Odour detected in Louisiana; source could be ExxonMobil's JV refinery

04 April 2013 21:00  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--The US Coast Guard said on Thursday it is investigating reports of an odour in the New Orleans area in Louisiana and believes the source could be an ExxonMobil joint venture refinery, which reported a leak early Wednesday morning.

Chalmette Refining is a joint venture between ExxonMobil and Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA. ExxonMobil is the operating partner.

According to the Coast Guard, the investigation is still ongoing, and the company quickly stopped the leak, which was contained to a unit at the refinery.

 “Air monitoring was initiated immediately upon discovery, and all monitoring throughout the incident has indicated no detection of SO2 [sulphur dioxide], H2S [hydrogen sulphide] or VOC [volatile organic compound] emissions immediately beyond the vicinity of the leak source or at the fenceline,” the Coast Guard said.

The company is working with the Coast Guard and the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality to evaluate all potential sources of the odour.

“We apologise to neighbours for any inconvenience this leak incident may have caused,” said Janet Matsushita, plant manager at Chalmette Refining. “The health and safety of neighbours, community and employees are our top priority.”

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By: Tracy Dang
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