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Shell Chemical Louisiana Plant May Start Up in Next Two Days




By Christian Schmollinger

Oct. 24 (Bloomberg) — A chemical plant operated by Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s second-largest oil company, may return to service in the next two days after an unidentified failure caused the shutdown of two units.

Shell is in the process of restarting the gas olefins and the liquid olefins cracker units at the plant in Norco, Louisiana, said Wade Gauthreaux, the site supervisor on duty. The gas unit, capable of producing 1.4 million pounds a year of the chemical used to make plastics, will return to service first, he said.

The plant shut yesterday because of a power failure, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reported, citing a company spokeswoman. Gauthreaux disagreed, saying the problem was not power related. He did not give a specific reason for the shutdown, saying that an investigation is still continuing.

“The theory is that it’s another problem,” Gauthreaux said by telephone. “We’ll be bringing the gas plant back first since it didn’t go down and that can return the fastest.”

The liquids cracker can produce 1.9 million pounds of olefins, according to Shell Chemical’s Web site.

To contact the reporter on this story: Christian Schmollinger in Singapore at[email protected].

Last Updated: October 23, 2008 23:27 EDT


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