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Noranda not impacted by low Mississippi River levels

Keywords: Tags  Noranda Aluminum, alumina, coke, Gramercy, New Madrid, Gramercy, Mississippi River, low water levels barges

NEW YORK — Noranda Aluminum Corp. does not anticipate any impact from low water levels on the Mississippi River.

"The section (of the Mississippi River) they’re talking about is north of us, from St. Louis to Cairo, Ohio," a Noranda spokesman told AMM. "We don’t have any barge traffic, incoming or outgoing, that goes into that part of the river."

Noranda uses the Mississippi River primarily to transport coke and alumina from its alumina refinery in Gramercy, La., and only sparingly to transport aluminum from its smelter in New Madrid, Mo., the spokesman added. "We use the river for coke and alumina and both of those come from south Louisiana. We ship out on barges sometimes for aluminum, but it’s rare."

If water levels continue to fall and parts of the river are shut, Noranda would turn to rail to transport its alumina and coke. "If—and this is a big if—the river closes south and we cannot get barges through, ... rail is the only option. There aren’t enough trucks," the spokesman said. "But we are not worried about it."

Century Aluminum Co. also does not anticipate any delays in shipping from its Hawesville, Ky., smelter, a spokeswoman told AMM.

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