November 2006

Columns

HPIn Europe: Maiden voyage into refining yields renewables megaproject

When Sir Richard Branson, the UK billionaire businessman, first said he wanted to build oil refineries, a friend of mine – a well-known consultant – got on the phone to Virgin Group headquar..

Wright, Tim L., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

When Sir Richard Branson, the UK billionaire businessman, first said he wanted to build oil refineries, a friend of mine – a well-known consultant – got on the phone to Virgin Group headquarters and offered his services. "It's just Richard being Richard," the corporation said. "We're not about to start building oil refineries." I guess he's surprised everyone, including his own staff, these past few months. Even at the time, before the launch in September of Virgin Fuels, Sir Richard's ideas about refining got a lot of attention. He hardly kept them to himself. He called publicly for a $20-billion fund to get 20 new refineries built as quickly as possible. He said that government

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