(recasts with updates throughout)
HOUSTON (ICIS)--Several petrochemical companies as well as government agencies were conducting safety checks at facilities and logistical points in Texas on Friday in an attempt to return to operations almost a week after Hurricane Harvey made landfall near Corpus Christi.
The remnants of Harvey, which on Friday was a post-tropical depression, were moving northeast over Tennessee, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said.
The US Coast Guard began lifting Houston-Galveston port restrictions, and the port of Houston reopened its terminals in Texas. Previously, the ports of Houston, Texas City, Galveston and Freeport reopened with certain vessel traffic restrictions, as did Corpus Christi. Several others remain closed including Beaumont, Mont Belvieu, Port Arthur and Port Neches in Texas, as well as Lake Charles in Louisiana.
Offshore oil and gas platforms in the Gulf of Mexico continued to be surveyed to determine whether they can resume normal operations, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) said.
Meanwhile, Arkema said its Crosby liquid organic peroxides plant in Texas is still at risk of catching fire in the next few days. The plant closed on 25 August as a precaution, but rainfall and floods disrupted the electrical supply needed to keep those chemicals refrigerated. Arkema confirmed on Thursday that smoke and fire have been reported.
Several companies are planning restarts at their facilities:
- Citgo Corpus Christi refinery in Texas.
- Eastman Texas City plant in Texas.
- Enterprise Mont Belvieu fractionators in Texas.
- Enterprise Mont Belvieu splitter III units in Texas.
- Huntsman Conroe regular shift schedules in Texas.
- INVISTA Victoria nylon intermediates plant in Texas.
- KMG Houston and Waller plants in Texas.
- LyondellBasell Corpus Christi olefins plant in Texas.
- Marathon Texas City refinery in Texas.
- Phillips 66 Freeport terminal in Texas.
Previously, companies had declared force majeure or implemented allocation because of Harvey:
- Ascend declared force majeure on acrylonitrile (ACN), hydrogen cyanide (HCN) and disodium iminodiacetate (DSIDA) from Chocolate Bayou, Texas.
- BASF declared force majeure on acrylic monomers and oxo-alcohols.
- Celanese declared force majeure on vinyl acetate monomer (VAM).
- Covestro declared force majeure on methyl di-p phenylene isocyanate (MDI), toluene di-isocyanate (TDI), polyols, liquid caustic soda (50%), hydrochloric acid (HCl) (36%), hexamethylene di-isocyanate (HDI), isophorone di-isocyanate (IPDI), select pre-polymers and aspartics from Baytown and Channelview, Texas.
- Dow declared force majeure on methyl di-p phenylene isocyanate (MDI).
- Enterprise is evaluating potential curtailment of natural gas liquid (NGL) fractionation at Mont Belvieu, Texas.
- Formosa declared force majeure on polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP).
- Formosa declared force majeure on chlor-alkali.
- INEOS declared force majeure on phenol and acetone.
- INEOS declared force majeure on polypropylene (PP) after the storm's effects on Chocolate Bayou and La Porte, Texas.
- INVISTA declared force majeure on butanediol (BDO). Other products included adiponitrile (ADN), hexamethylene diamine (HMDA), adipic acid, polytetramethylene ether glycol, tetrahydrofuran, nylon 6,6, DYTEK specialties and Flexisolv solvent products.
- LyondellBasell declared force majeure on styrene.
- Monument declared force majeure on Texas-based products.
- Olin declared force majeure on chlor-alkali from Freeport, Texas.
- Occidental Chemical (OxyChem) declared force majeure on polyvinyl chloride (PVC) after Pasadena and Deer Park shutdowns in Texas.
Previously, several companies had shut down or reduced operating rates in Texas as a precaution to Harvey, or had production issues stemming from severe weather, heavy rains and flooding:
- A Schulman kept three Houston "" harvey="" heads="" toward="" louisiana="" as="" texas="" plants="" remain="" down= "">facilities closed in Texas.
- American Acryl shut down Bayport acrylic acid in Texas.
- Ashland shut down Texas City plant in Texas.
- Berry shut down two plastics plants.
- Braskem shut down Seadrift PP in Texas.
- Chevron Phillips Chemical (CP Chem) shut down certain operations at Cedar Bayou and Sweeny, as well as other facilities as appropriate in Texas. Previously, the company said it was conducting a sitewide shutdown at Cedar Bayou.
- CP Chem shut down its Pasadena Plastics Complex in Texas, which produces PE.
- CP Chem shut down its Port Arthur complex in Texas.
- Citgo shut down its Corpus Christi refinery in Texas.
- Covestro reduced operations at Baytown MDI, TDI, polycarbonate (PC), aniline and chlorine. Later, the company said it has suspended production on most products at Baytown and Channelview in Texas.
- DCP shut down its Andrews natural gas processing plant in Texas.
- Dow flared at its Texas City VAM plant in Texas.
- Dow shut down Seadrift operations. The company said it remains operational at remaining Texas sites. However, it had a process upset at Freeport olefins after a lightning strike to another facility.
- DuPont shut down its Orange olefins plant in Texas.
- Eastman shut down its Texas City plant in Texas.
- Enterprise shut down its Mont Belvieu south plant in Texas.
- Enterprise said three of six propylene splitters are in operation or in limited service.
- Enterprise's ethane export terminal is out of service.
- Enterprise's liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) export terminal is out of service.
- ExxonMobil shut down its Baytown refinery and chemicals plant in Texas.
- Flint Hills Resources flared at Houston propane dehydrogentation (PDH) in Texas.
- Flint Hills shut down its Port Arthur olefins plant in Texas.
- Formosa shut down its Point Comfort chlor-alkali in Texas.
- An Indorama unit tripped at Clear Lake ethylene oxide in Texas.
- INEOS had an upset at Chocolate Bayou olefins 1 and 2 plants in Texas.
- INEOS shut down its Green Lake acrylonitrile plant in Texas.
- INVISTA lost power at its adiponitrile (ADN) operations in Orange, Texas and shut HCN production.
- INVISTA shut down its Victoria nylon intermediates plant in Texas.
- Javelina shut down its Corpus Christi gas processing in Texas.
- Lucite shut down its Beaumont methyl methacrylate (MMA) plant in Texas.
- LyondellBasell shut down its Bayport, Chocolate Bayou, Corpus Christi, La Porte, Matagorda and Victoria sites in Texas. Previously, the company said it was conducting preparations at its Corpus Christi olefins plant.
- LyondellBasell shut down or partially shut down its BD production at Channelview in Texas.
- LyondellBasell scaled back operations at its Houston refinery in Texas.
- Marathon shut down its Texas City refinery in Texas.
- Petrobras shut down its Pasadena refinery in Texas.
- Phillips 66 shut down its Sweeny refinery in Texas.
- Phillips 66 shut down its Beaumont terminal in Texas. Its Lake Charles and Alliance refineries and terminals in Louisiana continue to operate.
- Shell shut down its Deer Park refinery and chemicals plant in Texas.
- Occidental Chemical (OxyChem)/OxyVinyls shut down Ingleside ethylene and chlor-alkali in Texas.
- Stolt shut down its Houston bulk-liquid storage terminal in Texas.
- Targa shut down its Cedar Bayou fractionator in Texas.
- Targa received a natural gas liquid (NGL) sales curtailment.
- Total had a power outage that caused its Port Arthur refinery in Texas to shut down.
- TPC boilers tripped at its Houston BD site in Texas.
- TPC shut its operations at its Port Neches site in Texas.
- Valero shut down its Port Arthur refinery in Texas.
- DuPont is down at its Victoria site in Texas for a previously planned outage. It will commence start-up activities when the weather improves.
- INEOS discovered a heat exchanger tube leak at its Pasadena site in Texas. Repairs are unable to commence until weather risks pass.
To view an interactive map of petrochemical plants in Texas, click here. Use the drop-down menu to see plants by products, and zoom in to see more details.
Photo above: Coast Guard aircrews conduct flyovers to assess the ports of Houston, Texas City, Freeport and Galveston on 31 August. These port assessments are conducted in order to identify any damaged Coast Guard regulated port facility, potential oil spills or chemical release and any navigational obstruction along the ports. (US Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Patrick Kelley)