Port Arthur Refinery
|City||Port Arthur, Texas|
|Capacity||600,000 bbl/d (95,000 m3/d)|
The first processing units of the Port Arthur Refinery were constructed in 1902 by the Texas Company, later Texaco. The roots of this refinery can be traced to the Spindletop oil boom near Beaumont, Texas. It came into operation in 1903. Port Arthur is in eastern Texas on the Gulf of Mexico. At certain points during its lifespan it was considered the flagship refinery of Texaco.
On January 1, 1989, Saudi Refining, Inc. purchased 50% of the Port Arthur refinery (and two others) from Texaco to form a joint venture with Texaco called Star Enterprise. In 2001, Texaco was purchased by Chevron. Shortly thereafter Chevron's interest in this refinery (and two others) was sold to Shell on February 13, 2002. This new joint venture was called Motiva Enterprises LLC. Today, the Motiva Port Arthur Refinery is a joint venture with a 50% ownership between Shell Oil Products US and Saudi Refining Inc. Shell Oil Products is part of Royal Dutch Shell. Saudi Refining is part of Saudi Aramco. Approximately 1,200 people are employed at the site.
The completion of the expansion of the Port Arthur Refinery, officially celebrated on 31 May 2012, increased its crude oil capacity to 600,000 barrels per day – making it the largest refinery in the US. The expansion added 325,000 barrels per day of capacity.
This large and sophisticated refinery has the ability to process a flexible crude diet. It can process heavy, sour, and acid crudes from wherever they become available – initially Saudi Arabia – but also other areas. The refinery can also process shale oil, which is relatively light and sweet crude, if it’s economically attractive. The refinery supplies gasoline, diesel, aviation fuels, and high quality base oils to customers in the US.