Processing Magazine

S.D. county approves 400,000-barrel refinery project

June 9, 2008
According to MarketWatch.com, voters in a South Dakota farm county recently approved a proposal to build the first major refinery in the United States in more than 30 years.

The facility, owned by Texas-based Hyperion Resources Inc., will have the capacity to process 400,000 barrels of oil per day. It will process crude imported from Canada, the largest foreign oil supplier to the United States. Hyperion is planning to break ground on the project in 2010.

Located in South Dakota''s Union County, the $8 billion project is estimated to create 4,500 construction jobs and 1,800 permanent jobs, according to the company. The 100,000 or so voters in the county approved it by a margin of 58 percent to 42 percent.

According to the National Petrochemical and Refiners Association, the project represents the first major refinery the United States to be built since 1976, when a 245,000 barrel-a-day refinery was built by Marathon Petroleum Co in Garyville, La. In comparison, Exxon Mobil Corp.''s refinery in Baytown, Texas, the largest in the United States, has a capacity of 562,500 barrels a day.

There are more than 140 U.S. refineries with total capacity of about 17.6 million barrels a day, and that''s the largest in the world.