US announces $1.2 bn funds to chemicals & refining companies to decarbonize manufacturing

US announces $1.2 bn funds to chemicals & refining companies to decarbonize manufacturing

This is part of the US$ 6 billion funds announced by Biden-Harris Administration for 33 projects to clean up heavy manufacturing

  • By ICN Bureau | March 27, 2024

As part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) on March 25, 2024 announced up to US$6 billion for 33 projects across more than 20 states to decarbonize energy-intensive industries, reduce industrial greenhouse gas emissions, support good-paying union jobs, revitalize industrial communities, and strengthen the nation’s manufacturing competitiveness.

Funded by the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act, the projects will create and maintain tens of thousands of high-quality jobs and help accelerate the commercial-scale demonstration of emerging industrial decarbonization technologies crucial to meeting the Biden-Harris Administration's climate and domestic manufacturing goals. 

The projects will focus on the highest emitting industries where decarbonization technologies will have the greatest impact, including aluminum and other metals, cement and concrete, chemicals and refining, iron and steel, and more.

Together, the projects are expected to reduce the equivalent of more than 14 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions each year—an amount equivalent to the annual emissions of 3 million gasoline-powered cars.

Many of the projects will deploy first-in-the-nation emissions-reducing technologies that have the potential for sector-wide adoption and transformation, multiplying the magnitude of the emissions cuts and supporting the future of U.S. manufacturing.

The announcement is the largest investment in industrial decarbonization in American history, helping to position American manufacturers and workers to lead the global clean energy economy. 

“Spurring on the next generation of decarbonization technologies in key industries like steel, paper, concrete, and glass will keep America the most competitive nation on Earth,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “Thanks to President Biden’s industrial strategy, DOE is making the largest investment in industrial decarbonization in the history of the United States. These investments will slash emissions from these difficult-to-decarbonize sectors and ensure American businesses and American workers remain at the forefront of the global economy.”

This transformative federal investment will help strengthen local economies and create and maintain tens of thousands of good-paying, high-quality jobs—particularly those that support worker organizing and collective bargaining.

As part of President Biden’s efforts to build an equitable and inclusive clean energy future, each project is also expected to develop and ultimately implement a comprehensive Community Benefits Plan that ensures meaningful community and labor engagement. Nearly 80% of the projects are located in a disadvantaged community, as defined by President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative, offering a significant opportunity to invest in good jobs and clean air in communities that have experienced years of divestment.

The industrial sector contributes nearly one-third of the nation’s overall greenhouse gas emissions. This transformative federal investment is matched by the selected projects to leverage more than $20 billion in total to demonstrate commercial-scale decarbonization solutions needed to move the industrial sector toward net-zero emissions. Funded projects will cut carbon emissions by an average of 77%. The industrial sector’s unique and complex decarbonization challenges require equally unique and innovative decarbonization solutions that leverage multiple pathways including energy efficiency, electrification, and alternative fuels and feedstocks such as clean hydrogen. The projects announced today are part of the Industrial Demonstrations Program, managed by DOE’s Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED), and will help strengthen America’s manufacturing and industrial competitiveness. Funding for these projects includes $489 million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and $5.47 billion from the Inflation Reduction Act.

The 33 projects selected for award negotiations represent difficult-to-decarbonize industries, including seven chemicals and refining projects, six cement and concrete projects, six iron and steel projects, five aluminum and metals projects, three food and beverage projects, three glass projects, two process heat-focused projects, and one pulp and paper project.

Among these projects, the chemicals and refining projects are:

  1. Baytown Olefins Plant Carbon Reduction Project | ExxonMobil Corporation (Up to $331.9 million - Baytown, Texas)
  2. Chemical Production Electrification and Heat Storage | ISP Chemicals, LLC an Ashland Company (Up to $35.2 million - Calvert City, Kentucky)
  3. Novel CO2 Utilization for Electric Vehicle Battery Chemical Production | The Dow Chemical Company (Up to $95 million - U.S. Gulf Coast)
  4. Polyethylene Terephthalate Recycling Decarbonization Project | Eastman Chemical Company (Up to $375 million - Longview, Texas)
  5. Star e-Methanol | Orsted P2X US Holding LLC (Up to $100 million - Texas Gulf Coast)
  6. Sustainable Ethylene from CO2 Utilization with Renewable Energy (SECURE) | T.EN Stone & Webster Process Technology, Inc. (Up to $200 million  - U.S. Gulf Coast)
  7. Syngas Production from Recycled Chemical Byproduct Streams | BASF Corporation (Up to $75 million - Freeport, Texas)

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