Olin Chlor Alkali Tracy Plant

The Olin Chlor Alkali plant located in Tracy, California began production in 1971. However, it was August of 2007 when the plant was purchased by the Olin Corporation. The plant belongs to a company that is currently the largest producer of industrial bleach in America.  This bleach is utilized in food processing, water treatments, and disinfectants.  There are currently 20 full-time employees and the plant sits on 15 acres.  The San Joaquin Valley, where the plant is located, is home to approximately 82,000 people, and located about 60 miles outside of San Fransico, California. As a company, the Olin Corporation is a manufacturer with concentration in two segments of business.  These are Chlor Alkali Products, who manufacture chlorine, caustic soda, sodium hydrosulfite, hydrochloric acid, potassium hydroxide, and bleach products.  Their other segment, Winchester, produces sporting ammunition, canister powder, reloading components, industrial cartridges, and small caliber military ammunition. As of 2008, the Olin Corporation announced plans to consider construction of a salt- to- bleach facility in Northern California. However, they are also considering the pre-existing Tracy plant as a possible location. This would make the Tracy plant and the Olin Corporation the first in Northern California to offer bleach produced by an on-site generation plant. Despite the reported $2 million dollars spent in plant improvement over recent years, the age of the plant indicates that materials such as asbestos were potentially used prior to government regulations. Asbestos poses a dangerous health risk to those who come into contact with it. Many power plants lined their equipment, machinery, and plumbing with asbestos. The material’s frequent use throughout such plants is, in part, responsible for the high rate of cancers found in former employees, namely, mesothelioma. The development of mesothelioma continues today among previous power plant workers, and the Tracy plant remains on a list of chemical plants that potentially exposed former employees to dangerous levels of asbestos. References: Olin Evaluates Salt-to-Bleach Plant for California Olin Corporation Tracy, CA