On April 19, the Iowa Fertilizer Company (IFCo) announced the start of production at its plant in Wever, Iowa (sits on the Illinois state line, and near the Missouri state line to the south).
The $3 billion plant is estimated to produce 1.5 to 2 million metric tons (MMmt) of nitrogenous fertilizer products annually, using natural gas as both a feedstock and a fuel.
According to IFCo, it's Wever plant is the first world-scale, greenfield nitrogen fertilizer facility built in the United States in more than 25 years.
IFCo's parent company, OCI N.V., produces natural gas-based fertilizers throughout the world and is based in the Netherlands. Foreign investment in the U.S. industrial sector is part of a growing trend in natural gas-intensive manufacturing, such as chemical manufacturing. One of the factors supporting this trend is an extended period of low U.S. natural gas prices, which have made it economical for companies to expand or construct new facilities.The first such plant in IOWA?
- the state most associated with Hillary
- the state most associated with wind energy
- the state most associated with anti-fossil fuel energy
- one of the states adamantly opposed to the DAPL pipeline
Data points from The Grand Forks Herald:What are they thinking in North Dakota?
Maybe Mexico is a bit far, but Iowa? No, not really. Except you have to go through Minnesota on Warren's trains.
- Northern Plains Nitrogen fertilizer plant
- Grand Forks, ND
- $2 billion
- path unclear
- "seed money" in place
- project first announced in 2013
- had hoped to have it up and running sometime this year
- low commodity prices driving farmers away from corn and wheat (use nitrogen) -- one can always find an excuse not to do something
- farmers moving to soybeans (don't use nitrogen)
- promoters remain optimistic
- other suppliers too far away: Iowa and Mexico
The Most Magical Photograph Of The Week
The butterflies have hatched: