Engineering News

Valero To Kick Off $2.4B Expansion At Port Arthur
Monday, August 11, 2008

Matt Mackowiac, press secretary for U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, said the senator has been working for incentives for industrial expansions for many years.

"It's important to the senator to increase U.S. domestic energy supplies," Mackowiac said.

So it should be no mere consequence Hutchison will be an honored guest speaking at Valero Port Arthur Refinery's groundbreaking for its crude oil expansion project beginning at 1 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 13 at Texas 82 and West Seventh Street.

Mackowiac said Hutchison's speech will cover the current energy crisis and focus on short and long-term needs.

Guests are asked to arrive by 12 p.m. Buses will run from 12 p.m. to 12:45 p.m., shuttling guests from the parking area to the site. Guests are asked to arrive early and it is recommended that flat soled shoes are worn with no open toes.

Barbara Phillips, Valero public affairs manager, said the refinery is really excited about the ceremony.

Valero will invest $2.4 billion in the Port Arthur Refinery and will add 2,000 more construction workers to the job rolls that local officials say will keep the area's economy expanding.

The project, which is to be completed in 2011, will include a 50,000 barrel-per-day hydrocracker, a 45,000 barrel-per-day coker and changes to other units.

"It will increase our production from 325,000 barrels to 405,000 barrels-per-day," Plant Manager Greg Gentry said. "We've been in the planning stages for a year. It will help us utilize our crude capacity by constructing a hydrocracker unit and a coker unit. It will be a $2.2 billion projects. Thirty permanent jobs will be created and 2,000 construction members a day will be employed at the peak. Construction will start in the next two or three months. The hydrocracker unit should be completed in the fourth quarter of 2010 and the coker unit in the first quarter of 2011."

Valero Chief Executive Officer Bill Klesse said the expansion will meet the demand for diesel both domestically and around the world.

Source: The Port Arthur News/Texas Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News

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