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Shell starts operations at Pennsylvania polyethylene plant

Shell starts operations at Pennsylvania polyethylene plant
Photo courtesy of Shell

Shell Chemical Appalachia LLC, a subsidiary of Shell plc, announced the start of operations of Shell Polymers Monaca (SPM), the first major polyethylene manufacturing complex in the Northeastern United States. It is expected to ramp up to full production by the second half of 2023.

Shell Polymers Monaca will produce 1.6 million tonnes or around 3.5 billion pounds of polyethylene annually. SPM products will serve customers who manufacture commodity and specialty films, pipe, blow-moulded containers and injection-moulded parts.

Shell started main construction at Shell Polymers Monaca in April 2017 after making a Final Investment Decision in June 2016.

โ€œBuilding this world-class facility is a fantastic achievement and one the team can be proud of; itโ€™s a showcase of Shellโ€™s project delivery expertise,โ€ said Huibert Vigeveno, director, Shell Downstream. โ€œWith great market access, innovative offers and connected infrastructure, Shell Polymers Monaca is well positioned and ready to serve customers with high-quality, competitive products.โ€

Strategically located within a 700-mile radius of 70% of the U.S. polyethylene market, SPM sits on 384 acres adjacent to the Ohio River in Beaver County, Pennsylvania. SPM contracted most of its natural gas feedstock at Final Investment Decision from the nearby Utica and Marcellus basins. The advantages of proximity are not limited to production; SPM also offers customers shorter supply chains, which translates to increased flexibility and access to polyethylene pellets that can be used in a wide variety of products such as common household goods, consumer and food packaging, as well as industrial and utility products.

The start-up of Shell Polymers Monaca represents an important step in growing Shellโ€™s chemicals business as part of its Powering Progress strategy. The company is increasingly participating in value chains closer to end-use customers and using advantaged feedstocks to deliver more high value products while reducing exposure to commodity chemicals over time.

โ€œIโ€™m proud that in delivering this facility weโ€™ve had a strong and innovative safety focus; invested in the community through employment and education; and helped repair and improve the local environment by remediating a brownfield site. These commitments are core to Shellโ€™s Powering Progress strategy today and will remain so in the years to come,โ€ said Vigeveno.