During the past couple of days I've had the unfortunate instance of reading articles in the Portland Press Herald about the idling of Verso Paper Jay Maine machine causing some 350 employees to lose their jobs.
As I've reported before paper manufacturing has existed in this area of the world since the late 1800s and this recent closure demonstrates that this industry really is all but dead.
Which is sad.
I can understand how some of the older more technology obsolescent mills couldn't survive in the 21st century, examples of this include Lincoln, N.H. and Gilman, Vermont and there are others.
But this Verso mill is of a different category. This is a much larger operation that has been updated in the late 80s to early 1990s. It's market was larger and more established and it had a relatively efficient supply and logistics chain servicing it. If this Verso mill can't make it-- this industry really is in deep trouble.
What are the politicians doing about this in response?
I attempted to find out the specific reason(s) why this happening. The reasons ranged from market demand to foreign competition to natural gas prices. The last two reasons are debateable, especially if recent events in China are considered along with published prices for Natural Gas which is traded on the NYMEX.