Weekly news roundup

A lot of green news came out last week and I had to weed them out to 6. Interesting enough is that a lot of them are about new investments amid the current tight chemical company budgets.

On other news, there are continuous debate going on regarding the Obama administration’s carbon emission plans as well as a vocal “No We Can’t” from various business and manufacturing groups on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) plan to regulate carbon dioxide as a pollutant under the Clean Air Act.

You can read more about EPA’s move in Joe Kamalick’s February 26 Insight article on ICIS (subscription required). If you want information for free, here are this week’s green news:

Epoxy boost from wind
Hexion Specialty Chemicals will build a new epoxy resin production facility in Esslingen, Germany, which are vital materials used in the production of windmill blades for the wind energy market. Hexion says it is one of the leading global suppliers of specialty epoxy resin systems to the wind energy market.

Canadian biotech funding
Biotech company Performance Plants Inc. (PPI) will receive up to $5,565,063 in funding from Sustainable Development Technology Canada, which will be used to advance PPI’s trait technologies that improve conversion of cellulose into cost-effective biofuels and biochemicals.Botanical extracts sold
Specialty chemicals supplier Cognis sold its its Botanicals Extracts Business to Burgundy Botanical Extracts Iberia, S.A. The business focuses on the production of botanical extracts for pharmaceuticals, dietary supplements and cosmetics.

Nitrous oxide neutralized
Lanxess started its new EUR 10 million nitrous oxide reduction unit – known as LARA – at its Krefeld-Uerdingen site. The unit will neutralize around 5,000 metric tons of nitrous oxide per year corresponding to around 1.5 million metric tons of CO2 equivalents.

New water-based resin factory
DSM has opened a new EUR 30 million factory for waterborne acrylic resins in Waalwijk (Netherlands). DSM’s waterborne acrylic resins are said to have far less environmental impact and are much more painter friendly than traditional solvent-based resins

New sustainable PO plant
BASF and Dow Chemical completed the start-up phase of the world’s largest propylene oxide plant based on the companies’ hydrogen peroxide to propylene oxide (HPPO) technology. The 300,000 tons/year plant at BASF’s site in Antwerp, Belgium, is said to provide economies of scale, a reduction of wastewater and lower energy usage.

And in ICIS News (requires subscription):

The six largest baby bottle manufacturers in the US plans to stop selling products containing the controversial chemical bisphenol A (BPA).

A €36m ($45m) investment by private equity firm Waterland will allow European methanol producer BioMCN to start expansion of its bio-methanol plant in Delfzijl, the Netherlands.

Brazil’s Braskem confirmed plans to build a plant in Rio Grande do Sul state to make polyethylene (PE) from ethylene produced from bio-ethanol.

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