Airgas celebrates opening of Stockton facility

By Erin Voegele | July 26, 2019

Air Liquide announced July 18 that its Airgas division recently celebrated the grand opening of its new liquid carbon dioxide and dry ice facility in Stockton, California. The facility is located adjacent to Pacific Ethanol Inc.’s Stockton ethanol plant.

Pacific Ethanol announced an agreement in March 2018 to sell carbon dioxide generated at the Stockton plant to Airgas for processing at a liquid carbon dioxide production plant to be developed near its corn ethanol plant.

According to Airgas, the new facility converts gaseous carbon dioxide that would otherwise be discarded as a byproduct of ethanol, manufacturing it into approximately 500 tons of liquid carbon dioxide per day, which can be used for brewing, carbonated beverages and winemaking, as well as flash freezing and food packaging. The adjoining Airgas Dry Ice facility will convert up to 250 tons per day of liquid carbon dioxide into dry ice, which is used for safe transport in food and agricultural applications and a variety of life sciences and industrial processes.

Airgas said the new facility was engineered to have minimal environmental impact and is a zero-runoff/discharge site. Technology at the site will capture and recycle all process and rain water that comes in contact with the equipment.

To mark its commitment to the greater Stockton community, Airgas announced plans to make a $5,000 donation to a local high school or junior college welding program, in conjunction with the opening of this facility.

“The Airgas business model is built on the foundation of local customer service,” said Matt Whitton, regional president of Airgas NCN. “We stay close to our more than 1 million customers and strive to meet their needs by working collaboratively with them and our partner suppliers to help their companies succeed. We announced our plans to build this facility in March 2018 to have three strategically located CO2 plants in Northern, Central, and Southern California and today, we deliver on that commitment.”