April 26, 2008 at 1:26 pm #3670
Sinclair begins expansion of refinery
By JASON WOMACK World Staff Writer 4/26/2008 Last Modified: 4/26/2008 2:46 AM
Sinclair Tulsa Refining Co. broke ground Friday on an expansion project that is contributing millions to local businesses, company officials said.
Sinclair said it has placed orders or committed to place orders totaling $150 million with Tulsa area suppliers and fabricators. The total project, estimated to cost $1 billion, will boost production at Sinclair’s west Tulsa refinery and cut the plant’s emissions.
“We really are trying to make our refinery more competitive in the long run,” said Kevin Brown, executive vice president of Sinclair Tulsa Refining, a subsidiary of Salt Lake City-based Sinclair Oil Corp.
Sinclair announced plans to increase production at the refinery last fall. The project will raise output by 60 percent and allow the plant to refine low-quality, heavy sour crude oil. Refining capacity will jump to 115,000 barrels of crude per day when the project is completed in 2010. The current capacity is 70,000 barrels.
The expansion follows a growing trend in the refining industry. A new refinery has not been built in the United States since 1976, but the industry has engaged in expansion — building out existing facilities to meet a growing demand for fuel. Refiners have added the equivalent of a new refinery every year for the last decade.
The bulk of the production gains at Sinclair will be made in diesel fuel. The refinery will add more than 36,000 barrels per day of ultra low-sulphur diesel, bringing its total production of the fuel to 56,300 barrels per day. “One of the reasons diesel is so expensive is because there is a worldwide shortage,” Brown said.
Diesel prices continue to set records nationwide. The average price of the fuel reached another all-time high Friday, reaching $4.233 per gallon at the pump. A year ago, diesel was averaging $2.921 per gallon, according to AAA and the Oil Price Information Service. Gasoline production at the Sinclair refinery will grow by 22 percent to nearly 49,000 barrels per day.
Although the facility will increase its production, Sinclair said the plant’s emissions will fall by 1,000 tons per year. Sinclair will add a coker unit that will use an odor control system, and also install an enclosed flare system.
Brown said the technology should make a difference to nearby residents. “I would hope they would notice fewer smells,” he said.
Sinclair said the project will take 4 million man hours and, at its peak, employ 2,500 people. Ultimately, the expansion will add 200 long-term, full-time jobs, Sinclair said.
The company has also contributed $250,000 to improve the River Parks land along the west bank of the Arkansas River. It will add 190 trees and triple the area that Sinclair leases to River Parks for public use. Those improvements are scheduled for completion by July.
April 26, 2008 at 1:46 pm #6903
Here is update on Sinclair Tulsa Refinery & Coker expansion – they broke ground on construction phase Friday. The refinery capacity will go from 70 MBD to 115 MBD, complete by 2010 (now – was 2009) add a new coker and has estimated cost $1Billion.
Sinclair also recently brought online a relocated coker at its Rawlings Wyoming Refinery in 1st Quarter this year.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.