The MOU for Porto Marghera, like that for Gela, is a confirmation of Eni’s commitment in Italy to the transformation of facilities operating in sectors that are no longer competitive into sustainable projects able to generate profitability, with the maximum attention to the population and the territory.
Signed on 14 November at the Ministry of Economic Development by Eni and Versalis with institutions and the trade unions, the agreement foresees the creation of new plants, the first of their kind, for the production of high-performance products for use in oil drilling and high value-added segments of the market, such as detergents and bio-lubricants.
The project, that will be operational very soon, will involve the people of the plant, working closely with the Versalis research centres in Mantua and Novara and technicians from Elevance Renewable Sciences, the US-based company specialised in high value-added products made from vegetable oils.
The new production structure at Porto Marghera foresees the definitive closure of the steam cracking plant.
For Versalis the green chemicals sector is crucial from both an industrial and commercial point of view and offers an opportunity for the sustainable transformation of sites that are no longer competitive and to achieve synergies – through partnerships – with cutting edge technology companies.
The Porto Marghera agreement is another step in Eni’s strategy for the development of green economy initiatives: from chemicals to the new green refineries at Gela and Venice.
Green chemicals: the challenge of a new business
The revolution in chemicals is now also linked to the use of raw materials of vegetable origin. An Italian example of world excellence is the green chemicals project Matrìca, a 50:50 joint venture between Versalis (Eni) and Novamont, that has led to the conversion of the Porto Torres petrochemical plant.
Eni, with Versalis, is focused on a strategy that ranges from traditional chemicals to chemicals from renewables. Green chemicals today offer Versalis a business opportunity with high growth potential.
The high potential of green chemicals is the result of innovation, an authentic challenge for a new business. In particular, the Porto Torres plant makes it possible to:
- diversify activities towards a high-potential production sector, with products with a low environmental impact
- valorise industrial sites that are no longer competitive, guaranteeing jobs, the quality of the local territory and the development of support and supply businesses
The challenge was to develop products from renewables, and this challenge has been met; renewable raw materials such as, vegetable oils and biomass, used to produce intermediates fro bio-plastics, bio-lubricants. plasticisers, as well as cosmetics and personal care products. All of the vegetable raw materials come from marginal areas of land not suitable for the cultivation of food.
Achieving excellence through research
What is it that distinguishes the world’s best companies? The importance attributed to research. The role of research and the technological evolution in the chemicals sector is fundamental and enables a constant focus on innovation and evolution of products and processes, as well as an ability to respond to the needs of an increasingly demanding market.
A constant commitment to quality and sustainable development
Versalis is committed to protection the territory by reducing energy consumption and minimising emissions through the adoption of cutting edge green technologies. And this is why Versalis has signed up to the global “Responsible Care‘ programme of the chemical industry for the spread and implementation of principles and behaviours to protect the safety and health of workers and respect for the environment.