Adam Wilmoth column: Indiana project may help reduce cost of fertilizer

Despite low natural gas prices, two-thirds of the country's fertilizer is imported from the Middle East in what some agriculture industry experts say threatens the country's food supply.
by Adam Wilmoth Published: October 26, 2012

“How are we going to do our part to feed the estimated 70 percent increase of world population to 9 billion by 2015,” he asked. “Do you think that when China is hungry that we'll have any priority in obtaining fertilizer from them?”

A subsidiary of an Ohio-based coal company could provide at least part of the answer.

Powhatan Point, Ohio-based Ohio Valley Resources LLC, last month announced plans for a $1 billion nitrogen fertilizer plant in southern Indiana.

The plant would produce 2,400 tons of ammonia per day and 3,000 tons per day of the urea ammonia nitrate solution used in fertilizer.

The Indiana project still needs permitting approval, and construction likely will take about three years.

The new plant won't affect fertilizer prices any time soon, but over the next several years, that and other fertilizer and chemicals plants are likely to pop up throughout the country if domestic natural gas prices remain lower than the international rate.

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by Adam Wilmoth
Energy Editor
Adam Wilmoth returned to The Oklahoman as energy editor in 2012 after working for four years in public relations. He previously spent seven years as a business reporter at The Oklahoman, including five years covering the state's energy sector....
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