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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Nissan Pledges To Make Self-Driving Cars By 2020

August 28, 2013 2:28 pm | by Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.

Nissan Motor Co. says it will make cars that drive themselves by 2020. The Japanese automaker made the pledge Tuesday at an event in California. CEO Carlos Ghosn has said before that he wants Nissan to be the first to sell self-driving cars. But Tuesday's announcement was more specific.

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Advice For Small Biz: Take Stock, Take Risks

August 28, 2013 2:26 pm | by Joyce M. Rosenberg, AP Business Writer

The economy is showing signs of life and that makes it a good time for small business owners to re-evaluate how they are running their companies. Now that crisis mode has passed, owners need to make sure they're ready to take advantage of growth opportunities on the horizon. Experts say it's time for owners to think about taking some risks and to make sure that they are taking care of employees.

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$1.5B Fertilizer Plant In ND On Course

August 28, 2013 2:23 pm | by The Associated Press

A group planning a $1.5 billion nitrogen fertilizer plant in northeastern North Dakota has secured a supply of natural gas and is in the process of buying a site. Northern Plains Nitrogen Chairman Darin Anderson said the company is buying land next to Grand Forks' municipal sewage lagoons north of the city and east of Interstate 29, the Grand Forks Herald reported.

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Sheen Seen On River Near Delaware City Refinery

August 28, 2013 2:21 pm | by Randall Chase, Associated Press

State environmental officials on Wednesday were investigating an oil spill at a refinery that left a sheen floating on the Delaware River. The refinery in Delaware City, operated by PBF Energy, reported the release about 1:30 a.m. Wednesday.

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Expanding IL Tire Plant Gets New Rail Spur

August 28, 2013 2:19 pm | by The Associated Press

One of southern Illinois' biggest employers now has a new railroad spur as it presses ahead with a $129-million expansion it says will add 100 jobs by mid-2015. The $1.1 million spur paid for by Illinois taxpayers was unveiled Tuesday at the 3,000-worker Continental Tire the Americas site that produces more than 14 million tires a year in Mount Vernon.

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Bombardier In Talks With Russia On Aircraft Deal

August 28, 2013 2:17 pm | by The Associated Press

Canada's Bombardier has signed a preliminary agreement with a Russian state corporation for the purchase of as many as 100 Q400 NextGen aircraft in a deal that could be worth up to $3.39 billion. The Montreal-based plane and train manufacturer said the deal with Rostekhnologii also includes the possibility of setting up a Q400 NextGen final assembly line in Russia to complement its Toronto operations.

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Labor Rules To Boost Employment For Vets, Disabled

August 28, 2013 10:09 am | by Sam Hananel, Associated Press

Veterans and disabled workers who often struggle to find work could have an easier time landing a job under new federal regulations. The rules will require most government contractors to set a goal of having disabled workers make up 7 percent of their employees. 

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U.S. Buying F-35 Engines From Pratt & Whitney

August 28, 2013 10:07 am | by The Associated Press

United Technologies Corp. said Tuesday that its Pratt & Whitney unit will deliver 38 jet engines to the Defense Department for the F-35 Lightning II aircraft. Besides the engines, Pratt & Whitney will also provide engineering support, spare parts and other services.

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Dow Plans $1B Investment In Plaquemine

August 28, 2013 10:06 am | by The Associated Press

Dow Chemical Co. says it will invest $1.06 billion to build two new polyolefins plants and upgrade its ethylene capacity at the company's 3,300-acre site in Plaquemine. The company says the move will create 71 new jobs at the facility and an additional 470 indirect jobs.

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GE Completes Joint Venture With XD Electric

August 28, 2013 10:04 am | by The Associated Press

General Electric Co. said Tuesday that it has finally launched a joint venture with XD Electric Group, a partnership originally announced over a year ago. GE and XD Electric, a Chinese company that makes electricity transmission and distribution equipment, will sell equipment and services for upgrading electrical grids through their joint venture.

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Shell Seeks Ethane For Proposed PA Plant

August 28, 2013 10:02 am | by The Associated Press

Shell Oil Co. is seeking ethane suppliers for its proposed petrochemical complex in western Pennsylvania. The company says in a statement Tuesday that it will accept bids from August 27 to October 4, 2013. Shell is still a year or more away from making a final decision on whether to build the multi-billion dollar plant at an industrial site about 40 miles north of Pittsburgh.

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New Water Permitting Requirements Issued For CA

August 27, 2013 3:23 pm | by David Metres, Associate with Barg Coffin

California water regulators recently published a new draft of permitting requirements applicable to many businesses – including many businesses never before subject to water quality regulation.  After 16 years of settled practice, businesses will face a significant change to storm water regulation in California if the draft requirements become the law.

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Toyota Raises New Corolla Base Price

August 27, 2013 2:32 pm | by The Associated Press

Toyota is raising the base price of its reworked Corolla compact car by 3.5 percent. Toyota is giving the Corolla a sportier look and more gadgets, a recognition by the world's biggest automaker that the under-50 crowd wants more than just reliability in a compact car. 

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Safety Vs. Enforcement: Agencies At Odds Over Probe

August 27, 2013 2:29 pm | by Pete Yost, Associated Press

The federal government is fighting with itself over a massive fire at a Chevron refinery in California that sent 15,000 people to hospitals with respiratory ailments. In one corner is the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board. In the other is the EPA.

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AL Professor Creates Carbon-Capturing System

August 27, 2013 2:25 pm | by Ed Enoch, The Tuscaloosa News

A Colorado company has licensed a method of capturing carbon dioxide pioneered by a University of Alabama assistant professor, with the hope of developing the method as a more energy-efficient way of reducing emissions at fossil-fuel power plants.

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United Airlines Makes Emergency Landing In ID

August 27, 2013 2:23 pm | by The Associated Press

A United Airlines 737 flying from Seattle to Houston made an emergency landing in Idaho after one of its two engines apparently shut down. Police say the airplane landed safely at the Pocatello Regional Airport just after 2:50 a.m. Tuesday.

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Lab Owner Sentenced To 40 Months In Waste Case

August 27, 2013 2:20 pm | by The Associated Press

An environmental laboratory owner in Mississippi has been sentenced to more than three years in federal prison after being convicted of falsifying records on industrial wastewater samples. U.S. District Judge Henry T. Wingate in Jackson sentenced Tennie White to 40 months during a hearing Monday. 

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Maruti Suzuki Says New Plant Delayed

August 27, 2013 2:18 pm | by The Associated Press

India's largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India Ltd. said Tuesday that the opening of its new plant in India's western state of Gujarat will be delayed due to the overall slowdown of the Indian economy and car market. The company's chairman, R.C. Bhargava, stated that the Indian unit of Japan's Suzuki Motor Corp. will "miss the target" of commissioning its Gujarat plant by March 31, 2016.

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Poor Supervision Cited At NY-Run Steam Plant

August 27, 2013 10:18 am | by Michael Virtanen, Associated Press

Poor supervision at the steam plant serving the state government complex in Albany led to misbehavior by workers that included watching "Dancing With the Stars," being drunk on the job, and leaving bedrolls and beer cans in the facility, New York's inspector general reported Monday.

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Fire Marshal: Inspections Refused Since TX Blast

August 27, 2013 10:15 am | by Paul J. Weber, Associated Press

Five facilities in Texas with large quantities of the same fertilizer chemical that fueled the deadly plant explosion in West have turned away state fire marshal inspectors since the blast, investigators said Monday. A railway operator that hauls hazardous materials across Texas was also said to have rebuffed a state request to share data since the April explosion at West Fertilizer Co. that killed 15 people and injured 200 others.

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