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  • VIDEO: Safety investigators explain findings of probe into West Fertilizer explosion

    Posted by: Ben DuBose

    Friday January 29, 2016

    By Ben DuBose
    Digital Editor

    The US Chemical Safety Board (CSB) today released a safety video into the fatal April 17, 2013, fire and explosion at the West Fertilizer Co. in West, Texas, which resulted in 15 fatalities, more than 260 injuries, and widespread community damage. 

    The deadly fire and explosion occurred when about 30 tons of fertilizer-grade ammonium nitrate (FGAN) exploded after being heated by a fire at the storage and distribution facility. 

    The CSB’s newly-released 12-minute safety video entitled, “Dangerously Close: Explosion in West, Texas,” includes a 3D animation of the fire and explosion as well as interviews with CSB investigators and chairperson Vanessa Allen Sutherland. 

    “This tragic accident should not have happened," chairperson Sutherland said. "We hope that this video, by sharing...

    Continue reading "VIDEO: Safety investigators explain findings of probe into West Fertilizer explosion"

    Tags:CSB, explosion, fertilizer, West, video

  • Russia strengthens position as crude supplier to Chinese refiners

    Posted by: HP News Services

    Tuesday January 26, 2016

    By Chen Aizhu

    BEIJING, Jan 26 (Reuters) - Russia beat out Saudi Arabia as China's top crude oil supplier for the fourth month in 2015 in December due to robust demand from independent Chinese refiners that prefer shipments from the Far East over high-sulfur barrels from the Middle East.

    Russia strengthened its position in Asia by supplying nearly a quarter more crude to the region in 2015, shifting the balance of power in one of the few bright spots in the global market and blunting the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries' high-profile drive to win customers.

    China is one of the top targets for Russian oil after small, independent oil plants nicknamed "teapots" won the right to import crude for the first time just several months ago and hectically started placing orders towards the end of last year.

    "These new plants were in a rush to use new quotas. But...

    Continue reading "Russia strengthens position as crude supplier to Chinese refiners"

    Tags:Russia, China, crude oil, refineries

  • Industry Metrics: Asian, European margins rise on higher gasoline, distillates demand

    Posted by: HP Editorial Staff

    Monday January 18, 2016

    Asian margins showed a strong recovery due to higher winter heating fuel demand, supporting middle distillate crack spreads. US product markets strengthened slightly, despite supply-side pressure with refineries increasing runs and inventories on the high side. European markets showed improvement on the back of strong gasoline demand and strong exports to the petrochemical sector.







    Continue reading "Industry Metrics: Asian, European margins rise on higher gasoline, distillates demand"

    Tags:industry metrics, margins, cracking spread, utilization rate, fuel oil, kerosine

  • Weak oil markets prompt Saudi leaders to make quicker decisions

    Posted by: HP News Services

    Friday January 08, 2016


    Saudi Arabia, one of the most tradition-bound societies on the planet, where family structure and tribal patriarchy differ little from a century ago, is suddenly in a hurry. It has done more in the past week than in most years.

    Over eight days, it has executed dozens of militants, severed ties with Iran and announced numerous steps for a radical rollback of the state that may include privatizing oil giant Saudi Aramco, among the world’s largest companies.

    The flurry of action, a result of tumbling oil prices, shifting US interests and regional turmoil threatening rulers across the Middle East, appears to be the largely the work of Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the 30-something son of King Salman, in office less than a year. And while his ambition to modernize has drawn praise, some fear he is in over his head.

    “The Saudis had a reputation...

    Continue reading "Weak oil markets prompt Saudi leaders to make quicker decisions"

    Tags:Saudi Arabia, gasoline, oil, Saudi Aramco

  • US to export light, sweet crudes to Europe as US Gulf refiners target heavier grades

    Posted by: HP News Services

    Thursday December 24, 2015


    The days of empty oil tankers leaving the Houston Ship Channel are over.

    Now that the US has ended crude export restrictions after 40 years, tankers bringing crude oil to Houston and other Gulf Coast ports will also be able to take crude from them, spawning an active market for crude sellers and ship owners.

    Most vessels that discharge in the US Gulf had challenges finding regular back-haul cargoes because of the restrictions that were eased last week, according to Stefanos Kazantzis, senior shipping adviser at McQuilling Services. The US already allowed exports of refined products.

    “At 200,000 [bpd] of additional US crude exports (on top of what goes to Canada), we estimate that about five to seven Aframax tankers would be required to deliver the crude to ports in Europe and the Caribbean/South America,” Kazantzis said.

    Imports to PADD 3, the Gulf...

    Continue reading "US to export light, sweet crudes to Europe as US Gulf refiners target heavier grades"

    Tags:US, Europe, refining, exports, crude oil

  • Former US energy secretary: OPEC grip, surging gas to shape markets in 2016

    Posted by: Adrienne Blume

    Wednesday December 09, 2015

    By Adrienne Blume
    Executive Editor

    Spencer Abraham

    HOUSTON -- During a breakfast presentation of The Economist's 30th global forecast issue on December 9, Executive Editor of The Economist, Daniel Franklin, invited Spencer Abraham, Chairman and CEO of The Abraham Group LLC and former US energy secretary under George Bush, to discuss the energy markets in 2016.

    With the recent OPEC decision to leave oil production levels unchanged and crude oil prices hovering below $40/bbl, Franklin posed the question: "What can we expect for the year ahead in energy?"

    Abraham (pictured right) noted that, with regard to the cyclical nature of energy markets and oil prices, it is interesting how the US perception of commodity markets has changed over the past year. The consensus used to be that low commodity prices were a good thing for the economy, but perception has shifted in the opposite direction since oil prices began falling in 2014.

    Continue reading "Former US energy secretary: OPEC grip, surging gas to shape markets in 2016"


  • WINNERS: Top HPI projects of 2015

    Posted by: Lee Nichols

    Monday December 07, 2015

    The global hydrocarbon processing industry continues to expand and modernize to efficiently meet growing demand for energy, transportation fuels and petrochemicals. Presently, Hydrocarbon Processing’s Construction Boxscore Database is tracking over $1.5 trillion in active projects throughout the globe. This includes projects that have either been announced or are in some phase along the project’s planning, engineering or construction time frame.

    Using the Construction Boxscore Database, Hydrocarbon Processing editors identified 11 projects that will have some of the highest impacts to the global or regional downstream industry. All of the nominees have a significant impact to the downstream sector, whether that is through overall capital expenditure, satisfying domestic or regional demand, or the resurgence in refining or petrochemical processing capacity.

    This year, Hydrocarbon Processing focused on major refining and petrochemical projects under construction. These projects represent nearly $77 B in total capital expenditures. This...

    Continue reading "WINNERS: Top HPI projects of 2015"

    Tags:top HPI projects, poll

  • Industry Metrics: Global refining margins fall amid expectations of mild winter

    Posted by: HP Editorial Staff

    Thursday December 03, 2015

    Global refinery margins fell due to the expectations of a mild winter and an oversupply environment. Asian margins lost momentum despite tightening sentiment fueled by the peak of the maintenance season. European product markets weakened further due to pressure from an increasing product overhang and higher inflows amid a lack of export opportunities, causing a sharp drop in refinery margins. HP 




    Continue reading "Industry Metrics: Global refining margins fall amid expectations of mild winter"

    Tags:industry metrics, margins, utilization rates

  • US crude-by-rail industry slows as big refiners seek longer-term deals

    Posted by: HP News Services

    Wednesday December 02, 2015


    It’s been several months since an oil train accident grabbed big headlines—but not because there haven’t been any. A single weekend in November saw two trains derail in Wisconsin. The first spilled about 20,000 gal of ethanol into the Mississippi River, followed a day later by a spill of about 1,000 gal of North Dakota Bakken crude.

    This year has already been the costliest by far for crude train explosions. Derailments in 2015 have caused $29.7 million in damage, according to data from the US Department of Transportation, a huge increase from $7.5 million in 2014. Most of this year’s price tag can be attributed to two crashes within a three-week span. The Feb. 16 derailment of a CSX train in West Virginia triggered a massive explosion near a cluster of homes along the Kanawha River and led to...

    Continue reading "US crude-by-rail industry slows as big refiners seek longer-term deals"

    Tags:refiners, crude, rail

  • API, America's Natural Gas Alliance trade groups to merge in 2016

    Posted by: Ben DuBose

    Monday November 23, 2015

    Following the approval of both boards of directors, the American Petroleum Institute (API) and America's Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA) have announced that the two organizations will combine into a single trade association, effective January 1, 2016.

    The combined association will continue ANGA's mission under API.

    “There is a natural synergy between our organisations,” said API CEO Jack Gerard. “As a single organization, the combined skills and capabilities bring an enhanced advocacy strength to natural gas market development, ANGA’s primary mission, and the combined association’s expanded membership will provide additional lift to API’s ongoing efforts on important public policy issues.”

    Under the agreement, ANGA's mission to promote natural gas as a clean, affordable solution to America’s energy and environmental needs will be handled by a new market development group at API, a team led by current ANGA President Marty Durbin. ANGA...

    Continue reading "API, America's Natural Gas Alliance trade groups to merge in 2016"

    Tags:API, ANGA, natural gas, trade

  • Industry Metrics: US gasoline crack spread tumbles amid higher inventories

    Posted by: HP Editorial Staff

    Thursday November 05, 2015

    A sharp drop in the gasoline crack spread following the end of the US driving season and increasing inventories caused refinery margins to fall. Asian margins have been strengthened by the onset of the refinery maintenance season and the downward correction seen in Dubai crude prices. European refinery margins fell due to increasing inflows to the region amid a lack of export opportunities. HP






    Continue reading "Industry Metrics: US gasoline crack spread tumbles amid higher inventories"

    Tags:industry metrics, margins, utilization rates

  • POLL: Top Project Awards of 2015

    Posted by: Ben DuBose

    Sunday November 01, 2015

    Using the Construction Boxscore database, HP editors identified 11 projects with high impacts on the global or regional downstream industry and demonstrating innovative processing and/or construction technologies. They represent some of the top developments for the global refining and petrochemical sectors in 2015.Take a look at our picks, and cast your vote in the poll! For the winning projects, awards will be presented to the operator and EPC contractor(s).REFININGNorth West Redwater Sturgeon Bitumen RefineryThe 150-Mbpd refinery project is being developed by the North West Redwater Partnership, a 50/50 JV between North West Upgrading and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. The $8.5-B bitumen refinery will be located in Sturgeon County, 45 km northeast of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. The Sturgeon refinery will be the first refinery built in Canada in three decades. The facility will convert diluted bitumen...

    Continue reading "POLL: Top Project Awards of 2015"

    Tags:Top HPI projects, poll

  • Daily editions of the Gastech 2015 official conference newspaper

    Posted by: HP Editorial Staff

    Friday October 30, 2015

    SINGAPORE -- Here is Day 4 of the official newspaper for the Gastech 2015 Conference & Exhibition.

    The newspapers were published by Hydrocarbon ProcessingGas Processing and World Oil as four daily print editions from October 27 until October 30. All issues are available electronically in PDF form.

    The official newspaper includes event coverage from Gastech 2015 in Singapore. Gastech, held every 18 months, is the world’s favorite meeting place for energy professionals working in the natural gas and liquefied natural gas (LNG) industries.

    If you would like information on future Hydrocarbon Processing show dailies or to submit a press release for consideration, please contact the editor via email at Mike.Rhodes@GulfPub.com.

    Day 4 Newspaper
    Day 3 Newspaper

    Day 2 Newspaper

    Day 1 Newspaper

    Continue reading "Daily editions of the Gastech 2015 official conference newspaper"

    Tags:Gastech 2015, natural gas, LNG, show daily

  • Honeywell hunts for bigger acquisitions after $5.1B deal for metering giant Elster

    Posted by: HP News Services

    Friday October 23, 2015


    Honeywell International is looking at acquisitions larger than the $5.1 billion it paid for Elster as it makes headway on a program that targets deals spending of about twice that much by 2019.

    CEO Dave Cote
    “We’ve got a pipeline that’s got plenty of opportunities of that size or bigger,” said chief financial officer Tom Szlosek, referring to the purchase of Elster, a maker of gas, electric and water meters.

    CEO Dave Cote has made more than 80 acquisitions in the 13 years he’s led the company as he seeks to build and refine Honeywell’s stable of brands and products ranging from jet engines and aircraft guidance systems to rubber boots. In March 2014, Cote pledged to spend $10 billion or more on acquisitions over the next five years, double the previous half-decade period. He also changed his mind after saying in 2013...

    Continue reading "Honeywell hunts for bigger acquisitions after $5.1B deal for metering giant Elster"

    Tags:Honeywell, M&A, acquisitions, Elster

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