Exxon Mobil Corporation has reportedly commenced the groundwork at its Texas refinery which is slated to become the biggest in the United States. As per trusted sources, the move comes ahead of a final investment decision on expanding the facility.
Reportedly, the firm has further started recruiting and training staff to operate on what would become the third crude distillation unit at the plant. The expansion is expected to ramp up the crude capacity by at least 300,000 barrels each day at the facility located in Beaumont, Texas. The current capacity stands at 365,644 barrels each day, cite sources.
Sources privy to the matter claim that the planned unit will convert crude oil from Texas shale fields into refined products, including gasoline and diesel. Moreover, the company plans to boost daily crude production by almost three times in the Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico to 600,000 barrels of oil equivalent by the year 2025.
Sarah Nordin, the spokesperson of Exxon Mobil Corporation, reportedly stated that the preliminary work has commenced and construction of the crude facility is slated to begin next year following a final investment decision. The company would begin processing crude by 2022 and proceed with front-end engineering, design and other preparatory work to further enhance the crude refining capacity of the refinery, Nordin added.
The spokesperson did not elaborate on the specific steps that are being taken at the new refinery to build the crude unit. For the record, the new unit is a part of USD 20 billion program that aims to expand its manufacturing capacity at the U.S. Gulf Coast over the next decade.
Exxon’s preparations also involve raising the facility to resist flooding. Reportedly, the facility was swamped and had to be closed due to torrential rains caused by Hurricane Harvey last year.
The refinery has hired eight operators initially to gain experience working on the two existing crude units. Sources state that the new operators would move over to the latest processing unit after it is constructed.