Celanese planning $425m US acetic acid plant in Clear Lake, Texas

Author: Lane Kelley

2019/01/25

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Celanese is planning a second US acetic acid plant in Clear Lake, Texas, with a projected cost of $425m, according to documents submitted to a state agency in December.

The 800,000 tonne/year unit would be expanded to 1.2m tonnes/year, and would be the third largest in the world, behind Celanese’s existing 1.5m tonne/year plant in Clear Lake, and the company’s acetic acid plant in Nanjing, China, according to documents submitted to the Texas Comptroller.

Celanese intends to apply for construction permits this month, break ground in January 2020, and begin commercial production in September 2021, according to the document.

The new Clear Lake project could also include a methanol expansion at some point, according to the Celanese document. Methanol is the major feedstock for acetic acid. The Clear Lake site also includes a 1.3m tonne/year methanol plant that is a 50-50 joint venture with Mitsui.

Celanese’s Clear Lake site also includes a 460,000 tonne/year vinyl acetate monomer (VAM) unit .

Additional reporting by Al Greenwood