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December 18, 2012
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News for American Chemistry

Top Story 
  • Construction costs increasing for ethane crackers, companies say: The chemical industry is seeing increasing costs for building petrochemical plants, including ethane crackers. Still, the U.S. enjoys "pretty staggering" cost advantages, said Anton Ticktin of investment bank Valence Group. Financial Times (tiered subscription model) (12/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Policy Watch 
  • ACC proposes assessment model for EPA's low-dose chemicals review
    The American Chemistry Council submitted recommendations to the Environmental Protection Agency for the regulator's "state of the science" paper, which will guide research and evaluation of certain chemicals for low-dose health effects. "The up-front design of the assessment needs to be transparent. ... The agency should develop and use consistent and scientifically objective data evaluation protocols to evaluate studies. In this manner, the same procedures are used irrespective of who conducted the study, where it was conducted, or who funded it," ACC wrote in a letter to EPA. Chemical Week (subscription required) (12/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • EPA's area source rule for chemical manufacturing gains OMB approval
    The White House Office of Management and Budget has approved an Environmental Protection Agency rule that sets emission standards for chemical manufacturing sites that are below "major" thresholds for individual or combined hazardous air pollutants. The American Chemistry Council and others have appealed for the EPA to offer exemptions to certain permitting requirements. (free content) (12/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Republican groups warn against implications of federal fracking rules
    The Department of the Interior's proposed rules covering hydraulic fracturing would hamper energy development on federal and Indian properties, according to the Republican Governors Association and the Republican Attorneys General Association. "The states, not the federal government, are best positioned to appropriately regulate hydraulic fracturing operations. Current state regulations already provide effective and efficient oversight that is specific to the needs of the states," the groups wrote in a letter to President Barack Obama. The Hill/E2 Wire blog (12/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
Research & Innovation 
  • SABIC to unveil 4 technology hubs in 2013
    SABIC expects next year to open one technology center each in China and India, and two in Saudi Arabia. The site in Bangalore, India, will focus on "research in chemistry, material science, process engineering, analytical and application technology," while the Shanghai facility will host the company's regional office, said Ernesto Occhiello, senior vice president for technology and innovation. (12/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Leadership & Management 
  • Don't rely on cookie-cutter leadership strategies
    Leadership shouldn't rely too much on uniform, "six steps to managing"-type leadership guides, says Karl Heiselman, CEO of Wolff Olins. Every employee is different, and bosses need to tailor their approaches to individual workers' needs. "[W]hen you're communicating with somebody ... you're trying to get the best work out of them. The way you do that is not the same for everybody," Heiselman says. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (12/15) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
ACC News 
  • Chemical Activity Barometer stable at year's end after 4 consecutive monthly gains
    The American Chemistry Council has released its Chemical Activity Barometer, a leading economic indicator derived from a composite index of chemical industry activity. The December CAB remained stable, showing no change over last month. This followed four consecutive monthly gains. "Recent data indicate slightly slower activity in construction-related plastic resins, coatings, and pigments, but the longer-term trend seems to suggest that the recovery in housing will continue," said Kevin Swift, chief economist at ACC. "More new homes are being built today than since July 2008, and each housing start represents more than $15,000 of chemistry," Swift noted. 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
  • Efficiency is key to meeting energy demands of a changing world, ExxonMobil says
    The expected rise in our global population -- up to 9 billion people by 2040 -- will have a huge impact on the world's economic conditions, resources and our evolving energy needs, according to ExxonMobil's 2012 "Outlook for Energy" report. As ExxonMobil Chairman and CEO Rex W. Tillerson said, "Understanding future energy trends is critical for effective policy decisions that can help ensure safe, reliable and affordable energy development and economic growth, job creation and expanded global trade."

    Visit ACC's Chemistry To Energy website to learn more about how you can contribute to a stronger energy future, and how chemistry makes it possible. Read more on the recent ExxonMobil report. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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Editor's Note 
  • Best of 2012: 18 SmartBrief interviews with industry thought leaders
    SmartBrief's SmartBlogs network interviewed 18 industry thought leaders this month, including Paul Hodges of ICIS and Kevin Swift of ACC for the ACC SmartBrief Best of 2012. Find out what these leaders are projecting for their industries in 2013, and see what other free SmartBrief newsletters you might be missing out on. Learn more. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

There are two things that one must get used to or one will find life unendurable: the damages of time and injustices of men."
--Nicolas Chamfort,
French writer

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