US PBF mulls $550m renewable diesel project at Chalmette refinery

Author: Al Greenwood

2021/06/24

HOUSTON (ICIS)--PBF Energy is considering a $550m project that would retrofit an idled hydrocracker to produce renewable diesel at its Chalmette refinery in Louisiana, the US-based refiner and the state said on Thursday.

The project would include a pre-treatment unit that would allow Chalmette to produce feedstocks for the retrofitted unit from soybean oil, corn oil and other vegetable oils and animal fats, the state of Louisiana said.

The Chalmette refinery is among the sites that PBF is considering, the state said. Other companies could participate in the project.

PBF expects to make a final investment decision after government entities in St Bernard parish consider tax incentives for the project, the state said. Votes on the Industrial Ad Valorem Tax Exemption Program (ITEP) are expected later in the summer.

PBF Chalmette Refinery Manager Steven Krynski said, “PBF Energy is looking for projects that will create stability for our workforce, prepare the refinery for a green energy transition and help us recover from the losses of the last year and a half."

PBF acquired the Chalmette refinery in 2015. It has the capacity to process 189,000 bbl/day. It is just outside of New Orleans.

Other refiners in the US are also considering projects that would convert hydrocrackers to produce renewable diesel. CVR Energy is considering such a project at its refinery in Kansas.

Others are already moving forward on such projects, including Vertex Energy, HollyFrontier and Marathon Petroleum. CVR is converting a unit at its refinery in Oklahoma.

Thumbnail image shows a diesel tank. Photo by Shutterstock