Area Development
CONSOL Energy Inc., a producer of bituminous coal, and Synthesis Energy Systems Inc., an industrial gasification company, will partner to build the United States' first coal gasification and liquefaction plant in Benwood, West Virginia. More than 60 permanent jobs and 300 to 500 construction jobs are planned with the project. The process will involve converting a specific coal blend into syngas, which will then be used to produce approximately 720,000 metric tons per year of methanol that can be used as a feedstock for the chemical industry, along with approximately 100 million gallons per year of 87-octane gasoline. The project is expected to include a river terminal facility for storage and offloading onto barges. The joint venture will receive financing and tax incentives over a 10-year period from the state. The facility is expected to be at full operation in 2012.