Energy intensity decreased by 1% from 2020, and we saw a 4.4% reduction in absolute energy consumption from 2020. The main drivers for this reduction were strategic business decisions related to SABIC high-intensity olefins operations.
The temporary shutdown of the Teesside, UK, olefins plant throughout 2021 resulted in a year- over-year reduction of 17.5 million GJ. Similarly, the Ibn Rushd restructuring project, which saw a permanent shutdown of olefins operations, resulted in a reduction of 8.9 million GJ from 2020.
KEY INITIATIVES AND SUCCESSES
AL JUBAIL, SAUDI ARABIA
We commissioned the United EG3 plant, which will be the most energy efficient ethylene glycol plant in the world. The plant will have an estimated annual capacity of 700,000 metric tons of monoethylene glycol and enable SABIC to maintain its position as the largest producer of ethylene glycol in the world.
The Ar-Razi methanol-manufacturing site enhanced their Sustainability and Energy Management System in 2021 with the development of an online Enabler Tool to track sustainability KPIs and main energy consumers’ performance on a daily basis. This tool and greater emphasis on energy management reduced total site energy consumption by 830,000 GJ, a reduction of 1.5% in absolute energy for the site.
The Saudi Kayan plant improved energy efficiency of the C3 splitter column by upgrading with high performance sieve trays. Separation column tray efficiency increased by 24% and the steam needed to operate the column was reduced by 18.5% (15 tons/hr).
The Petrokemya site implemented continuous monitoring, advanced process control, and operating protocol acceptance with the neighboring Ibn Zahr plant, resulting in maximized C4 mixed feed and increased operational efficiency for the Butene #3 unit (a 510,000 GJ reduction, equivalent to 0.06% of all SABIC energy consumption). Additionally, several energy optimization projects were implemented, including an adjustment to the medium pressure (MP) steam header pressure and a change in boiler conductivity control parameters, leading to a combined reduction of 26,000 GJ per year.
MT VERNON, INDIANA, UNITED STATES
The polycarbonate site in Mt Vernon, Indiana upgraded the chlorine plant’s cell technology from diaphragm to best-in-class membrane technology. The upgrade increased operation efficiency by 30%, reduced steam consumption by 75%, and electrical consumption by 20%. Overall energy intensity for the entire complex was reduced by 3%.
BERGEN OP ZOOM, THE NETHERLANDS
The site was able to realize an annualized reduction of 84,000 GJ through various energy reduction efforts that included the repair of the hydrogen boiler to generate steam from a carbon-free energy source and offset purchased fuel gas (55,000 GJ), the repair and prioritization of steam traps across the site (13,000 GJ), and strategic spare parts management to limit downtime of heat recovery system (16,000 GJ).
Replacement of the cooling water pump (CW) and installation of a variable frequency drive (VFD) to optimize operating frequency in Building Q enabled us to realize a significant energy reduction of 186 MWh/year. We realized further gains by changing the screw design for the EFN4230 of the L121 extruder. This reduced torque and increased output, resulting in an energy reduction of 441 MWh/year.