Ohio Valley Resources plans to construct a billion-dollar nitrogen fertilizer production facility on 150 acres north of Rockport, Indiana, that will create an estimated 1,200 construction jobs and eventually about 80 full-time positions.
The firm said it tentatively chose Spencer County because of its convenient location to rail and highway access, as well as the potential for river access. However, other competing sites in Kentucky are still being evaluated.
The high-tech facility will produce approximately 2,420 tons per day of ammonia and 3,000 tons per day of urea ammonium nitrate solution to be used as fertilizer. Some of the ammonia production will serve local utility markets to reduce emissions in coal-fired power plants and industrial facilities. In addition, the plant will produce 300 tons per day of diesel exhaust fluid, a urea solution used to reduce emissions in diesel engines.
As global demand for nitrogen fertilizer has increased, the U.S. has become one of the world's largest importers of this commodity. This has resulted in America's farmers and food supply becoming more dependent on foreign sources of essential fertilizer products. According to data from the Economic Research Service of the United States Department of Agriculture, 54 percent of the U.S. nitrogen supply,or approximately 10.79 million tons, was imported in 2011.
According to Doug Wilson, President and CEO of Ohio Valley Resources, this project represents a major step forward in reviving domestic production of critical nitrogen fertilizer products to serve the Eastern Corn Belt. "Our goal is to restore jobs to the United States that have been lost for years by displacing imported sources of fertilizer products," Wilson said. "We are excited that our new plant will help to stabilize the supply and price of nitrogen fertilizers to support the regional agricultural economy."
"Not only will our new plant play a key role in boosting domestic agricultural production, but it will also provide a reliable source of emissions-control products to support a cleaner environment," Wilson said. "This will all be done by American workers using domestic sources of low-cost natural gas."
Ohio Valley Resources recently filed an air permit application with the Indiana Department of Environmental Management to construct its billion-dollar nitrogen fertilizer facility in Spencer County. At the same time, OVR entered into technology licensing agreements with KBR of Houston, TX, to provide the essential ammonia process production units necessary for the proposed facility. The agreement with KBR also includes a front-end engineering design package to develop a lump-sum turnkey engineer, procure, and construct price for the project. Tax incentives offered by the state or local officials were not immediately available.