Unusual glow in night sky explained

People in Limburg, especially those close to the border with the Netherlands, have been treated to an unusual spectacle: a glow in the night sky.

Chemical company SABIC that is located just across the border says that it is responsible but that the glow isn’t at all dangerous. SABIC produces ethane and propene for several plastics businesses.  Every six years the whole installation needs to be closed down for maintenance.  This maintenance is now at an end by restarting one of the installations, a naphtha cracker, is proving more difficult than usual. Naphtha crackers are used to turn naphtha into plastics.

Due to the problems excess gas is being burned off.  As flaring is used as a safety procedure, the result is a glow in the night sky.  The company says the process may cause a lot of noise or light, which may be a nuisance, but isn’t at all dangerous.

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