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New shipping trade born with first US ethane export cargo

A new shipping trade has been born with the first ethane export cargo departing the US for Norway.

The INEOS Intrepid left the Marcus Hook terminal near Philadelphia bound for Rafnes in Norway carrying a 27,500 cu m cargo of US shale gas ethane.

INEOS said it was the first time shale gas had ever been shipped to Europe.

The INEOS Intrepid is one of four 27,500 cu m Dragon class ethane multi-gas carriers that will form part of a fleet of eight ethane carriers.

“This is an important day for INEOS and Europe. We know that shale gas economics revitalised US manufacturing and for the first time Europe can access this important energy and raw material source too,” said Jim Ratcliffe chairman and founder of INEOS.

INEOS has built large ethane storage tanks in Rafnes, Norway and Grangemouth in Scotland to receive the exports from the US to be used in its cracker plants at both locations.

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