December 2012, Vol. 239 No. 12

In The News

Shell Eying Sites For U.S. GTL Plant

Despite persistently low natural gas prices, Shell hopes to boost profits by converting natural gas into diesel and other fuels, press reports indicate. While many of its competitors want to exploit the low prices by exports to Asia or Europe, Shell said it wants to bring its expertise in gas-to-liquid fuels into the U.S. fuel market. Though it avoids the need for export permits, the process is still complex because it is more capital-intensive than investing in LNG infrastructure for exports. Shell’s Pearl GTL project in Qatar, which chemically converts natural gas into premium diesel and chemical feedstocks, cost $18 billion and took five years to build. It went online

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