Koch Nitrogen Company, LLC is moving forward with plans to build a new urea plant at its Enid, Okla., facility. In addition, the company is revamping existing production processes at the facility. Combined, the investments are estimated at $1 billion and are expected to increase fertilizer production at the facility by more than 1 million tons per year. The improvements to existing processes will be implemented in stages from 2014-2016. Construction on the new plant, which will include additional storage and enhanced loading facilities, is expected to begin in the fourth quarter of 2014. The plant is projected to be operational in 2016.
“The investment we are making through Koch Nitrogen underscores our confidence in the future of our overall fertilizer business and our commitment to customers for the long-term,” said David Robertson, president and chief operating officer of Koch Industries, Inc. “In addition to the significant increase in capacity, this investment will serve to improve our operational efficiency and competitive position in North America.”
“We are pleased Koch Industries is once again expanding its presence with a new investment in Oklahoma,” said Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin, “Koch is well acquainted with our favorable business climate, with three separate companies already operating in the state, employing nearly 1,800 Oklahomans and generating more than $146 million in annual compensation and benefits for our economy. This substantial investment in Enid by Koch Nitrogen to build a new ultra-modern fertilizer production plant is further proof that our commitment to keeping business taxes low and regulations reasonable is paying dividends in the form of quality jobs for our state.”
Governor Fallin also congratulated officials with the city of Enid and Garfield Country and referred to the plans as a model of public and private cooperation.
“We are thrilled with Koch Nitrogen’s investment plans,” said Eric Benson, Enid City Manager. “They are an excellent corporate citizen and outstanding community partner. They have worked closely with us to address the pressing needs of our community, including recent efforts to find a solution for our community’s water situation. Koch’s expanded presence in Enid will resonate positively throughout our economy for a long time.”
Koch Nitrogen has selected the following companies for the project:
• Black & Veatch, a global engineering, consulting and construction company, will provide project planning, engineering and procurement services.
• KBR, a global engineering, construction and services company, will provide urea engineering and procurement services.
• Stamicarbon, the global market leader in licensing of urea technology and services, will provide urea synthesis and granulation technology.
“As crop production increases throughout North America, we are seeing an increasing demand for fertilizer from our customers,” said Steve Packebush, president of Koch Fertilizer, LLC. “With this additional production, we’ll be in a much better position to meet that demand. We look forward to breaking ground on this project, while continuing to evaluate enhancements at our four other North American facilities.”
The positive economic impact to the city of Enid and surrounding communities over the next three years will be substantial. During the 18-24 months of construction, 500 to 800 new construction jobs are projected to be created. In addition, a total of 20-30 permanent employees will ultimately be added to support the new plant.
The Koch Nitrogen facility in Enid is one of the largest fertilizer production plants in North America, producing ammonia, UAN (liquid fertilizer) and granular urea. It was built in 1974 and purchased by Koch Nitrogen in 2003. The site employs 143 people in the fields of engineering, operations and maintenance with annual compensation and benefits totaling nearly $14 million. In the last five years, Koch Nitrogen has invested more than $100 million into the Enid facility, including the construction of a 10,000-square-foot control facility in 2011, which improved operational reliability and overall plant efficiency.
At the facility in Enid and at all Koch Nitrogen facilities, employees are committed to a safe work environment and strive to manage operations in a manner that protects the health and safety of employees, customers, contractors, the public and the environment. The fertilizer industry is highly regulated and Koch works with numerous federal, state and local regulatory agencies to attain compliance with all laws and regulations at all times. At the federal level, those agencies include the U.S. Occupational Safety & Health Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Department of Transportation. At the state level, Koch works with the departments responsible for environmental quality and natural resources as well as the Department of Agriculture. Koch also meets periodically with Local Emergency Planning Committees to discuss hazardous materials safety and appropriate responses to emergency events.