Cracker Plant's Feasibility Questions Lead to Indefinite Delay
“IF WE DON’T TRUST BIG GOVERNMENT, THEN WHY TRUST BIG PLASTIC?” reads a sign at CORR’s January 2020 No Cracker Plant rally in Moundsville, WV, directly across the river from the proposed plant site at Dilles Bottom, Ohio.
The proposed PTTG plastics cracker plant at Dilles Bottom Ohio is now indefinitely delayed after scrapping its most recent Final Investment Decision (FID) deadline again this week.
More than six years and close to $100 million of economic development funds into the project, PTTG, the Thailand-based petrochemical company who wants to build the plant, announced that they would be conducting another “feasibility study” of the project. They “expect it will be finished in the middle of next year at the soonest.” Unlike previous delays, PTTG did not give another FID deadline with this announcement.
If built, the $10 billion PTTG cracker plant would produce polyethylene plastic from ethane (natural gas) in Belmont County, OH across from Moundsville, WV. PTTG missed their March 2020 FID this Spring, and was currently promising a FID by the end of this year or early next year.
Let us save PPTG some trouble because the people of the Ohio Valley deserve to hear this. This cracker plant is not feasible.
Since 2015, PTTG has missed six of their own Final Investment Decision deadlines; leading us on for five years! Two partner companies, including their majority financial backer, have abandoned the failing project (Japan’s Marubeni Corp in 2015, and Korea’s Daelim in 2020). PTTG’s stock price and the price of plastic have been cut in half. The permits for this and partner projects that were already delayed by lawsuits either have expired or are coming due to expire. And now the world is in a fossil fuel and plastic glut as its citizens are more committed than ever to caring for the environment.
The state-owned petrochemical giant depends so much on big government for this cracker that PTTG cited our presidential elections for their delay. But the project has already spanned administrations and they failed to deliver for the past four years under arguably the friendliest oil and gas administration ever. Call me what you will, but what if we don’t trust big government OR big oil & gas?
A business that is utterly dependent on futureless fossil fuel and whose “valuable” end product is single-use plastic trash the world is already drowning in is not feasible. This economy is not sustainable.
The Ohio Valley deserves a robust, prosperous, and sustainable economy in which we, our families and communities can make a living without the unending pitfalls and environmental wreckage of boom and bust industries.
We deserve straight answers and not rosy lies about the factors that affect our lives - our job and real estate prospects, safe and healthy air and water, and public servants who work for us. We deserve better than this unfeasible PTTG cracker plant charade.