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Daily news and top headlines for manufacturing professionals

After 2 Workers Injured, 1 Fatally, OSHA Cites MFG Chemical Inc.

January 9, 2015 2:30 pm | by Meagan Parrish, Editor, Chem.Info | Articles | Comments

OSHA has issued MFG Chemical Inc. citations following an incident involving the release of chemical vapors from an over-pressurized reactor, which left one worker hospitalized and another dead from burns in his respiratory system. After a media referral alleged that a chemical release had...

Activist Investor Intensifies Fight Over DuPont's Future

January 9, 2015 2:13 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

A fight for control of DuPont Co. is intensifying after the hedge fund led by activist investor Nelson Peltz announced plans to nominate its own slate of four directors to the industry titan's board. Its shares edged higher in premarket trading. Trian Fund Management LP, which holds about a 2.7 percent...

Army Plan For OR Ex-Chemical Site May Include Price Tag

January 8, 2015 7:40 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Economic development leaders in Eastern Oregon who thought the U.S. Army would give them, at no charge, thousands of acres where weapons such as nerve and mustard gas once were stored now say the Pentagon is telling them to think again. Instead of turning over the site of the Umatilla Chemical...

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3 Executives Charged In WV Chemical Spill Plead Not Guilty

January 8, 2015 5:43 pm | by Jonathan Mattise, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Three executives charged in a chemical spill last January in West Virginia pleaded not guilty in federal court Thursday. The pleas come a day after an FBI affidavit was unsealed, saying Freedom Industries knew about critical flaws at its Charleston plant more than a decade before the spill, but...

How Lower Oil Prices Could Fuel More Hiring In The U.S.

January 8, 2015 2:51 pm | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

In June, when oil cost $107 a barrel, U.S. employers added a healthy number of jobs — 267,000. Now, with oil below $50, hopes are rising that hiring in the United States is poised to intensify. Goldman Sachs forecasts that if oil stays near its current price, the economy will add 300,000 more jobs this...

Quartz Glassware: A Scientific Secret Ingredient

January 7, 2015 2:25 pm | by GE Reports | Articles | Comments

Quartz glassware is the secret ingredient to many scientific experiments. It handles heat and cold without cracking, remains inert to most chemicals and does not interact with light, a quality that makes it perfectly transparent. It doesn’t change shape and remains hard when cold, but becomes flexible when...

Cheap Oil: Who Wins And Who Loses?

January 7, 2015 1:34 pm | by Bridget Bergin, Associate Editor | Videos | Comments

Everyone has noticed the lower gas prices, but determining who stands to win and lose in the sudden drop-off is slightly more complicated. PwC’s UK Head of Oil and Gas, Alison Baker, spoke with Bloomberg’s Tom Mackenzie about the effects of lower gas prices. The average person on the street paying for gas for...

U.S. Gas Prices End 2014 At Lowest Levels Since 2009

January 7, 2015 1:28 pm | by U.S. Energy Information Administration‎ | News | Comments

Across the country, retail prices for regular grade gasoline reached the lowest levels in four years primarily as a result of falling crude prices in the second half of 2014. As of December 12, the weekly retail price for regular gasoline in each city for which EIA collects data was below $3.00 per gallon (gal) for the first time since...

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Monsanto Earnings Fall 34% On Lower Corn Seed Sales

January 7, 2015 9:44 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Monsanto said Wednesday that its earnings fell 34 percent in its first fiscal quarter as South American farmers cut back on planting corn, reducing demand for the company's biotech-enhanced seeds. U.S. farmers harvested record crops of soybeans and corn last year, sending prices on those food...

Blast At WA Natural Gas Facility Costs $69M In Repairs

January 7, 2015 8:32 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Williams Northwest Pipeline is spending $69 million to repair damage from an explosion that injured five people at a natural gas facility last March in eastern Washington. A pressure vessel ruptured, throwing a piece of shrapnel into a liquid natural-gas storage tank at the processing...

Manufacturing Snapshot Of The Week: Obama Plans To Veto Keystone XL

January 6, 2015 4:47 pm | by Bridget Bergin, Associate Editor | News | Comments

The snapshot for this week is an image of White House press secretary Josh Earnest speaking during the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington on Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2015. The photo shows Earnest announcing President Obama's plans to veto the Keystone pipeline...

The Magnetic Wand That Cleans Up Oil Spills

January 6, 2015 1:25 pm | by Meagan Parrish, Editor, Chem.Info | Videos | Comments

You don't have to think hard to imagine why cleaning up an oil spill would be daunting — millions of gallons of oil floating in miles of ocean waters, dispersed by waves, weather and wildlife. Just looking at the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico shows not just how difficult the challenge is, but how woefully uninnovative our...

First Bill In GOP-Run Senate Seeks To Approve Oil Pipeline

January 6, 2015 12:21 pm | by Dina Cappiello, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The Republican-controlled Senate's first piece of legislation will seek to approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline, testing President Barack Obama on a project he's been increasingly critical about, saying it wouldn't have a huge benefit for U.S. consumers. The bipartisan legislation, which is sponsored by 54 Republicans and...

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A Look At The Plans For Undersea Robotic Industrial Plants

January 6, 2015 10:20 am | by GE Reports | Articles | Comments

Subsea oil and gas deposits off the coast of Brazil exist in a world of extremes. They are locked more than four miles beneath the ocean’s surface, the same distance as 16 Empire State Buildings stacked on top of each other. Layers of near freezing water, salt and rock squeeze them with pressure equal to six really...

How Long Before Oil Prices Recover?

January 5, 2015 2:22 pm | by Meagan Parrish, Editor, Chem.Info | Videos | Comments

If you work in manufacturing, the free fall of gasoline prices has, in many ways, been a blessing: Feedstock and transportation costs are down, and consumer confidence is swinging way up. But of course, not everyone has been rejoicing. For those whose business depends on demand for oil...

A Look Into GE's "Christmas Trees"

January 5, 2015 10:09 am | by GE Reports | Articles | Comments

It’s not quite the North Pole, but the Christmas season seems to be always on at the Bridge of Don plant in Aberdeen, Scotland, where GE builds massive machines for subsea oil and gas exploration. That’s because workers at the plant make Christmas trees, an industry nickname for huge mechanical systems that control the flow of oil...

U.S. Rig Count Plummets 35 To 1,840

January 2, 2015 10:17 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. says the number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. plunged by 35 last week to 1,840. The Houston firm said Monday in its weekly report that 1,499 rigs were exploring for oil and 340 for gas. One was listed as miscellaneous. A year ago 1,757 rigs were...

Why The U.S. Will Power The World Economy In 2015

December 30, 2014 9:57 am | by Christopher Rugaber, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The United States is back, and ready to drive global growth in 2015. After long struggling to claw its way out of the Great Recession, the world's biggest economy is on an extended win streak that is edging it closer to full health. But the new year doesn't look quite...

Ahead Of The Bell: U.S. Consumer Confidence

December 30, 2014 9:50 am | by the Associated Press | News | Comments

The Conference Board releases its December index on U.S. consumer confidence Tuesday at 10 a.m. Eastern. The consumer confidence index is expected to rise to 93 this month from a November reading of 88.7, according to a survey of economists by...

Lawmakers Promise To Help Strapped Oil-Patch Towns

December 26, 2014 11:21 am | by Matthew Brown, James MacPherson, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Relief could be on the horizon for strapped public services in the Northern Plains' booming oil patch, as elected leaders in Montana and North Dakota move to steer more money into the region during the states' upcoming legislative...  

Feds To Study Nuke-Waste Burial In NV

December 24, 2014 9:47 am | by Ken Ritter, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Nevada and the federal Energy Department announced Tuesday they've formalized a panel to study contentious issues including whether radioactive material from a World War II-era plant in Tennessee will be buried at a former nuclear weapons proving ground north of...

Natural Gas Down 29% In One Month

December 23, 2014 4:30 pm | by Jonathan Fahey, AP Energy Writer | News | Comments

Natural gas, the nation's most prevalent heating fuel, is getting cheaper just as winter is arriving because of mild temperatures and plentiful supplies. The price of natural gas has dropped 29 percent in a month, to $3.17 per 1,000 cubic feet on Tuesday from nearly $4.50 in late November. That's a steep drop even...

Saudi Arabia Will Not Cut Oil Production

December 23, 2014 12:22 pm | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

Saudi Arabia's Oil Minister, Ali al-Naimi, tells John Defterios in an exclusive interview with CNN Money that his country is not conspiring to target U.S. and Russian oil producers by not cutting production...      

Oil Patch Towns Looking To Catch Up With Demands

December 23, 2014 10:03 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

City officials in the North Dakota oil patch say they are forging ahead with housing and infrastructure projects, despite an expected downturn in drilling in the next year. Watford City Mayor Brent Sanford said development and land sales are not slowing down because housing needs for...

Chemical Manufacturing Looked Up In 2014

December 22, 2014 3:45 pm | by Meagan Parrish, Editor, Chem.Info | Articles | Comments

If 2014 could be summed up in one word for American chemical manufacturers, it would be—momentum. According to American Chemistry Council’s “Year-End 2014 Chemical Industry Situation and Outlook,” chemistry output expanded in the last year, despite weakness in key markets and...

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