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Shell Plans $717 Million Olefins Plant Expansion In Ascension Parish, Louisiana

Shell Chemical LP will develop a new $717 million linear alpha olefins manufacturing unit at the company’s complex in Ascension Parish, Louisiana. The project is expected to create 20 new jobs, while retaining 650 existing jobs at Shell Geismar.

The manufacturing unit will produce alpha olefins, chemicals that are used to produce a variety of consumer and industrial products including plastics, synthetic lubricants, drilling fluids and household detergents. The linear alpha olefins unit will generate 425 kilotons per year, making Shell Geismar the largest alpha olefins production site in the world. Construction will begin during the first quarter of 2016, and the unit is expected to begin operations in 2018, according to Louisiana Economic Development.

“This expansion project is great news for Shell’s Geismar site and the region,” Shell Geismar General Manager Rhoman Hardy said. “We are now focused on the safe and efficient integration of this high-value project into the plant’s day-to-day operations. Shell remains a vital economic engine in this region, and a good corporate neighbor for years to come.”

The alpha olefins unit will be constructed within the 800-acre Shell Geismar site. The plant is located at River Road and Louisiana 3251, on the east bank of the Mississippi River. The Ascension Parish project will be the fourth alpha olefins unit at Shell Chemical’s Geismar plant, which has been in operation since 1967.

To secure the project, the state offered a competitive incentive package that includes the comprehensive solutions of LED FastStat - the state workforce development program. In addition, the company is expected to utilize Louisiana’s Enterprise Zone and Industrial Tax Exemption programs.

“We are extremely pleased about Shell Chemical’s commitment to continue to grow its Ascension Parish assets,” Ascension Parish President Tommy Martinez said. “Shell Chemical is one of Ascension’s best corporate citizens. We not only appreciate the jobs it provides but also the corporate support and volunteer spirit of its employees.”

“We know that Shell Chemical had several choices as to where to site this new project,” said President/CEO Mike Eades of the Ascension Economic Development Corp. “We are grateful for its ongoing faith in the Geismar site and the employees there.”

“Shell Chemical’s expansion is illustrative of the vibrancy of the regional economy, as well as the continued strength of the petrochemical industry,” Baton Rouge Area Chamber President/CEO Adam Knapp said. “BRAC has worked closely with Shell over the years and the company continues to serve as a good corporate citizen, employing more than 700 within the region.

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