Bayport Polymers to double polyethylene capacity
Photo courtesy of Total S.A.

Bayport Polymers to double polyethylene capacity

Bayport Polymers, LLC, a 50-50 joint venture owned by Total S.A. and Novealis Holdings LLC, itself a joint venture of Borealis AG and NOVA Chemicals Inc., announced the final investment decision to build a 625,000-ton-per-year polyethylene unit at its production site in Bayport, Texas, U.S.A.

The new unit will use Borstar® technology and more than double the site’s polyethylene capacity to 1.1 million tonnes per year (Mt/y) with a start-up scheduled in 2021. The contract for the engineering, procurement and construction of the new unit has been awarded to McDermott and is expected to employ 1,750 staff during peak activity.

Formed in May 2018, Bayport Polymers is currently building a one-million-tonne per year steam cracker in Port Arthur, Texas, U.S.A.. This cracker will process ethane, which is abundantly available and competitively priced in the U.S. and will supply Bayport polyethylene units.

“The power of this partnership between Total, Borealis and NOVA Chemicals will enable us to become one of the largest players in the North American polyethylene market,” said Bayport Polymers President Diane Chamberlain. “The Borstar technology, which will be used for the first time in North America, will allow us to better serve our customers with an increased range of high-value-added products.”

“The project is in line with our strategy to develop petrochemicals at our major integrated complexes and leverage competitively priced feedstocks,” said Bernard Pinatel, president, Refining & Chemicals of Total. “It’s another step to strengthen our position in the United States, where we have more than 5,000 employees and where we operate one of our six world largest integrated platforms in Port Arthur, Texas.”

“This final investment decision is a major milestone in the development of this exciting partnership, and a significant step in the global market presence of our unique Borstar technology,” explained Borealis Chief Executive Alfred Stern.

“Partnering with Total and Borealis and bringing Borstar® technology to North America will allow us to better serve our customers throughout the Americas by delivering a broader slate of products that help make everyday life healthier, easier and safer,” said NOVA Chemicals CEO Todd Karran.

The Bayport Polymers joint venture combines a 400,000-ton-per-year polyethylene plant previously owned by Total in Bayport, Texas, with the Borealis proprietary Borstar® technology and NOVA Chemicals’ deep customer and technical expertise in polyethylene to deliver a broad range of products to help meet the growing global demand for plastic products. The joint venture also includes the ethane-based steam cracker currently under construction in Port Arthur, Texas, and a new 625,000-ton-per-year Borstar polyethylene unit to be built in Bayport, Texas.

Borealis is a leading provider of innovative solutions in the fields of polyolefins, base chemicals and fertilizers. With its head office in Vienna, Austria, the company currently has around 6,600 employees and operates in more than 120 countries. Mubadala, through its holding company, owns 64% of the company, with the remaining 36% belonging to Austria-based OMV, an integrated, international oil and gas company. Borealis provides services and products to customers around the world in collaboration with Borouge, a joint venture with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC). Borealis generated EUR7.5 billion (USD8.8 billion) in sales revenue and a net profit of EUR1,095 million (USD1,287 million) in 2017.

NOVA Chemicals, headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, is wholly-owned, ultimately by Mubadala Investment Company of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.