Disappointing market conditions and power-supply issues can no longer hurt one Texas aluminum smelter, but not because costs and competition started to ease. Instead, Alcoa recently made the decision to curtail production at their aluminum smelter in Rockdale, Texas.
In a press release, John Thuestad, President of Alcoa’s US Primary Products business, stated, “When we initially curtailed half of our aluminum production in Rockdale, we said it would be extremely challenging to try to be competitive operating only half of the plant. Unfortunately, the cumulative effect of operating only half of the smelter, well-known issues regarding the cost and long-term reliability of the power supply in Rockdale, and current market conditions, has forced us to make this difficult decision.”
The world leader in aluminum production, Alcoa plans to adjust worldwide aluminum production, predicting a reduction that drops 30,000 tons from their annual 5 million tons. The company cites decreased demand for aluminum as another reason for this decline.
“The ongoing effort and dedication of our employees and our community are what make this especially difficult,” Thuestad added in the company statement. “We will look to work with our community and the region to ease the impact and try to return Rockdale to being a globally competitive producer of metal.”