Dyno Nobel's new plant at Waggaman, LA, is producing ammonia above its daily rated capacity. Conversely, total production in 2017 is expected to be closer to 80% of annual capacity, because it is likely to be taken offstream regularly this year while it ramps up.
This article discusses the early performance of the Waggaman ammonia plant, and the cost overruns it saw during construction.
EuroChem's CEO confirmed in the Russian press yesterday that the company still intends to build its massive greenfield nitrogen plant in Louisiana. This article introduces some of the changing market conditions that will impact, for better or for worse, EuroChem's final investment decision.
I've published recent updates on four greenfield nitrogen plants that hope to break ground in 2017, potentially adding 1.8 million tons of ammonia capacity in the US.
The project pipeline is long, however, and others are making progress too. This article provides updates on another four projects that, together, could add more than 4 million tons to North American ammonia capacity through 2022.
AM Agrigen has had its air permit extended for another year (unlike one other proposed greenfield) but, in its application, disclosed a completely different plan for the project.
For over a year, I've been commenting on the creativity that ammonia project developers have been forced to display, in order to demonstrate a viable business model.
The remaining pipeline of potential new ammonia plants has shifted away from brand-new, multi-billion dollar, world-scale plants producing multiple end products; these demonstrated good efficiencies of scale but became - evidently - almost unfundable.
Now the focus is on developing smaller ammonia plants, using diverse feedstocks, and avoiding as much new machinery as possible.
The Louisiana governor joined Incitec Pivot and Dyno Nobel last week for a "dedication event" for the new ammonia plant at Waggaman, LA. The festivities included a ribbon-cutting and the unveiling of a ceremonial plaque, despite the fact that the plant is not quite finished with its commissioning process.
Investimus Foris has yet to make any announcements about its ammonia plant retrofit at Pollock, LA, but it has clearly made significant progress over the last few months.
The Lithuanian company established its US operating subsidiary, TopChem Pollock LLC, in October 2015. It assumed ownership of the plant site in December 2015, inheriting the unpaid environmental permitting fees of the previous owners. And it submitted its air permit application to LDEQ in March 2016.
In a move that might appear contrary to its "Disciplined Approach" of "Matching Supply to Demand," PotashCorp is quietly planning a potential new urea plant at Geismar.
More details of the brownfield project, which received its air permit in December 2015, are in my Research Note for Geismar, LA. The new urea plant is an addition to PotashCorp's existing plans for a major ammonia expansion.
SUMMARY STATUS: Cancelled
In July 2015, the Louisiana governor's office announced that Lithuanian investors intended to build an ammonia plant in Pollock, by retrofitting an idled biodiesel plant. The air permit was issued in December 2016, disclosing project details. Construction was going to begin in 2017 for start-up in 2019 but, in April 2017, the project was "put on hold indefinitely."
EuroChem announced an MOU for the engineering, procurement, and construction of their proposed ammonia-urea plant in Louisiana.
Their US greenfield is one of five projects that they plan to develop over the next ten years, all covered under this MOU: the others are in Russia (an ammonia-urea plant in Nevinnomyssk, an ammonia plant in Kingisepp, and a urea plant in Kingisepp) and Kazakhstan (an ammonia-urea plant in Zhanatas).
These expansions would give EuroChem a gross ammonia capacity of around 8 million mtpy.
Yesterday, Bloomberg published an article about EuroChem's Louisiana greenfield ammonia plant with the headline "EuroChem Shelves $1.5 Billion U.S. Plant as Sanctions Bite" ... which is misleading.
EuroChem company reps clarified via e-mail, saying that the Louisiana greenfield "remains on track with its original schedule" and suggesting that the article, which was accurate in its original Russian, suffered from "subjective interpretation by the Bloomberg translator."
Nonetheless, it was quickly picked up in the media, including Green Markets. The article quoted EuroChem CFO Andrey Ilyin:
"The decision on the project is delayed due to changes on the financial markets, namely affected access to credit resources ... The ruble's devaluation also made development of such projects more attractive in Russia."
"Muthiah confirmed there was a proposal to set up a plant in the US but declined to give details. Sources close to the company said the move was an attempt by the MA Chidambaram group scion to chart a new and distinct course for the group he had inherited ..."
In other news: AM Agrigen now has a draft air permit ...
Permit documents show that AM Agrigen is planning to build a world-scale urea greenfield, although the company hasn't made any public announcements regarding size.
Of all the plants now in development, only CF Industries' Donaldsonville brownfield has a bigger ammonia capacity.
The project's backers are clearly looking toward the export market, despite the argument given in permit documents, which stress the US's status as an importer of urea as the main reason why another urea plant needs to be built here ...
In May 2014, Bobby Jindal's office announced that AM Agrigen had selected a site in St Charles Parish for a $1.2 billion ammonia-urea greenfield ... full details are now at the Killona, LA - AM Agrigen project page.
AM Agrigen's plant is the 30th new ammonia plant to have been in development in North America since early 2012 ...
Here is a company with no history, building a plant of unknown size, with a blank page for a website. It made no sense until I realized who was promoting the project - about which site members can read in my Research Note ...
OWNER: AM Agrigen Industries
PROJECT: Greenfield ammonia-urea plant
SUMMARY STATUS: Planning Phase
Greenfield ammonia plant: in development since 2012, permits approved in 2015, delayed, then completely redesigned in 2016. Now awaiting EPC announcement and revised budget and schedule. AM Agrigen has made no public announcements but permit documents reveal changing scale and technology licensors.