Demand for Brazilian ethanol and Chilean metals will drive healthy growth in process and environmental equipment in Latin America, according to several reports by McIlvaine Company ( McIlvaine’s Pumps: World Markets report predicts the market for pumps will grow from just under $2 billion this year to $2.8 billion in 2010 in all countries of the Americas except the United States and Canada. Meanwhile, McIlvaine’s Valves: World Markets report shows annual sales of valves in Latin America are expected to rise from $3.2 billion to $3.9 billion by 2010.

According to McIlvaine, 25 percent of all the process equipment used by the mining industry will be delivered to Latin America over each of the next four years. As a result, McIlvaine, in its Liquid Filtration: World Markets report, predicts Latin America will be the leading purchaser of belt filters, drum filters, and a major purchaser of filter presses.

Brazil is leading the way in the conversion of sugar cane to ethanol, as 40 percent of its transportation fuel is already ethanol-based. Over the next decade, McIlvaine says Brazil plans to be energy self-sufficient through a massive investment in more ethanol plants. Each of these plants requires environmental equipment, such as scrubbers and fabric filters. McIlvaine, in its report Fabric Filters and Elements: World Markets, predicts that Brazil will be a major purchaser of fabric filters in part because of its ethanol plant activity.

Another major factor cited by McIlvaine for Latin America’s increased investment in process and environmental equipment is the curtailment of natural gas supply to Chile from Argentina, which will result in major efforts to retrofit Chilean power plants to burn coal. The cost of scrubbers to remove the SO2 in these retrofitted plants will be in excess of $500 million. Other Latin American countries will spend another $1.3 billion on scrubbers for SO2 removal in the next five years, according to McIlvaine.

McIlvaine sees wastewater treatment as one of the big potential markets for process and environmental equipment in Latin America. As shown in the following chart, less than 12 percent of municipal wastewater is receiving secondary treatment. As a result, McIlvaine believes the upgrade of existing primary treatment plants and the construction of treatment plants where sewage is now directly transported to waterways represents many billions of dollars potential in process and environmental equipment.

2006 Sewage Treatment in Million Gallons/Day (MGD)
Beginning of 2007 – In Place

Sewage Primary Secondary

Country Transport Treatment Treatment

United States 40,671 38,957 34,449

Canada 4,190 3,232 2,776

Mexico 4,304 1,596 823

Argentina 1,932 605 193

Brazil 5,079 1,471 826

Chile 1,031 376 127

Colombia 1,158 203 99

Ecuador 253 36 22

Guatemala 171 13 5

Peru 526 50 17

Venezuela 889 185 87

Other South & Central America 1,409 976 902