Nucor announces ground breaking in St. James Parish project; names facility general manager
Nucor Corp. announced today that it has broken ground on its direct reduced iron (DRI) making facility that will be located in St. James Parish, Louisiana. The company's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Dan DiMicco, spoke at the event, alongside Governor Bobby Jindal and Economic Development Secretary Stephen Moret.
The company also announced today that Lester Hart has been named the general manager of the St. James Parish facility.
"We are very excited to be here in St. James Parish to break ground on our $750 million DRI facility. This facility is an important investment for our company and the state of Louisiana," said DiMicco. "Our nation's economy has been long-suffering, and strong, solid manufacturing growth is the path back to solid economic growth. At a time when job creation is vital to our nation's economic success, we need more capital investments like this one that are the result of the public and private sectors working together. We would like to thank Governor Bobby Jindal, Economic Development Secretary Stephen Moret, local officials and members of the St. James Parish community for their support of this project."
Nucor's commitment to Louisiana has come after a long process of site selection and permitting, negotiations with state and federal lawmakers, as well as local elected officials and community residents.
Initially, Nucor will build one DRI plant, but has been permitted for the construction and operation of two plants with a combined annual DRI production of 5,500,000 tons.
Direct reduction technology converts natural gas and iron ore pellets into high-quality direct reduced iron used by Nucor's steel mills, along with recycled scrap, to produce numerous high-quality steel products such as sheet, plate, and special bar quality steel. The DRI facility is the first phase of a multi-phase plan that may include a coke plant, blast furnace, pellet plant, and steel mill.
The project will create a substantial number of quality jobs. The project's first phase will create 150 permanent Nucor jobs that earn an average annual salary of $75,000, plus benefits; approximately twice the median household income for that part of Louisiana. During peak construction, 500 jobs will be directly created. If the additional phases of the project are constructed, over time Nucor could have a total investment of over $3 billion and increase permanent employment to more than 1,000. To date the company has invested over $50 million to acquire nearly 4,000 acres of property on the Mississippi River for the facility.