newsroom

Industry News

An Acid Squeeze Is the Latest Obstacle Facing Giant Copper Mines

(Yahoo Finance/Bloomberg) - Add sulfuric acid to the list of challenges facing copper miners as the world clamors for more of the wiring metal. The compound, used to extract copper from ore, is getting harder to come by. A slowdown in oil refining during the pandemic has resulted in less availability of sulfur, a key input for the acid. At the same time, more acid made in Asia is being used locally as industries there rebound. At least one copper mine in top-producer Chile has already been impacted and spot prices have surged.

Read More
STB Action Creates More Equitable Demurrage Approach

(Railway Age) - Picture a customer who receives a hefty invoice from an auto repair shop with several additional charges and no details regarding the nature of these fees. The customer is left facing the question of whether to dispute the bill, and if so, how. Such has been the experience of U.S. rail shippers in recent decades when receiving invoices from the railroads for demurrage charges, which are applied by railroads for costs incurred when shipments are held up beyond a reasonable time.

Read More
Shipping rule cleans the air but dirties the water

(Science Mag)- In an unwelcome twist, a global effort to curb pollution from the heavy fuel oil burned by most big ships appears to be encouraging water pollution instead. A 2020 regulation aimed at cutting sulfur emissions from ship exhaust is prompting many owners to install scrubbing systems that capture pollutants in water and then dump some or all of the waste into the sea.

Read More
Ice core data show why, despite lower sulfur emissions in U.S. and Western Europe, air pollution is dropping more slowly

(Washington.edu) - The air in the United States and Western Europe is much cleaner than even a decade ago. Low-sulfur oil standards and regulations on power plants have successfully cut sulfate concentrations in the air, reducing the fine particulate matter that harms human health and cleaning up the environmental hazard of acid rain.

Read More
Limetree Bay Refinery Will Start Monitoring Sulfur Dioxide

(Patch) - ST. CROIX, USVI -- Limetree Bay refinery has agreed to resume sulfur dioxide monitoring. This decision from the executive management comes days after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that Limetree Bay was in violation of the Clean Air Act.

Read More
China pulls bunker demand from other Asian ports as competition grows

(Hellenic Shipping News) - Lower bunker fuel prices in China following tax changes last year that have underpinned a ramp-up in production are drawing demand away from the key regional bunkering hub of Singapore and other ports across the region, according to market sources. "Prices are so low [in China] there is no reason not to go to China now," a Singapore-based bunker trader said.

Read More
U.S. Truck Boom Shows Why Oil's Demand Comeback Is Here to Stay

(Finance.Yahoo) - For a look at how dramatically U.S. oil consumption is roaring back, consider this: Bennie Baucham, a trucker for four decades, hasn’t been this busy in years.
Baucham is making three round trips a night with containers from the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports to warehouses in Southern California’s Inland Empire, up from two a night during more normal times. The drive is an hour each way. He’s got to fill the tank on his 65-foot-long 18-wheeler every other day for all the shoes, clothing and electronics he’s moving.

Read More
Engen converting South Africa's oldest refinery to terminal

(Ajot) - The Engen oil refinery in South Africa, the country’s oldest, will be converted into a terminal capable of importing cleaner fuels after suffering annual losses for much of the past decade.
It would be too costly to refit the plant in Durban, which opened in 1954, to meet evolving emissions regulations, Engen Chief Executive Officer Yusa Hassan said in an interview. The move will be closely watched by companies including Glencore Plc and Royal Dutch Shell Plc, which own stakes in other processors in the country that have experienced accidents or are under review.

Read More
Many European Refiners May Not Survive COVID

(Oil Price) - The coronavirus pandemic has shortened Europe’s energy transition. What was initially perceived as a gradual movement towards fewer emissions and greener generation has now become an unprecedently ambitious endeavour – by the time Europe recovers from the COVID-triggered slump, its fuel demand will have already dropped to the point where some downstream assets are no longer needed. This process of refinery backsliding that ultimately leads to the closure of less-efficient assets, be it due to lower refining complexity, geographic remoteness or other institutional factors, has already started. In this article we will look at those refineries that have announced their shutting down in the upcoming years or are on the brink of doing so, providing an explanation as to what exactly has worn it away.

Read More
Smart Farming in 2020: How IoT sensors are creating a more efficient precision agriculture industry

(Business Insider) - The farming industry will become more important than ever before in the next few decades.
The UN projects that the world's population will reach 9.7 billion by 2050, causing global agricultural production to rise 69% between 2010 and 2050. To meet this demand, farmers and agricultural companies are turning to the Internet of Things for analytics and greater production capabilities.

Read More
Ship Pollution: NIMASA to ensure availability of sulphur compliant fuel

(Hellenic Shipping News) - The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has said it is determined to ensure availability of marine fuels that comply with the regulation by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) limiting the sulphur in the fuel oil used on board ships to 0.50 per cent m/m (mass by mass).

Read More
Biostimulants Earn the Spotlight in Agriculture

(Crop Life) - Predicting the future is rarely a safe activity. Look no further than last year. Anyone’s prognostications for 2020 were ripped to shreds by the appearance of COVID-19. That said, here is a prediction for the rest of 2021 and beyond: The industry will see continued interest in and the growth of biostimulants.

Read More
Sulphur dioxide from Caribbean volcano reaches India, WMO confirms

(Down to Earth) - The sulphur dioxide (SO2) emissions from a volcanic eruption in the Caribbean reached India April 16, 2021 sparking fear of increased pollution levels in the northern parts of the country and acid rain. Sulphur dioxide reacts with water to form sulphuric acid which can come down with rainfall.

“Sulphur dioxide (SO2) emissions from La Soufriere volcano eruption in the Caribbean have reached all the way to India,” tweeted the World Meteorological Organisation on April 16.

Read More
Sulfur 4R Management and the Changing Landscape of Fertility

(Access Online Library Wiley) - Decreased atmospheric inputs of sulfur (S) to cropland and increasing removal with harvested crops necessitates a closer look at sulfur fertility management using the 4Rs. Considering the soil organic matter, percent sand, crop status, and sulfur fertilizer solubility are critical to meeting crop nutrition needs for optimal production.

Read More
UK researchers launch a $2 million project to study sulfur variability in biofuel feedstocks

(news.ca.uky.edu) - Sulfur found in biofuel feedstock could pose serious problems to the industry, because it causes pollution, is toxic to the catalyst and corrosive to biorefinery equipment. A national group of scientists and industry partners led by researchers at the University of Kentucky is studying ways to reduce sulfur levels in pine byproducts used to produce biofuels.

Read More
At Earth Day climate summit, Biden promises 50% reduction in US greenhouse emissions

(USA Today) - President Joe Biden pledged to cut U.S. greenhouse gas pollution in half by 2030 at a virtual climate summit Thursday, outlining an aggressive target that would require sweeping changes to America's energy and transportation sectors.

The White House also said it would double its climate-related financing for low-income countries by 2024 and push the private sector to fund sustainable infrastructure, mitigation initiatives and other investments.

Read More
U.S. crude stockpiles fall as refiners ramp up output -EIA

(Reuters) - U.S. crude oil stockpiles dropped more than expected as refiners increased activity heading into the summer driving season, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories (USOILC=ECI) fell by 5.9 million barrels in the week to April 9 to 492.4 million barrels, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 2.9 million-barrel drop.

Read More
Nornickel to boost production at Finnish nickel refinery

(Mining Technology) - Nornickel plans to increase production at its nickel refinery in Finland due to the surging demand for battery raw materials in the European market. Mainly powered by renewable energy, the Harjavalta plant uses sulphuric acid leaching for nickel semi-products to enable hydrometallurgical production of high purity nickel.

Read More
Biostimulants Earn the Spotlight in Agriculture

(Crop Life) - Predicting the future is rarely a safe activity. Look no further than last year. Anyone's prognostications for 2020 were ripped to shreds by the appearance of COVID-19. That said, here is a prediction for the rest of 2021 and beyond: The industry will see continued interest in and the growth of biostimulants.

Read More
India and United States collaborate on AI in agriculture

(Future Farming) - The United States allows India to use its AI technology in order to increase foodgrain production. India and the United States have launched the U.S. India Artificial Intelligence (USIAI) Initiative. This was announced by the Indo-U.S. Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF), which is an is an autonomous bilateral organisation – jointly funded by the governments of India and the U.S. – that promotes science, technology, engineering and innovation through substantive interaction among government, academia and industry.

Read More

Member News

Shell to Let Shareholders Vote on Shift to Cleaner Energy

(WSJ) - LONDON-- Royal Dutch Shell PLC detailed a first-of-a-kind shareholder vote over its pivot away from oil, asking investors to endorse its energy transition strategy in a nonbinding vote next month.

Read More
Rio Tinto achieves battery grade lithium production at Boron plant

(Investing News) - Rio Tinto has commenced production of battery-grade lithium from waste rock at a lithium demonstration plant at the Boron mine site in California, United States. The demonstration plant is the next step in scaling up a breakthrough lithium production process developed at Boron, to recover the critical mineral and extract additional value out of waste piles from over 90 years of mining at the operation.

Read More
Mosaic, AgBiome collaborate to develop biological plant nutrition products

(Agriculture.com) - Ag input suppliers are betting big on microbial solutions for plant nutrition, and the Mosaic Company is one of the latest to enter the fray.
Last week, Mosaic – a producer and seller of phosphate and potash crop nutrients – entered into a strategic collaboration with AgBiome, a company with one of the world’s largest collections of diverse microbial communities. The goal is to discover, develop, and launch biological solutions to enhance soil fertility, the companies said in a press release.

Read More
Two Mosaic Products Earn Enhanced Efficiency Fertilizer Designation

(Agriculture.com) - The Mosaic Company announces that two of its products, MicroEssentials and Sus-Terra fertilizer, are now labeled as Enhanced Efficiency Fertilizers (EEF) as defined by the Association of American Plant Food Control Officials (AAPFCO).

Read More
Hempel Acquiring Wattyl Australia, New Zealand

(Coatings World) Hempel A/S said it signed a purchase agreement to acquire Wattyl – one of Australia and New Zealand's leading manufacturers of paint for the decorative and protective segments with a turnover of €150 million and 750 employees – from The Sherwin-Williams Company.

Read More
Shell to License Tech for New Refinery

(Rig Zone) PT Pertamina Rosneft Pengolahan dan Petrokimia (PT PRPP) has signed a licensing and basic engineering agreement to apply Shell Catalysts and Technologies processes at a new refinery in Tuban, Java Timur, Indonesia, Shell (NYSE: RDS.A) reported Wednesday

Read More
CSX, Union Pacific caution about bad winter weather

(Freight Waves) Bitter cold and strong winter storms could impact rail operations over the next several days, according to service advisories from several U.S. Class I railroads.

Read More
U.S. Department of Commerce Issues Final Affirmative Countervailing Duty Determinations on Phosphate Fertilizer Imports from Morocco and Russia

Yahoo Finance - February 9, 2021
The U.S. Department of Commerce announced its final determination that phosphate fertilizer imports from Morocco and Russia are unfairly subsidized. Commerce calculated a subsidy rate of 19.97 percent for Moroccan producer OCP. In the Russia investigation, Commerce calculated rates of 9.19 percent and 47.05 percent for PhosAgro and EuroChem, respectively, and a rate of 17.2 percent for all other producers/exporters

Read More
Oil May Not Be Chevron's Largest Business in 20 Years

CNN Business - February 8, 2021
While oil and gas will certainly be needed for decades to come, the oil and gas division may not be Chevron's top business in 20 years, although it will still be a very big part of the U.S. supermajor's operations, chief executive Michael Wirth told CNN Business in an interview published on Monday.

Read More
TSI Member Companies Earn Railroad Safety Grand Slam Award

The NAR Grand Slam Award is presented annually to companies that are exemplary shippers of hazardous materials. An award winner must have been recognized by at least four Class I railroads and have had zero non-accident releases involving their shipments the previous calendar year. HJ Baker Sulphur LLC and ExxonMobil Corp received the award for calendar year 2019.

Read More