Monday, August 28, 2017

Force majeure declared by Alvin, Texas acrylonitrile plant

Ascend Performance Materials declares force majeure due to impacts of Hurricane Harvey 
August 28, 2017 
Company’s Chocolate Bayou facility in Alvin, Texas, ceases operations until further notice 
Ascend Performance Materials today announced it has declared force majeure on materials produced at its Chocolate Bayou facility, including hydrogen cyanide (HCN), acrylonitrile (AN) and disodium iminodiacetate (DSIDA). The company’s Chocolate Bayou manufacturing facility has ceased operations as a result of equipment issues and the reduction of supply of raw materials caused by the effects of Hurricane Harvey. 
At present, availability of product is reduced, and the company will allocate existing products as prescribed in its contracts. The company is working with affected customers to minimize the impact to their respective businesses and will continue to provide customer updates regarding supply.
In 2015, Ascend claimed that the Chocolate Bayou facility was "the largest acrylonitrile production plant in the world." Will be interesting to see if this affects acetonitrile prices, or if other suppliers will step up.

Best wishes to those affected by Harvey, and also those at the Chocolate Bayou plant.

UPDATE: C&EN's first story on Harvey, including a look at the storm's effects on academic laboratories. (article by Jyllian Kemsley and Melody Bomgardner)

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