Thursday, January 31, 2013

Shale gas, chemistry and the manufacturing multiplier effect

By American Chemistry on January 29, 2013 in Industry
The awards season is upon us and shale gas is winning acclaim as the star of America’s economic recovery. Kevin Bullis, senior editor for energy at MIT Technology Review, is just the latest thought leader bestowing accolades on shale gas. Bullis noted in a Fox News commentary that the mention of a manufacturing renaissance conjures images of advanced robots doing the heavy lifting on the shop floor or an advanced factory making wind turbines.  But “the real American edge might be something entirely more mundane,” Bullis wrote recently. “Cheap starting materials for plastic bottles and plastic bags.”  The economic resurgence starts with natural gas, according to Bullis:
“The plummeting price of natural gas—which can be used to make a vast number of products, including tires, carpet, antifreeze, lubricants, cloth, and many types of plastic—is luring key industries to the United States. . . . Over the last 18 months, these low prices have prompted plans for the construction of new chemical plants to produce ethylene, ammonia for fertilizer, and diesel fuels. To Read More…..

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