26 July 2011 20:56 [Source: ICIS news]HOUSTON (ICIS)--The slow climb toward normal operations at Valero’s Aruba refinery helped boost the US-based refiner’s overall throughput by 136,000 bbl/day for the second quarter, but the refinery has produced no revenue from operations during that time, CEO Bill Klesse said on Tuesday.
No profit was made from operations at the Aruba refinery during the second quarter.
The refinery has a coker, therefore it is more complex and able to process heavier crude grades. But the crude has to be at a large discount to the $100/bbl West Texas Intermediate (WTI) in order to return a profit.
Klesse said the discount for heavy crude was big enough during the second quarter. However there were too many costly blips and upsets for the refinery to benefit from the discount crude.
“For the start up, we began getting ready a year ago,” Klesse said. “It has been very tough for a lot of people. Right now it is running at 200,000 bbl/day, but there have been a lot of issues getting there.”
The refinery has a total throughput of 235,000 bbl/day.
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