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Braskem restarts Triunfo petrochemical hub

  • : Petrochemicals
  • 24/05/21

Brazilian petrochemical giant Braskem started the gradual resumption of operations at its plants in the Triunfo hub, Rio Grande do Sul state.

Braskem said it expects to complete the process in about 15 days, provided that climatic and logistical conditions remain stable.

On 7 May Braskem shut down all of its operations in Rio Grande do Sul state after extreme flooding since late April, but said its polymer inventories were safe and protected from the damage caused by heavy rainfall at its operations in southern Brazil during the past two weeks.

At the time, Braskem said there was no permanent damage to the industrial facilities, but critical water intake and effluent treatment systems were submerged, rendering them inoperable. Additionally, the Santa Clara River terminal, which was preemptively closed by the local port authority, has also been flooded.

Braskem said the decision to resume operations takes into account the safety of people, processes, and logistics, and stated that it will keep the market informed about relevant developments, including their impacts.

Since the Triunfo shutdown, Braskem was working with an operational capacity of 50pc. But the company was heard increasing its operating rates in other Brazilian plants to serve customers in the southern region. Braskem last week ruled out bringing material from Mexico.

The extreme weather in southern Brazil caused a humanitarian crisis in Rio Grande do Sul and left 161 people dead, 85 missing and over 581,000 people displaced, according to the state's civil defense.

Braskem owns and operates six industrial units at the Triunfo hub, with a combined production capacity of over 5mn tonnes (t)/yr of chemicals and thermoplastic resins such as polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), including a 260,000 t/yr bio-based PE plant.

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