“Shell Chemicals is the No. 1 or No. 2 global producer of LAO, detergent alcohols and ethoxylates,” said David G. Naugle, vice president, higher olefins and derivatives (HODers), Shell Chemicals LP. “To maintain a leading position, we have to be flexible in dealing with the changing needs of customers and opportunities to grow in the next few years.”
The 35-year-old Geismar plant has become a leading producer of Shell Chemicals’ detergent products, due to new alpha olefin, olefin feed-prep and alcohol units.
The site, originally spanning 700 acres on the Mississippi River, purchased an historic sugar cane plantation next door, The Ashland-Belle Helene house, and now has a total of 810 acres. Part of the agreement was that Shell Chemicals would maintain the plantation house. Archeological digs revealed dolls, pottery, bottles and many other items used by African-Americans since 1839. One of the oldest items recovered was a 1793 Spanish medio real that was probably used as a necklace or charm.
The Shell Chemical plant also supports the River Road African American Museum and the publication of “Our Roots Run Deep,” a history of the museum located in Darrow, LA.