You are currently viewing: News



21-01-2020

European refineries are the least prepared as IMO 2020 regulations loom large

European refineries expect the largest impact from new IMO 2020 regulations, yet just 23% of these refineries are focussing on operational improvements targeting higher availability to make low sulphur fuels, according to a global study of senior employees in the refining industry, commissioned by Aspen Technology, a global leader in asset optimisation software.

The survey also revealed a shortfall globally in refineries with this focus on clean fuels, with just 37% claiming to be doing that as a result of IMO 2020.

However, four out of ten (43%) refineries globally are focusing on operational improvements targeted at improved overall utilisation, relying on digital investment to secure operational efficiency improvements, with mid-sized refineries focussing on this most, in a ‘survival of the fittest’ battle in the lower quartiles.

Nearly two-thirds of oil refineries, globally, (64%) have not made any capital expenditure against IMO 2020 regulations which came into effect on 1st January.

The study also found that refineries expect fuel oil production is likely to fall as a result of IMO 2020, with more than a third (34%) of refineries globally expecting to produce less fuel oil in 2020, while just 24% expected to increase production.

Ron Beck, Industry Marketing Director at AspenTech, said: “We are in a challenging period, but there are still many margin improvement opportunities refineries can make. There are two clear options to help them compete: operational improvements to increase utilization or increased availability.  Today’s technology can improve both.”

Beck added: “Given the overall reduction in production that IMO 2020 is likely to bring, fuels that enable shippers to comply will be comparatively more valuable in the market. It’s concerning that most refineries are failing to focus on improved utilisation. Such investment is becoming ever more urgent as IMO 2020 approaches. Digital approaches can significantly help operators who have yet to decide on capital investments”

Additional/ supporting key findings:
* The study also discovered that a third of refineries (33%) are upgrading equipment to process higher sulphur oil. Only 29% of plants are shifting to use lower sulphur crude slates to help cope with the regulation.
* It appears likely that fuel oil production could fall as a result of IMO 2020, with more than a third (34%) of refineries globally expecting to produce less fuel oil in 2020, while just 24% expected to increase production
* BPCL Mumbai refinery in India achieved 90% improved sulphur recovery in under six months in 2018 by implementing digital twinning on their sulphur removal processes.

Sponsor : 

Other News Items

RefComm® launches free eLearning webinar series for refining professionals

RefComm® is launching eRefComm®, an interactive online learning community for refining professionals in the downstream sector. The first of eRefComm’s free, ...

02-04-2020

Ergon Refining announces updated startup plan for Vicksburg refinery

Ergon's naphthenic refinery in Vicksburg, Mississippi, began a planned turnaround on March 5, 2020. Originally scheduled for a 26-day duration, completion of the turnaround ...

01-04-2020

Tecnimont awarded contracts totalling $10M

Maire Tecnimont S.p.A. announces that its subsidiary Tecnimont S.p.A. has been granted awards for a total amount of approximately USD 10 million for technology-driven ...

31-03-2020

PKN ORLEN closer to take over the ENERGA Group

The European Commission has given its unconditional approval for PKN ORLEN’s plan to take over the ENERGA Group. This is another step, following the tender offer, ...

31-03-2020

Shell exits proposed Lake Charles LNG project

Given current market conditions, Shell announces today it will not proceed with an equity interest in the proposed Lake Charles LNG project. Accordingly, Energy ...

30-03-2020

LyondellBasell to slow construction on PO/TBA project

LyondellBasell, one of the largest plastics, chemicals and refining companies in the world, has informed the engineering and construction contractors it will slow construction ...

30-03-2020

Air Products acquires five operating hydrogen plants

Air Products today announced it has signed agreements with PBF Energy Inc, that include the $530 million purchase of five hydrogen steam methane reformer (SMR) hydrogen ...

30-03-2020

K°Bloc reliability refined

Kelvion has refined the K°Bloc fully-welded plate heat exchanger to further enhance its reliability and efficiency. Designed and made in Germany, K°Bloc plays ...

27-03-2020

Chevron Lummus Global announces multi-technology award in Southeast Asia

Chevron Lummus Global (CLG) is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a contract by a Southeast Asian refiner for the license, engineering and supply of proprietary ...

25-03-2020

Yokogawa acquires Grazper Technologies

Yokogawa Electric Corporation announces that on March 20, 2020, it completed the acquisition of all shares in Denmark-based ApS (Grazper), as mutually agreed. Grazper ...

25-03-2020