IGP plans four-train methanol project for Louisiana, US

08 January 2018 20:51 Source:ICIS News

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Another huge methanol project for Louisiana was announced on Monday by IGP Methanol, which plans to build four plants in Plaquemine Parish, each producing 1.8m tonnes/year.

Photo by VISUM/REX/Shutterstock

When completed, the company’s Gulf Coast Methanol Park would produce 7.2m tonnes/year of methanol, greater than total US production now.

A spokesman for the company did not have any figures on the proposed cost of the project or if it would be built one plant at a time or two at a time.

“I don’t think it’s going to happen all at once,” said Scott Benson.

Though there were no cost figures disclosed for the project, local media in Plaquemine Parish put the project's cost  at $2.8bn in an article about residents voicing opposition to the project at a public hearing in September.

Benson said the permitting for the project began before it was announced and said the release issued on Monday served as the project announcement.

With a 2.8bn cost, the IGP project would be more expensive than current Louisiana methanol projects under construction or that have started in recent years.

- Methanex spent $1.4bn moving two plants with roughly 2m tonnes/year capacity from Chile to Geismar, south of Baton Rouge, according to the company. Those plants are now running.

- Yuhuang Chemical broke ground in 2015 on a 1.8m tonne/year plant in St. James Parish that will cost $1.9bn, slated to be up and running by late 2019.

- G2X’s 1.4m tonnes/year Big Lake Fuels methanol project in Lake Charles broke ground in 2016 at a cost of $1.6bn, with a target of mid-2019 to begin production.

There an even longer list of Louisiana projects announced in recent years that were announced some years back but have not begun construction, including South Louisiana Methanol (St James Parish), Lake Charles Methanol (Lake Charles),  Castleton Commodities (Plaquemines Parish) and Syngas Energy (St. James Parish).

IGP’s press release on Monday said the company recently received its air quality permit from the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality.

Its website describes IGP as a project development and infrastructure company focused on methanol-related businesses.

The company’s release said the Gulf Coast Methanol project will employ up to 1,500 construction workers per plant, provide 325 permanent operation and maintenance jobs and bring tens of millions of dollars in wages, taxes and port fees to Plaquemines Parish.

The company’s management includes an extensive list of individuals, some with methanol experience, led by James S Lamoureaux, an entrepreneur and start-up company architect.

Benson said Lamoureaux and other company officials could not be reached on Monday because they are overseas.

IGP’s release also states that Haldor Topsøe is the technology provider and licensor for all four IGP plants.

By Lane Kelley