Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Dow Chemical cuts way, way back on local production, contract worker jobs

The news from Dow Chemical Co. that is cutting production as well as contract jobs came as no surprise.

We issued a warning in a Nov. 20 post entitled "The Worldwide Depression is Upon Us."

With Dow cutting production to 35 percent of capacity at its Freeport site, we wonder what this may mean for the local pollution scene.

We figure it could go one of two ways:

1. With production cut so drastically, there's bound to be much fewer chances for "emissions events," which would be "good."

2. On the other hand, with "thousands" of contract workers idle there will be fewer people running the place, so maybe that could mean more slipshod operating procedures, which would be "bad." As the local Dow spokeslady told The Facts newspaper today, "Dow leadership still is determining where there are contractors they cannot do without..."

We now call on Dow not to keep contract workers on the job who keep the place from blowing us all to Kingdom Come, as long as that makes economic sense.

Dow's stock price closed today at $18.85, a couple bucks above its 52-week low but way off its 52-week high of $45.50.

The cuts at the company's Freeport site were announced after the market closed, so we'll see what effect, if any, the moves have on Wall St. tomorrow.

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