At first glance, this seems like good news for the US Virgin Islands. Why in the world would a beautiful Caribbean island want a disgusting, old refinery? Why not tear it down and build a golf course? Or at least that is my thought.
The Hovensa, a joint venture between Hess (HES) and Petroleos de Venezuela S.A, refinery in St. Croix is being closed due to various reasons such as lower demand since the financial crisis and modern refineries in the emerging markets. Also, another reason for the closure is that it is an oil-fueled operation leaving it at a disadvantage versus one fueld by nat gas. Isn't this just short sighted? That advantage will flip flop numerous times over the next 10-20 years.
The 350,000 barrel per day refinery has been in operation since the 1960s and clearly provides a huge tax income for the island. Looking at the picture below I still wonder why paradise would want such a disgusting operation. Of course, the real question is whether Hovensa will tear it down or just let it fall apart.
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