Shell Chemical announced Nov. 30 its final investment decision to increase alpha olefins (AO) production at its existing chemical manufacturing site in Geismar, La. As part of the plan, Shell will construct a fourth AO unit, adding 425,000 tonnes of capacity.
According to Louisiana Economic Development (LED), Shell estimates the project will generate 1,000 construction jobs at peak building activity.
“This expansion project is great news for Shell’s Geismar site and the region,” said Rhoman Hardy, Shell Geismar general manager, in a statement. “We are now focused on the safe and efficient integration of this high-value project into the plant’s day-to-day operations.”
Shell’s plant is located at River Road and Louisiana 3251, on the east bank of the Mississippi River, in Ascension Parish.
LED began discussing a potential project with Shell in November 2013, and to secure the project, the state of Louisiana offered a competitive incentive package that includes the comprehensive solutions of LED FastStart. In addition, the company is expected to utilize Louisiana’s Enterprise Zone and Industrial Tax Exemption programs, LED’s statement further noted.
Construction is slated to start in the first quarter of 2016, and the unit is expected to begin operations in 2018. The new capacity brings the total AO production at Shell’s Geismar site to more than 1.3 million tonnes per year.
Shell Chemical’s Geismar plant has been in operation since 1967.