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Chemical plant that caught fire in Laura being replaced

$170M investment announced for new facility
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Posted at 8:07 PM, Jun 30, 2021

A chemical manufacturing plant in Westlake that caught fire in Hurricane Laura last year will be replaced.

Gov. John Bel Edwards attended a groundbreaking ceremony for the facility Wednesday afternoon, where he announced a $170 million investment to replace the BioLab plant.

The comeback means 82 direct jobs and 231 indirect jobs back to Southwest Louisiana, a much needed economic boost after the past year. Hurricane Laura had a direct impact on the chlorine shortage across the country when BioLab was damaged, as the company manufactures pool supplies.

BioLab's new facility will produce trichloroisocyanuric (TCCA), a chlorine-based sanitizer. According to Edwards, 50% of all chlorine and shock products in the U.S. will come from ingredients made at the Westlake plant.

"It's a big economic impact to the country, but it's also a safety factor," the governor explained.

The project is expected to be completed in Spring 2022.

Read more from KPLC.

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