US chems, other manufacturers form shale booster group

19 November 2013 19:03  [Source: ICIS news]

WASHINGTON (ICIS)--A broad coalition of US chemical producers, other manufacturers, academia and general business groups on Tuesday announced plans to accelerate industrial development based on newly abundant supplies of shale gas.

At a press event launching the American Shale & Manufacturing Partnership (ASMP), Carnegie Mellon University senior director for engineering research Matthew Sanfilippo said that “the confluence of emerging technologies and new domestic energy options such as shale gas can fundamentally transform American manufacturing”.

Sanfilippo said that Carnegie Mellon was joining with industry partners “in a singular goal of fostering an American manufacturing renaissance”.

Among others, ASMP members include the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) and the Society of Chemical Manufacturers and Affiliates (SOCMA).

The ASMP group said in a statement that it “is dedicated to laying the groundwork to ensure that development is not stalled”.

Sanfilippo said that, in order to realise an American manufacturing renaissance, “we must craft new models of collaboration among research universities, industry, labour, state and federal government and the environmental community”.

AFPM president Charles Drevna indicated that much of the work of ASMP will involve smoothing the regulatory pathway for shale-related industrial and manufacturing development.

“The dream of bringing manufacturing back to the US is very real,” Drevna said, “but it requires our government to develop policies that encourage growth instead of putting regulatory barriers in the way.”

SOCMA president Larry Sloan said that ensuring the industrial potential of the shale gas bonanza “will aid in strengthening the global competitiveness” for the specialty chemicals sector “and in maintaining our role as innovation leaders”.

Sloan said that small and medium-size companies - the bulk of SOCMA’s member firms - will be particular beneficiaries of the renaissance.

“Shale will also help reinforce the increasing interest in buying American because of our quality advantage over foreign supplies,” he said.

In addition to AFPM, SOCMA and Carnegie Mellon, other initial 15 members of ASMP include the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), the US Chamber of Commerce, a major iron workers union, America’s Natural Gas Alliance, the Consumer Energy Alliance, Rice University and Texas A&M University.

Paul Hodges studies key influences shaping the chemical industry in Chemicals and the Economy


By: Joe Kamalick
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