News from Notch Consulting, Inc.

June 16, 2011

Stranded tanker carried CBO

Filed under: Carbon Black — Notch @ 11:24 pm

An oil tanker carrying carbon black oil (CBO) was freed yesterday after becoming stuck in mud for several days about 5 miles from the Gulf of Mexico. The 800-foot tanker Ratna Puja was southbound when it got stuck Monday night. Ships were able to get around the stranded vessel, but the incident highlighted the dangers of the swollen Mississippi.

Rep. Cedric Richmond of Louisiana’s second district used the incident to warn that such events may become more frequent.

Richmond said he has addressed the matter with the White House and the Army Corps of Engineers. Record water flow in the Mississippi River this spring has deposited additional sediment and reduced the operating depth of the river, putting large cargo ships at risk of running aground. Richmond warns closure of the Mississippi to heavy cargo traffic would cost the country as much as $295 million a day.

“The solution is simple,” he said in a statement. “The president must immediately request a supplemental appropriations bill to fund the Army Corps of Engineers dredging work. In the long term, Congress must use the $6 Billion in shippers’ tax money set aside for this very purpose in the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund.”

EC clears Birla’s Columbian acquisition

Filed under: Carbon Black — Notch @ 11:13 pm

From the Wall Street Journal comes word that the European Commission has cleared India’s Aditya Birla Group to buy U.S. company Columbian Chemicals, in a move that would bring together two of the four largest world producers of carbon black, a chemical mostly used in the production of tires.

“The Commission has concluded that although the merger would create one of the three largest companies in the sector, European customers would continue to enjoy healthy competition,” it said in a statement.

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