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WASHINGTON (June 7 , 2016)The American Chemistry Council (ACC) issued the following statement in response to an announcement by Royal Dutch Shell that Shell Chemical Appalachia LLC has taken the final investment decision to build a major petrochemical complex, comprising an ethylene cracker with polyethylene derivatives unit, near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

“Today’s exciting news is another sign that a renaissance in American chemistry is underway,” said Cal Dooley, ACC President and CEO. “Thanks to our nation’s abundant supplies of shale gas, the U.S. has become the world’s destination for new chemical industry investment. Our competitive edge will mean new jobs and exports and a stronger manufacturing sector for years to come.”

Shell’s complex will use low-cost ethane from shale gas producers in the Marcellus and Utica basins to produce polyethylene, which is used in a variety of products, from food packaging and containers to automotive components. Ethane, a natural gas liquid, is the U.S. chemical industry’s main feedstock.

As of this month, 262 chemical industry projects valued at $161 billion are completed, under construction or planned for the U.S. These new factories and capacity expansions could create $105 billion in new annual chemical industry output and 738,000 permanent new jobs throughout the U.S. economy by 2023.

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