Shell Chemical Wins Air Permit For Proposed Ethane Plant

The plant would convert ethane from Marcellus Shale natural gas into chemicals used to make plastics, tires and even antifreeze.

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MONACA, Pa. (AP) — Shell Chemical has been granted an air quality permit for a proposed petrochemical plant in western Pennsylvania.

The state Department of Environmental Protection says Monday that it has approved the air quality plan for the site in Potter Township, Beaver County.

Shell recently bought the former zinc plant but says it may take years to decide whether to build the "ethane cracker" about 25 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.

The plant would convert ethane from Marcellus Shale natural gas into chemicals used to make plastics, tires and even antifreeze.

The air quality permit follows a public hearing last month.

Local officials hope the plant will bring thousands of jobs to the area.

The Clean Air Council says it will also bring pollution. The group is pushing for more air quality monitoring and safety precautions.

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