‘Perfect storm’ exposes fragility of Louisiana’s industrial supply chain


It came as a surprise to many that Louisiana’s industrial supply chain was so vulnerable. A series of unfortunate and unthinkable events in 2020 and 2021 severely disrupted its reliability at nearly every level, and led to shortages in everything from steel, raw materials and industrial valves to skilled laborers and drivers, reports 10/12 Industry Report in the Fall 2021 issue.

The COVID-19 pandemic caused much of it, but not all. Shutdowns in upstream manufacturing facilities kicked it off, only to be followed by a range of transportation issues—including shipping delays at multiple West Coast ports, rail bottlenecks and an alarming lack of trucks. 

In South Louisiana, all of that was exacerbated by the impacts of three catastrophic hurricanes in only 12 months, and a host of other weather scares. Some South Louisiana chemical plants aren’t meeting production goals because they can’t get raw materials. And industrial facilities all along the Gulf Coast are delaying scheduled maintenance turnarounds and capital projects into 2022—after already pushing them back a year—because of rapid inflation and an unpredictable supply. Read the entire story.