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Agrium to debottleneck nitrogen fertilizer Borger plant in Texas

KBR won EPC contract for Agrium Lone Star Project

2B1st_Project_Smart_Explorer_Sales_Pursuit_ToolThe Texas-based engineering company KBR has been awarded the Lone Star Project by the Canadian fertilizer specialist Agrium to debottleneck its ammonia production unit located in Borger, Texas USA.

Through Cominco Fertilizers Ltd (Cominco), Agrium started operations in 1933 and opened the Borger facility in 1966 to produce nitrogen fertilizers in Texas.

From the mergers of the fertilizers operations between Cominco and Calgary Energy Company, Agrium was established in 1993 with nutrients production facilities in Canada and USA.

Agrium_KBR_Borger_Lonely-Star_Urea-Ammonia_Expansion_Project_MapWith a large portfolio of nutrients, Agrium is offering fertilizers based on ammonium sulfate, nitrogen, phosphate, potash and micronutrients.

As the nitrogen fertilizers needs ethane as feedstock, the gas associated to the bitumen crude oil development converted the Alberta Province into the large producer and exporter of fertilizer from Canada primarily to USA.

More recently the development of the shale gas has opened an historical opportunity to improve the competitive advantage of the ammonia and urea produced in USA compared with the imported fertilizers.

In addition it creates the best conditions to increase the local production in front of the world largest demand for nutrients.

USA stands as the first largest importer of ammonia in the world by far and the second largest importer of urea behind India.

In this context, the US glut of the shale gas is highly welcome in the nitrogen fertilizer market as well as in the petrochemical industry to re-localize production instead of importing it.

Therefore a tenth of ammonia and urea projects popped up around the main shale gas basins in USA.

KBR to execute Agrium Borger expansion on fast-track

In that perspective Agrium considered to build a $3 billion capital expenditure greenfield nitrogen plant in the US Midwest.

But after comparing risks of glut at fertilizers level and profitability, Agrium revised its plans and gave the priority to the expansions of existing facilities such as in Borger, Texas USA and Redwater Alberta Canada.

In April 2013, Agrium prepared ground in that direction in ordering KBR a major turnaround contract at the Borger facilities.

Agrium_KBR_Borger_Lonely-Star_Urea-Ammonia_Expansion_ProjectBy this turnaround Agrium revamped the ammonia furnace to improve energy efficiency and increase the meantime between shutdown.

After completion of this turnaround campaign, the Borger plant is ready to support the major expansion planned with the Lonely Star project.

With $720 million capital expenditure, Agrium is willing to:

 – Increase ammonia production capacity by 145,000 tonnes per year (t/y) to reach 635,000 t/y.

 – Add greenfield urea plant of 610,000 t/y

Providing the licenses and having the resources on site from the turnaround, KBR was able to propose Agrium an execution of the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract on fast track of the Lonely Star project to complete the Borger nitrogen fertilizer plant expansion by the end of 2015.

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2 Comments to “Agrium to debottleneck nitrogen fertilizer Borger plant in Texas”

  1. We are interested in being considered for the bid package for scaffold and insulation for this project. Can you get us a contact in Borger, TX at the Agrium facility?

  2. We are interested on this project to offer blasting and paint service how we can get?

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