Congressman visits Dow facility in St. Charles

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 6, 2005

Louisiana freshman Congressman Charlie Melancon, D-Napoleonville, recently visited the Dow facility, St. Charles Operations, in St. Charles Parish.

After touring the chemical manufacturing site, Congressman Melancon visited with an audience of current and retired Dow (Union Carbide) employees, local and state elected officials, members of the area St. Charles Community Advisory Panel, members of the Louisiana Chemical Association, area industry leaders and members of the River Region Chamber of Commerce.

After a presentation by St. Charles Operations’ Site Leader Nawzer Parakh, U.S. Rep. Melancon discussed with the audience business issues affecting the petrochemical industry and the state’s economy. According to Parakh, Dow gets a “double hit” from high natural gas prices – in both power generation and raw material for products. He called on Melancon, through his participation in the House Resources Committee, “to enact legislation with strong incentives for gas conservation, diversify the nation’s energy supply, increase gas drilling and exploration, and invest in storage and infrastructure.”

Congressman Melancon said although his position requires him to spend time in Washington, spending the majority of his time in the district he represents is paramount to his success. “The chemical industry, including Dow, is vital to the economic wellbeing of the state, particularly in the Third District,” he said. “We must do something about the high costs of energy and the captive nature of the rail system, which continue to adversely affect industry.”