Evidence continues to pile up that there is no viable business case for the proposed Hyperion oil refinery near Elk Point. My friends at the SD Tar Sands Pipeline blog note that demand for gasoline is dropping. SDTSP points to a Wall Street Journal report that Valero is closing a Delaware gasoline refinery. Experts in that article see gasoline demand decreasing or remaining flat as biofuels take more of the market and as motorists look for more fuel-efficient vehicles.
A new Department of Energy report says that last week, U.S. crude oil refineries operated at under 80% of capacity. The same report says our oil imports over the past month are down 13% from the same time last year. Domestic production is up, but there's still a net drop of 2.1% in cumulative oil input to refineries this year.
All this supports the case I've been making for the past year here (see also here and here and here): Hyperion's refinery proposal is more wishes and dreams than solid business case.
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