Industrial capital investment puts Louisiana among states with best economic development


Major capital investment in industrial projects are responsible for Louisiana’s recognition this year as one of the nation’s best economic development performances.

Area Development magazine has bestowed the Silver Shovel Award on the state, among those that create the most significant impact from 10 leading investment and job creation projects during 2019.

This is the ninth time in 11 years that Louisiana has won Area Development’s Silver Shovel Award, following previous awards in 2018 and from 2010 through 2016. The magazine evaluates states, giving weighted scores for high-valued jobs per capita, the amount of investment, the number of new facilities, and industry diversity. Projects submitted by Louisiana represent more than $7.2 billion in capital investment and 1,800 new direct jobs.”

Four of the year’s industry announcements featured large capital investment components: South Louisiana Methanol’s $2.2 billion methanol complex in St. James Parish, Valero/Diamond Green Diesel’s $1.5 billion alkylation and renewable diesel projects in Norco, a $1.4 billion investment by Methanex for a methanol plant in Geismar and Shell Chemical’s plans for a $1.2 billion manufacturing expansion at Geismar.

Other Louisiana projects include Bagwell Energy’s 240-job expansion at its Port of Delcambre fabrication center, ExxonMobil’s $469 million investment for a propylene manufacturing unit in Baton Rouge, Ernst & Young’s addition of 200 corporate jobs in New Orleans and SNF’s $375 million expansion for its polymer production plant in Plaquemine.

Louisiana’s economic development projects merited a 2020 Silver Shovel Award in the category for states of 3 million to 5 million people.

Area Development collected information from all 50 states on their top job creation and investment projects. The 2020 Shovel Awards reflect major projects that broke ground, began hiring or invested money in 2019.

Read the announcement.