Exxon to build multi billion dollar chemical plant in Texas

Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM.N), the world's largest publicly traded energy company, plans to build a multi-billion dollar chemical plant in Texas to take advantage of cheap North American shale gas, according to a U.S. environmental filing seen by Reuters.
The plant, which could be online as soon as 2016, would sharply crank up Exxon Mobil's chemical production capacity and help it compete more effectively with rival Dow Chemical Co (DOW.N), the largest U.S. chemical maker.
Exxon Mobil has been North America's largest natural gas producer since its 2010 purchase of XTO Energy Inc.
Its decision to build the new plant comes after a recent announcements by Dow, as well as Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSa.L), LyondellBasell (LYB.N) and others to expand their own U.S. chemical production.
Shale gas gives U.S. producers a large cost advantage over European and Asian rivals, many of whom have to use crude oil-derived naphtha to make chemicals.
Exxon Mobil's plant will be built at the company's Baytown complex and is expected to produce 1.5 million tons annually of ethylene, a key material in plastics production.
The company also plans two new polyethylene production facilities, each with an annual capacity of 650,000 tons per year, at its nearby Mont Belvieu complex.
These facilities will be built just east of Houston.  There are already several chemical facilities in the area.  My recollection is that they are close to transportation facilities for moving the goods.  This is another example of how the shale gas revolution is spurring growth and jobs.  Exxon will have no shortage of material to be used in the manufacturing.


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