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Polypropylene Production Lines Back Up At Lake Charles Facility
August 03, 2021

Another major North American Polypropylene (PP) producer is bringing production back online. LyondellBasell said both PP lines at its Lake Charles facility in Louisiana are back up and running, following a lightning strike that shut all plant production lines in mid-July.

In a letter to customers, the company said its K-line came up over the weekend. The J-line asset was restarted back on July 20. The combined PP capacity of both assets is at approximately 1.4 million mt/year.

Before the lightning strike, LyondellBasell lifted its Force Majeure (FM) on PP but kept a sales control program in place to help facilitate supply and customer demand.

Other North American PP producers are still building inventory but are not collectively flush with material at normal supply positions. At least six PP producers remain on FM, with one other producer on allocation.

Some additional supply relief is expected this month from TotalEnergies after they announced last week they plan to partially end FM on PP from a Texas facility in early August. However, the company noted that exiting FM will not "open the door to unlimited supply" and they would need additional time to rebuild inventories to reasonable levels, especially during hurricane season.

By Brian Balboa for The Plastics Exchange.

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