by Morinville News Staff
The province announced two new approved petrochemical plants Monday, projects the government believes will “add jobs, diversify the energy industry and create lasting benefits for Alberta’s economy.”
The two projects process propane extracted from natural gas resources into value-added plastics products used worldwide. The province says the projects have been approved to receive royalty credits under Alberta’s Petrochemicals Diversification Program, announced in February of this year.
Sturgeon County to benefit
Pembina Pipeline Corporation and Petrochemical Industries Company (PIC) are partnering on the first project, approved to receive up to $300 million in royalty credits. The project will be a $3.8 billion to $42 billion integrated propylene and polypropylene facility Sturgeon County.
The Pembina/PIC facility will create 2,000 to 2,500 on-site workers during construction, followed by more than 150 full-time operations and head office jobs on opening.
The facility would process about 22,000 barrels per day of propane into polypropylene. Construction is expected to start in 2019, with a 2021 opening.
Strathcona County to benefit
Inter Pipeline has been approved for the second project, up to $200 million in royalty credits to build a $1.85-billion facility in Strathcona County.
Two-thousand full-time equivalent jobs are expected at the three-year construction period’s peak. The government says about 1,600 of those would be at the site, the rest in fabrication and module shops as well as engineering firms. The plant will need 95 full-time worker son opening.
The Inter Pipeline facility would process about 22,000 barrels per day of propane into propylene. Construction is expected to start next year with the facility operating in 2021.
Minister of Energy Margaret McCuaig-Boyd said the government was committed to diversifying the province’s energy industry and creating jobs in the industry.
“These investments will help create world-class petrochemical facilities, diversify our energy economy and create thousands of high-paying, skilled jobs in Alberta,” she said.
Mick Dilger, Pembina President, and Chief Executive Officer, said his company was honoured the government selected their project.
“This program shows leadership on behalf of the Province and will go a long way to ensuring Alberta’s economy continues to diversify and grow by enabling projects such as ours to be more competitive in today’s global market,” Dilger said.
Inter Pipeline President and CEO Christian Bayle also had praise for the program.
“Alberta is a particularly attractive location for a world-scale propane dehydrogenation facility, given the ample supply of low-cost propane feedstock,” Bayle said. “A propane dehydrogenation facility and associated derivative facilities are an innovative way to provide a new market for Alberta propane, create jobs and help diversify our energy based economy.”
Councillor Ed Gibbons, Chair, Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association, was also pleased with the news.
“This is great news for Alberta’s Industrial Heartland and great news for our entire province,” Gibbons said. “These new petrochemical facilities will create stable jobs and new value chains that will benefit Albertans for decades to come. We commend the province on moving forward with this program and thank the companies involved for making Alberta’s Industrial Heartland their location of choice.”
Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association believe the two proposed facilities, in addition to capital investment and job creation, will lead to increases in local and regional spending, as well as the generation of tax revenues for local municipalities and the province.