September 27, 2012


US fertiliser firm to build facility in Spencer County, Indiana



Ohio Valley Resources LLC (OVR) filed an air permit application with the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) on September 17 to construct US$1 billion nitrogen fertiliser facility in Spencer County, Indiana.


Approximately 1,200 workers will be needed to construct the plant over a three-year period. Upon its projected completion in 2016, the facility will provide approximately 80 full-time jobs, according to a news release.


Tentative plans call for the nitrogen fertiliser plant to be located on approximately 150 acres in Spencer County, north of Rockport. Its location will allow convenient rail and highway access as well as the potential for river access. Other competing sites in Kentucky are still being evaluated.


OVR has retained Morley and Associates of Newburgh to assist with off-site utilities and related infrastructure. Doug Wilson, president and chief executive officer of Ohio Valley Resources, said this project represents a major step forward in reviving domestic production of critical nitrogen fertiliser products to serve the Eastern Corn Belt.


"Our goal is to restore jobs to the US that have been lost for years by displacing imported sources of fertiliser products," Wilson said. "We are excited that our new plant will help stabilising the supply and price of nitrogen fertilisers to support the regional agricultural economy."


OVR also has entered into technology licensing agreements with KBR of Houston, Texas, to provide the essential ammonia process production units necessary for the proposed facility. The agreement with KBR also includes a front-end engineering design (FEED) package to develop a lump-sum turnkey engineer, procure, and construct (EPC) price for the project.


Weatherly, Inc., of Atlanta, Ga., will supply the design of its proprietary urea ammonium nitrate (UAN) plant on a subcontract to KBR as part of the overall project. The new ammonia plant for OVR will be the first entirely new facility of its type to be constructed in America by a US-based firm in more than a quarter-century.


It will use the latest version of KBR's Purifier Process and therefore will consume less energy than ammonia plants currently operating in the US. As global demand for nitrogen fertiliser has increased, the US has become one of the world's largest importers of this important commodity. This has resulted in America's farmers and food supply becoming more dependent on foreign sources of essential fertiliser products.


According to data from the Economic Research Service of the USDA, 54% of the US nitrogen supply - or approximately 10.79 million tonnes - was imported in 2011.


The high-tech facility will produce approximately 2,420 tonnes per day of ammonia and 3,000 tonnes per day of urea ammonium nitrate (UAN) solution for fertiliser.