HOUSTON (ICIS)--The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final greenhouse gas permit for LyondellBasell's expansion project at its cracker in Corpus Christi, Texas, the regulator said on Wednesday.
Earlier this year, LyondellBasell said it should complete the expansion project in the fourth quarter of 2015. It will increase the capacity of the cracker by 800m lb/year (353,000 tonnes/year).
The cracker's permit is the first of its kind. While the EPA issued the permit, it was drafted by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ).
The two sides have been in dispute about greenhouse-gas (GHG) permitting since the EPA completed final regulations for the permits in June 2010.
The EPA wanted states to draft their own greenhouse-gas regulations. However, it found the regulations in Texas to be inadequate. As a result, the EPA imposed its own federal regulations on the state.
Texas is now working to replace the federal plan with its own programme, which would eliminate the need for companies to get air permits from the EPA.
Texas and the EPA are now working together to determine how much greenhouse gases a new or modified plant can emit.
Regarding the Corpus Christi project, it is among several that LyondellBasell is pursuing.
In the second quarter, LyondellBasell should complete the expansion of its cracker in La Porte, Texas, which would also increase capacity by 800m lb/year.
In the first quarter of 2015, the company should complete a 250m lb/year ethylene expansion at Channelview, Texas.
The following lists ethylene expansion projects:
Chocolate Bayou, Texas
Apr 2014 Westlake Chemical
Calvert City, Kentucky
Q2 2014 LyondellBasell
La Porte, Texas
mid-2014 Chevron Phillips Chemical
2014 Westlake Chemical
Lake Charles, Louisiana
Corpus Christi, Texas
Late 2015 Huntsman
Port Neches, Texas
NA BASF Fina Petrochemicals
Port Arthur, Texas
2014 Source: Companies, ICIS analysis