Shell Progresses Plans for Louisiana Plant

US$1.2 Billion Expansion to Create 'World-scale' Facility

Energy major Shell has progressed development of its Geismar facility in Louisiana, with plans for a “world-scale” monoethylene glycol plant.

The giant expansion project is expected to cost about US$1.2 billion and will act as a major driver for breakbulk activity in the region should it receive all the necessary approvals. Shell announced plans to complete advance feasibility studies for the project

“The successful completion of the company’s recent alpha olefins project, combined with this potential expansion, demonstrates to the world that Shell has confidence in Louisiana and recognizes our state’s tremendous physical attributes and our outstanding workforce. Louisiana looks forward to working with Shell Chemical LP to make this investment happen,” Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said.

1,000 Construction Jobs

The proposed expansion to Shell’s existing Geismar facility in Ascension Parish, Louisiana is projected to cover 841 acres and is expected to break ground in 2020.

The project is also anticipated to generate more than 1,000 construction jobs during the development phase and lead to a total of 135 new permanent jobs in the state’s Capital Region.

“Shell Chemical LP has a more than 50-year history of investment at Geismar that has provided high-quality jobs for decades, and made the site a world-class manufacturing facility,” Edwards added.

Lake Charles Complex Inaugrated

The project is one part of a state-wide development plan that this month saw the completion of the US$3.1 billion Lake Charles petrochemical complex.

Developed by Korean firm Lotte Chemical and Westlake Chemical of Houston, the grassroots petrochemical project includes an ethane cracker with capacity for more than 1 million-tonne per year and 700,000 tonnes-per-year monoethylene glycol (MEG) plant.

“This new ethylene facility marks another phase of Westlake's continued investment in the state … Westlake Chemical Corp. is pleased to be a joint-venture partner with Lotte Chemical, a leading global petrochemical company, in LACC, a state-of-the-art ethylene facility,” said Albert Chao, CEO of Westlake.

Lotte Chemical, via its subsidiary Lotte Chemical USA, is the first Korean petrochemical company to locate a project in the U.S.