Petrochemical industry growth spurs hiring
Houston Chronicle/Jobs


Lower natural gas prices have refocused the chemical industry's planning for production of lower
olefins and polyolefins, therefore the industry is expecting to see a significant growth of
engineering, procurement and construction opportunities in the industry in the coming years, said
to Ian Laski, manager, Petrochemicals Operations, Bechtel Oil, Gas and Chemicals business unit.
Bechtel is one of the largest EPC companies in the world.
Several companies have announced plans to add ethylene capacity in the U.S.
INEOS Olefins & Polymers USA - which offers products such as ethylene, propylene, butadiene,
mixed butenes and crude benzene, which are the building blocks for the wide variety of products
that its customers manufacture - has plans to boost ethylene capacity at its Chocolate Bayou
complex by 6.5 percent in 2013.
"We will add new ethane cracking capacity and will expand all associated infrastructure," said
Richard Longden, group communications manager at INEOS.
In addition to its crackers at Chocolate Bayou, INEOS has 950,000 tonnes/year of high density
polyethylene capacity at La Porte, and in its joint venture HDPE operation with Chevron Phillips
Chemical at Cedar Bayou.
"INEOS Olefins & Polymers USA is also looking at high-density polyethylene and ethylene oxide/ethylene glycol projects, both of which are in the engineering phase and
would present job opportunities for the Houston area, and continues to explore feedstock options through greater availability of NGLs (natural gas liquids) due to shale
gas," said Charles Saunders, director, product development and technical services, INEOS Olefins & Polymers.
INEOS also had a number of other projects on the drawing board.
"Bechtel has started building a group of experts with broad experience in the field, initially concentrating in polymer expertise," Laski said.
Front-end work on a petrochemicals EPC project requires design and process engineers. As the project moves into construction phase, piping, mechanical and civil
engineers come to the forefront. Petrochemical projects use proprietary technologies, so throughout EPC, process engineers ensure correct technology application.
"At Bechtel, we are typically looking for individuals with EPC experience in the petrochemical industry that have a proven track record of commitment to safety and quality.
"Another skill we look for is leadership. When building a complex industrial facility, you need to be able to motivate your team, collaborate with the customer and make
difficult decisions under pressure," Laski said.
Bechtel has a number of openings for senior process, piping and mechanical engineers, both in Houston and London.
"We are looking for professionals who are ready for the next challenge and want to put their knowledge and experience to work. To our future employees, we can promise
exciting work on complex projects around the globe alongside some of the best and brightest in the industry," Laski said.
Among INEOS Olefins & Polymers USA's work force are chemical, electrical and mechanical engineers; chemists; and safety, security, health and environmental
specialists. In particular, INEOS employs chemists, engineers and material scientists in its Technology Center at the La Porte site. INEOS's work force is further
composed of various skill sets integral to the operation and of its manufacturing facilities, including process technicians, operators and maintenance technicians of
varying disciplines," Saunders said.
INEOS' website lists numerous positions from administration, accounting, lab technicians to plant operators and engineers.
Bechtel's website lists 26 pages of open positions across the board and around the world.

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