Pennsylvania Petrochemicals Complex site location & polyethylene supply and demand

The complex will use low-cost ethane from shale gas producers in the Marcellus and Utica basins to produce 1.6 million tonnes of polyethylene per year. Polyethylene is used in many products, from food packaging and containers to automotive components.

The facility will be built on the banks of the Ohio River in Potter Township, Beaver County, about 30 miles north-west of Pittsburgh. As a result of its close proximity to gas feedstock, the complex, and its customers, will benefit from shorter and more dependable supply chains, compared to supply from the Gulf Coast. The location is also ideal because more than 70% of North American polyethylene customers are within a 700-mile radius of Pittsburgh.

The project will bring new growth and jobs to the region, with up to 6,000 construction workers involved in building the new facility, and an expected 600 permanent employees when completed.

“Shell Chemicals has recently announced final investment decisions to expand alpha olefins production at our Geismar site in Louisiana and, with our partner CNOOC in China, to add a world-scale ethylene cracker with derivative units to our existing complex there,” said Graham van’t Hoff, Executive Vice President for Royal Dutch Shell plc’s global Chemicals business. “This third announcement demonstrates the growth of Shell in chemicals and strengthens our competitive advantage.”

Pennsylvania Petrochemicals Complex site location & polyethylene supply and demand


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Notes to Editors

  • Shell Chemicals sells more than 17 million metric tons of petrochemicals per year to customers, many of whom are leaders in their own fields.
  • Our world-class integrated refining-chemicals plants are in Asia-Pacific (Singapore), Europe (Netherlands), and North America (the US Gulf Coast and Canada).
  • Shell owns and operates three major petrochemical facilities in the US at Deer Park, Texas, Norco and Geismar, Louisiana, and additional Chemicals manufacturing in Scotford and Sarnia. 
  • A cracker plant breaks down large molecules from oil and natural gas into smaller ones. An ethylene cracker produces base petrochemical “building blocks” which are the first stage in the chemicals manufacturing chain.
  • Derivatives are the chemicals that are made during subsequent processing stages, using products from the ethylene cracker. Polyethylene is a derivative of ethylene.
  • Polyethylene is used to produce many common household items, ranging from packaging, to sports equipment, construction materials, automotive fuel tanks, toys, and garden furniture.
  • Shell currently produces over 500,000 tonnes of polyethylene per year through the CSPC Nanhai petrochemicals joint venture in China. See the media release CNOOC and Shell take final investment decision to expand petrochemical complex in China
  • We draw strength from being part of an integrated energy company; we benefit from shared infrastructures, access to a variety of feedstocks, and deep manufacturing and processing expertise. This gives Shell a competitive advantage over stand-alone chemicals companies.
  • For more details, visit

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All forward-looking statements contained in this release are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements contained or referred to in this section. Readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Additional risk factors that may affect future results are contained in Royal Dutch Shell’s 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2015 (available at and

These risk factors also expressly qualify all forward looking statements contained in this release and should be considered by the reader.  Each forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date of this release, June 7, 2016. Neither Royal Dutch Shell plc nor any of its subsidiaries undertake any obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or other information.

In light of these risks, results could differ materially from those stated, implied or inferred from the forward-looking statements contained in this release.

With respect to operating costs synergies indicated, such savings and efficiencies in procurement spend include economies of scale, specification standardisation and operating efficiencies across operating, capital and raw material cost areas.

We may have used certain terms, such as resources, in this release that United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) strictly prohibits us from including in our filings with the SEC.  U.S. Investors are urged to consider closely the disclosure in our Form 20-F, File No 1-32575, available on the SEC website

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