Shell Canada says it has successfully started up production from the company’s Scotford upgrader refinery expansion project near Edmonton.
CALGARY: Shell Canada says it has successfully started up production from the company’s Scotford upgrader refinery expansion project near Edmonton.
The 100,000 barrels-per-day expansion takes upgrading capacity at Scotford to 255,000 barrels-per-day of heavy oil from the Athabasca oil sands in northern Alberta.
“This startup is an important milestone for our heavy oil business,” said Marvin Odum, director of Shell’s upstream – or oil production – business in the Americas. “And it adds new capacity from an important source of oil in a world requiring more secure energy.”
This is the first commercial production from the upgrader expansion. The Scotford Upgrader processes oil sands bitumen – heavy oil – from the Muskeg River Mine and Jackpine Mine, for use in refined oil products.
With production capacity at the Athabasca Oil Sands Project now at 255,000 barrels a day, Shell said it wants to improve efficiency in its refinery operations.
Design and engineering work also continues on the proposed Quest carbon capture and storage project at the Scotford refinery.
The planned project would capture and store underground about one million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year. A final decision to begin construction could come in 2012, once all regulatory approvals are in place.
Shell Canada owns 60% of the Athabasca Oil Sands Project, along with Chevron Canada Ltd., with 20%, and Marathon Oil Corp., also with 20%.
The oil sands project includes the Muskeg River Mine, Jackpine Mine and Scotford upgrader.
Shell Canada is a unit of global giant Royal Dutch Shell Group plc and employs about 8,000 people across the country.
© 2011 The Canadian Press