Progress on US Methanol Plant in Institute, WV – Praxair Providing O2

US Methanol broke ground last September in Institute (Kanawha County), WV to build its very first methanol production plant (see US Methanol Breaks Ground on First Plant in West Virginia). Methanol plants convert natural gas into methanol, used as a chemical feedstock (raw material) to create other things, like gasoline, antifreeze, plastic bottles–even LED and LCD screens. Methanol plants use a LOT of natural gas, hence our interest. A number of dignitaries attended the groundbreaking in Institute, including colorful WV Governor Jim Justice. Factoid: the plant in Institute is being constructed/assembled from a deconstructed methanol plant from Brazil. The new plant, called Liberty One, was supposed to open in mid-2018. That’s now changed. It’s been a while since we’ve reviewed Liberty One and its progress. It popped up on our radar when we spotted a press release from Praxair, an industrial gas company, announcing they have been selected as a partner to provide Liberty One with oxygen–lots of oxygen–to be used in the plant as part of the chemical process of converting methane into methanol. When we checked the Liberty One project site, we noticed the timeline to complete the plant has changed–from the previously announced mid-2018 to fourth quarter of 2019…

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