INSTITUTE, W.Va. - A chemical manufacturing startup is planning to build a methanol production facility in Kanawha County next year.

News outlets report Governor Earl Ray Tomblin announced Tuesday that California-based US Methanol will move a production facility to Institute and create more than 60 permanent positions when the plant begins operations in July 2017.

CEO Brad Gunn says his company plans to deconstruct a methanol plant in Brazil and install it next to the Dow-DuPont chemical plant. Officials say the facility would also create about 300 temporary construction positions beginning in November.

"We came at this from the gas side of things," Gunn said. "There's an awful lot of gas to be marketed and sold in this area. We came at the methanol business from that angle."

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports the plant will use a chemical process to turn methane into pure methanol, a base solution used in paints, plastics, windshield washer fluid and other chemicals, such as formaldehyde.

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