A green field project and a cold brown field made history in Dickinson Tuesday.
A green field refinery — a term that means from the dirt on up — officially started construction in bare frozen soil about four miles west of town, the first time since 1976 that a new refinery has gone under construction anywhere in the country.
Calumet Specialty Products and MDU Resources are 50-50 partners in the $300 million venture that will turn Bakken crude into diesel for local truck and equipment markets, and other hydrocarbon byproducts. The companies invited dignitaries, employees and local residents to a golden-shovel photo op in a cold March wind out at the site and then to warm up with coffee and speeches at the local activities center.
Suits and smiles abounded and Dickinson’s economic development director Gaylon Baker wore both. He told the crowd he was probably the single luckiest developer in the USA that day.
“Who else can claim they’ve got the only new refinery in the country?” he said.Reuters is reporting:
MDU Resources Group Inc and Calumet Specialty Products Partners LP broke ground on the first U.S. refinery to be built since 1976 on Tuesday, aiming to supply locally produced diesel to North Dakota's oil patch.
The $300 million refinery should take about 20 months to complete, the companies said.