Nan Ya shuts petrochemical plant in Yunlin
The China Post news staffThe China Post news staff -- The Formosa Plastics Group (FPG) finally shut down yesterday the manufacturing operations of an isononyl alcohol plant at the group's petrochemical complex in Mailiao area of Yunlin County in southwestern Taiwan in accordance with industrial plant safety procedures.
June 6, 2011, 11:37 pm TWN
The isononyl alcohol plant is among the five petrochemical plants of Nan Ya Plastics Corporation, an affiliate of the FPG, ordered to close for inspection following successive fires on May 12 and 18.
Top administrators at Yunlin County Government were on hand to see the machinery equipment eventually grind to a halt at the plant, almost two months after the latest fire at the sprawling Mailiao petrochemical complex, also known as Taiwan's No. 6 naphtha cracking complex.
They included Magistrate Su Chi-fen, Deputy Magistrate Lin Yuan-chuan, and senior officials from the departments of economic development, labor affairs, fire prevention, and environmental protection from the county government.
The high-profile presence of the officials was aimed at demonstrating the county government's determination to force the FPG to improve its industrial and manufacturing operations to prevent similar industrial hazards from occurring in the future.
There were speculations that the county government was not serious enough about enforcing the plant closure order it issued earlier.
The local government agreed to give extra time of two months for Nan Ya Plastics to gradually wind down the operations for safety reasons as suggested by the company.
Executives of the company had asked for a measured and phased shutdown of the five plants considering the complicated chemical process.
They explained that production at the isononyl alcohol plant was suspended yesterday because all the petrochemical materials at the factory were used up and the equipment was not refilled with new materials.
No new materials were furnished at the other four plants producing ethylene glycol (EG), butylene glycol, bisphenol A (BPA) as operations were planned to come to a halt after the existing materials were used up.
County government officials reaffirmed their firm decision to enforce the rules and asked Nan Ya Plastics to submit its plant closure plans and procedures for four other plants before June 7.
The complete shutdown of the plants must be completed within two months or the company will face fines of NT$300,000 for every single day past the deadline, they said.
Executives at Nan Ya stressed the shutdown procedures at all plants would be executed in line with maximum safety standards to avoid any possible glitches or technical snags.