would be banned from 2030, with hybrid-engine models allowed to be sold until 2035; thereafter, all new cars in the UK would be EVs. However, the current Prime Minister has abandoned this plan to appease voters and some Tory backbenchers (although many within the Conservative party urged Sunak to stick to the original deadline).

Citing the need to maintain consumer flexibility at the turn of the decade, the Prime Minister's revised policy brings the UK into line with most of Europe, including France, Italy and Spain.

The UK Government recently announced ?500m of subsidies to Jaguar Land Rover to build its ?4bn gigafactory in Somerset. It has also committed ?211 million in advance battery research via the Faraday battery challenge.