Royal Dutch Shell to build ethylene cracker in Appalachia, US

29-Aug-11
Royal Dutch Shell has planned to build a new world-scale ethylene cracker in the Appalachia region of US as the vast area of natural gas implanted in the Marcellus Shale are changing region's fortunes by encouraging global energy. The three locations Shell is eyeing for the crackers are Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio. Shell owns the natural gas rights for about 700,000 gross acres in the Marcellus, mostly in Pennsylvania, as per icis.com. According to a company official US natural gas is "abundant and affordable," and the company has the know-how to develop this crucial energy resource, along with its associated product polyethylene (PE), for the domestic market. In 2010, Shell bought privately-owned East Resources and its land in the Marcellus area for US$4.7 bln. World-scale crackers tend to take four to five years to build, cost roughly US$1bln to construct, and when completed can generally produce about 907,441 tpa of ethylene. The Shell project will be the first cracker built in the US since past 10 years.
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