Arkema Louisville Plant

The Arkema Louisville plant is a chemical plant located in Louisville, Kentucky. A type of acrylic resin is Arkema’s signature product. This plant makes the molding resin that is a key element in Plexiglas and many other products. The resin made at the plant ends up in lighting applications, medical equipment and some car parts such as dashboard panels. Resin at the Louisville plant is also used in DVDs. The finished product is shipped throughout the world. Many of the finished products from the plant are drilled, screwed and hammered and must be durable.

The plant in Louisville opened in 1968 making molding resin as a division of Rohm and Hass. Operations continued in 1992 when AtoHaas was formed. The plant has been fully owned by Arkema Inc. since 1998. It currently employs 73 people with an annual payroll of $6.3 million.  The plant is known for adhering to local and national environmental regulations in its manufacturing process. The plant has also been involved with the surrounding community. Efforts have been made to adapt to new techniques to reduce the environmental impact of the plant.

The Arkema Louisville plant is located along the Ohio River in the Rubbertown area. This area was so-named because it is where tires were manufactured for the war effort during World War II. The city itself is home to approximately one million people. The Rubbertown area is still home to several manufacturing plants. Many of these companies work together to address local environmental concerns. The area is also a major source of employment for Louisville residents.

Despite these factors, the Arkema plant may not have always been a safe place to work.  Many chemical manufacturing facilities built in the 1960s and 1970s made extensive use of asbestos in their building materials.  Exposure to asbestos is known to cause mesothelioma, a rare and aggressive cancer of the lining of the chest and abdomen.  Because symptoms mimic those of other, less serious respiratory problems, mesothelioma often goes undiagnosed until the cancer has spread beyond the range of standard treatments, making it an extremely deadly disease.