VRNM-700-Patents-US$56.9 billion in sales by the year 2015-Renewable chemicals
Renewable chemicals: How Big, How Soon? This week, a report from GIA projected that the renewable chemicals market would reach US$56.9 billion in sales by the year 2015. “Growth in the market is especially driven by factors such as a strong pipeline of novel products, government policies, energy prices, consumer awareness and concerns for global warming,” the authors said.
With a global speciality chemicals market of $500 billion to sell into, that’s a big bite of market share from the old line petrochemicals companies.
Response from the old-line majors
Plastics News warns: “Renewable-chemicals companies will face the ultimate test: competing against petrochemicals from oil companies able to wage price warfare against fledgling rivals.”
Butanediol (BDO).” That a compound annual growth rate of 23.5 percent.
Among the developers
Among the companies chasing the succinic acid market: Agro-Industrie Recherches et Développements, Anhui Sanxin Chemical Co., Ltd., Anqing Hexing Chemical Co., Ltd. BASF SE, Bio-amber S.A.S, DNP Green Technology Inc., Kawasaki Kasei Chemicals Ltd., MBI International, Myriant Technologies LLC, Roquette Frères S.A., and Royal DSM N.V.
Potential opportunities exist for the use of bio-based succinic acid as replacements for butane-based maleic anhydride, which is widely used in the manufacture of polymers, which are conventionally produced from butane. Bio-succinic acid’s use in polyols and polyurethanes production process, presently involving the use of adipic acid as a precursor, is also likely to boost prospects in the succinic acid market. Another potential area of growth is green solvents and eco-friendly chemicals for water treatment.
$56 billion – possible? Pipe dream? New reality?
So is $56 billion possible? Given the time it takes to put steel in the ground – and we are looking here at as much as 8 million tons of product in an industry where individual facilities range from 1,000-20,000 tons, it could take more than 100 plants to reach that level, and time to plan, permit, build and open may not be there by 2016.
But the growth rate will be staggering, by all accounts. Because majors with balance sheets are circling around the niche, looking at the opportunities.
“We finally appear on [major company] radar and they are taking notice,” Damien Perriman of Verdezyne told ICIS. Verdezyne is moving from lab to pilot stage with its process for producing a bio-based adipic acid. “They’re sending people to participate in the discussion and is actually becoming more aware of what we are developing in the pipeline.”