IAM seeks federal help to save Intalco Works; sign the petition!

UPDATE (May 5, 2020) — The International Association of Machinists is asking union members and community supporters to sign this petition to President Trump requesting his “assistance in preserving U.S. domestic aluminum production capability and saving 700 aluminum smelting jobs at Alcoa Intalco Works in Ferndale, Washington.”


The following is from the International Association of Machinists (IAM):

FERNDALE, Wash. (April 29, 2020) — Company leadership at Alcoa Intalco Works recently announced plans to shut down their aluminum smelting operation, one of the few facilities of its kind remaining in the United States. IAM International President Robert Martinez Jr., and Western Territory General Vice President Gary R. Allen sent a letter requesting assistance from members of the U.S. Senate in saving 600 IAM-represented aluminum smelting jobs at the facility.

“Allowing this facility to close would do irreparable damage to our nation’s capacity to produce aluminum domestically, severely damage our domestic supply chain, and endanger our national security and sovereignty especially in times of national emergency or foreign conflict,” wrote Martinez and Allen. “Furthermore, this closure would leave nearly 700 hard-working men and women out of work and devastate the local economy and surrounding communities.”

The aluminum smelting operation at Alcoa Intalco Works is of particular strategic importance as it is one of the largest aluminum producers in the United States, producing more than 280,000 tons per year. It is also the last remaining facility in the western United States, and is the only U.S. aluminum smelter with proximity to a deep water port.

The IAM is committed to saving these vitally important jobs, the Alcoa Intalco Works Washington state facility, and this vital industry.

BACKGROUND — Here are some important facts about the Alcoa Intalco Works smelter and the aluminum industry:

► There are three companies in the United States that operate seven primary aluminum smelters producing less than half of the U.S. domestic demand.

► China has more than 140 smelters producing well over half of the world’s demand for aluminum. Chinese overproduction and unfair subsidies drive down the market price of aluminum to unsustainable levels for U.S. producers forcing them out of the market.

► Alcoa’s announced curtailment of the Intalco smelter will cost 700 manufacturing jobs, directly impacting critical national security infrastructure. The cost to build a new smelter in the U.S. is prohibitive while China is able to add smelting capacity at a fraction of U.S. costs. Intalco is the last operating smelter on the West Coast and the largest by capacity in the U.S.

► Intalco is the only Aluminum smelter in the United States that has access to all modes of transportation; a deep water port, dedicated rail spur, and direct access to Interstate 5 between Canada and Mexico and has access to low carbon intensity hydro power. The plant is in the process of modernizing the potlines, which increases productivity, lowers costs, and reduces emissions and is also increasing its capability for aluminum scrap recycling.

► Increasing Chinese aluminum production increases the global environmental impact through the predominate use of coal fired electricity.

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