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Two Fresh Force Majeure Declarations Amid Feedstock Woes
September 14, 2023

NOVA Chemicals has declared a force majeure on its Polyethylene resins, including both HDPE and LDPE, produced at its facilities in Ontario, Canada. The announcement, made on September 14, attributes the disruption to an unplanned outage at its nearby Corunna Cracker which supplies the Ethylene feedstock for the Moore and St. Clair sites. The Moore facility has an annual production capacity of 840 million lbs of Polyethylene; the St. Clair River site has an annual PE capacity of nearly 400 million lbs.

INEOS Olefins & Polymers has declared a Force Majeure (FM) on its Polypropylene Homopolymer (HoPP) production at its Carson, California facility. The announcement, made September 12, cites complications associated with the acquisition of Polymer Grade Propylene (PGP) feedstock as the reason for the disruption and may potentially extend to all grades of Polypropylene, not just those produced at the Carson plant. INEOS' Carson plant has a production capacity of approximately 500 million lbs. It is the only Polypropylene production facility located west of the Rocky Mountains.

CPChem previously declared Force Majeure on August 16 for its HDPE resins produced at its Orange, TX facility with 900 million lbs of annual production capacity. The move was triggered by an equipment failure.

These force majeure declarations are not isolated incidents but part of a larger, more complex Petrochemical industry issue currently straining the supply chain. Other recent upstream disruptions include Dow Chemical's PDH unit that makes PGP monomer in Freeport, TX and Enterprise PDH #1 in Chambers County, TX as well as the recent shutdowns of two of the nation's largest refineries due to fire, BASF / TotalEnergies in Port Arthur, TX and Marathon in Garyville, LA.

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