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The Vinyl Institute Recognizes Safety, Environmental Excellence

Jan 2016

The vinyl industry has worked hard to improve its environmental performance and its worker protection record. The result is major improvements in both, as evidenced by industry-wide Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) data as well as the health, safety, and environmental records of individual vinyl plants.

For example, the vinyl industry has a work-related incidence rate that is one-quarter the rate for chemical plants and one-seventh the rate of the overall manufacturing industry in the United States. There has also been a 83-percent reduction in unit vinyl chloride emissions since 1987. All while PVC resin production has increased by 82 percent over the same time period.

The industry came together recently to celebrate its safety record and environmental excellence. Awards were handed out for safety excellence, safety performance, and environmental excellence at this year’s Vinyl Institute (VI) Annual Meeting. During the event, VI President Richard Doyle said that “to achieve these type of remarkable results speaks volumes about the investments all our members have made, and continue to make, in safety training, process improvements, and emissions reductions.”

5 Awards for Safety Excellence
The VI’s Safety Excellence Award is based on OSHA recordable incidents, which are defined as an occupational injury or illness resulting in medical treatment.  The award, which recognizes plants with five or more consecutive years with no recordable incidents, was presented to:

  • Oxy Vinyls, LP for its PVC plant in Pedricktown, NJ (14 consecutive years with no recordable incidents)
  • Mexichem Specialty Resins, Inc. for its PVC plant in Pedricktown, NJ (13 consecutive years with no recordable incidents)
  • Oxy Vinyls Canada, Inc. for its PVC plant in Niagara Falls, Ontario (seven consecutive years with no recordable incidents)
  • Occidental Chemical for its Ethylene Dichloride (EDC) plant in Convent, LA (six consecutive years with no recordable incidents)
  • Westlake Vinyls Company, LP for its PVC plant in Geismar, LA (five consecutive years with no recordable incidents)

8 Awards for Safety Performance
The VI’s Safety Performance Award recognizes efforts to improve worker safety based upon OSHA’s recordable incidence rate. The award, which recognizes plants with no recordable incidents for the reporting year, was presented to eight companies representing 17 facilities in the vinyl and EDC/vinyl chloride monomer (VCM) categories:

  • Formosa Plastics Corporation, USA for its PVC plant in Baton Rouge, LA, and for its EDC/VCM plant in Point Comfort, TX
  • Mexichem Specialty Resins, Inc. for its PVC plant in Pedricktown, NJ
  • Occidental Chemical Corporation for its EDC plants in Convent, LA, and Geismar, LA, and for its EDC/VCM plant in Ingleside, TX
  • Oxy Vinyls Canada, Inc. for its PVC plant in Niagara Falls, ON
  • Oxy Vinyls, LP for its PVC plants in Deer Park, TX, Pasadena, TX, and Pedricktown, NJ, and for its VCM plant in Deer Park, TX
  • Shintech, Inc. for its PVC plants in Addis, LA, and Plaquemine, LA, and for its EDC/VCM plant in Plaquemine, LA
  • Westlake PVC Corporation for its PVC plant in Calvert City, KY
  • Westlake Vinyls Company, LP for its VCM and PVC plants in Geismar, LA

6 Awards for Environmental Excellence
The VI’s Environmental Excellence Award is based on outstanding performance under the EPA National Emission Standard for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) and an outstanding track record of environmental performance for five or more years. Shintech, Inc’s PVC plant in Freeport, TX, won the award for 24 consecutive years of outstanding environmental performance.
In addition to Shintech, awards for outstanding environmental performance were handed out to:

  • Oxy Vinyls, LP’s PVC plant in Deer Park, TX (14 consecutive years of achievement)
  • Oxy Vinyls, LP’s PVC plant in Pedricktown, NJ (9 consecutive years of achievement)
  • Occidental Chemical Corporation’s EDC/VCM plant in Ingleside, TX (seven consecutive years of achievement)
  • Westlake Vinyls, Inc.’s EDC/VCM plant in Calvert City, KY (seven consecutive years of achievement)
  • Occidental Chemical Corporation’s EDC/VCM plant in La Porte, TX (five consecutive years of achievement)

2 Environmental Honor Awards
The Vinyl Institute also handed out Environmental Honor Awards (one each in the PVC and EDC/VCM categories) to Formosa Plastics Corporation, USA for its specialty PVC plant in Point Comfort, TX and to Oxy Vinyls, LP for its VCM plant in Deer Park, TX. The environmental criteria for the award includes emissions reduction under the NESHA, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), and EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory (TRI).