DENKA PERFORMANCE ELASTOMER, a global supplier of Neoprene, is an American entity with joint owners from Japan: Denka Company Limited and Mitsui & Co. LTD. Since 2015, Denka Performance Elastomer has owned and operated a portion of the Pontchartrain Site located in LaPlace. We manufacture Neoprene rubber, one of the first synthetic rubbers, known for its resistance to sunlight, ozone, oil and heat, and ease of processing. This material is used for a variety of purposes, including medical, military, automotive, and construction applications.
Denka has 250 full-time employees and 125 resident contractors, resulting in a total annual payroll of $35 million. 48 percent of our workers are river parish residents, and our total taxes and purchases result in a contribution to the local and regional economies of approximately $80 million per year. Our employees are active members of the community, giving back by participating in local programs including the St. John United Way, St. John Rotary Club,Household Hazardous Material Collection Day, Near Neighbors and Community Advisory Panel (CAP) meetings, and LaPlace’s annual Andouille Festival.
Denka is committed to protecting the environment as well as the health and safety of our employees and the community as a whole. We completed installation of over $30 million in new control technology to reduce chloroprene emissions in 2017. Emissions testing demonstrates that this new technologyreduces more than 98% of the chloroprene emissions which are routed for control. Completion of these projects satisfies the terms of a voluntary agreement made with LDEQ in 2017; however, Denka continues to investigate ways to further reduce emissions through review of emergent reduction technologies and plans to implement these where feasible.
Annual emissions data shows that air emissions were reduced by 16% between 2016 and 2017 through our emission reduction efforts. We anticipate reporting further reductions for 2018 as a result of our projects coming fully on-line in late 2017. We continually demonstrate our commitment to environmental stewardship and to the community by working closely with regulatory agencies, maintaining open lines of communication, and complying with
our environmental permits and regulations. At Denka Performance Elastomer, our goal is to achieve excellence in safety, health, and environmental performance.