Air Products Closing Wilkes-Barre LNG Manufacturing Plant

Air Products owns a manufacturing plant located on the outskirts of Wilkes-Barre, PA. If you’ve ever heard of the Air Products business, you may conjure up an image of small cylinder tanks of helium or other “rare” gases sitting inside a chain fence. Yes, Air Products sells gases by the tank, but they also manufacture the mother of all gas tanks in their Wilkes-Barre facility–huge rocket-looking “production trains” or “heat exchangers,” which are pieces of equipment that turn natural gas into liquefied natural gas, or LNG. The heat exchangers manufactured by Air Products in Wilkes-Barre are two-thirds of a football field long (180 feet), used by plants all over the world to condense natural gas into a liquid. We’ve written about Air Products a few times, theorizing some of the heat exchangers they manufacture are being used by plants to liquefy Marcellus/Utica gas (see our Air Products stories here). Sadly, Air Products has just met with its employees at the Wilkes-Barre plant to let them know the plant close on August 1st, resulting in a layoff of 75 employees. Air Products is not getting out of the heat exchanger manufacturing business. They own a second plant in Port Manatee, Florida. The Wilkes-Barre plant is limited in the size of the exchangers it makes, while the Florida facility is not. Demand for shorter exchangers is down, meaning no work for the plant. Also, the Wilkes-Barre facility must ship the huge exchangers they manufacture via railroad to Philadelphia–a process that takes five days. The Florida facility is located at port where the exchangers are loaded directly onto ships heading to other countries, where much of the product is destined. It seems in the end, geography is what defeated Air Products’ Wilkes-Barre operation…Continue reading

PA-Based Air Products Wins Another Gulf LNG Plant Contract

Air Products is a Wilkes-Barre, PA manufacturer that builds huge rocket-looking “production trains” or “heat exchangers”–pieces of equipment that turn natural gas into liquefied natural gas, or LNG. Last September, Air Products signed a deal to produce two heat exchangers for an LNG export plant in Texas (see Air Products Wins Contract for TX LNG Plant, Marcellus Connection?). They’ve done it again! Air Products announced Wednesday they’ve signed another agreement–this one is to produce three heat exchangers for the Cameron LNG Liquefaction Project, located in Hackberry, Louisiana. As with the Texas plant, we believe there’s a connection to the Marcellus in this new sale…
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Air Products Wins Contract for TX LNG Plant, Marcellus Connection?

This is the kind of story MDN enjoys telling–connecting dots that others haven’t noticed. In broad brush strokes, Air Products announced on Tuesday that they have won the contract to provide two massive liquefied natural gas heat exchangers for Freeport LNG in Freeport, Texas. The heat exchangers will take two years to build and both will be built at their Wilkes-Barre, PA plant. At first blush you may not think there is a connection to the Marcellus/Utica, but there is. Here’s how the Air Products announcement all ties together for the Marcellus Shale (and what you won’t find anywhere else)…
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Air Products in Wilkes-Barre, PA – A Shale Gas Success Story

Air Products is located on the outskirts of Wilkes-Barre, PA. If you’ve ever heard of the Air Products business, you may conjure up an image of small cylinder tanks of helium or other "rare" gases sitting inside a chain fence. Yes, Air Products sells gases by the tank, but they also manufacture the mother of all gas tanks, and that’s where the shale gas business comes in…

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Energy Stories of Interest: Thu, Jul 19, 2018

The “best of the rest”–stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading: Cuomo’s Republican opponent is lukewarm on fracking; will NEXUS Pipeline bring promised tax windfall for OH schools?; Chambersburg, PA gets grant to add new gas pipeline; Altoona happy with CNG buses; Permian natgas prices fall as production grows; two new pipelines from Permian into Mexico; sleazy lawyers trying to score billions from climate lawsuits; Rusty Braziel appointed to serve on Natl Petroleum Council; drillers worldwide flared less natgas in 2017, but not in the U.S.; Powelson talks about decision to leave FERC: Baker Hughes selling a piece of the company; and more!
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Wed, Nov 8, 2017

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: Chesapeake gets 3 permits in Carroll County, OH; WV tax receipts up 5.3% thx to shale; top exec leaving CONSOL Energy; NY virtual pipeline would power local economy; Carrizo’s final divestiture of Marcellus/Utica assets complete later this month; recap of NARO Appalachia conf; CNG buses come to Portage County, OH; EIA cuts Henry Hub price estimates; US LNG companies join Trump on China trade mission; unrest in Saudi Arabia; and more!
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Chester County, PA Town Floats Illegal Pipeline Ordinance

Uwchlan Township in Chester County (near Philadelphia) has put itself on a path to get sued. The town is in the process of proposing and adopting new zoning ordinances that govern how pipelines can get built within town boundaries. The problem, of course, is that they don’t have that right. Federal pipeline projects are governed by federal law and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. State pipeline projects are governed by the state’s Public Utility Commission. Local yahoos can’t just take it on themselves to overturn federal and state law. Sorry boys and girls, it doesn’t work that way. You’ll need to suppress your inner anarchist. Some of the things the town wants sounds pretty tame: install secure fencing at the site, have an evacuation plan ready. But some things are certain litigation waiting to happen: pipeline operators must compensate the town for “any loss of tax revenue that results from a decline in real estate values” caused by construction the pipeline. And how, prey tell, will the town calculate that? Home values go up and down with the wind–year in and year out. Many factors beyond a pipeline affect property values. This is real hubris on the part of Uwchlan…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Thu, May 18, 2017

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: Dead-end NY can’t create any jobs Upstate following frack ban; big air quality improvements coming to OH, thx to fracking; oil production in Utica shows modest increase; Air Products may shut down Luzerne County LNG manufacturing plant; Bob Huggins to highlight Shale Crescent USA event; WV nixes enviro group’s appeal of Mountain Valley pipe permit; Virginia gov targets power plant emissions; change at the top of Halliburton; former FERC attorneys say it’s time to drop NAVs; US shale oil will grow, even at $40/barrel; Trinidad production drops 8% in March; and more!Continue reading

2 New Non-Corporate-Raider Board Members Join Williams

It’s been a while since the last episode of As the (Midstream) World Turns. In our last episode, we left beleagured Williams conducting a board of directors “refreshment” program (i.e. purge)–to clean out the old and bring in some new blood. A brief history to catch you up in case you missed our previous episodes: Following an aborted merger with Energy Transfer Equity, six of Williams’ board members tried to engineer a palace coup to depose current CEO Alan Armstrong. The coup failed and the board members quit in July (see Half of Williams Board, Including 2 Corporate Raiders, Quit). One of the board members who quit was corporate raider Keith Mesiter, founder and managing partner of Corvex Management. Meister is a protege of Carl Ichan, hence we call him Mini-Me. After quitting, Mini-Me decided he wanted back on the board and began a proxy fight to take control of the company (see Corvex Raider Launches Hostile Takeover Attempt of Williams). In August, Williams appointed three new members of the board, all of them highly qualified (see Williams Appoints 3 New Board Members, Confounds Corp Raider). In September Williams continued with what it calls its “Board refreshment plan” by appointing two more new board members (see More Board Shakeups Coming to Williams). At that time Williams also announced three current board members who were on the board prior to the big shake-up (three who didn’t quit in July) will be gone by the annual meeting held Nov. 23. Those three are now gone, and yesterday Williams announced two new board members to replace them–heavy hitters! One of the new board members is the former CEO of Williams competitor Enterprise Products Partners…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Wed, Nov 9, 2016

best of the restThe “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: Northeast drillers gear up for winter; natgas prices fall in the northeast; blocking pipelines new anti-fracking ploy; natgas output still going strong in OH; Hilcorp gets 11 new permits in Columbiana County; PA rig count goes up in Oct; LNG layoffs in NEPA; energy companies turn to drones; and more!
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NEPA Tungsten Plant Begins Converting Marcellus Gas into Hydrogen

This is the story of how abundant and cheap Marcellus Shale gas is helping to secure the jobs of 550 people in Bradford County, PA, people who work in a business that has nothing to do with the Marcellus Shale industry. Yesterday, Global Tungsten & Powders Corp. in Towanda, PA held a ribbon cutting ceremony for a new piece of equipment at the company’s plant that will convert Marcellus Shale gas, extracted locally, into hydrogen used in enormous quantities at the plant. The Global Tungsten plant in Towanda is one of the country’s largest users of hydrogen (who knew?). The company uses hydrogen to manufacture tungsten products at the plant, including components for solid oxide fuel cells (i.e., big batteries). Until now, liquid hydrogen has had to be trucked to the plant daily, from hundreds (even thousands) of miles away. The new equipment unveiled yesterday, which will be owned and operated by Air Products, will provide 80-90% of the plant’s hydrogen needs. Just one more way this evil, nasty fossil fuel called Marcellus Shale gas is benefiting Pennsylvanians (jobs and economy) AND making the planet a better/safer/greener place to live…
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2nd LNG Export Terminal for Marcellus Gas Advances – in Maine!

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You may have heard about the Cove Point, Maryland LNG (liquefied natural gas) export facility along the shoreline of Maryland that Dominion is beginning to build. Although Dominion received both FERC and Dept. of Energy (DOE) approval and has begun construction, they are still waiting on a final final final final approval from the DOE (see Cove Point LNG Plant STILL Waiting for Final DOE Approval?!). Cove Point was, as far as we knew, the only LNG export project on the East Coast of the U.S. that would be fed by Marcellus Shale gas. That is, until we spotted a second LNG export project that’s making serious headway–in Maine. The Downeast LNG project began life in 2005 as an LNG import project, but last year, after getting preliminary approval for the import project from FERC, Downeast amended its application to become both an import AND export LNG terminal. And yes, the gas they plan to export is Marcellus Shale gas…
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