Canada's Come By Chance refinery samples new crude on own front door
By Jarrett Renshaw
NEW YORK May 20 (Reuters) - Canada's Come By Chance refinery, located on the eastern island of Newfoundland, is for the first time buying domestic crude pumped from fields only a few hundred miles offshore, marking the latest addition to its increasingly versatile slate.
The 115,000 barrel-per-day refinery recently began taking deliveries of White Rose crude, a refinery spokeswoman confirmed. Until now, the relatively medium-sweet variety has been a stranger to the refinery, despite its close proximity in the northern Atlantic Ocean.
The first cargo was shipped in December, according to Husky Energy, which operates the fields that make up the roughly 45,000 bpd White Rose stream. At least four other vessels followed in April and May, passing briefly through the Whiffen Head terminal to a refinery dock about a mile away, according to vessel tracking data available on ThomsonReuters' Eikon.
Although the field has been pumping oil for a decade, most of the crude has been shipped to refiners on the U.S. East coast eager for nearby medium-sweet oil, with Phillips 66's Bayway refinery in New Jersey the largest buyer, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration data. Some also goes elsewhere in Canada and to Europe.
Come By Chance, run in recent years by an upstream Canadian oil venture and the South Korean state oil firm, had shunned White Rose in favor of longer-distance grades closer to the sour varieties it was mainly built to consume.
The deliveries are the latest sign of a new approach to crude supply by the new owners. It is also part of a flux in global crude supply routes, which have been tangled by the growth of production from U.S. shale fields.
"They have become a merchant refinery," said Ed Hirs, an energy economist at the University of Houston, referring to a type of freewheeling refinery that has no fixed supply or market. Continued...