March 2017

Maintenance and Reliability

Implement proactive asset management techniques

The drop in crude oil prices since 2014 has impacted both upstream producers and downstream players. Upstream producers—those responsible for exploration, drilling and production—were the first to feel the effects. While refining margins benefitted from the drop in crude oil pricing, they began to suffer when record surpluses of gasoline and diesel flooded the market a year later.

Natarelli, J., T.A. Cook Consultants Inc.

The drop in crude oil prices since 2014 has impacted both upstream producers and downstream players. Upstream producers—those responsible for exploration, drilling and production—were the first to feel the effects. While refining margins benefitted from the drop in crude oil pricing, they began to suffer when record surpluses of gasoline and diesel flooded the market a year later (FIG. 1). Both industry sectors were forced to make difficult choices over the past 2 yr. The price slump has forced significant changes to traditional asset operations, maintenance and turnarounds. Many employees in each sector have lost their jobs, and companies have cut capital spending and investment.

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