The secrets of top-performing chemical companies | Shale gas bolsters U.S. chemical outlook for 2013-15 | Report: Power producers to spend $4.8 billion on treatment chemicals
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January 8, 2013
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The secrets of top-performing chemical companies
Chemical firms that fare best in total shareholder return, or TSR, have several characteristics in common, according to an analysis of Bloomberg's Global Chemical Industry Index. Among them are a focus on long-term performance, an ability to simultaneously increase revenue and profit, and more commonly being nondiversified. ICIS Chemical Business (U.K.) (1/4)
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Shale gas bolsters U.S. chemical outlook for 2013-15
The U.S. chemical industry may perform better in 2013 than other mature markets because of the advantages afforded it by shale natural gas. "With the help of low-cost shale gas, the U.S. is poised to become a major force in exports of petrochemicals and other bulk chemicals not only in the emerging economies of the Asia Pacific, where it will take business away from Middle East producers, but also in mature markets like Europe," Sean Milmo writes. Royal Society of Chemistry (1/4)
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Report: Power producers to spend $4.8 billion on treatment chemicals
Power utility firms are expected to spend in excess of $4.8 billion for water-treatment chemicals this year, according to a report. Among the largest expenditures are for corrosion prevention with more than $2.4 billion and for scale inhibitors for boiler feedwater with more than $1.3 billion, the report states. Environmental Leader (1/4)
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Instant Access: Chemical Engineering Showcase
See the latest developments in simulation and modeling increase productivity in the design of chemical processes and reactors. The Chemical Engineering Showcase includes a range of great resources for all things chemical, including: videos, models, articles, white papers, and more. Click here to get instant access today.
Energy, Sustainability & Safety
N.Y. health officials considered fracking safe, document shows
New York state's Health Department concluded in early 2012 that hydraulic fracturing operations could be done safely in the state, according to a leaked document. "By implementing the proposed mitigation measures, the Department expects that human chemical exposures during normal [fracking] operations will be prevented or reduced below levels of significant health concern," according to the document. State Department of Environmental Conservation spokeswoman Emily DeSantis said the analysis is old and will be updated. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (1/3)
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Survey: Safety of lab workers needs to be addressed
Scientists working in research laboratories are not as safe as they feel, according to the findings of an international lab-safety survey. About 86% of respondents believe they have safe workplaces, but almost half have experienced lab accidents. "Understanding this disparity will be key to positively changing safety culture," said James Gibson, head of environmental health and safety at the University of California, Los Angeles. Nature (1/2)
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Report: Venture capital investments in clean tech fell in 2012
Venture capital investments in clean technology worldwide slumped to $6.46 billion in 2012, down 33% from 2011, according to research and consulting firm Cleantech Group. The leading industry last year in terms of amount invested was biofuels and biochemicals at $952 million, followed by transportation at $927 million, the report showed. The declining cost of natural gas and the global economic downturn drew away investors in 2012, said Cleantech Group CEO Sheeraz Haji. San Jose Mercury News (Calif.) (free registration) (1/3)
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Biological Engineering & Pharmaceuticals
Big Pharma should go back to basics, says Novartis CEO
Pharmaceutical companies shouldn't expect value creation simply by finding new ways to market existing drugs, says Novartis CEO Joseph Jimenez. Long-term growth can only come from a continuous stream of new treatments, he argues. "The industry needs to spend more money on R&D and less on sales and marketing," he says. The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (1/1)
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Materials & Nanotechnology
Mitsubishi Rayon, SK Chemicals sign fiber prepreg agreement
Mitsubishi Rayon will provide carbon fibers to SK Chemicals in a partnership aimed at extending the two companies' carbon fiber prepreg operation in Asia. The long-term agreement calls for the prepregs to be manufactured at SK Chemicals? Ulsan, Korea, and Qingdao, China, plants. Chemical Week (subscription required) (1/3)
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Education & Government Update
Would lower tuition rates draw more STEM majors?
A Florida task force has proposed stopping tuition increases for some college majors, such as science, technology, engineering and math, in an effort to raise enrollment in these fields. This approach is new to higher education, where tuition discrepancies often have revolved around raising tuition in areas such as engineering because of the costs associated with that particular major. Some caution that just because higher tuition resulted in a decrease in enrollment in these fields doesn't mean the reverse will be true. (1/3)
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Career Focus
How to find a career mentor
When looking for a mentor, don't limit your search to your workplace, Lisa Quast writes. Look to professional associations, community groups or even your family. "Once you find a person who agrees to be your mentor, first and foremost, make sure you share the same commitment to your expectations," she says. Forbes (1/2)
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Institute News
Web forum to focus on air toxics and coal combustion
AIChE is teaming with the Air and Waste Management Association to produce an online forum, "Emissions of Mercury and Other Air Toxics: Compliance Strategies for Coal Combustion." Scheduled for Jan. 23, from 1:30 to 3 p.m. EST, the session will cover technical and permitting issues, potential strategies and an update on boiler MACT. Nick Hutson of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Bob Fraser of ERM will speak, with Constance Senior of ADA-Environmental Services moderating. Learn more.
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Midwest regional conference slated for end of month
AIChE's 5th Midwest Regional Conference will be held Jan. 31 and Feb. 1 at the Illinois Institute of Technology. Organized by the Chicago local section, the event encourages regional networking among industrial practitioners, government employees and academic researchers. It also features a high school outreach program highlighting engineering careers, and a special workshop for young professionals. Find out more.
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If money be not thy servant, it will be thy master. The covetous man cannot so properly be said to possess wealth, as that may be said to possess him."
-- Francis Bacon,
British author and statesman
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