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Questions & Answers
Here are answers to some of the questions we receive most often about this project.
1. What did you look for when you were selecting a preferred site for the project?
Shell looked at various factors to select the preferred site, including good access to liquids-rich (Marcellus) shale gas resources, water, road and rail transportation infrastructure, power grids, economics, and sufficient land to accommodate facilities for a world-scale petrochemical complex and potential future expansions.
2. Are you still considering other site locations? If so, where?
If the project goes forward, we fully expect to proceed with our preferred site in Pennsylvania, but we must complete a thorough review of the site before we can confirm its suitability.
3. When would you start building and when would the petrochemical complex start up?
There are many hurdles to clear before we can even take an investment decision to build the proposed petrochemical complex. It is premature to discuss the timing of start-up.
4. When will you take a decision to go ahead with the project or not?
There are a number of hurdles to clear before we can even take an investment decision to build the proposed petrochemical complex.
5. What project-related activities will need to be completed before an investment decision is made?
We need to confirm the suitability of the site, secure ethane feedstock supply, complete the engineering and design work, confirm the support of customers for our products, receive all the necessary permits and confirm that the project is economically robust and competitive.
6. How important are tax incentives for this project?
A tax incentive, like the PA Manufacturing (PM) tax credit, is an economic enabler that attracts investment for local manufacturing in the region. They are in place elsewhere in the petrochemical industry. For instance, Alberta (home to four crackers) has such incentives in place.
While tax incentives are helpful in strengthening the competitiveness of this project, when making such a substantial capital investment the project fundamentals must be sound. That means competitive feedstock and transportation costs; a fit for purpose facility using the latest technology to reduce costs and energy consumption; a strong customer base; a productive, skilled workforce; and a strong relationship with the community.
7. What role did Shell play with respect to PM?
Shell supports and endorses incentive programs provided by state and local authorities that improve the business climate for capital investment, economic expansion and job growth. We shared our views about the PM with the Corbett Administration. We will carefully consider it as one of a variety of factors to determine the economic viability of our proposed petrochemical project before taking an investment decision.