Ethanol Plant Restart LyondellBasell Restarts Methanol Plant to Take Advantage of Shale Gas

Editor: Dominik Stephan

LyondellBasell restarts its methanol plant at Channelview, Texas, on schedule to take advantage of the low cost feedstock from US shale gas. The unit had been out of service since 2004 due to the rising cost of natural gas, the key feedstock for methanol production.

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LyondellBasell restarts methanol production in the US to cash in on the shale gas boom.
LyondellBasell restarts methanol production in the US to cash in on the shale gas boom.
(Picture: WEG Wirtschaftsverband Erdöl- und Erdgasgewinnung e.V.)

Houston/Texas – "The methanol plant re-start is the first in a series of U.S. Gulf Coast projects by LyondellBasell to take advantage of the natural gas price advantage that we enjoy from shale gas," said Patrick Quarles, senior vice president, Intermediates and Derivatives. "The methanol plant project and our other significant debottleneck projects will bring new capacity into our system earlier and at substantially lower cost than constructing entirely new facilities."

Other LyondellBasell growth projects include expansions of ethylene capacity at La Porte, Channelview and Corpus Christi, Texas, that will add 1.8 billion pounds to the company's annual capacity, and the expansion of a polyethylene facility in Matagorda County, Texas.

Methanol is used in the production of chemicals such as acetic acid and formaldehyde, and in products including adhesives, foams, plywood subfloors, solvents and windshield washer fluid. LyondellBasell is a leading manufacturer and global supplier of acetic acid. Methanol also is used in global gasoline production through direct blending, as well as for the production of methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE), a clean-burning gasoline component produced by LyondellBasell.

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