Third Plant in Geismar for Methanol supplier

Striving to make North American industries, like our surging construction industry, more independent, Methanex announced its plans to expand into a third facility in Geismar, Louisiana, by the second half of 2022. With this third location, Methanex will have one of the largest methanol complexes in the world. It will produce potentially 1.8 million metric tons of methanol per year at the new 145-acre site. Most importantly, though, is the new Methanex branch's expansion in the local economy. Essential resource production aside, Methanex's stimulus to the local economy is representative of the re-emergence of North American-made production across the United States and Canada.

Methanex and consulting economists estimate the third plant will add 230 direct jobs within Louisiana, as well as 1500 indirect jobs in the region, not to mention the effective increase to construction jobs in the South Eastern States and beyond. More than 1,000 construction jobs can expect to bloom from the new seeds of industry planted by Methanex.

The prevalence of methanol in the American market alone should not be underestimated. Methanol is an ingredient found in everything from windshield washer fluid to recyclable plastic bottles, paint silicone sealants, plywood floors, and synthetic fibers. However, it is most notably used in the energy industry for blending in gasoline and other fuels. Methanol literally propels, pulls, and sparks combustion engines from big rigs to NASCAR competitions and everyday small engine equipment to gas generators that keep construction worksites lit and productive long after the sun has set. The usefulness of methanol-infused gasoline has kept this chemical in a tight competition against electric-powered alternatives still in development. Methanol has an irreplaceable versatility that will maintain its relevance even in our evolving market.

Resource scarcity has reminded us of the importance of local industry more than ever. While the modern economy of today relies on the benefits of globalization to support the ever-growing consumer population, overreliance on non-native produced goods can and has had negatives consequences closer to home. This includes the diminution of the North American job market. Inexpensive labor and production costs entice companies to manufacture overseas. The initial savings of this method have one key drawback to both the buyer and seller that has only multiplied, as the expense of raw materials has risen dramatically in recent decades. That drawback is transport. An uptick in fees shouldered by the seller to export to North America spurs an increase in product price over time. Also, consider the cost of fuel, natural disasters en route, or even unexpected delays— such as the Suez Canal blockage in Canada this March in 2021. Local competition creates an alternative to expected and unexpected rising costs. North American jobs may be our only combatant to unsustainable price gouging.

There is yet another hidden cost of international trade. Product packaging to ensure safety during shipping is often overlooked by the consumer, but it is the driving force behind our neighborhood recycling industry. Per person, the EPA estimates we generate around 4.9 pounds of recycling per day. But now, consider the amount of recycling by-product bore by even one manufacturing plant. Without a more cost-effective alternative to importing resources from Tier 3 suppliers in Asia, Tier 1 and 2 manufacturers must pay hefty fees to dispose of single-use sealed plastic containers for chemicals, treated pallet boards, shrink wrap, boxes, and more. Further investiture in our local recycling plants could eliminate the bulk of this waste burdening our landfills.

Methanex's expansion is a sign of the changing times. North America is looking to support local businesses that encourage growth in our job markets, support sustainable initiatives, and reduce our dependency on foreign goods so we can restore balance to our position in the global economy.

At General Equipment and Supply, we reflect those key values. With the increase in development in Louisiana, thanks to Methanex and other local businesses like GES, we are ready to fill your welding, cable-pulling, and gang box storage needs. Our reconditioned industrial tools and equipment help you get the job done right the first time. GES's reconditioned tools are environmentally sustainable and save you steep discounts at over 50% or more on the branded equipment you want for your next project. See our collection of used, reconditioned, and surplus products from Greenlee, Knaack, Sumner, Miller, Ridgid, and more. Our local team is happy to help you find the right tool. Shop with GES today!

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