New mandates present fuel challenges for US refiners

Click here to enlarge imageAt the beginning of the 20th century, petroleum refining was subject to sweeping changes. In roughly 20 years, the number of new US plants rose nearly five fold, the number of employees and wage earners increased six fold, and capital investment surged seven-fold.This positive refining environment was a result of rapidly expanding demand for products and major shifts in the quantity and quality of crude supplies. Cheap fuel and environmentally sensitive fuel formulations helped the US achieve air quality that is the envy of the industrialized world.Virtually 100 years later, on the brink of the industry's second century of challenge, the number of operating...

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