Valero increases runs of light, sweet crudes at refineries

01 May 2012 20:26  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US-based Valero is running as much light, sweet domestic crude as possible, with conventional crude grades and shale oil, said Valero executives said in the first quarter earnings call on Tuesday.

“Gulf coast [Louisiana Light Sweet crude (LLS)] to [West Texas Intermediate (WTI)] spread could be as much as $25/bbl, but really we have no idea,” said executive vice president and chief commercial officer Joe Gorder. “[In the] longer term, I think the spread will be $4/bbl because the Seaway Pipeline tariff is around that [price].”

Valero is also running crude and condensate from the Eagle Ford shale basin in south Texas. The quality of the oil has been better than originally expected, slightly heavier, an official said during the call.

“We at Valero are looking for ways to participate to bring real value to the conversation so we continue to look at our options,” said the official.

Eagle Ford crude was posted at a discount of $4/bbl to LLS crude, Valero said.

The St Charles 205,000 bbl/day Norco refinery in Louisiana and its 142,000 bbl/day Corpus Christi refinery in Texas can run a broad selection of crude oil, an official said. The oil grades are run through a process unit to make the crude grade relatively stable with each batch to be fed into the crude unit of the refinery, Valero officials said. The company is also looking at doing the same with other refineries.

By: Sheena Martin
+1 713 525 2653

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