Shell Moves a Step Closer to PA Ethane Cracker Plant


Shell Company Logo

A proposed Beaver County ethane cracker plant could make or break Gov. Tom Corbett’s economic record.

Despite being more than a year from a decision whether or not to build a Marcellus shale processing facility, Royal Dutch Shell plc has opened bidding for ethane suppliers for the proposed plant.

Shell currently has an option to buy on the Beaver County property of Horsehead Holding Corp. Horsehead Holding owns and operates a plant on the property that processes zinc metal, dust, and powder, as well as zinc oxide, from recycled sources, the company’s website said.

The news that Shell is looking for bids comes just four months after the Pittsburgh Business Times reported that speakers at Platts Pittsburgh Natural Gas and Petrochemical Forum were skeptical of whether or not the project would be completed.

The progress of the project is important for Gov. Corbett because he asserted in a statement that the plant would help to create a market for the state’s natural gas and a large amount of jobs in the state.

“We are beginning to see the scope and impact this project would have on Pennsylvania,” Corbett said. “Securing ethane suppliers will develop a market for the state’s natural gas supply, helping to create good-paying jobs for citizens statewide.”

If the project were not completed, it would be a blow to Corbett, who is campaigning on a message of job creation and growth.

In 2012, Corbett’s administration offered Shell a $1.65 billion incentive package including tax breaks to locate in Beaver County.

“If built, this project is projected to result in 10,000 construction jobs, at least 400 direct jobs and more than 10,000 jobs created in chemical and supply chain industries,” Corbett said. “The generational impact is why we are all dedicated to ensuring, once built, that this facility is successful.”

The results of the newly-opened bidding will add to an existing list of ethane providers that Shell has accumulated for the potential plant. Cannonsburg-based Consol Energy Inc., Noble Energy Inc., Hilcorp Energy Co. and Seneca Resources Corp. have signed on along with Shell to provide the plant with the ethane necessary for the cracker plant.

A cracker plant takes oil and gas and breaks them into smaller molecules using ethane.

August 28th, 2013 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Top Stories | 8 Comments

8 thoughts on “Shell Moves a Step Closer to PA Ethane Cracker Plant”

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  3. Thomas j dean says:

    they need this plant in western Pennsylvania.they be crazy not to build on the old Horsehead site

  4. bobguzzardi says:

    ACT 85 of 2012 July 2 2012 HB 761 Tax Reform Code of 1971 contains both EITC and the Shell Cracker Tax Credit and Subsidy.

  5. bobguzzardi says:

    Marcellus Shale drilling creates jobs, grows the economy, raises the standard of living for all by lowering energy costs. The Governor has led on promoting Marcellus Shale; Democrats resist with calls for higher taxes, more regulation and even a moratorium.

    Unfortunately, the Governor confuses The Forgotten Taxpayer with his contradictory policy of giving multi billionaire private corporations multi billions in tax credits.

    Crony Capitalism is not Free Market policy. Crony Capitalism is power for the political insiders and profit for privileged politically connected players. The Forgotten Taxpayer pays with higher taxes and less opportunity.

    The Governor sounds an uncertain trumpet.

    Cui Bono? Insider John Brabender and the Hacks get paid. Crony Capitalism benefits political profiteers.

  6. PAINDY1 says:

    I am absolutely sure that this announcement had nothing to do with the release of this report or the rock-bottom Corbett poll numbers that will be announced today!

  7. PAINDY1 says:

    POLITICAL NECROPHILIA FOR FINANCIAL GAIN SHOULD BE OUTLAWED IN PA What is the “real story” behind the Harner resignation? Did the Cyber-school PROFITEERS give acting Governor Brabender the thumbs down on Harner? Are tax payers really to believe this is all about “speedo swim suits”?
    M9yj5vJ Mr. Brad Bumstead, please look into Mr. John Brabender’s rumored attack ad Highmark contract!! Is Brian Nutt involved?

  8. PAINDY1 says:

    It’s been a really tough week for Acting Governor John Brabender. So now this story is produced before a holiday weekend. What does this suggest; tough week-rumored Brabender Highmark attack ad contract scandal; PA Ed scandals; Voter Suppression, well on and on. So let me make this argument: if Dan O-N-O-R-A-T-O or Ed Rendell were Governor this Cracker plant would be in operation because these two gentlemen with all their flaws know how to make deals, are committed to job growth in Western PA and had staffs that were committed to PA and these staffers stood by their MAN. The main goal of the Corbett Administration is to enrich acting Governor John Brabender, citizen of Virginia.

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