Regulators Approve Major Emissions Reduction Program
(Fort McMurray, Alberta) Syncrude Canada Ltd. has received regulatory approval for a sulphur dioxide emissions reduction project (SERP) at its Mildred Lake Upgrader. The application was filed jointly with Alberta Environment and the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board in mid 2003.
Requiring an investment of over $400 million, SERP will more than halve total sulphur dioxide emissions from the currently approved level of 245 tonnes per day. Other emissions, such as particulate matter and metals, are also expected to be reduced by around 50%.
This initiative is one example of Syncrude’s focus on the sustainable development of its operations. Combined with flue gas scrubbing and sulphur reduction processes now under construction as part of the Upgrader Expansion (UE-1) project, Syncrude plans an overall reduction of almost 60% in sulphur emissions, while crude oil production will increase by more than 40%.
“These combined efforts should result in a very significant reduction in sulphur dioxide emissions from all parts of our operations,” said Charles Ruigrok, Syncrude Chief Executive Officer. “Continuous improvement is an important part of the way we do business at Syncrude and it extends to all facets of our operations, including our environmental performance.”
Maintaining high air quality in the Wood Buffalo region and managing the cumulative effects of emissions from our site are important issues.
“Along with our neighbours in the region, we enjoy having excellent air quality in Wood Buffalo and want to maintain it while we meet our business goals for planned, sustainable growth.”
The emissions reduction program involves retrofitting a three-train flue gas scrubbing system into the operation of Syncrude’s two existing cokers. This multi-train configuration will ensure greater reliability of the system. To date, $15 million has been spent on design, engineering and other preliminary work. Procurement and construction activities are scheduled to begin in 2005 and will ramp up following completion of UE-1 in 2006. SERP expenditures are planned to extend through 2008, as tie-in work is coordinated with regularly scheduled equipment maintenance shutdowns.
Syncrude currently produces one of the lowest-sulphur crude oils in the marketplace, Syncrude Sweet Blend, which is attractive to a wide variety of refiners. At the completion of UE-1, all crude oil produced will be of an even higher standard to be known as Syncrude Sweet Premium.
The Syncrude Project is a joint venture operated by Syncrude Canada Ltd. and owned by Canadian Oil Sands, ConocoPhillips Oilsands Partnership II, Imperial Oil Resources, Mocal Energy Limited, Murphy Oil Company Ltd., Nexen Inc., and Petro-Canada Oil and Gas.
Trading Symbols for Public Syncrude Joint Venture Owners
|Canadian Oil Sands Trust |
(via Canadian Oil Sands Limited and Canadian Oil Sands Limited Partnership)
|ConocoPhillips Oilsands Partnership II|
(wholly owned by ConocoPhillips)
|Imperial Oil Resources||IMO-TSX/AMEX|
|Murphy Oil Company Ltd.||MUR-NYSE|