FERNDALE, Wash. — Alcoa Corporation officials announced a plan today, April 22nd, to “fully curtail” the Ferndale Intalco Works smelter citing declining market conditions.
Officials say they expect to complete the curtailment by the end of July, this year.Final_Intalco_NewsRelease_20200422
It was early November 2015 when company officials announced plans to idle the smelter along with 2 others in the US “to ensure continued competitiveness amid prevailing market conditions.” It had been reported aluminum prices had reached a 6-year low of $1,479 per tonne in the London Metal Exchange at that time. By mid-January 2016, it was decided to delay the layoffs and an official announcement in May said the smelter would continue operating normally citing improved pricing for electricity from Bonneville Power Administration.
Aluminum is reported to be currently trading at around $1,490 on the London Metal Exchange. Industry experts are saying the current economic environment is quite uncertain given lower immediate demand and yet unknown future demand while many factories have been shut down amid the current COVID-19 response.