Due to the exploitation of its immense fossil fuel resources, Louisiana ranks second among the states in the value of mineral production, behind only Texas. It ranks second in the production of natural gas and fourth in the production of crude petroleum. Oil is produced in nearly all parts of the state, but the Gulf Coast and northwestern Louisiana are the principal producing areas. Much of the oil is produced from offshore wells in the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Natural gas, which accounts for four-fifths of the value of the state’s mineral output, is produced primarily in areas along the Gulf Coast and in northern Louisiana. Natural gas is processed to produce natural-gas liquids, such as natural gasoline and liquefied petroleum gases.
The leading nonfuel mineral mined in Louisiana is salt. The state also produces significant quantities of sulphur from a mine located in the Gulf of Mexico.
The production of chemicals is the leading manufacturing activity in Louisiana. It accounts for two-fifths of the income generated by manufacturing in the state. The chemical industry, which is associated in part with oil-refining activities, is based largely on the state’s output of crude oil, natural gas, salt, sulfur, and other minerals. A wide range of petrochemicals and other basic chemicals is produced. The principal centers of the chemical industry and oil-refining industry are along the Mississippi River from Baton Rouge downriver toward New Orleans and in the Lake Charles area. Other major industrial activities include petroleum refining, the processing of food products, the production of paper products, and the manufacture of transportation equipment.
Among the great variety of other goods made are fabricated metals, electrical equipment, primary metals, and lumber and wood products. New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Shreveport, and Lake Charles are the state’s principal industrial centers.
Louisiana’s electric power comes primarily from plants powered by fossil fuels, mostly coal and natural gas. Some 75 percent of its electricity is generated in these thermal plants, while 18 percent comes from two nuclear power plants constructed during the 1980s in Taft and Saint Francisville. The sluggish rivers of the state offer little potential for future hydroelectric development. Most of the state’s power is produced by private power utilities and by industrial establishments that maintain their own generating plants. "Louisiana" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia
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