US Ethylene Plant Development; Announcement, Plans, and New Technology

Appalachian Region

Just over a year ago, in June 2015, Shell Chemical received approval from Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection to proceed with its plans to build an ethane cracker in Beaver County, Pa. (see my October (more…)


Will U.S. Methanol Exports to China Help Alleviate Its Water Shortage?

It is well known that China is facing a water crisis. With 20% of the world’s population, China has only 7% of the world’s fresh water. According to Liu Changming, a retired hydrologist for the Chinese Academy of Science, four hundred Chinese cities now face a water shortage of which 115 cities have severe shortages. Most of the (more…)


How to Make Big Money in a Short Time!

It always intrigues me to learn how easy it is to make money, in this case, without substantial risk, in the trading world if you only had the “tools” to do it. This morning I read that three trading companies have chartered four crude oil carriers off Singapore and locked in short term trades to make, what I consider big money. (more…)


Managing One’s Own Competency and Professional Development in Tough Times

This is the sixth time I have been under-employed in my career. The oil price pendulum has that impact!

To date, this is neither the longest nor toughest downturn, it just feels that way. Amazingly, however, some (more…)


Carbon Dioxide Process Delivers Nanotubes and Water

After reading Marshall Frank’s Three Carbon Dioxide Utilization Technologies, we identified another promising CO2 feedstock process that promises to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Solid Carbon Products LLC (more…)


Three Carbon Dioxide Utilization Technologies

With the global effort underway to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, particularly carbon dioxide, most activities focus on carbon capture and storage (CCS). These technologies involve scrubbing CO2 from the flue gasses of facilities using fossil fuels such as power plants and cement plants, concentrating the CO2 and then pumping it deep (more…)


Seeing the Big Picture as the Smoke Clears

The Fort McMurray fire highlights how privileged most North Americans, Oil Sector workers, and oil industry support service providers are to live in a region where Emergency Response Plans and Services are so well organized and coordinated. It has also been a great showcase for our industry in the ability to so effectively (more…)


Seven Strategies to Embed a Competency Approach in Your Organization Successfully

The ultimate goal of a competency project is to design and deliver a targeted learning and development plan that will lead to a fully competent workforce. IHRDC has learned many lessons around what works and what does not in the development and implementation of competency management and assurance systems. Below are (more…)


Will the Chinese Still Build their US-Based Methanol Plants?

Last March, I wrote about several Chinese companies planning to build methanol plants in the United States with the purpose of shipping the product to China for use as feedstock in the Methanol to Olefins (MTO) plants constructed or currently being built in China. I showed that at crude oil prices at that time, i.e. $60/bbl, olefins (more…)


Instructional Design in the Oil and Gas Industry

Project Drivers

Cost, time, and quality are the three main drivers behind any project, and finding the balance between these things is key to success, whether the project is developing a training program, designing and developing new software, (more…)