$ Billions of $hale industry capital now at risk

$$$.US chemical investment from shale gas now exceeds $200 billion.$$$

From An Article of Petrochemical Updates, London, UK, September 19, 2018

U.S. chemical and plastics industry investment linked to natural gas has now surpassed $200 billion, the American Chemistry Council (ACC) announced in September.

Since 2010, 333 chemical industry projects cumulatively valued at $202.4 billion have been announced, with 53% of the investment completed or under construction and 41% in the planning phase.

Fully 68% of the total is foreign direct investment or includes a foreign partner. Project types include new facilities and capacity expansions.

“This is an exciting milestone for American chemistry and further evidence that shale gas is a powerful engine of manufacturing growth,” said ACC President and CEO Cal Dooley. “The U.S. remains the most attractive place in the world to invest in chemical manufacturing. We look forward to continuing to transform energy into a stronger economy and new jobs.”

ACC analysis shows that $202.4 billion in capital spending could lead to $292 billion per year in new chemical and plastics industry output and support 786,000 jobs across the economy by 2025.

A note of caution is in order however, the ACC warns.

U.S. manufacturers often rely on inputs that are not available or made in the U.S. to create products that cost less yet perform at the high level downstream customers expect.

“Protectionist trade policies such as tariffs and quotas unnecessarily raise the costs of those inputs, deter innovation and economic growth, and could ultimately weaken our country’s competitive advantage,” the ACC said.


$$$. US-China trade war escalates.$$$

From an Article of Petrochemical Updates, London, UK, September 19, 2018

Hours after President Trump announced the third round of U.S. tariffs on $200 bn in Chinese imports, China responded with its own levies of up to 10% on $60 bn worth of U.S. products.

The U.S. tariffs start at a rate of 10%, before rising to 25% at the end of the year. They come into effect on September 24 and will apply to thousands of Chinese products.

China will also impose its tariffs on more than 5,000 items on September 24.
The third U.S. list includes a total of 1,363 chemicals and plastics products, of which the U.S. imported $12.9 bn worth from China in 2017, according to the American Chemistry Council (ACC) and International Trade Commerce (ITC) data.

The latest list from the U.S. excludes some key chemicals after trade groups rallied to remove them.

The U.S. did not include rare earth elements. China is the world’s largest producer of rare earths and the biggest supplier to the U.S., according the U.S. Geological Survey.

Rare earth elements and minor metals have broad applications in U.S. industry, ranging from jet engines to mobile phones to oil and gas drilling.

These materials are critical raw-materials that are used to make catalysts for fluid-catalytic-cracking (FCC) units, which are used in refineries to produce gasoline and refinery-grade propylene (RGP).


$$$.China’s Sinopec plans to build Canadian refinery.$$$

From an Article of Petrochemical Updates, London, UK, September 19, 2018

China’s Sinopec Corp has joined a group planning to build a bitumen upgrading and petrochemical refining facility in Alberta. Using approximately 167,000 barrels of diluted bitumen per day, the facility will produce a broad range of products for domestic and exporting consumption.

In addition to Sinopec, the group includes an Alberta indigenous group, China State Construction Engineering Corp, and Alberta management company Teedrum.

Teedrum, an Edmonton based company, working in partnership with the Alberta First Nations Energy Centre (AFNEC) will lead the development.

Gasoline, jet fuel, diesel fuel and basic chemicals will be shipped across Canada and to markets in the U.S. Northwest via existing clean product pipelines, rail, and to deep water for export, the project’s consulting firm Stantec said in a statement.

The SinoCan Global refinery would cost C$8.5 billion, with a financing plan still to be worked out, according to Teedrum, which is an Edmonton based company, working in partnership with the Alberta First Nations Energy Centre (AFNEC) to lead the development.

The Alberta First Nations Energy Development fund will hold equity ownership in the facility generating revenue to support social and economic initiatives in Indigenous communities. Sinopec and China Construction will provide the expertise and investment needed to develop the facility.

The group hopes to receive regulatory approval from the Alberta and Canadian governments within two years.


West Virginia pipelines are driven thru very rough terrain

The strange no-name pipeline — snaking across the local hills & valleys

>>> Community interest report by S. Tom Bond, Lewis County, WV, September 20, 2018

I have been noticing a clearing along I-79 between Lost Creek and Quiet Dell for a few weeks. It goes across the highway from hilltop to hilltop in an East-West direction. Lately it turned into a pipeline, something I am interested in, so decided to trace it across country by driving other roads.

First I found it along the old road to Clarksburg just north of Mt. Clare. I stopped to talk to the two women dressed in work clothes with the highly visible vests the gatekeepers along highways wear. When I asked the name of the pipeline one of them told me it was “Fullflow.” When I checked that on the net, there was no such entry, very strange. I judged she had been “spoofing” me.

Next time I went to Clarksburg I drove out through Quiet Dell towards Philippi. At the bottom of the hill beyond the tiny town, it showed up again. There is a supply company just beyond that sells the kind of things they might need on the pipeline and knowing these people like to use local businesses to get local support, I went in. An innocent looking young woman was at the counter. I asked if the pipeline people bought stuff there. Yes they did. “Do they pay cash?,” I enquired. “No,” was the now hesitant answer. “What company’s check is it?,” I asked. At this point the answer was evasive, noncommittal. I thanked her and left the store.

On the way back to I-79, I stopped to enquire of the two male gatekeepers at the road. One lazy guy slumped in a chair said he “forgot” the name of the pipeline. (“Forgot who pays your wage,” I thought, “liar with your pants on fire.”) The Puerto Rician, being more polite by nature, went on to give some more complicated answer, which did not contain the name of the pipeline. By this time I suspected everyone connected with it had orders to not give the name.

I stopped at the bank at Lost Creek, about two miles South of the pipeline, on the way back home. The official at the bank said he had no idea what it was called, either, averring he wasn’t interested so long as it was not on him. This I judged this to be true by his tone, but that only increased the strangeness, because he almost surely is a Chamber of Commerce type. We talked further and he suggested I go to the DEP site on the net.

That site , toward the bottom, lists the Goff Connector Pipeline with a description:

The project will disturb approximately 285.9 acres of land for the installation of 20.26 miles of 24-inch steel natural gas pipeline in Harrison County West Virginia.

Using the CLICK HERE button shows (after a long wait for the ArcGIS map to come up) the line running from a compressor station on an old strip mine in Easternmost Harrison County, near where Harrison, Barbor and Taylor Counties come together, to a point near Reynoldsville, just south of Simpson Fork. It swings south along the route to cross I-79 where I found it. There are many little yellow lines off the big yellow line, presumably spurs to be built. The map also shows several more pipelines in other colors.

The compressor station, located at the Eastern end, near Barbour and Taylor, is described in a legal ad in an obscure Clarksburg newspaper aimed at the Business community as follows:

The proposed natural gas compressor facility project is located in Harrison County, WV and will include the construction of a 13.7 acre gravel pad, vehicular access entrances, and stormwater management controls. This site is the re-development of a former coal strip mine. Goff Connector LLC’s gathering operations at this facility will include compressor skids, a control building, dehydration equipment, and various other natural gas equipment. 0.5902 acres of PEM wetlands occurring on mine spoil will be filled with on-site soils and a gravel pad cap. The fill impacts to these wetlands will be mitigated via on-site wetland creation.

The company named in the publication is out of state, of course: Goff Connector LLC, 17806 IH-10 Suite, 300 San Antonio, TX 78257. It is a typical West Virginia development, out of state company, out of state money, out of state labor, and definitely out of state benefit and profit. A few local businessmen provide services and that is it. West Virginia mineral extraction! The damage is left here in WV, of course.

Having a name to work with, I googled “Goff Connector Pipeline.” Among other things I found a North American Oil and Gas Pipelines article entitled North American Pipeline Project Roundup: June 2018 which includes this item:

C.J. Hughes Pipeline was awarded a contract by Fullstream Goff Connector LLC to install approximately 20.5 miles of 24-in. pipeline in Harrison County, West Virginia. Headquarters is Clarksburg, West Virginia. The superintendent is Jackie Berryman. Approximate start date: April 19.”

Elsewhere The Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond mentions it as one of six big projects adding over 600 miles in WV.

If we assign an approximate cost of $10,000,000 a mile, based on a recent survey, the cost would be in the neighborhood of $200 million for the project.

This financial magnitude is a construction that normally would get a lot of newspaper and TV attention. It involves big money, and is carried out insight of thousands of people. Why the silence? As times pass, resistance grows. Natural gas has too many problems: damage to property and environment encourages those hurt to organize; gas looks less attractive because of sensational explosions and the publicity they get; and the ever growing certainty of global warming with more and more research and the hurricanes. Since there is a problem with the failure of fracking companies to make money, even the sources of money for fracking adventures have second thoughts.

Payment for pipelines is relatively secure, because utilities (with guaranteed profit) sign up to have them built, but the structure is rotting from the bottom, the production end.

Time has come when the resistance is having an effect and the industry would like to quietly slide into place and guarantee as much profit as possible before the now clearly visible end.


Radioactive Wastes Come From the Action of “Slick Water” on Black Shale

September 21, 2018

How Slick Water and Black Shale in Fracking Combine to Produce ….. Radioactive Wastes From a Press Release, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, September 18, 2018 Radioactivity in fracking wastewater comes from the interaction between a chemical slurry and ancient shale during the hydraulic fracturing process, according to Dartmouth College research. The study, detailed in twin [...]

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Legal Stay Issued for MVP Pipeline in Summers County, WV

September 20, 2018

Judge issues stay in Summers County MVP case (WITH VIDEO) From an Article by Matt Combs, Beckley Register-Herald, September 18, 2018 HINTON — Summers and Monroe County Circuit Judge Robert Irons issued a temporary stay Tuesday to work being done in Summers County on the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP). Specifically, the stay will halt work [...]

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ACP & MVP Now Back Under Construction, Says FERC

September 19, 2018

FERC allows construction to resume on Atlantic Coast Pipeline From an Article of the Virginia Mercury, September 17, 2018 PHOTO — A sign carried by demonstrators outside the State Water Control Board meeting Tuesday takes aim at, from left, Gov. Ralph Northam, Dominion Energy spokesman Aaron Ruby and Thomas Farrell, Dominion president, chairman and CEO, [...]

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Financial Investments in Fossil Fuels Now Questionable

September 18, 2018

IEEFA Update: The investment rationale for fossil fuels falls apart — — — Institute for Energy Economics & Financial Analysis From an Article by Tom Sanzillo and Kathy Hipple, IEEFA, August 27, 2018 An outdated mindset that no longer lives up to its hype! For decades, the fossil fuel sector literally fuelled the global economy [...]

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Frackers are Blundering thru WV, OH, & PA, Unrestrained in Bleeding Fossil Fuels

September 17, 2018

Reply to George Ahern’s Op-Ed* of Naples, Florida: George Ahern’s Op-Ed of August 29 has been the source of many guffaws here in Appalachia, where it is passed around among people far from Naples, Florida. It is written as though there was no negative side on the balance sheet of fracking. The industry uses technology [...]

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Excess Pressure on Natural Gas Lines Implicated in Explosions and Fires in Massachusetts

September 16, 2018

Dozens of Massachusetts Homes Explode. A Gas Expert Explains Investigators still don’t know what happened, but apparently excess gas pressure occurred From an Article by Rachel Gutman, The Atlantic Magazine, September 14, 2018 Late Thursday, dozens of explosions erupted in three towns in northern Massachusetts. As many as 70 fires, explosions, and suspected gas leaks [...]

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Cost$ of Natural Gas Pipelines have Escalated to New Highs

September 15, 2018

Natural Gas Pipeline Costs Higher than Ever Expected “GAS PIPELINE COSTS RUN HIGHER” by Andrew Bradford, BTU Analytics, September 7, 2018 Gas pipeline costs are running higher and higher partially due to rising material and labor costs but also now protracted regulatory battles running legal bills higher. Before 2010, once a pipeline company secured necessary [...]

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Hurricane Florence Churning Dangerously! Local Citizens are Furious!

September 14, 2018

Dear Concerned Citizens, September 13, 2018 North Carolina is my home —— Hurricane Florence is at our doorstep. And I am furious. If you’re in the path of the storm, stop reading and get yourself and your family to safety. But if you’re outside the impacted region, it’s time to get to work. A million [...]

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