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Chevron announces PE units complete

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LP (Chevron Phillips Chemical) has announced that the two polyethylene (PE) units of its US$6 billion petrochemical investment on the US Gulf Coast successfully achieved the major milestone of mechanical completion. The PE units are now undergoing a series of rigorous commissioning activities, system checks and final certifications to ensure a safe and reliable start-up, and consistent, high-quality production. Once operational, each PE unit will produce at least 500 000 tpy of product.

“These new units allow us to utilise the abundant natural gas liquid feedstocks provided by the development of shale resources in the US to meet the growing demand for polyethylene from our global customers producing performance films, high-pressure pipe and packaging,” said Peter Cella, president and chief executive officer of Chevron Phillips Chemical. “The hard work of the project team and thousands of engineering, procurement and construction workers, as well as the terrific support from the community surrounding Old Ocean, have made today possible.”

The PE units are in Old Ocean, Texas. Ethylene feedstock for the new units will be supplied via the company’s ethylene pipeline and storage system that was also expanded as part of this project. Along with the PE units, the company purchased nearly 3000 rail cars and constructed a state-of-the-art rail facility with the capacity to store 1500 rail cars to ship PE pellets to customers around the world.

The final element of the company’s US$6 billion US Gulf Coast Petrochemicals Project entails the construction of a new ethane cracker in Baytown, Texas, that is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2017.

“Achieving mechanical completion of the PE units is a significant step toward bringing the entire investment on line,” said Steve Prusak, commercial director, US Gulf Coast Petrochemicals Project. “We remain focused on safely starting up these new assets and look forward to completing the entire project in 2017.”

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