Tyumen Oil to introduce low-sulfur diesel fuel


Tyumen Oil Co., Moscow, said Thursday it would next month begin to manufacture diesel fuel with a sulfur content that is below the limits allowed under US, Russian, or European Union standards. Tyumen Oil said it will become the first Russian company to provide low-sulfur diesel to its Russian customers.

Tyumen Oil has been working with ABB Lummus Global�a unit of Switzerland-based ABB Ltd.�to modernize the Ryazan refinery, located 120 miles southeast of Moscow. This year alone, the company is spending $90 million on the project, in which hydrotreating equipment has been installed to reduce diesel sulfur. Eventually, Tyumen Oil will use $270 million in loans�the majority of it guaranteed by the US Export-Import Bank�for Ryazan's modernization.

The refinery, which ranks third among Russian refineries in output, will operate with modern air pollution control equipment to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, says Tyumen.

"Our goal is to make Ryazan one of the best refineries in Europe in its efficiency and environmental friendliness,'' said Viktor Tkachev, head of downstream operations.

Tyumen said that, on Aug. 1, it would begin supplying low-sulfur diesel fuel to about 100 stations in the Moscow region and at Ryazan. The fuel will contain 340 ppm of sulfur. Decreasing the sulfur in diesel fuel reduces vehicle exhaust emissions of particulates and sulfur dioxide, which contribute to air pollution problems.

"This is part of our strategy to supply our customers with products that are of high quality and are more environmentally friendly," said Simon Kukes, president and CEO of Tyumen. Kukes noted that his firm was one of the first Russian companies to produce only unleaded gasoline.

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