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The Americas: Early January update

Hydrocarbon Engineering,


Brazil’s Mines and Energy Minister Edison Lobao has said that the country will be able to carry out plans to construct a refinery in the north east of the country without participation from Venezuela. The refinery is currently set to be a joint venture between the Brazil’s Petrobras and Venezuela’s PDVSA. The facility will have a capacity of 230 000 bpd.


An explosion happened at Canadian Natural Resources Ltd.’s Horizon facility, Fort McMurray at the start of this year. The explosion and fire has halted production of oilsand and it is not yet known when production will resume.


The Chevron owned Kapolei refinery is still halting propane production. This is due to repairs currently being carried out at the facility. Hawaii’s other refinery owned by Tesoro is continuing to make propane however, consumers are being asked to conserve propane supplies until the Kapolei unit comes back online.


On 7th January Sunoco Inc. shutdown half of the production equipment at the Marcus Hook refinery. Several units at the Philadelphia refinery will also be closed on February 1st. Both closures are for unplanned repairs.


On 6th January all vacuum distillation units were shutdown at the Port Arthur refinery due to the collapse of a crane. The FCC unit was running at reduced rates after the collapse. Motiva, refinery owner, hopes to restart the units currently offline by the end of next week.

ExxonMobil made a filing with the US National Response Centre on 8th January. This was due to a release of 100 lbs of hydrogen sulfide from its Beaumont facility.


All processing units at the Puget Sound refinery, owned by Royal Dutch Shell Plc are to be taken offline. This unit shutdown is due to an upset in the facility’s boiler house. The incident occurred on 6th January and there were no injuries.

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