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Cepsa Commences Building €75 Million Hydroalcoholic Gel Facility in Spain
Cepsa Commences Building €75 Million Hydroalcoholic Gel Facility in Spain

Cepsa Commences Building €75 Million Hydroalcoholic Gel Facility in Spain

  • 10-Jun-2024 11:16 AM
  • Journalist: Emilia Jackson

Cepsa furthers its expansion and diversification in the chemicals sector with the initiation of construction for a groundbreaking isopropyl alcohol (IPA) facility, marking Spain's inaugural endeavor of its kind. IPA serves a vital role not only in hydroalcoholic gels but also in an array of household and industrial cleaning solutions.

Supported by a €75 million investment, the forthcoming IPA plant will be situated in Palos de la Frontera (Huelva) and will mark Spain's pioneering adoption of green hydrogen technology. It will lead the industry in substituting traditional fossil-based materials with sustainable alternatives for isopropyl alcohol production. This advancement will broaden Cepsa Química's portfolio of eco-friendly products, aligning seamlessly with Cepsa's Positive Motion energy transition initiative.

According to José María Solana, CEO of Cepsa Química, the IPA initiative "marks a significant milestone in our Next Chemicals in Positive Motion strategy. Interconnected with our Andalusian Green Hydrogen Valley, the facility underscores our dedication to combatting climate change and expediting the ecological shift. Furthermore, it reinforces Spain's self-reliance in such product categories."

The establishment of this new facility will ensure our nation's steady and premium access to this vital commodity, pivotal to industries like healthcare and pharmaceuticals. Additionally, it will diminish our reliance on isopropyl alcohol-based sanitizers imported from external sources.

The Regional Minister of Industry, Energy, and Mines in the Government of Andalusia, Jorge Paradela, highlighted Cepsa's latest chemical facility in Palos as "a concrete illustration of how innovation, sustainability, and employment generation can synergize, fostering economic development and enhancing the welfare of European communities."

According to Jorge Paradela, Cepsa's investment underscores the significance of competitive energy prices in industrial site selection. He emphasized its pivotal role in bolstering Spain's strategic autonomy, as it will become the nation's pioneering facility for manufacturing the raw materials necessary for renewable-origin hydroalcoholic gel production.

Isopropyl alcohol serves as a solvent in the fabrication of paints, coatings, and printing inks, while also acting as an intermediary in the creation of essential components in pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and agrochemicals.

The upcoming facility, slated for completion by the conclusion of 2025, will boast a production capability of 80,000 tons annually. The construction of this new plant is anticipated to demand around 400,000 hours of labor, encompassing both direct and indirect workforce contributions.

Cepsa's chemical enterprise, including the new IPA facility, stands to gain from its proximity to the Andalusian Green Hydrogen Valley and Cepsa's expansive second-generation biofuels plant, a collaboration with Bio-Oils, situated adjacent to La Rábida Energy Park in Huelva. The strategic positioning of the new facility alongside the chemical plant and La Rábida Energy Park will foster deep integration among the three establishments, fostering robust industrial and economic synergies. Notably, the supply of acetone needed for IPA production will originate from Cepsa's chemical plant, thereby enhancing its value proposition. Furthermore, the hydrogen, serving as a crucial raw material, will be sourced from the Andalusian Green Hydrogen Valley.

The upcoming plant will embody Cepsa's dedication to sustainability, utilizing renewable energy and materials from its inception, aligning with its "Positive Motion" strategy. The production of isopropyl alcohol (IPA) will be powered by renewable thermal and electrical sources.

This venture will fortify Spain's burgeoning chemical sector and enable Cepsa to broaden its product range, positioning itself as a frontrunner in the Iberian Peninsula market and a prominent producer of isopropyl alcohol within the European Union.

Cepsa's pioneering efforts extend to sustainable solutions like NextLab and NextPhenol, which maintain traditional product quality while significantly reducing carbon emissions. These innovations form part of the new Next portfolio, leveraging renewable and recycled materials alongside renewable energy. Moreover, Cepsa Química has developed and verified a certification system ensuring compliance with international standards for carbon footprint reduction.

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