PARKERSBURG – The proposed development of a new petrochemical complex – the ethane cracker plant – in Wood County will be a game changer for the entire state of West Virginia, the governor said Thursday at West Virginia University at Parkersburg.
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin and officials with Odebrecht announced plans for the development of an ethane cracker, three polyethylene plants and associated infrastructure for water treatment and energy co-generation. A cracker plant converts ethane, a byproduct from Marcellus Shale and Utica Shale natural gas, into the widely used ethylene, a key component for the plastics industry.
The proposed complex is called Ascent, which stands for “Appalachian Shale Cracker Enterprise.”
“Today, without question, is one of my proudest moments,” Tomblin said. “I am pleased to announce that Odebrecht has chosen a site in Wood County, W.Va.
“They have chosen Wood County as the perspective location for the potential development of a ethane cracker. This announcement is a defining moment in the economic development in the Mountain State.”