July 22, 2017: after posting the LyondellBasell article below, I thought back to this article just a couple of days earlier:
RBN Energy: Really? New US cracker demand, exports will strain ethane supply. Really? Remarkable. Absolutely remarkable.
The last couple of years have been a wild ride for the U.S. ethane market, but look out ahead. It’s going to get crazy.
The onslaught of new, ethane-only crackers is upon us at the same time overseas exports are expected to ramp up.
At first glance, it might appear there is enough ethane to meet all that demand, coming from molecules that today are being rejected — that is, sold as natural gas rather than liquid ethane. But the big question — will it be enough? Because not all that rejected ethane has access to pipeline capacity needed to get it to market, at least not right now. In today's blog, we begin a new series on rising ethane demand, how the new demand will be met, and what it all means for ethane prices.Ethane is a unique market — it’s the only energy commodity that can morph from being sold as natural gas to being sold to petrochemical plants as a liquid feedstock.
- Houston petrochemical company, LyondellBasell ("Pat, I would like to buy an 'L'.")
- to build a $2.4 billion plant near Houston Ship Channel
- would be the largest factory of its kind in the world
- 2,500 construction jobs; 160 permanent positions
- represents a continuation of the petrochemical boom along the Gulf Coast
- of the $185 billion in petrochemical plants completed since 2010 or planned through 2023, $70 billion of those along the Texas Gulf Coast
- direct result of the shale-drilling boom which produced large amounts of ethane
US Will Dominate Energy -- Rick Perry
For various reasons I did not want to post this story but on second thought there were some important points to bring out. The reader who sent me this article mentioned this about the journalist who interviewed Rick Perry for the article below: Ms Zito was one of the few reporters that covered the election correctly; she was on the ground in western Pennsylvania and got a great feel for Trump's support.
From The Washington Examiner, meeting with SecDOE Rick Perry outside Pittsburgh earlier this week:
BRUCETON, Pa. — The National Energy Technology Laboratory in suburban Pittsburgh is one of 17 government-funded national labs within the Department of Energy and is also part of a fascinating chapter in American history, not just in the development of energy, but also of science.
The complex, atop a rolling Appalachian ridge, once housed the head of the Ordnance Engineering Group for the Manhattan Project and the researchers and scientists who helped design the trigger for the first atomic bomb. SecDOE Rick Perry visited for a tour of the lab that is working to expand the possibilities for horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in shale. He praised work the lab is also doing to identify and extract rare-earth elements from coal and coal byproducts.Two things come to mind immediately:
- the new attitude in Washington: America's exceptionalism
- fracking: for the US, no looking back