SEEKING to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, Shell has announced that it will install new state-of-the-art ethylene steam cracker furnaces at its 4.5m t/y Moerdijk petrochemicals complex in the Netherlands.
The company will install eight new furnaces at the site to replace 16 older units. The new units are expected to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by about 240,000 t/y, which represents about 10% of the Moerdijk site’s annual emissions. The investment is also expected to reduce the site’s energy consumption. Shell also notes that despite installing fewer new cracker furnaces, that capacity will not be lost.
Savings in energy requirements will be achieved as the new furnaces are more efficient due to the application of new technologies that reduce the amount of steam required in the process. This enables a reduction in CO2 emissions. In total, Shell expects about 10% energy efficiency savings.
The new furnaces will be shipped to the site in modules, which will enable the cracker to continue to operate throughout the upgrade project. Shell expects work to be complete by 2025.
Thomas Casparie, Executive Vice President of Chemicals at Shell, said: Steam cracking makes base chemicals, which are transformed into a range of finished products that help society live, work and respond to climate change. This investment at Moerdijk contributes to the reduction of carbon emissions from our manufacture of chemicals and to Shell’s ambition of becoming a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050 or sooner. We aim to achieve our ambition in step with society.”
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