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Equistar to temporarily idle Chocolate Bayou olefins unit
Dec '08
Equistar Chemicals, LP, will temporarily idle its olefins unit at Chocolate Bayou, Texas, due to declining market and economic conditions. The olefins unit is expected to remain out of service until sufficient demand for petrochemical derivatives resumes. The Chocolate Bayou plant has a nameplate capacity of 1.2 billion pounds per year of ethylene and 725 million pounds of propylene.

"Demand for petrochemical derivatives continues to be very weak. With our olefins flexibility in North America, we can optimize physical assets and contain a portion of our costs while continuing to meet the needs of our customers," said Vaughn Deasy, Vice President of Base Chemicals for LyondellBasell. Equistar Chemicals is an indirect subsidiary of LyondellBasell Industries AF S.C.A.

LyondellBasell affiliates have recently idled several chemical and polymers plants around the world to optimize operations due to low demand. For example, Equistar temporarily idled an olefins unit at La Porte, Texas, in October. These facilities are being maintained in a state of readiness to restart as market conditions improve.

LyondellBasell, through its global subsidiaries, has 11 olefins plants worldwide and a rated annual capacity of 14.9 billion pounds of ethylene and 8.7 billion pounds of propylene. This includes world-scale crackers in the United States at Channelview, La Porte, Chocolate Bayou and Corpus Christi, Texas; Clinton, Iowa, and Morris, Illinois; and in Europe at Wesseling and Muenchsmunster, Germany, and Berre, France.

LyondellBasell Industries is one of the world's largest polymers, petrochemicals and fuels companies. We are the global leader in polyolefins technology, production and marketing; a pioneer in propylene oxide and derivatives; and a significant producer of fuels and refined products, including biofuels.


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