UPDATED AUG. 28 Mandatory evacuations are taking place along the Louisiana Gulf Coast where Hurricane Ida is forecast to make landfall as a strong Category 4 storm late on Aug. 29 or early the following morning.
"Hurricane conditions are expected ... along the Louisiana coast beginning Sunday with tropical conditions to begin by late [Saturday]," the National Hurricane Center said in an update on the storm conditions issued 2 p.m. on Aug. 28. "These conditions will spread inland over portions of Louisiana and Mississippi Sunday night and Monday."
Ida is expected to make landfall somewhere near New Orleans.
Consulting firm ICIS noted that the storm is likely to impact oil and chemical production sites in the Gulf of Mexico and along the Gulf Coast. Some facilities are continuing operations, but monitoring conditions.
ExxonMobil and Sasol sites in Louisiana were beginning to implement early stages of hurricane preparations as of Aug. 27, but had not actively begun to shut down any production, ICIS noted.
"An estimated 35 percent of North American styrene production capacity is in the path of Hurricane Ida," ICIS said. "Although the styrene market has recovered from earlier supply disruptions and outages that stemmed from the mid-February winter storm, outages at these sites would have an immediate impact on styrene market dynamics."
The storm also could impact chlorine production, which will impact the capacity of PVC, ICIS said.
The Lake Charles, La., area saw extensive damage in 2020 from Hurricane Laura and Hurricane Delta, which impacted the supply of resins and disrupted transportation.