Phillips 66 Plans to Convert Crude Oil Refinery into Renewable Fuels Plant

San Francisco Refinery in Rodeo, California

(Photo Credit: Phillips 66 on Facebook)

by | Aug 13, 2020

Phillips 66 Plans to Convert Crude Oil Refinery into Renewable Fuels Plant

(Photo Credit: Phillips 66 on Facebook)

Phillips 66 plans to transform its San Francisco Refinery in Rodeo, California, into a plant that produces renewable fuels. The energy company says that, if approved, the plant could become the world’s largest for renewable fuels.

Currently San Francisco Refinery consists of two facilities in the Bay area connected by a 200-mile pipeline: Rodeo, built in 1896 and Santa Maria, built in 1955, the company said. The refinery processes a mixture of crude oils, primarily producing transportation fuels like gasoline and diesel.

Instead, Phillips 66 wants to fully convert the plant into one that could accept materials such as used cooking oils, fats, greases, and vegetable oils, turning them into renewable gas, diesel, and jet fuel. The project, called Rodeo Renewed, would be capable of producing 680 million gallons of renewable fuels annually, according to the Houston-based company.

“Combined with the production of renewable fuels from an existing project in development, the plant would produce greater than 800 million gallons a year of renewable fuels, making it the world’s largest facility of its kind,” Phillips 66 said. “Once reconfigured, the plant will no longer transport or process crude oil.”

The company added that it expects production to begin in early 2024 if the project is approved by Contra Costa County officials and the Bay Area Air Quality Management District.

Environmental benefits from ceasing crude oil processing to focus on renewable fuels would include 50% less carbon dioxide, 75% less sulfur dioxide, and fewer local emissions, the company said. “These new fuels will reduce our carbon footprint, clean our air, and help California meet the goals of carbon neutrality,” the Rodeo Renewed site says. “Companies like Amazon are demanding these fuels right now.”

Phillips 66 also noted that the company also wants to shut down its Rodeo Carbon Plant and Santa Maria refining facility in Arroyo Grande, California, in 2023, with associated crude oil pipelines taken out of service in phases beginning that year.

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