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Range Resources To Supply Proposed Cracker Plant in Dilles Bottom

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — PTT Global Chemical America established a long-term contract with Range Resources Appalachia LLC to supply feedstock for its proposed ethane cracker plant in Belmont County.

Range will provide 15,000 barrels per day of ethane as feedstock for the planned petrochemical complex along the Ohio River at Dilles Bottom. The ethane supplied by Range will be utilized by PTTGC to manufacture polyethylene, one of the key resins used to produce plastics.

The agreement is predicated upon PTTGCA reaching a final investment decision for the project.

“We’re very pleased to hear this news,” county Commissioner J.P. Dutton said during a regular meeting Wednesday. “This is another pretty big announcement from the project team.”

The plans have encountered setbacks, including the COVID-19 pandemic and the withdrawal in July of PTT’s partner, Daelim Chemical USA.

However, Dutton also pointed out other steps forward by PTT, including an agreement with Mountaineer NGL Storage in Monroe County for ethane storage capacity as well as work on the proposed site.

“That encourages us,” Dutton added. “Another great announcement from the project team as they inch closer to making a final determination.”

According to a statement from PTT, the project will include world-scale chemical manufacturing facilities to produce finished plastic resin and will be capable of producing 1.6 million metric tonnes annually of polyethylene plastic resin used to make plastic products. The facility is expected to create hundreds of jobs, as well as thousands of construction jobs over the five-year period of construction.

Range, which is based in Fort Worth, Texas, confirmed Wednesday it has reached the long-term ethane supply accord with PTTGC America LLC. That agreement, according to a news release from Range, is contingent upon PTTGCA reaching a final investment decision, which is expected early next year.

Jeff Ventura, Range Resources’ chief executive officer and president, said in a statement: “We are pleased to help support a world-class project that brings additional jobs to Appalachia, while utilizing our low-cost natural gas resources.

He said his company, which has regional headquarters in Southpointe, views this project as “a win-win-win for Range, PTTGCA and the many communities in the Northeast that will benefit from the economic boost this facility provides.”

Ventura said the ethane his company would supply to PTTGCA “will be sourced from existing natural gas production and NGL processing facilities with the benefit of no additional transportation required. Range will also receive a significant revenue uplift compared to selling into the natural gas stream.”

Toasaporn Boonyapipat, president and CEO of PTTGCA, said in a statement: “We are excited to announce this agreement with Range Resources, a domestic leader in natural gas and natural gas liquids production. Range’s deep inventory of high-quality wells will provide our facility with a safe and reliable source of ethane in the years to come.”

PTTGCA is the U.S. subsidiary of PTT Global Chemical Public Company Limited, based in Thailand.

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