Continental Cement said in testimony filed with the Missouri Public Service Commission that it opposes Noranda Aluminum’s push for a lower electricity rate. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. signaled it is not opposed.
Noranda operates a huge aluminum smelter in the Missouri Bootheel that employs roughly 900 people. As Ameren Missouri’s largest customer, its request for lower bills would mean a $47 million annual loss of revenue for Ameren. Other customers’ bills would rise approximately 2 percent to make up the difference.
Chesterfield-based Continental operates a cement plant in Hannibal that uses roughly $6 million worth of electricity a year (Noranda spends about 30 times that on electricity). It says it would benefit from a rate reduction, too, and special treatment for Noranda is unfair.
Wal-Mart is concerned about the impact the smelter’s closure would have on the region.