Refiner to offer low sulfur blend to tug and towboat market

MARCH 20, 2014  — Independently owned crude oil refinery Continental Refining Company, LLC, Somerset, KY, is producing a low sulfur marine diesel fuel (T-90 700) for use in the ECA 1 Operating Zones in Category 2 and 3 marine engines. It is similar to DMA grade Marine Gasoil.

Continental Refinery is already supplying the special blend distillate to the U.S. East Coast where it is being used in oceangoing ships. Now the company is investing in processing more T-90 700 for domestic users on the inland water ways and Great Lakes.

It says that, in comparison with ULSD, the blend provides a cost savings of around 10 cents per gallon, or $4.20 per barrel for domestic Category 2 and 3 diesel engine users while still complying with EPA requirements.

Based on geography, the primary market for the refinery's T-90 700 supply is the Ohio River.

"Expanding into niche markets enables Continental Refining Company to continue to grow, remain competitive and strengthen our long-term prospects in Somerset, KY.  Providing low sulfur marine diesel as a low cost fuel option to American lakers and towboats while meeting ECA  Area 1 standards is smart business for freight operators and consumers when you consider that one towboat has the carrying capacity to push 40 barges— that's 2,400 trucks that don't have to clog up U.S. highways," explains Continental Refining Company CEO Demetrios Haseotes.

Continental Refining Company is one of only 150 refineries in the United States and is the closest refinery for crude oil producers within a 170-miles radius. Located on 93 acres in Somerset, KY the refinery is adjacent to intermodal rail and close to barge facilities for rapid shipping.