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Two U.S. Refineries Returning To Service After Emergency Outages

TotalEnergies’ Texas refinery in Port Arthur restarted on Friday, people familiar with the operations told Reuters.

The 238,000-barrel-per-day refinery has been shuttered since mid-January due to a power outage that triggered a malfunction at its gasoline-producing fluidic catalytic cracker. Two crude distillation units and two vacuum distillation units were shuttered—those units convert crude oil into feedstock for the other units at the refinery.

The refinery also had units that failed to start up on time when 3-month maintenance was completed in November.

Also on Friday, BP’s Whiting refinery said that power had been restored to its 440,000 bpd refinery in Indiana, with operations in the process of resuming. That refinery had been shut down on Thursday, prompting flaring and an evacuation. As of Thursday, BP had given no indication of how long it would be before operations resumed, with uncertainties surrounding how long the power would be out. By Friday morning, however, BP indicated that operations would resume later in the day after it learned that power had been restored.

The Whiting refinery produces 238,000 bpd of gasoline and 95,000 bpd of diesel fuel, along with 48,000 bpd of jet fuel. It is also responsible for the production of 7% of all the asphalt consumed in the United States, BP said.

The Whiting refinery is the sixth-largest refinery in the United States and the largest refinery in the Midwest.

GasBuddy’s Patrick De Haan said earlier that gasoline prices could spike due to the Whiting outage, to as much as 15 to 30 cents per gallon. AAA reported that gasoline prices rose to $3.154 per gallon from $3.150 per gallon on Thursday.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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  • Bucky Barkingham on February 03 2024 said:
    The newest major refinery operating in the US was built in 1977. Is it any wonder that such old plants have maintenance and reliability problems. All of the oil that fracking can produce means nothing if we don't have reliable refinery capacity for it.

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