US EPA aims to crack down on chemical makers ethylene oxide emissions

US chemical manufactures would have to trim their annual emissions of ethylene oxide, a carcinogenic gas, under an Environmental Protection Agency proposal. Ethylene oxide emissions from chemical manufacturing plants would fall by about 9 metric tons (t) per year under the proposed regulation, the EPA says. The agency wants to require facilities to control emissions of the gas from storage tanks, vents, and leaky equipment. Chemical plants collectively reported emitting about 100 t of ethylene oxide in 2018, according to the EPA Toxics Release Inventory. Of this, about 42 t were fugitive emissions that leak from vents, pumps, and valves, the inventory data show. Ethylene oxide, which is made from petroleum or natural gas, is a chemical building block for making plastics, detergents, medicines, solvents, and a slew of other products. The substance is also used to sterilize medical devices.

Spotlight

SNF Holding Company

SNF is the world’s leading manufacturer of water-soluble polymers, serving the municipal and industrial water and wastewater treatment markets, in addition to a wide array of specialty applications for various additional markets. SNF is back-integrated as the world’s largest producer of Acrylamide monomer, which is the key ingredient of our Polyacrylamide-based flocculants. Our current flocculant production sites span the globe with facilities in North America (Riceboro, GA and Plaquemine, LA), Europe, and Asia, with future expansion anticipated into other key, strategic geographical growth areas.

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Chemical Management

Application of Chromatography in Various Industries is Changing the Game!

Article | July 13, 2021

Used to separate and analyze compounds into their various components— chromatography plays a crucial part not just in the food industry but in the realms of drug testing, forensics, and even quality control in our favourite alcoholic drinks as well. Advanced Chromatography is an analytical technique introduced to the world by chromatography instrument companies to separate and analyze individual chemicals from complex compounds. Recent developments in the biotechnology and pharma industries have created a significant surge in the chromatography market. Read on to find out five fascinating facts about the day-to-day applications of chromatography in various industries and why businesses are looking to invest more in OEM chromatography manufacturing. Why are Industry-Decision Makers Adapting to Chromatography? Liquid Chromatography; A Popular Choice in Drug Testing Today, a lot of drug tests use liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry because it is easy to use, widely available, and gives quick results. LC and LC-MS can be done in almost any testing facility, which is different from other methods. It can be run by people with little training, so a testing facility can hire mostly technicians instead of highly trained scientists, who are harder to find. LC-MS is also very accurate, which means that there are fewer false positives. With liquid chromatography, you can get results in about 10 to 30 minutes, which is very fast. This technology is used by many drug testing labs across the country. It is widely used and trusted for testing drug samples and many other things. Businesses associated with the sports industry are leveraging chromatography to effectively and accurately test athletes for doping or performance-enhancing drugs. Use of HPCL in Pharmaceutical Industries Chromatography is used in the medical and pharmaceutical industries to create vaccines. In addition, chromatography can determine which antibodies best neutralize viruses and diseases. Mapp Biopharmaceutical, Inc. used the chromatography technique to develop the experimental immunization Zmapp to counteract the deadly Ebola virus. And it is still being used today to fight the coronavirus. The pharmaceutical industry has gained enormous success by exclusively using HPLC to obtain precise results during drug trials. The results can be used to analyze finished drug products and their ingredients quantitatively and qualitatively during manufacturing. The Detector in Forensic Science Chromatography methods are a well-established, powerful suite of methodologies in forensic science, from drug busts, murders, and robberies, to the identification of a plethora of chemical compounds that may be present in samples from terrorist incidents. Forensics use gas chromatography to help solve crimes. It helps analyze blood and clothing samples, allowing forensic scientists to investigate who and what was present at a crime scene. In particular instances, chromatography can even help forensic scientists pinpoint the exact whereabouts of the alleged perpetrator and victim before the crime happened. It’s an error-free process. Therefore, it is incredibly helpful in court. Additionally, chromatography is extremely handy in arson investigations. Most fires have a virtual cocktail of different substances. Every compound and substance differs in size and weight. Chromatography helps break down these varying compounds and substances to help determine what exactly started the fire. Liquid Chromatography in Food Industry Liquid chromatography plays a vital role in the food industry nowadays. It absolves and permits the selective removal of a wide variety of flavor and non-flavor-active food ingredients. The USDA, along with other countries, has prioritized rigorous testing of processed meat's contents. For example, in 2013, it was found that horsemeat was being sold as beef without anyone noticing. As a result, the food industry decided to change its analytical techniques. Chromatography quickly became the best way to find out what was in processed meats. High-Performance Liquid Chromatography and mass spectrometry were used to ensure that meat labeled beef was actually beef. In addition, it could tell if horse meat was mixed in with the beef, which helped keep people safe. Bio-Rad Fast Acid Analysis Column in Beverage Testing Not just food, many beverage manufacturers also use chromatography to ensure that each bottle of their product is the same. But, again, consistent taste is the main priority. And knowing the exact content of each bottle is the most proactive way to measure things. The Bio-Rad fast acid analysis column has been successfully used by many companies to quantitatively determine vitamin C in juices, fresh drinks, and powdered drinks. Chromatography Market is Opening New Dimensions in Various Businesses Undoubtedly, technological advancement has created a vigorous need for chromatography devices. According to Verified Market Research, growing at a CAGR of 3.4% from 2020 to 2027, the chromatography market is projected to reach USD 4.73 billion by 2027. The chromatography instrumentation market is currently witnessing huge advancements in the design of columns. This is raising the demand for development of better analytical reagents and resins. Increasing collaborations among the existing players, specifically in the Asian market is another propelling factor for this market. Additionally, emergence of green chromatography, increasing usage of chromatography instruments for monoclonal antibody purification, and usage of nanomaterial in chromatography are also fuelling the growth of this market. Plus, increased government funding in research and development activities is further driving the market growth. With various pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, chemical, food and beverage, and other industries contributing to its market growth, one thing is for sure— the increase in the chromatography system market is here to stay.

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Chemical Management

Global polyethylene demand boom likely, increasing the sustainability challenge

Article | July 22, 2021

IT FEELS LIKE several lifetimes ago. If you recall, way back in November-December 2019 Asian variable cost integrated naphtha-based polyethylene (PE) margins turned negative because of the increase in US capacity. Then in January the following year, deep Asian and Middle East operating rate cuts returned some order to the market. Then, bang, as we all know, the pandemic arrived and turned everything on its head. The pandemic has, in my view, accentuated trends that were already well underway. I believe this means that the supply-driven downturn that started in late 2019 will not return.Long before coronavirus upended everyone’s lives, PE demand was becoming increasingly divorced from GDP growth because of the shifting nature of end-use demand. Booming internet sales was, I believe, a major factor behind the split between the growth of the overall economies in the developed world plus China and PE demand.The average product bought online is dropped 17 times because of the large number of people involved in the logistics chain, according to Forbes. This had led to a surge in demand for protective packaging made not from PE and other polymers such as polypropylene, expandable polystyrene and PET films (I will look at their demand growth prospects in later posts).Despite sustainability pressures, the scale of demand for stuff bought online translated to a lot more consumption of virgin polymers.

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Chemical Technology

Demographics are reshaping petrochemicals trade flows, investment patterns and demand

Article | August 2, 2022

TEN YEARS AGO, fellowblogger Paul Hodgesand Ifirst highlighted the leading rolethat changing demographics would play in reshaping petrochemicals supply and demand. We have been emphasising the importance of demographics ever since. Demographics have, of course, always been a critical shaper of economies throughout human history. But during the last 70 years, there have been such major changes in demographics that the study of demographics must be at the very heart of your company’s strategy. The Babyboomer generation in the West led to a surge in demand as the rapid increase in babies born in the 1950s and early 1960s joined the workforce from the 1970s onwards. This helps explain high levels of inflation during that decade because too much demand was chasing too little supply. Another driver of inflation was the Middle East embargos against oil exports to the West because of the West’s support for Israel. Then came the 1990s and first the integration of Eastern Europe into the global economy. This helped dampen inflationary pressures because of the plentiful supply of workers in the east willing to work for low wages in export-focused factories. This reduced the cost of finished goods in the West. Next came Deng Xiaoping’s critically important“southern tour”in the early 1990s and China’s gradual integration into the global economy. China increasingly leveraged its very youthful population to again make cheap goods to export to the West. Hundreds of millions of young people were willing to migrate from the countryside to China’s coastal cities to work in export-focused manufacturing plants. The world began to talk about the “China price” and how it was further depressing global inflation.

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Chemical Technology

How Leading Chemical Companies Protect Customer Data Online

Article | July 20, 2022

Cybersecurity concerns must be considered in order for the chemical sector to succeed with digital commerce; simply listing your products on an online store and crossing your fingers won't cut it. It is crucial to pick a spouse who is aware of these hazards and has a strong defense in place. It is evident that the sector has massive potential for online sales, but selling chemicals online is different from selling common consumer goods online. Who your consumers are and how you gather and maintain data about them raise severe security and privacy problems. Chemical company leaders have every right to be concerned about the privacy of their data, given that one cyber attack occurs every 11 seconds. However, they should still go online because there is too much business risk in not taking advantage of the digital opportunity. Deloitte estimates that the chemical sector alone sold over $27 billion worth of goods online in 2020. More than half (58%) of chemical purchasers reportedly stated that they would transfer providers if their demands, which include demands for a fantastic digital experience, were not delivered. The objective is to limit risk and create a secure digital sales environment rather than dismissing e-commerce due to cybersecurity issues. Setting up the appropriate IT infrastructure: Building for convenience and security is possible thanks to new IT technologies. Emphasis on confirming identification: Always be aware of who you are dealing with, regardless of whether they came through a digital or physical means. Offering simple (and safe) reorder alternatives to clients that have been verified. It's ideal for business owners in the chemical sector who want to test selling online but are concerned about data collecting, security, and privacy for my company and customers.

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Spotlight

SNF Holding Company

SNF is the world’s leading manufacturer of water-soluble polymers, serving the municipal and industrial water and wastewater treatment markets, in addition to a wide array of specialty applications for various additional markets. SNF is back-integrated as the world’s largest producer of Acrylamide monomer, which is the key ingredient of our Polyacrylamide-based flocculants. Our current flocculant production sites span the globe with facilities in North America (Riceboro, GA and Plaquemine, LA), Europe, and Asia, with future expansion anticipated into other key, strategic geographical growth areas.

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NGOs file suit over transparency of TSCA new chemicals programme

Chemical Watch | March 18, 2020

A coalition of NGOs has sued the US EPA over an alleged lack of transparency in the TSCA new chemicals programme, which "thwart[s] the ability of the public to be informed and to provide input". According to a complaint filed by five environmental nonprofits in federal court today, the EPA has operated its TSCA premanufacture review process in a "black box, denying the public information to which they are legally entitled". Having access to timely information, they contend, is necessary to ensure the members they represent "are able to provide input on the potential risks of new chemicals and the need for protections from those risks prior to completion of EPA’s reviews." And they therefore have asked the court to ensure that the EPA complies with TSCA’s disclosure provisions, including by requiring that it:

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ACC to Trump, governors: Keep chemical industry going during coronavirus crisis

S&P Global | March 18, 2020

The US chemical industry's trade group told President Donald Trump and state governors this week that its sector must maintain operations as the coronavirus outbreak spreads to ensure supply of chemicals needed for disinfectants, plastics for food preservation and medical equipment, and staples like diapers and soap. "The role of chemistry is particularly important today, as chemicals enable countless products that will be needed to support good hygiene and treat those who are infected with the coronavirus in the weeks and months ahead," American Chemistry Council President and CEO Chris Jahn said in a letter to Trump and governors late Tuesday. Efforts to hinder the spread of coronavirus have included cancellations of major sporting events, concerts, conferences, parades, and other large gatherings, as well as closures of bars and limiting restaurants to takeout and deliveries. Companies have increasingly sent employees to work from their homes, while hospitals, grocery stores, and drug stores work to keep up with demand for care and products.

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How small chemical company leaders are dealing with the coronavirus

C&EN | March 17, 2020

As measures to contain the coronavirus—SARS-CoV-2—sweep across the US, the heads of privately owned chemical and instrument companies find themselves in uncharted territory trying to keep their companies going and their employees safe. C&EN reached out to CEOs of several such firms to learn what they are doing to keep business moving forward. We heard stories about setbacks, as expected supplies didn’t come through, but also small triumphs, as needed safety equipment was finally found. Overall, these leaders are keeping a close eye on supplies while planning for the real possibility that orders will drop in the coming months. Keeping staff healthy and maintaining continuity in customer service are the top priorities at Boron Specialties. “We are a pretty small facility, seven people &on-site&, so as best as we can we’re isolating,” CEO and founder Beth Bosley says.

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NGOs file suit over transparency of TSCA new chemicals programme

Chemical Watch | March 18, 2020

A coalition of NGOs has sued the US EPA over an alleged lack of transparency in the TSCA new chemicals programme, which "thwart[s] the ability of the public to be informed and to provide input". According to a complaint filed by five environmental nonprofits in federal court today, the EPA has operated its TSCA premanufacture review process in a "black box, denying the public information to which they are legally entitled". Having access to timely information, they contend, is necessary to ensure the members they represent "are able to provide input on the potential risks of new chemicals and the need for protections from those risks prior to completion of EPA’s reviews." And they therefore have asked the court to ensure that the EPA complies with TSCA’s disclosure provisions, including by requiring that it:

Read More

ACC to Trump, governors: Keep chemical industry going during coronavirus crisis

S&P Global | March 18, 2020

The US chemical industry's trade group told President Donald Trump and state governors this week that its sector must maintain operations as the coronavirus outbreak spreads to ensure supply of chemicals needed for disinfectants, plastics for food preservation and medical equipment, and staples like diapers and soap. "The role of chemistry is particularly important today, as chemicals enable countless products that will be needed to support good hygiene and treat those who are infected with the coronavirus in the weeks and months ahead," American Chemistry Council President and CEO Chris Jahn said in a letter to Trump and governors late Tuesday. Efforts to hinder the spread of coronavirus have included cancellations of major sporting events, concerts, conferences, parades, and other large gatherings, as well as closures of bars and limiting restaurants to takeout and deliveries. Companies have increasingly sent employees to work from their homes, while hospitals, grocery stores, and drug stores work to keep up with demand for care and products.

Read More

How small chemical company leaders are dealing with the coronavirus

C&EN | March 17, 2020

As measures to contain the coronavirus—SARS-CoV-2—sweep across the US, the heads of privately owned chemical and instrument companies find themselves in uncharted territory trying to keep their companies going and their employees safe. C&EN reached out to CEOs of several such firms to learn what they are doing to keep business moving forward. We heard stories about setbacks, as expected supplies didn’t come through, but also small triumphs, as needed safety equipment was finally found. Overall, these leaders are keeping a close eye on supplies while planning for the real possibility that orders will drop in the coming months. Keeping staff healthy and maintaining continuity in customer service are the top priorities at Boron Specialties. “We are a pretty small facility, seven people &on-site&, so as best as we can we’re isolating,” CEO and founder Beth Bosley says.

Read More

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