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Sulphuric Acid - NEWS - 1998
Updated May 6, 2005

Lurgi supplies plant units for the extension of Europe’s largest copper smelter
Sterlite Industries downs shutter at Tuticorin on Chennai court order 

Marsulex Extends North American and International reach with US$51 Million Acquisition of Trelleborg Businesses

Lurgi supplies plant units for the extension of Europe’s largest copper smelter

December 7, 1998 - Lurgi Umwelt GmbH together with its sister company Lurgi
Metallurgie GmbH, Frankfurt am Main, both managed by Frankfurt-based Lurgi AG were awarded a contract by
Norddeutsche Affinerie AG for extending the gas cleaning system and sulfuric acid plant. Norddeutsche Affinerie in
Hamburg is Europe’s largest copper smelter. The investment constitutes part of the smelter’s comprehensive extension project.

Commissioning of the new plant units is scheduled for autumn 2000. Erection work, however, will be started well in
advance so as not to disturb plant operation.

The contract has a total value of DM 32.8 million and mainly comprises the supply of four new cyclone scrubbers and
seven new electrostatic precipitators (ESP) by Lurgi Umwelt GmbH. In the past 80 years, Lurgi has taken a leading
position in the ESP market: in 1937, the one thousandth, and in 1977 the ten thousandth ESP were delivered. Up to now,
Lurgi has erected a total of about 15,000 ESPs around the world.

Lurgi Metallurgie GmbH is responsible for extending the sulfuric acid plant. In the gas cleaning system, noxious
substances are removed from the offgases of the copper converters and flash smelting furnace, and the SO2 they
contain is concurrently processed to sulfuric acid for industrial application.

Source : www.lurgi.com

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Sterlite Industries downs shutter at Tuticorin on Chennai court order 

CHENNAI, November 23, 1998: A green bench of the Chennai high court on Monday ordered Sterlite Industries (India) to immediately shut down its copper-smelter plant at Tuticorin.

The bench, comprising chief justice MS Liberhan and justice E Padmanabhan, passed the order after the Nagpur-based National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (Neeri) submitted its report on the plant's functioning.

"It will not be in public interest to permit the plant to function further,'' the bench said, while passing interim orders on a writ petition filed by MDMK general secretary Vaiko and others seeking directions to the union and state governments to prevent the plant from functioning owing to a series of accidents, including one last week.

Adjourning hearing to December 1, the bench said it was open to the Sterlite management to file an appropriate affidavit or undertaking regarding the Neeri report. Meanwhile, Sterlite senior vice-president, commercial, Hemant Jalan has said the plant would be closed down in stages inaccordance with the court order. It will be shut down completely by midnight.

He said the company would react to the Neeri report after considering its details. The court took note of the report that indicted both the central and state governments for giving various clearances and consent to the Sterlite plant in contravention of the statutory requirements. Neeri has recommended that the court ought to close the plant till all the elements of environment and disaster management plans, arising out of an objective, scientific and comprehensive environment impact assessment (EIA) study, was implemented by Sterlite.

The report said clearances were given by considering an inadequately prepared EIA report based on just one month's data.

The plant was established within 25 km of an ecologically fragile area "by relaxing green-belt requirements without adequate or acceptable justification," it said. It recommended that the state pollution control board conduct a study of the area, which harboured severalindustries and other trade related to Sterlite industries. It wanted a comprehensive EIA encompassing all operations.

An analysis of waste water samples indicated that the treatment plant was operating inefficiently, as it was not able to conform to the standards stipulated by the pollution board for arsenic, selenium and lead in treated effluents as also in the effluents stored in ponds.

The Neeri team had completed on November 1 their study on the environmental aspects of the Sterlite copper plant. This followed the order of the green bench of the Chennai high court on September 18. The seven-member team had completed their study on the air and water pollution aspects on October 29.

It is reported that the Sterlite management feels that the court order is not based on accidents, but on the Neeri report which has blamed the company for inadequate environmental and safety measures. Sterlite makes one lakh tonnes of copper for internal consumption and 3.25 lakh tonnes of sulphuric acid as a by-product inits Tuticorin plant.

The copper plant had been the centre of controversy even before its inception. It had come to Tamil Nadu having been rejected by the people of Ratnagiri, where it was originally proposed to be set up. The fisherfolk and others were against it as it posed environmental hazards, including air and water pollution. Environmentalists in Tuticorin have been accusing the plant of releasing noxious gases in the night. Vaiko himself had charged the plant with several gas leaks even before the Ramesh Flowers incident.

Environmental activists in Chennai termed the green bench order as the victory of the people and their right to livelihood over the powers of national and international industrial corporations.

Sterlite is one of the lowest cost producers of copper globally. Its copper smelter was operational for three months in the previous financial year, contributing Rs 205 crore or 15 per cent to the total revenue. The plant shutdown will cause a huge loss.Moreover, the company was slated to expand its smelter capacity to 1.5 lakh tpa from 1 lakh tpa. The smelter had actually attained 89 per cent capacity utilisation in October, 1998. The stock market is expected to react negatively to the current developments.

Source : www.expressindia.com

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Marsulex Extends North American and International reach with US$51 Million Acquisition of Trelleborg Businesses

Toronto – May 13, 1998 – Marsulex Inc. announced today that it has acquired two businesses from Trelleborg AB of Sweden.  The two companies – Intertrade Holdings, In.c (“Intertrade”) and BCT Chemtrade Corporation (“Chemtrade”) – provide sulphur by-product removal services to customers in North America and Europe.

Intertrade is based in Atlanta, Georgia and provides removal and resale services to generators of sulphur-based by-products produced as a result of environmental compliance.  As well, Intertrade operates sulphuric acid and liquid sulphur dioxide manufacturing facilities at Copperhill, Tennessee.

Chemtrade has long-term relationships with smelter and oil refineries, primarily in northern Europe, for the removal of sulphur and sulphuric acid.  Headquartered in Zug, Switzerland, Chemtrade is one of the world’s largest international distributors of sulphur by-products.  The company owns and operates a 75,000 ton terminal and storage facility in Rotterdam through which it supplies by-products to end-use customers around the world.  Chemtrade also has interests in marketing joint ventures that sell sulphuric acid in Chile and Portugal, and a ship chartering joint venture with a company that owns chemical tankers.

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