MOSCOW (MRC) -- Westlake Polymers has left in force the declared on Aug. 31 force majeure on its North American polymer facilities after Hurricane Laura adversely impacted its unit sites, reported S&P Global.
Westlake's Lake Charles, Louisiana, complex had "incurred limited physical damage" then and restarts primarily depended on the availability of electric power, industrial gases, and other feedstocks.
Westlake Chemical was in the process of a restart following the loss of electricity from Hurricane Laura on 27 August when the arrival of Hurricane Delta on 9 October interrupted the process.
Westlake's facility at Lake Charles, Louisiana, has a 200,000 mt/year linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) unit; a 60,000 mt/year high density polyethylene (HDPE)/LLDPE unit; a 386,000 mt/year low density polyethylene (LDPE) plant.
Westlake Chemical also declared a force majeure on Aug. 31 for all its North American PVC and VCM, which is also left in force in mid-October. Westlake's shutdown of its Lake Charles complex has idled 38% of its US VCM production, resulting in two VCM plants with a combined capacity of 952,318 mt/year going offline. The complex also has three upstream chlor-alkali plants with a combined capacity of 1.27 million mt/year of chlorine and 1.36 million mt/year of caustic soda - 46% of the company's overall North American chlor-alkali capacity.
Hurricane Delta appears to have wreaked minimal damage to chemical facilities in Lake Charles, Louisiana, just six weeks after Hurricane Laura blew through the region, severely damaging major electricity transmission lines that left facilities offline for weeks.
Westlake Chemical said in a statement on Oct. 12 that initial assessments after Delta's Oct. 9 landfall showed "very limited physical damage" to its Lake Charles complex, and facilities were "in the process of restarting."
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Westlake Chemical Corporation is an international manufacturer and supplier of petrochemicals, polymers and building products with headquarters in Houston, Texas. The company's range of products includes: ethylene, polyethylene, styrene, propylene, chlor-alkali and derivative products, PVC suspension and specialty resins, PVC Compounds, and PVC building products including siding, pipe, fittings and specialty components, windows, fence, deck and film.