Frontier Oil to expand El Dorado refinery capacity, close chemicals unit

By the OGJ Online Staff
HOUSTON, Feb. 20 -- Frontier Oil Corp. Tuesday announced plans to boost capacity at its El Dorado, Kan., refinery from 110,000 b/d to 118,000 b/d and increase the plant's coker capacity to 2,200 b/d. The expansion will cost $25.9 million -- $16 million for the crude unit and the remainder for the coker expansion.

Frontier expects the expansion to reach completion by the second quarter of 2003, pending receipt of the required environmental permits. Frontier expects gasoline production to increase by 2,500 b/d and heavy crude oil runs to increase by an average of 18,000 b/d

In addition to the expansion, Frontier also said it would shut down by April its phenol and cumene petrochemical units at the plant. Frontier expects to save $8 million/year through the elimination of the chemical unit's "high operating costs" and said that the move would increase gasoline volumes by an average of 5,000 b/d while allowing for outside marketing of benzene.

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