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Nucor Louisiana Iron Plant Delayed by Storage Dome Collapse

Nucor Corp., the largest U.S. steelmaker by market value, delayed the opening of an iron-producing facility under construction in Louisiana until the end of the year after a storage dome collapsed.

The plant, which will be the world’s largest producer of direct-reduced iron, was scheduled to begin production within a few weeks, the Charlotte, North Carolina-based company said in a statement today. There were no injuries and no environmental impacts, the company said. The dome was one of three on the site.

Direct-reduced iron uses natural gas to process iron ore so that it can be used in electric furnaces such as those Nucor uses to produce the metal. The $750 million plant in St. James Parish, Louisiana, is expected to produce 2.5 million tons of DRI a year, Nucor said.

Katherine Miller, a spokeswoman for Nucor, declined to comment on the cause of the collapse.

Nucor slipped 16 cents to $49.32 at the close in New York. The shares have risen 14 percent this year.

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