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32m single

May 05, 2023

Adam Yanelli


HOUSTON (ICIS)–More than 32m single-family residences (SFRs) and an additional 1m multifamily residences (MFRs) are at moderate or more significant risk of sustaining damage from hurricane-force winds while about 7.8m homes are susceptible to storm surge damage from hurricanes, CoreLogic said on Thursday.

In its 2023 Hurricane Risk Report, the real-estate information provider said damage from hurricane-force winds could have a combined reconstruction cost value (RCV) of $11.6tr and the damage from storm surge flooding could add an additional RCV of $2.6tr based on their direct or indirect exposure to coastlines.

Source: CoreLogic

Forecasters from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and Colorado State University (CSU) are both predicting a near-average Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from 1 June to 30 November.

CoreLogic said that property counts in the specified regions have risen by 1% from last year and values are 10% higher, making costs to repair or replace damaged homes higher than last year.

CoreLogic uses RCV to estimate how much it will cost to repair structures after storms.

Figures are based on an assumption of total (100%) destruction of the structure, or the cost to completely rebuild the existing structure assuming total destruction.

The RCV combines materials, equipment and labour, but does not include the value of the land or lot.

INCREASED DEMAND FOR CHEMS The damage and efforts to rebuild can translate to increased demand for many chemicals and polymers that are used in the construction sector.

The white pigment titanium dioxide (TiO2) is used in paints.

Solvents used in paints and coatings include butyl acetate (butac), butyl acrylate (butyl-A), ethyl acetate (etac), glycol ethers, methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) and isopropanol (IPA).

Blends of aliphatic and aromatic solvents are also used to make paints and coatings.

For polymers, expandable polystyrene (EPS) and polyurethane (PUR) foam are used in insulation.

Polyurethanes are made of methylene diphenyl diisocycanate (MDI), toluene diisocyanate (TDI) and polyols.

High density polyethylene (HDPE) is used in pipe. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is used to make cladding, window frames, wires and cables, flooring and roofing membranes.

Unsaturated polyester resins (UPR) are used to make coatings and composites.

Vinyl acetate monomer (VAM) is used to make paints and adhesives.

HURRICANE IMPACTS ON CHEM INDUSTRY While damage from hurricanes can lead to increased demand for chemicals, hurricanes and tropical storms can also disrupt the North American petrochemical industry as many of the nation's plants and refineries are along the US Gulf Coast in the states of Texas and Louisiana.

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) said that in 2021 offshore oil and gas production in the Gulf of Mexico accounted for about 15% of total US crude oil production, and about 2% of total dry natural gas production.

The 2022 Atlantic hurricane season was near-average and less than what was originally forecast.

But Hurricane Ian brought devastating storm surge, strong winds and heavy rainfall which combined to cause more than $50bn in damage in the continental US.

Minimal impact was seen in the oil and chemicals industries, with only a handful of oil rigs on the US Gulf Coast experiencing brief shut-ins.

Chemical facilities in Florida, Georgia and the US Carolinas also experienced brief closures during Hurricane Ian.

In 2021, Hurricane Ida slammed the US Gulf state of Louisiana, impacting production of products such as the chlor-alkali chain all the way through polyvinyl chloride (PVC), methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI), styrene, linear alpha olefins (LAO), phthalic anhydride (PA) and butanediol (BDO).

Focus story by Adam Yanelli

Additional reporting by JT Strasner, Al Greenwood

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INCREASED DEMAND FOR CHEMS HURRICANE IMPACTS ON CHEM INDUSTRY Adam Yanelli The subscription platform provides access to our full range of breaking news and analysis Contact us now to find out more