Dow idles more PE capacity.
Dow Chemical Co.'s Polyolefins and Elastomers business group in Houston is idling another 885 million lb/yr of polyethylene capacity, primarily for LLDPE, at unspecified plants in North America. The cutbacks, which started in August, were prompted by continued weak demand and increased feedstock costs, according to commercial v.p. Bob Biel. Added to about 600 million lb of capacity previously mothballed at two plants in Texas in 2001, the new cutbacks bring idled domestic PE capacity at Dow and its Union Carbide subsidiary to more than 1.4 billion lb. Says Biel, "It is less costly for us to idle these plants than to run them."