Environmental Groups Protest $1.3 Billion Shintech Expansion
BATON ROUGE – A coalition of 13 environmental and community groups has come out against a planned $1.3 billion expansion of Shintech facilities in Iberville and West Baton Rouge parishes.
The groups said the projects will increase cancer-causing pollution in Black communities and hinder Gov. John Bel Edwards’ efforts to reduce the state’s carbon emissions. They said the state should pivot toward cleaner industries and encourage hiring local workers to cap and clean up abandoned oil infrastructure, arguing a potential $6.6 million state grant to encourage the investment would be better spent boosting small businesses.
Shintech is the world’s leading manufacturer of polyvinyl chloride resins, or PVC. The company plans to increase capacity at its manufacturing facility in Plaquemine, which is expected to be completed this year. Shintech also is expanding its PVC packaging and warehouse operation in Addis.
Officials touting the projects said they will create 30 new jobs with average annual salaries of $86,000 while helping the company to retain hundreds more workers.
“The jobs and infrastructure the company has built in Plaquemine and Addis continue to create much-needed economic development in our communities,” Shintech Vice President of Manufacturing Danny Cedotal said.
By David Jacobs of the Center Square