MANUFACTURING & PETROCHEMICALS
San Patricio County is the chosen site for some of the world’s leading industrial and petrochemical companies (35 Billion to be exact!). They are here because few locations in North America offer so many practical business advantages. The county’s location in the friendly environs of the southern United States, in the Texas Coastal Bend on the Gulf of Mexico, is a key import / export point via interstate highways, rail and sea via the port of Corpus Christi. The region’s vast energy resources include ample, local supplies of natural gas, a modern industrial electrical grid, and fuels supplied by one of the most vibrant refining regions in the United States. Additionally, San Patricio County offers a hospitable business climate with low costs of land, labor and taxes.
Sherwin Alumina Company
Sherwin Alumina Company opened in 1953 at approximately 20% of its current size. The plant’s production capacity has increased from 1,000 metric tons a day to 4,250 metric tons of alumina products daily. Ninety percent of the production is exported. Since 1990, more than $75 million has been invested in modernizing the Sherwin plant, which was sold to BPU Reynolds, Inc., in 2000. In 2007, it was sold to Glencore International, and currently employs more than 600 people.
Cheniere Energy, Inc. is a Texas-based energy company primarily engaged in liquid natural gas (LNG)-related businesses.
The company has initiated a project to develop a $13 billion LNG terminal in San Patricio County, which is being designed and permitted for up to three modular LNG trains, with aggregate peak capacity of up to 15 mtpa. The facility will include three 160,000 m3 full containment storage tanks and two LNG carrier docks. Commencement of construction for the Stage 1 LNG terminal is in the second year of contruction. Cheniere is based in Houston, Texas, with offices in Johnson Bayou, Louisiana, Corpus Christi, Texas, and London, U.K.
Learn more about Liquefied Natural Gas at Our Energy Moment website
Tianjin Pipe (Group) Corporation is investing in excess of $1 billion through TPCO America (with U.S.-joint venture partners) to build a seamless steel pipe manufacturing facility on a 253-acre site east of Gregory, Texas.Construction of the 1.6 million square-foot facility is well underway, providing construction-related jobs for thousands of Americans.As the plant begins operations, it will employ an estimated workforce of 300-400 people. A preliminary study projected a total boost to the local economy of approximately $2.7 billion over the first decade of construction and operation of the facility. Using an electric arc furnace to convert recycled scrap steel and pig iron, the facility will be fueled by electricity and natural gas and will utilize Best Available Control Technology and cutting-edge processes that reduce emissions, conserve energy, and decrease environmental impacts. The facility will recycle water and retain storm water for reuse. The TPCO America facility will be the largest single investment by a Chinese company in a U.S. manufacturing facility.
voestalpine is investing $740 million in a natural gas based direct reduction plant in San Patricio County, with an annual capacity of 2 million metric tons of Hot Briquetted Iron (HBI). HBI is a high-grade feedstock for the production of superior-quality steel grades. Half of the production volume will be shipped to voestalpine’s existing Austrian steel mills in Linz and Donawitz for the production of sophisticated steel grades. The remainder will serve as a strategic reserve and will also be sold to partners interested in longer-term contracts. voestalpine celebrated their groundbreaking in April of 2014 and have an expected start-up date near the end of 2015. The calculated additional economic impact to the region is $650 million.
Occidental Chemical (OxyChem) is one of the world’s leading producers of industrial chemicals. Its 1200-acre Ingleside plant is strategically located on the Texas Gulf Coast, with excellent dock, pipeline and rail facilities that feed both domestic and international trade routes. OxyChem’s chloralkali plant opened in 1977 and has since expanded significantly. Upgrades since the original structure was built include a $40 million ethylene dichloride (EDC) plant in 1989; a $300 million vinyl chloride monomer (VCM) plant in 1990 with a $150 million expansion in 1997; and a $200 million co-generation power plant in 1999. OxyChem employs 240 full-time and 170 contract employees. Its parent company, Occidental Petroleum Company, the largest oil producer in Texas, recently purchased heavy docking facilities at the former Naval Station Ingleside from the Port of Corpus Christi for $82 million, where hundreds more will be employed in construction and operations.
The Chemours plant in San Patricio County is an integral part of the company’s commitment to the fluorochemical market. In 1990, the plant, which is located in Ingleside, started up the world’s first HFC-134a facility, and another larger world-scale facility started up in 1993. The HFC-152a process began operation in 1996. These products affect the daily lives of virtually all Americans, and much of the world for that matter… 50% of all vehicles in the U.S. and some 20% in the world use air conditioning coolant produced by Chemours in Ingleside. The 151-acre site employs at least 200 Chemours and 75 contract employees.
Kiewit Offshore Services was created in 2001 to pursue opportunities within the offshore fabrication market, and quickly established itself as a leading fabricator for the oil and gas industry. The company’s reputation for successfully delivering large offshore projects on time and within budget has led to a historic role in constructing the world’s largest and deepest drilling rigs. Kiewit’s expertise in massive and complex steel erection, using state-of-the-art facilities and methods, is applied to the construction of large structural steel components, and even military applications, in addition to offshore oil and gas projects.
Gulf Marine Fabricators
Gulf Marine Fabricators consists of two world-class fabrication facilities certified to ISO 9001-2000 and ISO 18001 standards. The two complexes encompass 360 acres and have more than 3,600 linear feet of bulkheads in water depth of 45 feet. A special feature is an 86-foot deep basin for offload of heavy-lift ships. Gulf Marine Fabricators has a 4,000-ton single-lift capacity with upgrade options to 7,000 short tons. Gulf Marine Fabricators is designed for manufacturing efficiency and equipped with advanced computer technology. A number of specialty fabrication buildings are located on site, including a deck assembly building, a shot blast building with Rotoblast machinery, and a climate-controlled plant building. Gulf Marine Fabricators specializes in the construction of large topsides, gulls, cell spars, jackets and compliant towers, as well as FPSO, drillships, TLP and semi-submersible integrations.
Martin Marietta Materials
Martin Marietta Materials supplies the products to build the world around you. They are the nation’s second largest producer of construction aggregates used primarily for construction of highways and other infrastructure projects, in certain green initiatives, including flue gas desulphurization, and in the domestic commercial and residential construction industries. Their aggregates business network of approximately 300 quarries, distribution yards and plants spans coast to coast through 27 states, Canada, the Bahamas and the Caribbean Islands.
Through their Specialty Products business, Martin Marietta also producse magnesia-based chemicals used in industrial, agricultural and environmental application and dolomitic lime sold primarily to customers in the steel industry.
Flint Hill Resources
Flint Hills Resources has owned a terminal and dock in Ingleside since 1990. In 2011, the company purchased a small craft pier and related wharf from the Port of Corpus Christi and spent $35 million to improve the dock. The dock went into service in July 2012 and is capable of loading 200,000 barrels of crude and condensate per day onto barges for delivery to other facilities along the Gulf of Mexico. During the past decade, Flint Hills Resources has invested more than $100 million into its existing Ingleside facility.
Flint Hills Resources, LLC, through its subsidiaries, is a leading refining, chemicals and biofuels company. It has expanded its operations through capital projects and acquisitions worth more than $7.6 billion since 2002. With more than 4,000 employees, Flint Hill Resources strives to create value for customers and society. In 2012, the company had more than 1,500 employees in Texas, with the majority in Corpus Christi, and paid about $204 million in compensation and benefits. These employees supported an additional 13,367 jobs and more than $553 million in compensation and benefits.
The first settlers in San Patricio County were attracted to the area because of its agriculture potential, and today the industry remains a major player in the local economy. According to a report from the San Patricio County Agrilife Extensions Office, the economic impact on the county from agriculture is $300 million annually. Five years of bad drought plagued much of Texas, and the county certainly was not excluded from the repercussions. However, the 2014 harvest is looking healthy, and San Patricio County producers have steadily maintained their operations, with some even making large investments in equipment and facilities in recent years.
The county consists of about 693 square miles of landmass, which equates to 443,520 acres. Of the county’s landmass, approximately 85% is used for agriculture production, making farming and ranching the county’s two largest industries by acreage. That 85% consists of 50% crop production (farming) and 35% native rangeland (ranching). Only 15% of the county’s landmass is developed.
Grain sorghum has been the predominate crop in San Patricio, which typically ranks in the top 5 grain producing counties in Texas. According to Farm Service Agency records, there were 230,500 acres (more than half the county’s land mass) of grain planted in 2012. Cotton is also a major cash crop within San Patricio County, which produces two to three bales of cotton per acre in normal years. Corn also plays a part, making up about .5% of the total fields planted. About 15,000 acres of crop production is under irrigation.
Cattle, as well, have an impact on our economy. An estimated 7,000 cows are dispersed throughout the county. Once commercial cattle feeding operation, located in Edroy, feeds 10-15 thousand head of cattle annually.
Many agriculture support businesses exist throughout the county. There are eight cotton gins, seven commercial elevators, six farms with onsite storage, two tractor and equipment dealerships, one 555,000 square foot, 115,000 cotton bale storage facility, several crop consultants and numerous seed and agricultural chemical operations.