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December 19, 2012
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News for American Chemistry

Top Story 
  • ACC's Chemical Activity Barometer indicates continuous, slow growth
    The American Chemistry Council's Chemical Activity Barometer remained steady from November to December, reflecting "slightly slower activity in construction-related plastic resins, coatings and pigments," said ACC chief economist Kevin Swift. The reading held at a level of 91 for the month, following four straight months of growth. With the housing market having the biggest gains in the metric, "the longer-term trend seems to suggest that the recovery in housing will continue," Swift said. ICIS News (U.K.) (12/18), Chemical Week (subscription required) (12/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Read more from ACC on the December Chemical Activity Barometer: Interested in learning more on chemistry in commerce and the benefits of chemistry in your state? View the interactive Chemical Activity Barometer website. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Policy Watch 
  • ACC lauds EPA's move to clarify chemical-manufacturing emissions rule
    The American Chemistry Council welcomed the Environmental Protection Agency's revisions in the Chemical Manufacturing Area Sources rule that narrowed the scope of emission sources. "While we continue to believe that it is not necessary for certain synthetic minor sources to obtain Title V [CAA] permits, given they already operate under protective state permits, we welcome EPA's clarification. ... Likewise, we are appreciative that EPA highlighted certain Title V provisions that could allow for greater operational flexibility needed for chemical manufacturing," ACC said in a statement. Chemical Week (subscription required) (12/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Calif. draft rules to require early disclosure of fracking chemicals
    Energy firms operating in California would need to disclose chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing before activities begin, should draft rules unveiled by the state's Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources be approved. Drillers will also be required to conduct further well testing and monitoring before, during and after operations under the rules. Companies "will participate in the process as new regulations are formulated," said Tupper Hull, a Western States Petroleum Association spokesman. Bloomberg Businessweek (12/18), Associated Press (12/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Solvay to optimize soda-ash production capacity
    Solvay is reconfiguring its global soda ash capacity and output to adapt with changing demand levels. There are "contrasting macroeconomic patterns" that necessitate a "regional adjustment," said Pascal Juery, head of Solvay's newly formed Essential Chemicals unit. "As a leading market player, we are determined to adjust our business and align our supply to the demand in the market, namely in the South of Europe and the Mediterranean area." ICIS News (U.K.) (12/18), Chemical Week (subscription required) (12/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Colo. city faces lawsuit from industry group over fracking ban
    Longmont, Colo., is facing a lawsuit from the Colorado Oil and Gas Association over the passage of a hydraulic fracturing ban within city limits. The ban is illegal because it prevents mineral owners from developing properties and blocks activities that are allowed by the state, the group argued. "We hope that the lawsuit can be quickly resolved," COGA President Tisha Schuller said, so drillers and city residents can work "to address those concerns in a way that does not illegally preclude the safe and responsible development of oil and gas reserves." The Denver Post (12/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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Research & Innovation 
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Leadership & Management 
  • The best bosses show no fear
    World-class leaders have five key traits, says Adam Bryant, who writes The New York Times' Corner Office column. Bosses need passion, confidence, a clear vision, a sense of how to manage groups of people and an utter fearlessness that allows them to take calculated risks without blinking. "The CEOs that I've interviewed had reverence in their voices when they talk about this quality of fearlessness," Bryant said. Knowledge@Wharton (12/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • What defines highly innovative businesses?
    There are many things that come together to create a culture of innovation, but strategic vision is arguably the most important, Jeffrey Baumgartner writes. Companies such as Apple and Google thrive because they have a strategic direction to guide their creative work to clear ends, Baumgartner explains. "If a business does not have definable, unique strategy, it will not be innovative," he writes. (Sweden) (12/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
To be without some of the things you want is an indispensable part of happiness."
--Bertrand Russell,
British philosopher, mathematician and historian

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