Phillips 66: Ponca City Refinery

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Conoco and Phillips 66 announced on November 18, 2001 that their boards of directors had unanimously approved a definitive agreement for a "merger of equals". The merged company, ConocoPhillips, became the third-largest integrated U.S. energy company based on market capitalization and oil and gas reserves and production. On November 11, 2011 ConocoPhillips announced that Phillips 66 would be the name of a new independent oil and gasoline refining and marketing firm, created as ConocoPhillips split into two companies. ConocoPhillips kept the current name of the company and concentrated on oil exploration and production side while Phillips 66 included refining, marketing, midstream, and chemical portions of the company. Photo: Hugh Pickens all rights reserved.

by Hugh Pickens, Ponca City Oklahoma


The purpose of this report is to provide a comprehensive overview of Phillips 66 that documents and explains the company's business strategy and execution of that strategy.

Major Sections of this report on Phillips 66 include:

Safety, Environment, Legal


Corporate


Strategic and Financial


Business Segments


Stock Market


Reference

Refining Business Segment


Increasing Profitability in Refining Business Segment


Detailed Look at Ponca City Refinery


Other Phillips Refineries


Other Locations


Contents

Master Index of Articles about Phillips 66

The 587 foot tall Mammoet PTC 140 crane, seen here from North First Street, towers over the Refinery Complex in Ponca City. The supercrane was used to move two new 232 ton coker reactor units within the refinery on September 29, 2013. Phillips was willing to invest $70 million in the two new coker reactor units because the Ponca City Refinery is one of the best run, safest, and most profitable of Phillips' fifteen worldwide refineries and Garland wants the refinery in Ponca City to continue to run smoothly and profitably. This photograph of the supercrane in Ponca City was taken from almost two miles away from the crane. Photo: Hugh Pickens All Rights Reserved.
Hugh Pickens, an analyst who closely follows Phillips 66, speaks with Phillips CEO Greg Garland (right) about the disposition of the North Tower, South Tower, and Research West at Phillips' Ponca City Refinery after Garland's speech to the Bartlesville Chamber of Commerce on August 13, 2014.

by Hugh Pickens, Ponca City Oklahoma


The purpose of this report is to provide a comprehensive overview of Phillips 66 that documents and explains the company's business strategy and execution of that strategy.

Major Sections of this report on Phillips 66 include:

Safety, Environment, Legal


Corporate


Strategic and Financial


Business Segments


Stock Market


Reference

Refining Business Segment


Increasing Profitability in Refining Business Segment


Detailed Look at Ponca City Refinery


Other Phillips Refineries


Other Locations


Introduction and Purpose

The purpose of this report is to provide a comprehensive overview of the Ponca City refinery and Ponca City's century old history as an oil refining center. The report is divided into five major sections that cover the refinery's history since its inception down to the present and discusses issues facing the refinery today under the tenure of Phillips 66:

Ponca City and its Century-Old Oil Refining History

In 1911 E.W. Marland Drilled "Willie Cries," his First Successful Oil Well in Oklahoma. Photo: Wikipedia
Prospectus for the 101 Ranch Oil Company. Marland founded the 101 Ranch Oil Company, located on the Miller Brothers 101 Ranch, and drilled his first successful oil well at Willie Cries on land which he leased in 1911 from the Tribe. Click to enlarge. Photo: Wikipedia
In 1918 E. W. Marland Built the Marland Refinery in Ponca City, Oklahoma. An article from Petroleum Age in 1922 said that Marland Refinery in Ponca City had a production of 10,000-barrel per day and Marland Refinery included nearly two million barrels of steel storage for crude and finished products. An article from Petroleum Age in 1928 said "Marland refinery at Ponca City is one of the largest complete plants in the Mid-Continent field with a crude capacity of 35,000 barrels per day of which approximately half can be run down to wax. The plant is equipped with four large Dubbs units, two Cross units, and 18 Fleming stills." Derivative Photo: Hugh Pickens original photo taken in 1919
A photo of Marland Refinery in Ponca City in 1921. By 1921 EW Marland had consolidated all of his oil operations under the auspices of the Marland Oil Company. Headquartered in Ponca City the firm continued its phenomenal growth pattern by absorbing numerous small oil companies including the Comar Oil Company, Tom Jones Oil Company, Kenney-Cleary Oil Company, Francoma Oil Company, John S. Alcorn Oil Company, and many others whose highly competent executives Marland's company usually retained. Photo: Oklahoma Historical Society
The Marland Refinery in 1921 from the Marland Oil Company Quarterly Report. There are multitude of oil derricks in the upper left had corner of the graphic, part of the Ponca Field. At the time the photo was taken the Marland Refinery had the largest oil tank storage facility in the world. Click on photo to enlarge.
An Advertisement for Marland Oil in the Saturday Evening Post about 1927. Photo: Saturday Evening Post
In 1928 J. P. Morgan Recruited Dan Moran to Replace E. W. Marland. E. W. Marland's successor as President of Marland Oil was Dan Moran. Known as a bulldog manager, Moran had an explosive temper. Moran's first management decision after taking over was to purge the company of the Marland influence, discharging most of Marland's operating executives, superintendents and managers who had grown up with the company alongside E. W. Marland.
The Marland Refinery in 1930. Photo: Unknown
An Advertisement for Conoco in the Saturday Evening Post in 1946. Photo: Saturday Evening Post
Conoco headquarters at Ponca City in 1950. Ponca City was a thriving community after it became the headquarters for Continental Oil Company (Conoco). Conoco was by far Ponca City's biggest employer with over 800 employees at the refinery and about 3,800 employees working in support services including financial, research, engineering, and service organizations. Photo: Unknown
New President Leonard McCollum Transforms Conoco, Moves Company HQ From Ponca City to Houston. In 1949, McCollum, moved Conoco's headquarters from Ponca City to Houston - the center of the US petroleum industry. Although Ponca City lost its role as headquarters, Ponca City was the beneficiary of McCollum's decision to build Conoco's central research center in Ponca in 1952 and double the R&D center in size by 1962. When McCollum joined Continental Oil when it was a medium-sized company with $209 million in assets. When he retired as chairman, the company, renamed Conoco, was a multinational energy conglomerate with assets of $2.3 billion.
An Advertisement for Conoco in the Saturday Evening Post in 1959. Photo: Saturday Evening Post
The Conoco Oil Refinery in Ponca City, Oklahoma the 1960's. The Park Building, shown in this photo directly north of the Continental Building, was built in the early 1960s, possibly completed in 1962. Derivative Photo: Hugh Pickens
An Advertisement for Conoco in the Saturday Evening Post in 1978. Photo: Saturday Evening Post
The Conoco Oil Refinery in Ponca City, Oklahoma in the 1980's. The North Tower was completed in 1978. The South Tower was completed in 1982. Derivative Photo: Hugh Pickens
Dupont Acquires Conoco in 1981, Divests in 1999. In 1981, in what was called the largest acquisition in US history at that time, Conoco was purchased by DuPont Company. DuPont Chairman Edward Jefferson (shown above) came to Ponca City in 1982 and assured local residents that major Conoco accounting functions located in Ponca City would remain there. "I see no basis for wanting to move them." Major downsizings followed, especially in the early to mid-1990s. Employee numbers in Ponca City fell from a high of 4,500 to a low of 1,800 - huge losses that left the city of 25,000 reeling, economically and psychologically.
Fire at Ponca City Refinery in 1999. Two workers were burned when fuel ignited in an 80,000-barrel storage tank. An estimated 50,000 barrels of fuel were consumed in the fire and damage was estimated at $1.5 million. In July 1996, the plant experienced a fire in a hydro heater, which removes sulfur from the hydrocarbon feed stock for the manufacture of oil and gas products.

1911: Marland finds Oil near Ponca City

Over the past 100 years, Ponca City's history has been shaped for the most part by the ebb and flow of the petroleum industry. EW Marland decided to come to Ponca City after a relative introduced him to the Miller brothers whose famous 101 Ranch lay near Ponca City, Oklahoma. In 1908 E. W. journeyed to Ponca City and immediately decided that the surface geology indicated oil. Marland raised capital from financiers back in Pennsylvania and began drilling. Marland originally founded the 101 Ranch Oil Company, located on the Miller Brothers 101 Ranch, and after drilling seven dry holes, drilled his first successful oil well, called Willie Cries, in 1911 on land which he leased from the Ponca Tribe.[1][2]

E. W. Marland's life ran to legendary proportions. The Pennsylvania native won and lost an oil fortune in West Virginia, a much larger one in Oklahoma, was a high-stakes gambler, lived lavishly, spent great amounts on his community and his workers, was a businessman with a strong social conscience, an enthusiastic conservationist and gardener. He had boom-and-bust times in politics as well as oil. After losing his independent Marland Oil Co. to financial sharks led by the younger J.P. Morgan, Marland a Democratic convert and ardent New Dealer won a term in Congress and one as Oklahoma's governor. Two bids for the U.S. Senate were unsuccessful. After his first wife died in 1926, he created controversy by having the legal status of their adopted daughter, Lydie, changed so he could marry her. He drilled for and found oil from the Appalachians to California, over much of the West and into Mexico. He pioneered in drilling the rich Three Sands and Burbank fields of Oklahoma this by a man trained as a lawyer, an early-day coal prospector self-taught in geology.[3]

E. W. Marland loved playing poker. A first rate player, Marland learned poker as a fraternity member at the Sigma Chi fraternity house at the Univeristy of Michigan in 1891. He loved gambling intensely and was a fair loser and a modest winner. At Ann Arbor he never gave the impression of excitability while playing and was alart though silent. John Joseph Mathews recounts in his book "Life and Death of an Oilman: The Career of E.W. Marland" that one time a sharpshooter from another part of town came to the Sigma Chi house to play. Very soon he had chips piled before him on the table. Then suddenly he stood up, beamed on the others and said, "I guess I'll check out." As he raked in the money from the banker in exchange for his chips, he said with a smug smile, "the fact is, boys, I need the money." Marland showed shocked surprise on his usually unreadable face. The expression of incredulity impressed the others when the sharpshooter had gone with all the money, they bantered Marland. At each game thereafter someone at some time usually after winning a large pot would say, "The fact is, boys, I need the money."[4]

After Marland struck oil in Ponca City and had begun to build his oil empire, many a night E. W. and his lieutenants and friends would sit until daybreak playing poker. There were hundreds of private poker parties during a year. Sometimes there were lavish affairs at the Arcade Hotel, or at some private home. Marland continued to love playing poker and played with deep concentration, except that now he could afford to lose of to win as much as seventy-five thousand dollars.[5]

1917: Marland Oil Founded

Marland Oil Company was founded in 1917, when Marland assembled his various holdings including the 101 Ranch Oil Company into one unit, forming Marland Oil Company. Later, on January 3, 1921 Marland incorporated the Marland Oil Company in Delaware to acquire through an exchange of stock control of the Marland Refining Corp. and Kay County Gas Co. By 1920 it is estimated that Marland and his partners controlled 10% of the worlds oil production (the equivalent of Saudi Arabia in 2006) and that Marland was worth $85 million (over $1.0 Billion in 2015 dollars).[6]

From the outset Marland realized that to sustain long-range corporate growth he must form an integrated company encompassing drilling and production, storage and transportation, and refining, and retailing, similar to the very successful model used by the Standard Oil Company. The first step in this process was to dissolve the 101 Ranch Oil Company and replace it with the Marland Refining Company. Over the next several years Marland expanded his empire to include production in neighboring states, and by 1919 he had even started large-scale drilling operations in Mexico. The next step in bringing the feverish rate of growth under a more centralized and integrated operation came in early 1921 when Marland consolidated all of his oil operations under the auspices of the Marland Oil Company. Headquartered in Ponca City, where its major refining facility was located, the firm continued its phenomenal growth pattern by absorbing numerous small oil companies such as Comar Oil Company, Tom Jones Oil Company, Kenney-Cleary Oil Company, Francoma Oil Company, John S. Alcorn Oil Company, and many others whose highly competent executives Marland's company usually retained. Additionally, the company opened its first retail gasoline "filling station" in Pawhuska, Oklahoma, in 1920, and that aspect of the business began to experience rapid growth. Marland took a strong, paternal interest in his company and in his employees and provided numerous benefits not normally offered in that era. He furnished company housing at a nominal fee, provided free insurance to all employees, paid wages above the norm for the time, and is generally acknowledged to have provided the best employee benefits and working conditions in the state. Additionally, his donations to local charities and civic projects were enormous, and he sponsored legendary entertainment spectacles for both employees and the general public.[7]

1918: Marland Refinery Constructed

In 1918 Marland began construction of the Marland Refinery and the population of Ponca City doubled then trebled in a few months.[8] According to an article appearing in Petroleum Age in 1922, the refinery in Ponca City was already one of the largest refineries in the world by 1920:

Located in the heart of the Mid-Continent oil field, the greatest known light oil field in the world, by 1920 the company controlled, with its subsidiaries, over 200,000 acres of proven and valuable oil land within a radius of 100 miles from Ponca City, the headquarters of the company. A study of the map of Marland properties in Northern Oklahoma proves easily the strong strategic position the company holds through its oil resources and large reserves in some of the best pools of this district. Marland oil opened in 1920 the famous Hickman, or now better known as Burbank pool, in the Western Osage; in 1921 the Tonkawa pool in Noble County, within fifteen miles of Ponca City, which promises to produce large quantities of high-gravity crude. It controls almost entirely the Ponca field, one of the oldest and best producing fields in the Mid-Continent, with five producing sands; holds large parcels of oil and gas lands in the Eastern and Western Osage fields, in the Garber, Noble, Newkirk, Deer-Creek and in the Pawnee Payne district. Marland draws its crude from eighteen producing fields with 244 wells and produces, with its affiliated companies, the Comar and Alcorn Oil Companies, over 12.000 barrels per day, sufficient crude for its own refinery demand. Pipe lines extending 271 miles, with thirteen modern equipped pumping stations, radiate in three directions from Ponca City and connect Marland's two refineries with oil fields which have ample unmined production to supply sufficient crude oil for many years to come. The company operates in Ponca City a 10,000-barrel complete refinery, and at Covington a 1,000-barrel skimming plant producing a well-known brand of high grade gasoline and lubricating oils. Nearly two million barrels of steel storage for crude and finished products give the company a strong position in the market, and enabled Marland to begin the storage of gasoline when the refinery price was as low as 12-1/2 cents. The recent raise, totaling so far 3 cents per gallon has greatly increased the value of the 250,000 to 300,000 barrels gasoline the company keeps i» storage against the coming summer demand.[9]

"E. W. Marland's dreams were about to come true when I arrived in Ponca City. That was in 1919 and there were no buildings south of Grand Avenue on the east side of the railroad tracks," says Charles D. Hull, later to become Refinery Manager in 1952 and mayor of Ponca City. "Only a wheatfield occupied the area. Mr. Marland already had the nucleus of a refinery operating where today's Ponca City refinery stands, but it was a mere shadow of the present-day facility. Evidence of the many Marland philanthropies was already beginning to show up throughout the City.[10]

W. H. Shorty Rogers, a refinery supervisor, arrived in Ponca City just after World War I and was sent by the Henry Volk Machine Company to assemble the wax plant for Marland Refining Company. "One day I was offered a position with Marland at the then-fabulous salary of $175 a month and moving expenses from Louisville. The offer came in December, 1919 and was the most unique Christmas present I ever received. We moved to Ponca City the following month. Marland and McFadden would make daily inspections of the refinery. One of the first units in operation were the shell stills, and one one particular day following a flash fire, Mr. Marland showed up on horseback with a lighted cigar in his mouth. I stopped him and asked him if he didn't think the cigar was a safety hazard in the refinery. With a startled look on his face, he grabbed the cigar and slammed it into the ground, then thanked me for reminding him of it.[11]

By 1922 nearly 600 Marland stations were found in 11 mid-continent states, from North Dakota to Oklahoma and as far east as Indiana. Growth required capital, however, and Marland was continually strapped. Turning to investment banker J.P. Morgan and Company, Marland was able to secure financial backing for continued expansion, but with expansion came a hefty price. By 1928 Marland had been forced out by Morgan interests who placed former Texaco executive Dan Moran in charge. With orders from Morgan and Company to put Marland Oil back in the black, Moran set out to acquire key assets that would round out the Marland operation, allowing for increased financial stability. With this in mind, Marland management began to look around for a partner, a company with complementary assets, an operation that would perhaps consider a merger.[12]

Marland's exploitation of oil reserves generated growth and wealth that were previously unimaginable on the Oklahoma prairie, and his company virtually built the city from the ground up. Mansions—including the Marland Mansion and Grand Home—were built by Marland and his associates. The "Roaring 20s" came to an end for Ponca City shortly before the Great Depression. After the takeover bid by J.P. Morgan Jr., son of financier J.P. Morgan, Marland Oil Co. merged with Continental Oil Co. (Conoco) in the late 1920s.[13] It was known as Conoco for more than 70 years. The company maintained its headquarters in Ponca City until the 1950s and continued to grow into a global corporation.[14] Marland was later elected the governor of Oklahoma and as a U.S. congressman.

1928: Marland Loses Control of His Company

While in New York City in 1923 Marland received a phone call that would change his life and lead to the downfall of the oil empire he had created. J. P. Morgan, the financier and banker, wanted to talk to Marland. "I had a very pleasant meeting with Mr. Morgan and his associates," Marland later wrote. They asked me if they could be of any help to me by establishing a line of credit for me in their bank amd suggested they could close my lines of credit in Chicago, St. Louis, and Kansas City. This suggestion, besides being very flattering, was very agreeable to me." Marland needed $12 million to expand the Ponca City Refinery and get into the producing business in Texas, California, and New Mexico. Rather than borrow such a large amount, Marland agreed to let Morgan buy $12 million of stock in Marland Oil in return for representation on Marland Oil's board of directors. At first allowing Morgan to name three members to the company's other twelve board members seemed like a prudent move. Marland used the money to expand pipeline facilities, enlarge his fleet of tank cars to 3,100, and build 500 service stations. "He was walking the earth like a king in the company of bankers and brokers, wearing his crown with the ease of hereditary royalty, and viewing the nation's prosperity with personal pride," writes Ruth Sheldon Knowles.[15][16][17]

John Joseph Matthews recounts the story of Marland's fall in his book Life and Death of an Oilman.

One day in the autumn of 1923, E. W. received a telephone call in his hotel room in New York City. Mr. Charles Sabin of the Guaranty Trust Company of New York was on the telephone. He wondered if Mr. Marland would be coming downtown that day. E. W. assured him that he had business downtown that day. Why? Mr. Sabin said that he would like to have Mr. Marland stop in at his office and see him if Mr. Marland found it convenient to do so. E. W. called at the office of Mr. Sabin, who said that he had been talking with Mr. Morgan of Morgan and Company just the day before, and that Mr. Morgan had expressed a desire to meet Mr. Marland—as a matter of fact he had asked if he, Sabin, could arrange the meeting. Mr. Morgan had expressed a desire, said Mr. Sabin, to talk over the general situation of the oil business with Mr. Marland, adding that Mr. Morgan had told him that he was especially interested in talking over the business with Mr. Marland because he understood through a mutual friend, Mr. A. C. Bedford, chairman of the Board of Directors of the Standard Oil Company, that Mr. Marland was really well in-formed about the conditions in the Mid-Continent oil field.

Then he asked E. W. if he might arrange a meeting with Mr. Morgan. E. W. replied that he would be very glad to meet Mr. Morgan at any time. Thereupon Mr. Sabin telephoned to Mr. Morgan, then took E. W. over to the Morgan and Company offices, where he was introduced to the son of one of the great little gods of his boyhood and youth. Mr. Morgan and his partners gathered around Mr. Marland. They later had lunch together in the bank, and as they lunched there was the usual friendly chat and a show of great interest in this famed Oklahoman who had honored them. They told E. W. that they had taken very little interest in the oil business, but the business was of such great importance to the country that they felt they must take a more active interest in it and learn something about it; that their sole financial concern with oil up to that time had been as bankers and underwriters of an issue of the Standard Oil Company of New Jersey; that they had no affiliation with any oil company; that they had expressed a desire to Mr. A. C. Bedford to inform themselves about the oil business and that Mr. Bedford had recommended Mr. Marland as a man of high character—"one who was a student of the business and who had developed a very important unit in the industry. Mr. Morgan sat forward in his chair. He wondered if his firm could not possibly be of some help to Mr. Marland by establishing a line of credit for him in their bank and in the Guaranty Trust Company of New York to, one might suggest, take care of his current needs. Why not let them, the Morgans,

It would be more convenient for him. He wouldn't be compelled to worry about visiting the banks in Chicago, St. Louis, and Kansas City to keep his lines of credit open. In other words, the Morgan partners implied that it was all very well to have regional loyalty, but a man splashing a big canvas with vivid colors and bold lines shouldn't be disturbed with details like borrowing accounts of five million dollars scattered over the Middle West and Southwest, which he personally had to visit periodically in order to keep open. The offices where he sat were really the ganglion of the financial world, especially since the war of 1914-18. London might be dying hard, but facts were facts. He felt that he was a part of the affairs of the world as he sat there. Certainly the masters of the world were around him, seeking, deferring, pushing the cigarette ash tray closer to him so that he would not have to reach, giving over-the-shoulder nods and curt orders so that they could give complete attention to Mr. Marland, who was telling them the fascinating story of oil in the Mid-Continent field. He talked and the international bankers listened. And as he talked he saw himself as a world power, too. The arrangements were made whereby Morgan and Company would become the bankers of the Marland Oil Company of Ponca City, Oklahoma. Then the Morgan partners seemed to read his thoughts and suggested that he would certainly want to expand. E. W. said that he had, as a matter of fact, been very anxious to get into the producing business in Texas, California, and New Mexico, and to make further extensions of the refinery at Ponca City. He said that he would like to have five million dollars to invest (open up new fields) in California, five million dollars to invest in Texas, and two million dollars to make extensions to the refinery in Ponca City and to start in New Mexico. But, he said, he would not really feel safe in borrowing such a large amount for permanent investment, because it might take him two or three years to realize on such an investment.

They would learn, through E. W., about production, refining, and the working in general of an oil company. In exchange for this tutoring in oil, they could certainly be of use to E. W. with their advice on financial matters. The Morgan members of the board of directors of E. W.'s company pointed efficient fingers at an obviously inconvenient by-product of the Morgan-Mar-land arrangement. Why should all the fifteen Marland members be compelled to leave their work and make expensive trips to New York for meetings? Why not form an executive commit-tee, which would have the powers of the board of directors, and they could meet in New York. Then only E. W. himself and two others to be appointed to the executive committee from the Marland Company need come to New York. An executive committee was elected consisting of the three Morgan representatives and W. H. McFadden, Vernon F. Taylor, and E. W., of the original Marland board members and stockholders. From this time on Morgan and Company dominated from New York City the Marland Oil Company of the Cherokee Outlet of Oklahoma. "The influence of Morgan and Company upon my executive committee was, of course, dominant," said E. W. "The other members of the board of directors, men who had grown up with me in the oil business and who had theretofore been active in formulating and directing the policies of the company with me, attended directors' meetings thereafter only when necessary, and they voted 'aye' to every suggestion of the executive committee. In this manner the Morgan influence became supreme—and the builders of the company lost control of policy direction."[18]

On May 14, 1924 E. W. Marland reported at the annual meeting of stockholders in Wilmington, Delaware that the company had eaned $2.09 per share on 1,382,987 outstanding shares in the company.[19] On August 1, 1925 J. P. Morgan officially notified E. W. Marland that he was exercising an option to purchase an additional 150,000 shares of Marland common stock at $40 per share. This brought the Morgan total to 635,000 shares of stock for an aggregate price of $22,400,000.[20]

By the end of 1926, Marland Oil's books showed current liabilities of over $8 million, an increase of $5 million from 1925. Marland gradually lost control of his company. One of the first decisions of the new board of directors was to form an executive committee that would meet in New York City with three Morgan members and three Marland members. "Every plan of major importance I suggested for the development of the company was vetoed, wrote Marland. "[Morgan] said I took too much 'human' interest in my employees and that Morgan and Company felt that I need under me a President of the Company...who would be hard-boiled and two-fisted." After Marland Oil recorded losses in 1926 and 1927, the executive committee met and decided in 1928 that Marland relinquish the president's title. Marland had no choice but to agree. The committee asked Marland to help find a new president but Morgan had already secretly chosen Marland's replacement - Dan Moran.[21][22][23]

Ruth Sheldon Knowles wrote about Marland's final expulsion from the company he founded in The Greatest Gamblers: The Epic of American Oil Exploration:

When his company showed another loss in 1928, Marland realized the situation was serious, but had no doubt as to his ability to weather whatever financial storm might be brewing. The price of oil fell from $2 a barrel to $1. The West Texas and Greater Seminole fields flowed more oil than refineries could handle. Storage of crude and products reached alarming proportions. Everyone in the industry sensed trouble. The overproduction situation would become worse at the end of the year when the great Oklahoma City field was discovered. When Marland met with his executive committee in New York in May, 1928, he was shocked to find that the bankers had turned against him. They told him the company needed a firmer hand, a president who would not be influenced by his friendship for the men who had helped him build the company. They offered him the board chairmanship. When Marland dazedly made recommendations for the presidency, he learned the bankers had already selected a Texas Com-pany vice-president, Dan Moran, a hard-boiled operating executive who was the antithesis of the generous, grandeur-minded, polo-playing dreamer and prospector. The bankers made it clear that the offer of the board chairmanship with salary was a pension. Marland would not be permitted any voice in the company affairs. Furthermore, he was told he could not live in Ponca City as his presence there would interfere with Dan Moran's reorganization. Marland angrily resigned, asking his officers and old friends, who wished to resign also, to stay. It was a futile expression of love for what he had built. Dan Moran fired them all anyway.[24]

On September 28, 1928 the NY Times reported that reports were circulating in the financial district that E. W. Marland would retire within a few weeks. It was said that he no longer desired an active role in his corporation and that it was expected that J. P. Morgan and Co would increase their representation. Three men were mentioned to succeed Marland: Colonel Franklyn R. Kenny and C. C. Brown, Vice Presidents at Marland Oil, and F. V. Taylor from outside the company.[25] On October 30, 1928 the NY Times reported that Marland had resigned as President of Marland Oil effective November 1, 1928 but that he would remain a director and member of the Executive committee. At the same time Marland Oil announced that Daniel J. Moran, Vice-President and director of the Texas Corporation had been elected President of Marland Oil.[26]

According to W. H. "Shorty" Rogers who later became a refinery supervisor, employee reaction to the Conoco-Marland merger was generally philosophical. "Most felt it meant more job security since we would be working for a bigger company. The program of reorganization went from the top down and most employees felt it was good."[27] However, J. P. "Jack" Barrett, who went to work for Marland in 1917 and later became supervisor of bulk plant auditor says that when the Conoco-Marland merger occurred a general feeling of unrest swept through the work force and many employees were terminated. "We simply lived from day to day, doing our best and hoping we would not be among those cut loose. Those of us who survived the merger with our jobs intact became a close knit group and cooperation was splendid. We worked six days a week and on Sunday, our day off, we frequently got together for any excursion to the 101 Ranch to see Tony, the trained bear, the ostriches, and other exotic animals.[28]

1928 - 1947: The Dan Moran Years- "You need a tough man to survive hard times."

Dan Moran, Bulldog Manager

E. W. Marland's successor as President of Marland Oil was Dan Moran. Known as a bulldog manager, Moran had an explosive temper. "Moran liked to brandish the machete lopping off people's jobs whenever he felt like it," says Keely Marshall. "Back in the 1940s, I was loading scrap iron into a gondola car with another kid. It was August and the temperature was well over 100 degrees. My partner told me his safety boots were killing him and he sat in the shad to pull them off. At precisely that moment, who but Mr. Moran pulls up in his car. 'Nobody sits down on company time,' he says. The kid was fired on the spot."[29]

L. W. Vickery, later to become Manager of the Engineering Center, arrived in Ponca City in 1929 and still remembers the Dan Moran period in Conoco history. "I was personally involved in his nocturnal visits to the refinery and many stories are still told of incidents that occurred during those visits. Most of them are true, too. Moran wanted everything done RIGHT NOW! He was ruthless and demanding, but in the words of an executive under him, 'he got more done in the wrong way than any man I ever knew.' In the 1930's, he stressed the need for research and engineering and got them. Look at us now."[30]

Cecil Hewitt went to work in the transportation department at Conoco in 1930 after previously working for Marland Oil at its Walters, Oklahoma bulk plant. "My second year in the Garage, Mr. Moran decided the annual inspection tour staff would camp out, so I was chosen to go along to pitch tents and make camp," says Hewitt. "Mr. Moran ran the tour with the precision of a railroad timetable. A minute late for departure and you were left behind. How you caught up was your business. Knowing the man personally, I can say with all candor that I never met a nicer or fairer person anywhere. He never accepted excuses for inefficiency, but the employee who did his job properly received Moran's praise and support."[31]

J. P. "Jack Barrett" said he first met Dan Moran while waiting on the elevator in the Main Office Building. "After introducing myself to him, I asked how his brother Bill, was. Surprised, he asked me how I came to know Bill. I told him that he was in my outfit in World War I. This was to put me in good stead with Mr. Moran for the rest of his time with Conoco. Although we were never close friends, he was always civil to me."[32]

Moran Purges the Company of Marland's Influence

Moran's first management decision after taking over was to purge the company of the Marland influence, discharging most of Marland's operating executives, superintendents and managers who had grown up with the company alongside E. W. Marland. "The pink slips just kept coming," says Keeley Marshall. Marland himself fared no better. In May 1928 when J. P. Morgan took over Marland Oil, they requested that E. W. Marland relinquish the job of President to become the Chairman of the Board. The Chairman's job was "ornamental, at best. "The bankers made it clear Marland would not be permitted any voice in company affairs," wrote Ruth Sheldon Knowle. Later it got worse when J. P. Morgan's executive committee told Marland that Dan Moran couldn't run the company efficiently while Marland remained in Ponca City. Marland resigned from the company he had founded. Marland later became a successful politician, elected to the House of Representatibves in 1932 and Governor of Oklahoma in 1934.[33][34]

Moran Merges Marland Oil with Continental Creating Conoco

But behind the personal failings of Moran is the story of a man who reshaped and guided Conoco through the great depression and World War II. "When Moran took the wheel in 1928, the company was bleeding red ink, facing debt of $6.5 million ($90 million in 2015 dollars)," writes Russ Banham. "Prospects in the oil industry were poor, given the twin evils of overproduction and soft prices. Moran made it clear that the only way the company could survive was through iron-fisted control of every penny spent." Moran fired workers, gutted their salaries, and abandoned oil-producing property he felt was marginally profitable. "I assure you the decisions which have been executed were impelled by stern necessity," said Moran. "While necessarily painful to some, [they have] had the most salutary effect upon the organization."[35]

According to Banham, Moran set his sites on expanding Marland Oil's modest refinery capacity and marketing depth. Three months after taking over Marland Oil, on April 30, 1929, Moran merged Marland Oil with Continental Oil. "Continental needed a steady, inexpensive supply of crude oil, which Marland had aplenty. Meanwhile, Marland needed more marketing outlets for its refined products - Continental's strength." Rumor has it that the merger also satisfied the personal interest of J. P. Morgan. "J. P. Morgan wanted the merger simply because he was looking for any way to do away with the Marland name," says John Morrow, who retired as Conoco's group senior vice president of finance in the 1980s.[36]

Conoco Inc. was an American oil company founded in 1875 as the Continental Oil and Transportation Company. Based in Ogden, Utah, the company was a coal, oil, kerosene, grease and candles distributor in the West. Marland Oil Company (founded by exploration pioneer E. W. Marland) later acquired the assets (subject to liabilities) of Continental Oil Company, for a consideration of 2,317,266 shares of stock. On June 26, 1929, Marland Oil changed its name to Continental Oil Company and moved its headquarters to Ponca City, Oklahoma. The acquisition gave Conoco the red bar-and-triangle logo previously used by Marland. Conoco used the logo between 1930 and 1970, when the current red capsule logo was adopted. Ponca City remained the world headquarters of Conoco until the 1950s when the headquarters moved to Houston.

The merger worked. By 1937, Moran had eliminated the company's $43 million debt. To celebrate the company's propsperity during the great depression, Moran distributed 5,000 Christmas bonus checks to employees worth $770,000, one of the largest bonuses bestowed by a US company that year. "What Moran sought to build was not a great national company, but a tightly knit regional company, on the fringe of greatness playing its own special game," wrote Fortune Magazine in 1961. " And in this he succeeded admirably, [despite] is tyrannical one-man show." According to Banham, although Moran's legacy is forever wedded to his explosive temper and gruff demeanor, his extreme ways did successfully navigate the shoals of the great depression and kept the company alive. As one Conocoan recalled "You need a tough man to survive hard times."[37][38]

1947 1967: New President Leonard McCollum Transforms Conoco, Moves Company HQ From Ponca City to Houston

Leonard McCollum became President of Conoco in 1947 and led the company into innovative fields of foreign exploration, natural gas processing, fertilizers, detergents and plastics. When McCollum -- known as Mr. Mc -- came to Conoco in 1947, he found a medium-sized oil company operating mainly in the Middle West and the Rocky Mountain states. It was known for its conservatism and had assets of $209 million and a net income of $31 million. Twenty-one years later, in 1968, he was chairman and Conoco's assets stood at $2.3 billion, net income was $203 million and its payroll totaled 32,000. He retired as chairman in 1972. "He had dynamic ideas in business and was a pioneer in many areas," recalled his wife Eleanor. "He once bought a coal company for Conoco. They said he was crazy. It became their most lucrative investment."

Daniel Yergin wrote in The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money & Power about McCollum's transformation of Conoco from a regional oil company to a multinational energy conglomerate:

In 1947, [Conoco's] board brought in a new president. Leonard McCollum, who had been Standard Oil of New Jersey's worldwide production coordinator. McCollum wanted to focus on building up the company's North American production. But he soon found that Continental was at a competitive disadvantage. Lower-cost foreign oil was pouring into the United States in the late 1940s, winning the incremental demand, while Continental's domestic production was being restricted by prorationing in Texas, Oklahoma, and else-where. Continental, McCollum decided, would have to go overseas.

The company spent a good deal of money drilling dry holes in Egypt and elsewhere in Africa over the next decade. Yet, despite the headaches and disappointments, McCollum was convinced that it was better, when it came to crude oil, to be a "have" than to be a "have-not" company. "If you set out to be a 'have.' "he said. "you must have the audacity to acquire as much acreage as possible—to take a big bite. Though a small piece may look like a sure thing, you better take as much as you can so you don't miss:' In the mid-1950s, Continental took a considerable bite in Libya, in a partnership with Marathon and Amerada that was called the Oasis Group. At the end of the 1950s, Oasis began to strike it very big in Libya. But, just at that moment. the rules were being drastically changed in Washington, completely undercutting McCollum's original strategic rationale. The new import quotas pretty much precluded Continental at the time from bringing its cheaper Libyan oil into the U.S. market, as it had planned. That meant the oil had to go elsewhere, and "elsewhere," of course, meant Western Europe. the most competitive oil market in the world. At first, Continental sold its surging Libyan output to the established majors and independent refiners in Europe. "We were brand new, and we had to go out and beat the bushes." recalled one Continental executive. But the company had little flexibility, and it also had to offer considerable price concessions to its buyers. Thus, it faced the classic dilemma—dependence on others.

At the turn of the twentieth century. William Mellon had turned Gulf into an integrated company, with its own refining and distribution, so that he would not have to say "by your leave" to Standard Oil or anyone else. Now, sixty years later. McCollum would do the same. So. in three years, beginning in 1960, the company established its own downstream refining and distribution system in Western Europe and Britain. acquiring where it could, starting from scratch where it could not. Its higher-quality Libyan oil, which was particularly suited to making gasoline, pushed Continental to develop its own networks of gasoline stations. In addition, Continental negotiated long-term contracts with strategically placed independent refiners. It built a very efficient refinery in Britain, where it sold low-cost gasoline under the "Jet" name. By 1964, sixteen years after McCollum had initiated the foreign oil search, Continental was producing more overseas than in the United States. It had become a significant integrated international oil company, which had never been in McCollum's original plan. The multiplication of such companies, each organized as more-or-less autonomous chains, increased the competitive pressures in the marketplace and gave further push to the falling oil price. Their success would also stir up nationalist sentiment in the countries that supplied their oil. In short, the companies were most vulnerable at the extreme ends of the production chain, the wellhead and the pump.'[39]

Between 1947, when he first entered the boardroom of Conoco, and 1967, when he retired as CEO, McCollum constantly strove for improvement in his company and the oil industry. McCollum established new divisions of research and development, market research, and a planning and coordinating department. He possessed an extraordinary ability to delegate authority, inspire others and to see success where others saw failure. According to his wife, "He was a visionary who understood the oil industry."[40][41]

"The hottest brand going" became Conoco's gasoline trademark during McCollum's twenty year tenure. McCollum was a "go-getter" who joked about his fast pace: "I kept four company planes at my disposal to go north, south, east, and west. I couldn't waste time turning around."[42]

In 1949, McCollum, moved Conoco's headquarters from Ponca City to Houston - the center of the US petroleum industry. New offices were opened at the Sterling Building on Texas and Fannin Streets.[43] Although Ponca City lost its role as headquarters, Ponca City was the beneficiary of McCollum's decision to build Conoco's central research center 1952 and double the R&D center in size by 1962.[44]

Leonard McCollum (1902-1993) gained a reputation as a skilled oil industry leader during his early career with Standard Oil. He joined Continental Oil when it was a medium-sized company with $209 million in assets. When he retired as chairman, the company, renamed Conoco, was a multinational energy conglomerate with assets of $2.3 billion.

1950 to 1980: High Water Mark for Conoco in Ponca City

Many consider the 1950s and 1960s as the high water mark for Conoco in Ponca City. "Your new job puts you right in the middle of Conoco's worldwide diversified operations," read a Conoco employee handbook published in 1967. "More Conocoans - 3,300 of the oil company's employees -work here than in any other single location. Ponca City is the 'Service Center of the Conoco World.' This is the center for our research, engineering, accounting, computer, pipe line, purchasing, and transportation activities. The oil industry is perhaps the most stable in the country. And the many companies of the Conoco family are right at the top of the industry."[45]

"Since 1950, Conoco's growth has been notably dynamic, moving from a position as a domestic regional company to the full rank of major international," continues the handbook. "Almost 'overnight,' Conoco established a fully integrated petroleum operation in Africa and Europe. Conoco is a now company. Enjoying the best overall growth rate among the world's largest oil firms, Conoco is a billion-dollar corporation and interational in scope and operations. Its diversification activities include plastics, coal, plant foods, petrochemical, electronics, nuclear research, and cryogenics applied to worldwide transport of natural gas in liquid form."[46]

"Conoco spends about $10 million annually on research and engineering through the efforts of more than 500 scientists and technicians at the company's multimillion dollar research center at Ponca City."[47]

1966: Cities Service Sells Refinery to Sequoia

Cities Service Sells Units to Gulf Oil

Conoco Time

1978: North Tower Completed

The Ponocoan reported on August 8, 1980 that a new ten story office building would be build at the Conoco Complex. "the need for this structure reflects our historic growth and existing office space demands," said Warren L. Jensen, vice President and regional coordinator, Midwest area. "It also reaffirms Conoco's commitment to Ponca City. The new South Tower was designed to house 1,000 employees with construction slated to be completed late in 1982. The South Tower was designed to be almost identical in size and design to the existing North Tower, completed in January, 1978. The main difference is that the South Tower has two additional floors, the addition of more elevators, and a central stairway. A one story office area connects the North and South Towers. Architects for the project were Frankfurt, Short, and Bruza of Oklahoma City.[48]

1978: Construction Begins on Research West

The Ponocoan reported on January 30, 1978 that construction had begun on the $13 million addition to Conoco's Research and Development Department with a 230,000 square foot building that will house 310 people. Research West would take approximately two years to complete and would house the Exploration Research Division and portions of Chemicals Research and Petroleum Products Divisions.[49]

1981: Dupont Acquires Conoco

In 1981, in what was called the largest acquisition in US history at that time, Conoco was purchased by DuPont Company, headquartered in Wilmington Deleware, over the July 4 weekend for $9.7 billion. At the time of the acquisition, DuPont announced that $2 billion in Conoco assets would be sold to reduce Conoco's debt. Dupont began by selling a west coast refinery for $100 million and a group of domestic properties were sold to Petro-Lewis for $750 million. [50]

WallStreet was sceptical of the acquisition as the NY Times reported that:

"Nobody on earth could figure out why Du Pont wanted them," said Thom R. Brown, an analyst at Butcher & Singer in Philadelphia. Shenandoah seemed to offer few resources, limited expertise, and scant protection from the profit-squeezing impact of the rising cost of the petrochemicals that Du Pont uses to make most of its products. Yesterday Du Pont, the nation's largest chemical company, announced that it planned to acquire Conoco Inc., the nation's ninth-largest oil company and second-largest coal miner. Once again, the analysts are surprised, but this time the relevance of the acquisition to Du Pont's feedstock concerns has nothing to do with it.

The problem, analysts said, is that Conoco is so large that they are groping to figure out how its acquisition would fit into Du Pont's overall strategic plans. A Du Pont spokesman said yesterday that the company could not comment on questions about its strategy pending filing of legal papers related to the acquisition offer. "As a result of this acquisition, Du Pont can forget about its image as a specialized company diversifying downstream into high technology," said John Henry, an analyst at E.F. Hutton. "It will become just a big commodities giant."

"I am a little concerned that it will divert management attention from the direction it should be going," Mr. Miles said. If the Conoco acquisition threatens to dwarf some of the expected developments on Du Pont's balance sheet that had attracted analysts, it nonetheless has a great deal of charm. "It is a conservative step," Mr. Henry said, "in that it makes the company bigger, stronger, less cyclical, and slower growing in the next few years. But it has got to be the most dramatic thing the company has ever done."[51]

The acquisition did little to benefit Ponca City. At the time of the acquisition, Conoco was by far Ponca City's biggest employer with 828 employees at the refinery and an additional 3,805 employees working in support services including financial, research, engineering, and service organizations.[52] Thirty years later only the refinery employees remain.

1984: Conoco Modifies Air Cleaner at Ponca City Refinery to Help Produce Liquid Fertilizer

In January, 1984 Conoco completed a $2 million refinery modification that made the air from Ponca City Refinery 30 percent cleaner and brought the city a commercial venture the fertilizer plant operated by Kerley Industries Inc. of Phoenix, Ariz. The changes cut refinery operating costs at the same time. In an innovative approach, Conoco engineers figured a way to capture waste gases previously lost in the atmosphere and put them to use. Old sulfur-recovery equipment was replaced by more efficient units and piping was erected to capture gaseous wastes produced during the refining process. The one-time wastes are piped to the nearby Kerley plant, which removes ammonia and sulfur compounds for use in liquid fertilizer. Conoco said its new equipment reduced sulfur dioxide emissions by 30 percent. It is the first system of its kind in Oklahoma and for Conoco.[53]

1985: Conoco Upgrades Ponca City Refinery

NewsOK reported on July 14, 1985 that Conoco Inc. is upgrading Ponca City Refinery with a new processing unit that is expected to improve production and profits. The equipment includes a hydrotreater reactor and an amine contractor that together adds hydrogen to the crude oil stock flowing to one of two catalytic crackers at the plant. The hydrogen improves quality of the stock, increasing light oil production. "This new equipment will allow us to increase production of higher-value, light oil products, including gasolines and diesel fuels," said refinery manager J.L. Dimond. Besides raising production and quality, the equipment will remove sulfur from the feedstock stream, resulting in cleaner air. The sulfur will be sold to a fertilizer company that opened its doors in Ponca City earlier this year. The newest equipment additions to the 134,000-barrel-per-day refinery will be finished about Oct. 1, Dimond said. This is the third upgrade in three years.[54]

1985: Ponca City Refinery Fights for its Life

News OK reported on July 21, 1985 that the Ponca City Refinery was facing a do-or-die situation. "An in-depth study of Conoco's refining operations by an executive management team has recently determined that the Ponca City refinery is the weakest link in Conoco refining operations," said plant manager John L. Dimond. "Unless the Ponca City refinery meets corporate profit objectives in a relatively short but unspecified time period, the refinery will be closed." That warning was passed along to the refinery's roughly 700 employees recently during meetings led by top Conoco officials including the firm's executive vice president and vice president of North American refinery. "The purpose of the meeting was to tell employees we're in a fight for our life," Dimond said. Since January, the refinery work force has been trimmed by 13 percent or 114 employees as a result of enhanced early retirement offerings to all eligible Conoco personnel systemwide, Dimond said. Overall, Conoco employed at its Ponca City complex more than 4,000 people, about 3,000 of whom work in the firm's major research, development and engineering departments.[55]

Through 1984, the Ponca City refinery "didn't make very much money, not enough to satisfy the corporation (Conoco's parent, Du Pont)," Dimond said. The refinery lost money during a 1985 first quarter that was "terrible," he said. During the second quarter, though, economic conditions were "reasonable," he said. His projections are that financial situation for the third and fourth quarters "will be somewhere in between the first and second." How long Du Pont would be satisfied with only marginal profits or even losses from the Ponca City plant "depends upon the attractiveness of alternate means for the disposition of assets," Dimond said. Also, competition among remaining refiners has become "intense," he said. "This competition is occuring in spite of the fact 111 U.S. refineries have shut down since January 1981 ... Survival is the prize awarded those refineries that are the most efficient."[56]

The keys to the "survival plan" are cost cutting and improved efficiency. Toward that end, Ponca City employees were asked recently for their ideas. The result was 470 suggestions, Dimond said. "Although the exact figures are closely guarded, I am at liberty to state that annual production (operating) costs in Ponca City must be reduced by about $10 million," he said. "I should emphasize that Conoco's management, the Ponca City refinery employees and support staff are committed to surviving this present crisis. Nonetheless, the crisis is very real and any projected increases in operating cost clouds the horizon."[57]

1990: Fire Damages Refinery Unit at Ponca City Refinery

NewsOK reported on May 23, 1990 that a spectacular fire that whipped orange fireballs 100 feet into the air and emitted a massive cloud of black smoke that was visible for miles across Kay County forced partial evacuation of the Conoco refinery complex. The inferno started about 6:15 p.m., after most of the 3,800 employees of the 1,300-acre complex were off duty, Hohensee said. "At this point the situation is stable, the fire is under control," Hohensee said at 7:45 p.m. "All emloyees have been accounted for." Nearby neighborhoods in south Ponca City were not evacuated. Ponca City police officer Bruce Piel said the blaze prompted authorities to evacuate children from a baseball field across the street. One member of the company's 16-man fire brigade was taken to St. Joseph Regional Medical Center and another was treated at the plant clinic after they showed signs of exhaustion, company spokesman Lynn Hohensee said. A hospital spokeswoman said the worker taken there was expected to be released Tuesday night. Retired Ponca City fire chief James R. Bates described the fire as a disaster. "They have flames everywhere," Bates said as he watched from his house two miles from the plant.

Hohensee said the fire was fueled by a propane supply. He said fire brigade workers, using a screen of water, made their way to the propane supply and cut it off. Refinery manager Dennis Parker said the fire was out at 9:35 p.m. Hohensee said the cause of the fire was unknown, and a damage estimate was not immediately available. Parker said damage would probably be in the millions. The fire began in the plant's dewaxing unit, where 12 workers were on duty, Hohensee said. He said the unit "dewaxes motor oil that is made into lubricants and then sold." The unit was built in 1941 and refurbished in 1970, Hohensee said. Officials said they originally thought the fire was contained to the dewaxing unit. But at 7:15 p.m. the fire spread to a nearby filtration building, Hohensee said. That building contains four large rotary filters that help separate wax from motor oil. The last major fire at the refinery was in 1973, Hohensee said. "I have never seen anything like this happen," said one 10-year employee, who did not want to be identified.[58]

1990: Conoco reaches Environmental Settlement with Ponca City

The NY Times reported in on April 5, 1990 that Conoco had reached one of the largest settlements ever recorded at that time in a lawsuit over environmental contamination offering 400 families that are neighbors to the Conoco refinery a package of measures worth from $23 million to $27 million, according to various estimates that will allow them to move away "from the acrid odors that have come to signify sickness and death in many households." Conoco executives said the settlement would permit them to create an uninhabited buffer zone around the plant. "We didn't do this for the money, and people are not going to have a good time spending it," said Anna Sue Rafferty, a leader of Ponca City Toxic Concerned Citizens, a community group that helped organize the suit against Conoco. "This has been my home for 34 years. I raised four children here. I love this house, but all I want to do now is get out of it." In response to years of complaints, Federal and state officials along with Conoco executives repeatedly told the plant's neighbors that no toxic substances were evident and that they faced no health risk. But recent tests performed by Conoco on samples of water found underground showed traces of benzene, a known carcinogen, according to Dennis Parker, the refinery manager. Adrienne Anderson, Western regional director of the National Toxics Campaign, which provided technical assistance to people in the area, said privately commissioned tests on water that had seeped into basements regularly showed dangerous levels of benzene, arsenic and about 20 other potentially harmful chemicals. Conoco, a fully owned subsidiary of E. I. du Pont de Nemours & Company, did not acknowledge any wrongdoing in the settlement. In a statement Monday, Mr. Parker noted that the agreement says, "No party admits any fault, liability or responsibility for any claims, injuries or damages claimed by any adverse party." Grace Klinger, who learned the chemistry of hydrocarbons to find out what was happening in her neighborhood, said: "When I was growing up, everyone just figured the stink was just refinery stink and if the company said it was O.K. then it was O.K. Now we know better, and it doesn't matter what Conoco says because the truth is out."[59][60]

1993: Major Downsizing at Conoco

Ponca City was hit by major downsizing at Conoco in 1993 when approximately 1,400 jobs were cut, resulting in an annual payroll reduction of $40 million. This precipitated an economic slowdown in the city and county in 1993 and 1994. The unemployment rate, which had always been well below the national average of six percent, jumped to 12 percent and unemployment compensation claims more than doubled from the previous year. While Conoco once accounted for 50 percent of the jobs in Ponca City, after the downsizing Conoco accounted for just seven percent, or 1,400 jobs. According to a study by the International Economic Development Council, "the town’s psychology and identity was rocked by the downsizing of its one major employer."[61]

1996: Phillips and Conoco End Merger Talks

On May 14, 1996 Phillips 66 and Conoco confirmed that they had been engaged in exclusive discussions to form such a joint-venture company which would, among other things, "market gasoline and other petroleum products under both the Phillips 66 and Conoco brands." However Bartlesville-based Phillips Petroleum Co. and Conoco Inc., Houston, agreed to end discussion of combining their U.S. refining, marketing, supply and transportation assets into a joint venture. Phillips Chairman and Chief Executive Wayne Allen and Conoco President and Chief Executive Archie Dunham said jointly Tuesday, "Both parties negotiated constructively and in good faith, but we were unable to reach agreement on significant commercial issues."

Allen said, "While we're disappointed that we could not reach an agreement, Phillips remains committed to improving the profitability of its RM&T (refining, marketing and transportation) operations." Dunham said, "Conoco and Phillips are both very successful and strong companies. We approached the negotiations on the basis that we would agree to create a joint venture only if it could be demonstrated that such a move would improve both companies' financial performance and be in the best interests of our shareholders. While it is disappointing that we could not reach agreement, Conoco is well positioned to compete in this market, and remains committed to providing quality products and service to its customers," Dunham added.[62]

1996: Fire at Ponca City Refinery

In July 1996, the plant experienced a fire in a hydro heater, which removes sulfur from the hydrocarbon feed stock for the manufacture of oil and gas products. No one was injured and production was not interrupted. A major fire occurred in May 1990 when a spectacular, propane-fed blaze swept through a dewaxing unit, causing more than $1 million in damage. [63]

1998: DuPont Divests Conoco

In a move that many investors believed was long overdue, E. I. du Pont de Nemours announced in 1989 that it would divest itself of 20 percent of its $22 billion Conoco oil subsidiary in a tax-free stock offering that could bring in as much as $5 billion. Charles O. Holliday Jr., DuPont's chief executive, said he would dispose of the rest of Conoco "as soon as practical." The Conoco divestiture was certainly not unexpected. DuPont bought the oil company in 1981 as insurance against the pricing and supply tactics of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. But oil prices have been far less volatile than it had feared, and DuPont continues to de-emphasize the petrochemical side of its business, so having Conoco as a captive source of raw material is of less strategic importance.[64]

The decision by DuPont's board struck much of Wall Street as a safe solution to the question of how best to divest itself of Conoco in a depressed oil market. Some investors feared DuPont would sell Conoco at a cheap price just to get rid of it. Others -- especially after British Petroleum PLC's $48 billion acquisition of Amoco Corp. -- hoped for a quick sale that would provide the same clean break but at a rich price.[65] Analysts were not surprised by the announcement that DuPont intends to sell its stake in Conoco. In fact, some wondered what took the company so long. "That's something they've [talked about] for a long time and they're finally acting on that," said Carol Freedenthal of Houston-based Jofree Corp. "I guess they've just got better places they can put their money than the oil and gas business." Edward Jones chemical analyst Bill Fiala said the move seemed imminent about a month ago after restructuring within DuPont did not include Conoco. "I think the writing was on the wall at that point," he said. "I think it's good for Conoco and good for DuPont. I think if Conoco's ever going to thrive, it needs to be a little more independent and a little more agile."[66]

Conoco's acquisition by DuPont cast a big shadow over Ponca City. According to the Daily Oklahoman, "when Conoco turned out to be the winner's prize in last summer's corporate takeover and bidding war involving Du Pont, Mobil Oil and Canada's Seagram, people here watched with more than idle curiosity. In fact, many were downright nervous."

But people's nerves have since calmed down. Delaware-based Du Pont, which emerged victorious in the fight for Conoco, completed its acquisition of that locally born oil company last Oct. 1. Du Pont has since demonstrated that life in Ponca City can go on as before even with Conoco, which most people had generally assumed was too big to be bought out, now reduced to the status of a Du Pont subsidiary. But local residents, many of whom not only get their paycheck from Conoco but were also long-time Conoco stockholders as were thousands of other Oklahomans, still had a lot of unanswered questions about Du Pont.

Many questions were answered last week when Du Pont board chairman Edward G. Jefferson came to town, accepting an invitation to address the annual meeting of the Ponca City Chamber of Commerce. Turning to Conoco, he told people that the Du Pont-Conoco merger, which turned out to be the most expensive in business history at $7.4 billion, offers long-term benefits for those connected with either firm.

While his own company is one of the nation's top research firms, Jefferson said he is impressed with Conoco's major Ponca City research facilities. He added that the combination of one company with a history of expertise in chemicals and chemical research and another with vast energy reserves and energy research should make both firms stronger and lead to development of many new products. He cited particularly the potential in tertiary oil recovery, an area Conoco plans to emphasize more in the future. Such recovery methods often employ the injection of chemicals into the ground, chemicals which Du Pont can provide. Jefferson also noted that the merger widens promotion possibilities for employees of both companies. He assured local residents that major Conoco accounting functions now located in Ponca City will remain there. "I see no basis for wanting to move them."[67]

Major downsizings followed, especially in the early to mid-1990s. Employee numbers in Ponca City fell from a high of 4,500 to a low of 1,800 - huge losses that left the city of 25,000 reeling, economically and psychologically.[68]

1999: Fire at Ponca City Refinery

In October 1999, an oil tank at the state's largest refinery burst into flames, injuring two workers and sending school children scurrying off playgrounds to safety. An estimated 50,000 barrels of fuel were consumed in the fire and damage was estimated at $1.5 million. A plume of thick black smoke rose over the city, scattering charred chunks of foam-like debris up to 5 miles from the Conoco refinery. Kenneth Ray, director of external affairs for Conoco, said the smoke was non-toxic but warned people with respiratory problems to stay indoors. Ray said the fire probably would be left to burn out and posed no danger of spreading. He said he didn't know what caused the 80,000-gallon tank to explode. A spokesman for Intergris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City said both injured workers, who had been on a lift inspecting insulation around the tank, had burns to the face, back and arms, and one had a fractured hip. Their conditions and the extent of their burns wasn't immediately available.[69]

Ponca City and the "Merger of Equals" with Phillips in 2001

Conoco Inc. and Phillips Petroleum Co. announced on November 18, 2001 that their boards of directors have unanimously approved a merger of equals and signed a definitive merger agreement. The merged company became the third-largest integrated U.S. energy company based on market capitalization and oil and gas reserves and production. Worldwide, it became the sixth-largest energy company based on hydrocarbon reserves and the fifth-largest global refiner. Graphic Created by: Granger Meador Used with permission

Other Stories About the Ponca City Refinery:

2001: The Creation of ConocoPhillips

Conoco Inc. and Phillips Petroleum Co. announced on November 18, 2001 that their boards of directors have unanimously approved a merger of equals and signed a definitive merger agreement. The merged company became the third-largest integrated U.S. energy company based on market capitalization and oil and gas reserves and production. Worldwide, it became the sixth-largest energy company based on hydrocarbon reserves and the fifth-largest global refiner. Upon completion of the merger, Archie W. Dunham, Conoco chairman and chief executive officer, would serve as chairman of ConocoPhillips and delay his scheduled retirement to 2004. James J. Mulva, Phillips chairman and chief executive officer, would become president and chief executive officer of the combined company, and also become chairman upon Dunham's retirement.[70][71]

The Associated Press reported that analysts described the combination as a deal done to survive. If Phillips and Conoco hadn't decided to join forces, analysts said they risked losing market share to competitors in an unhealthy business climate for all but the largest petroleum companies reported Alan Clenndenning. "This is absolutely a matter of survival - survival nor necessarily to thrive, but to guarantee they will survive, said Fadel Gheit, an analyst at Fahnestock & Co. In a conference callwith analysts, top Phillips and Conoco officials said the merger would allow them to save at least $750 million annually in part through the elimination of an unspecified number of jobs from the company's combined roster of 58,000 employees. "You cannot say you are cutting cots if you cut less than 5 percent, said Gheit. "And if you want to be aggressive with a sharp knife you can cut 15 to 20 percent, which I see as unlikely." Officials took pains to describe the deal as a merger of equals, tough under its terms, Phillips shareholders wil end up with a 56.6 percent stake in the new company.[72]

Businessweek reported in 2005 chief executive officer Mulva had conceived the bold $16 billion deal that created ConocoPhillips in 2002 that vaulted it into the league of energy giants so large they're called supermajors and was an aggressive risk-taker willing to place multibillion-dollar bets in the most volatile places on earth. All of the industry's big players are swimming in cash, reported Businessweek but Mulva is plowing some 70% of the company's expected cash flow back into the business, compared with 60% at Chevron Corp. and 35% at Exxon Mobil Corp.. "We're aggressive about where we want to be five years from now," said Mulva. "Even with the benefit of hindsight, Mulva has done a lot right," wrote Mark Morrison. "His aptly timed Conoco acquisition put the company in a position to benefit from a new global dynamic of rising energy demand that could last into the next decade. And his bold plans may ultimately prove that he adjusted more wisely and quickly to the changing world of energy than the other majors. Right or wrong, no one will accuse Mulva of being shy."[73]

According to Jim Mulva's presentation to financial analysts on July 14, 2011, ConocoPhillips' view was that the company needed to go up in size. That is one of the reasons for the merger -- to compete around the world. "We also felt, looking back 10 years ago, that there is going to be consolidation in the industry. And that made a lot of sense that we were pretty bullish about oil prices and we feltthe supply and demand situation of oil would get tighter with time."[74][75][76]

2001: Impact of Merger of Conoco and Phillips on Oklahoma Communities

KOCO reported on November 19, 2001 that merger of Conoco and Phillips in 2001 stunned residents in both Bartlesville and Ponca City. "This could be a bad deal for Bartlesville," said an unnerved Bartlesville resident Chuck Tate, who realizes how the economic fortunes of his town are tied to the huge oil company based. "I hope not, but I'm expecting the worst." Bartlesville's fortune has long mirrored the ups and downs of the company founded in 1917 by brothers Frank and L.E. Phillips. There was downsizing after the 1980s oil bust. Bartlesville embarked on a sustained effort to diversify its economy, luring new businesses and factories but nothing to compare to Phillips. During the oil boom 20 years ago, Phillips employed 9,000 locally, half the city's workforce. "Phillips has obviously been a huge part of this town, in my lifetime anyway," said local travel agency executive Gary Spears. "It's scary." Spears said all of his business is directly related to arrangements with Phillips or tied indirectly to travel by Phillips' employees or townspeople who benefit from the company. "When they say the Phillips' headquarters is not going to be here, it's a huge announcement," Spears said. "I don't know what that means at this point. Nobody does."[77]

ConocoPhillips will based in Houston, home to Conoco. It will keep a reduced presence in Bartlesville, Okla., where Phillips employs 2,400 at its headquarters and research facility. "This is really a growth story for Conoco and Phillips," said Conoco CEO Archie Dunham who is delaying a planned retirement to serve as chairman of the combined company. Phillips chairman James Mulva will be chief executive of the company, and become chairman when Dunham retires in 2004. Gov. Frank Keating said the merger was "unavoidable to ensure the survival in Oklahoma of both companies." "While some job reductions will result, I have assurances from the leaders of the new company that it will maintain an even stronger Oklahoma presence," he said.[78]

Also affected is Ponca City, 70 miles due west, where Conoco's refinery and offices employ 1,900 of the town's 26,000 people. "One of the great fears we've had in Ponca City was that Conoco might be the victim of a hostile takeover," said Ponca City Mayor Tom Leonard. "Now that they have created the third largest oil and gas company in the United States, that pretty much eliminates that risk."[79]

2002: Fire at Ponca City Refinery

A fire occurred at Ponca City Refinery in June 2002, when severe lightning and storms hit the Ponca City area. The plant's fire brigade quickly doused a small blaze thought to be related to a power surge from a lightning strike.[80]

2003: Archie Dunham Paid $25 Million Bonus for Merging Conoco with Phillips 66

Archie Dunham Was Paid a $25 Million Bonus for Merging Conoco with Phillips 66. A financial sweetener triggered by the merger of Conoco Inc. and Phillips Petroleum Co. allowed ConocoPhillips Chairman Archie Dunham to pull in more than $31 million in 2002. Archie Dunham, CEO of Conoco in 2000, received a $25 million "change of control" bonus payment made "in connection with the merger" of Houston's Conoco and Bartlesville, Oklahoma-based Phillips 66. The combined change of control payments for top Conoco Executives amounted to $64.8 million. “Integrity and ethics are among the responsibilities of all our corporate leadership, especially myself,” says Dunham. “Integrity and ethics must be evident in not only our personal lives, but also in our professional conduct before they can be instilled in our employees.” "Those guys are getting rich," said one energy stock analyst. Photo: Wikipedia

Houston Business Journal reported on April 27, 2003 that a financial sweetener triggered by the merger of Conoco and Phillips 66 allowed ConocoPhillips Chairman Archie Dunham to pull in more than $31 million in 2002. Archie Dunham, CEO of Conoco in 2000, received a $25 million "change of control" payment and a corresponding "tax gross-up payment" which together surpassed $26.6 million. Dunham's bonus was made "in connection with the merger" of Houston's Conoco and Bartlesville, Okla.-based Phillips, according to Securities and Exchange documents filed by Houston-based ConocoPhillips.

ConocoPhillips Executive Vice President Jim Nokes received change of control payments exceeding $19.6 million. Nokes oversees refining, marketing, supply and transportation operations. His total compensation last year was more than $21.4 million. At the same time, the company's Rob McKee floated into retirement with golden parachute bonuses that totaled $22.9 million, a vast majority of which was a change of control payment. On March 31, McKee retired as the ConocoPhillips executive vice president over exploration and production. His total compensation of more than $24 million last year likely would have been hard to fathom when he joined Conoco Inc. in New Orleans as a junior engineer in 1967. The combined change of control payments for former Conoco Executives Dunham, McKee and Nokes amounted to approximately $64.8 million. "Those guys are getting rich," says one energy stock analyst.[81]

“Integrity and ethics are among the responsibilities of all our corporate leadership, especially myself,” said Dunham in 2012. “Integrity and ethics must be evident in not only our personal lives, but also in our professional conduct before they can be instilled in our employees.”[82]

Jim Mulva, Phillips CEO and president, missed out on a change of control payment, but still managed to earn more than $18 million in 2002. A majority of Mulva's money in 2002 came via a "long-term incentive payout" of more than $14.9 million. Mulva was chairman and CEO of Phillips before the merger, but now he shares top billing with former Conoco Inc. Chairman, CEO and President Dunham.[83]

2003: Worker Dies in Accident at Ponca City Refinery

On July 21, 2003 Tim Crank, 39 and another employee were removing a vertical pump and motor inside a gas plant. For some reason, a hydrocarbon was released inside the plant, triggering an explosion and fire. Crank died 10 days later.[84] A a preliminary investigation showed a hydrocarbon leak reached an ignition source. Crank had been with ConocoPhillips since 1996. At the time of the fire, he was a unit operator in the west plant. Company spokeswoman Shanley Wells said the company is much like a family and at 11 a.m. employees observed a moment of silence for Crank. "This is devastating news here for us, for all of us. We offer the family all the sympathy we have," she said. This was the first fatality resulting from an accident at the Ponca City refinery since 1946, Wells said.[85]

The Tulsa World reported on July 31, 2003 that an explosion and fire on July 21, 2003 shut down several units at the Ponca City Refinery. ConocoPhillips CEO Jim Mulva said that ConocoPhillips planned to run its Ponca City refinery at about 62 percent of capacity in the third quarter. The plant has the capacity to produce about 105,000 barrels of gasoline a day and 74,000 barrels a day of distillate fuels, which include heating oil and diesel. "We think the lost profit opportunity impact on net income in the third quarter is about $30 million," Mulva said.[86]

Two employees and a contract worker were injured when the fire on the Ponca City refinery's west side started about 11 am. Plumes of black smoke filled the sky, but by evening, the smoke had decreased. Plant manager Ron Armstrong said he had no estimate of how long the fire would burn, but that it didn't seem to threaten other parts of the refinery. "The fire is contained. We're just letting it burn itself out," he said. Temperatures topped 100 degrees as 60 firefighters from several departments fought to contain the blaze.[87]

The last known fire at the plant was June 2002, when severe lightning and storms hit the Ponca City area. The plant's fire brigade quickly doused a small blaze thought to be related to a power surge from a lightning strike. In October 1999, two workers were burned when fuel ignited in an 80,000-barrel storage tank. An estimated 50,000 barrels of fuel were consumed in the fire and damage was estimated at $1.5 million. In July 1996, the plant experienced a fire in a hydro heater, which removes sulfur from the hydrocarbon feed stock for the manufacture of oil and gas products. No one was injured and production was not interrupted. A major fire occurred in May 1990 when a spectacular, propane-fed blaze swept through a dewaxing unit, causing more than $1 million in damage. On New Year's Eve 1990, fire damaged one of the Ponca City plant's three crude oil processing units. The unit refines crude oil into such products as gasoline, propane, kerosene and diesel fuels, and was processing 56,000 barrels a day before the fire. No one was injured.[88]

According to Conoco, rebuilding the damaged parts of the refinery and investigating the fire that erupted there will be a substantial undertaking. The cause of the fire, the extent of the damage and the cost of that damage remain unclear, but the company's management may receive a report on what sparked the fire as early as this week, said ConocoPhillips spokeswoman Shanley Wells adding that the majority of the refinery's operations weren't damaged by the fire. The company has convened at least four teams: a short-term team to help restart the operations that weren't damaged, a long-term team to focus on the refinery's rebuilding efforts, a team to investigate the incident and a team to conduct a damage assessment, the spokeswoman said. Additional personnel from other refineries also are assisting in the recovery effort, she said. "This is a huge undertaking," Wells said. "Within those various teams are subteams. We have a lot of personnel and resources focused on this."[89]

2005: ConocoPhillips Closes Demonstration Plant in Ponca City Eliminating Up to 120 Jobs

On October 21, 2004 ConocoPhillips announced that it would shut down its demonstration plant eliminating up to 120 jobs. The plant was built to test technology designed to convert natural gas into liquid fuels. "It is never easy to make this kind of announcement," said George Paczkowski, ConocoPhillips vice-president of downstream technology in Ponca City, "but we've known this demonstration plant was temporary since we built it. The plant was scheduled to close in July, 2005 eliminating 80 full-time positions and 40 contract jobs. Paczkowski said many of the full-time workers would be reassigned to other positions at the company.[90] "We started the plant to prove our technology to turn natural gas into diesel, and then to provide data for the design of a commercial plant," said ConocoPhillips spokeswoman Shanley Wells-Rau. "In 2005, we said that we successfully developed and proved the technologies. But the company never has moved on to build one commercially. It was never meant to be a long-term, commercial plant."[91]

The Daily Oklahoman reported on December 20, 2008 that ConocoPhillips had sold the company’s natural gas-to-liquids demonstration plant along with the technology behind it for an undisclosed amount of money. The plant was a demonstration project that opened in 2003 and closed in 2005 and had the capability of producing 400 barrels a day of liquid fuels from natural gas. The buyer was Industrial Properties, based in Kansas City who plan to dismantle the plant to resell its steel and equipment.[92]

2009: ConocoPhillips Moves 700 Jobs Out of Ponca City

Two huge office buildings site almost empty at Phillips 66's Refinery Complex after the company moves 700 Jobs out of Ponca City. On February 17, 2009 ConocoPhillips announced they had decided to relocate all of its 750 non-refinery positions out of Ponca City within two years and that first 250 jobs would be moved in 2009 with 180 jobs going to Houston and 70 jobs to Bartlesville. The positions moving first included jobs in technical services, research and development, engineering and support, human resources and Internet technology, among others. Management met with hundreds of Ponca City employees to tell them the news. "It’s a difficult time in general for all ConocoPhillips employees," said ConocoPhillips spokesman Tracy Harlow. "We made the strategic decision to consolidate locations for the most effective corporate operations."[93] Photo: Hugh Pickens

On November 7, 2008 ConocoPhillips announced that the company was planning to downsize their operation in Ponca City and that all 700 office worker positions in Ponca City were being for relocated to Bartlesville or Houson. On November 8, 2008 ConocoPhillips first announced that all 700 office worker positions in Ponca City are being considered for consolidation or relocation. "Consolidation and relocation are options we're looking at," said company spokesman Tracy Harlow. "Any and all options are still on the board right now." Most of ConocoPhillips' nonrefinery jobs in Ponca City werefocused in the credit card, information technology, facilities and other support operations, she noted. A steering committee, including ConocoPhillips managers, was looking at options. The review started November 2008 and had not narrowed into specifics so far, Harlow said. The 750 people employed in refinery operations would not be affected by the review.[94]

The Tulsa World reported on February 17, 2009 that ConocoPhillips had decided to relocate all of its 750 non-refinery positions out of Ponca City within two years and that first 250 jobs will be moved in 2009 with 180 jobs going to Houston and 70 jobs to Bartlesville. The positions moving first include jobs in technical services, research and development, engineering and support, human resources and Internet technology, among others. Management met with hundreds of Ponca City employees to tell them the news. "It’s a difficult time in general for all ConocoPhillips employees," said ConocPhillips spokesman Tracy Harlow. ConocoPhillips originally planned the Ponca City relocation study as a standalone effort in 2008 but falling energy and credit markets forced ConocoPhillips to consider layoffs and include Ponca City into its overall business efficiency study. "We made the strategic decision to consolidate locations for the most effective corporate operations,” Harlow said. “Obviously we are conserving cash right now, so cash will limit relocations in 2009.”[95]

Business Week reported that Ponca City took a hit from ConocoPhillips in February 2009, when the company said it planned to move 750 non-refinery jobs out of the city of about 26,000 to Bartlesville and Houston. But the refinery has remained a key part of ConocoPhillips' operations, said ConocoPhillips spokesman John Roper. Rich Cantillon, president and CEO of the Ponca City Chamber of Commerce, said ConocoPhillips upgraded the refinery last year and is performing another upgrade this year. No new oil refineries have been built in the U.S. since 1976, which is another positive sign for the Ponca City facility's future. "It's not going anywhere," Cantillon said. "We are good to go. Ponca City is a happy, good community. ... It's fascinating to see how (the split) will all play out, but we'll always have the refinery. There won't be any more job loss for Ponca City when it comes to (ConocoPhillips). There could be job growth."[96]

City officials were disappointed in ConocoPhillips' announcement that 750 jobs will be relocated from Ponca City, but expect the community to bounce back. "We would have liked to have seen them expand here. We have plenty of office room for them and had hoped they would grow their operation here," said City Manager Craig Stephenson. "We also understand it's a corporate decision." Mayor Homer Nicholson said Conoco has been a good corporate citizen and he is glad ConocoPhillips has decided to leave Oklahoma's largest refinery in Ponca City. "We are thankful," he said. "We were hoping the business optimization study would give them a reason to expand their business in Ponca City. Unfortunately, that did not happen," Nicholson said. "We have weathered larger reductions in force than this one," the mayor said.[97]

Effect of ConocoPhillips' Downsizing on the Community of Ponca City

The Tulsa World reported in 2009 that Conoco employed more than 5,000 people in Ponca City before the oil bust of 1985, the year Dave Myers, executive director of the Ponca City Development Authority, pinpoints as "the beginning of the end for us being a company town." The end itself came in 2002, when Conoco merged into ConocoPhillips and began transferring departments en masse to the Phillips campus in Bartlesville. In November 2009, the company announced it would probably transfer the final 700 office jobs out of Ponca, leaving only 750 jobs in the refinery.[98]

Until a few months ago, Fred Holmes worked in research and development with more than 100 other technicians. Then he and his wife had to choose between early retirement or transferring to Bartlesville, an hour and 20 minutes east of Ponca. "It was a 12-hour day any way you look at it," Holmes says. "She couldn't put up with it then, and I didn't want to do it now." After a few weeks, his wife quit the company and invested in a downtown bridal shop, Affairs to Remember. Now Holmes works there, too — recently moving the shop to a larger storefront and adding a catering service. But Homes still resents the company for, as he puts it, "abandoning Ponca City." While he had a small business to fall back on, Holmes has watched friends and co-workers move away to look for jobs elsewhere. "You used to be able to wake up in the morning and know you had a job and know that your family would be provided for," he says. "Now, nobody knows what's going to happen next."[99]

Mike Dove took early retirement when the company moved his entire department to Bartlesville. When he grew up during the '60s, a job with the company seemed like "the ultimate prize," Dove says. Like many of his classmates, Dove went off to college not to escape Ponca City, but so he could come back and stay. "You could pretty much count on a job for life, and it gave you a sense of security and stability. "By the '90s, that wasn't the case at all." For his own two children, both now adults, staying in Ponca City was never an option. "Finding a job," Dove says, "pretty much means going somewhere else."[100]

KOCO reported on November 7, 2008 that City development executive director David Myers said the diversity of the economy would lessen the effect of possible job losses. "The impact of this economically is not nearly as severe as the impact emotionally," said Myers adding that city leaders didn't want to depend on a single employer that could make or break the community and that other employers also make up a big portion of the economy. "Sensor testing is a $6 billion worldwide industry, and we're the only place in the world where you come and have your sensor tested by a neutral third party," Myers said. "Our real concern is with the individual families that might be impacted by this, and we want to make sure that there are some viable alternatives for them to stay here in Ponca City because most of them do want to stay here," Myers said. Barber Barney Barnwell said he has been in this situation before and so has the community. "We can survive," he said. "Ponca can survive."[101]

2010: Possible Sale of Ponca City Refinery

In May 2010, there was a lot of discussion in Ponca City about the possibility that ConocoPhillips was interested in selling its Ponca refinery to another oil company and getting out of Ponca City especially after ConocoPhillips Chairman and CEO Jim Mulva met with corporate analysts in October 2009 for the ConocoPhillips Q3 2009 Earnings Call and announced that the company's capital budget would decrease by about 12 percent in 2010 and that ConocoPhillips planned to divest $10 billion in refining, exploration, and production assets in a bid to improve its financial position.[102]

At the earnings call on October 29, 2009 Mulva was asked specifically about the possibility that ConocoPhillips might divest itself of some of its refineries and Mulva said that the company was "going through a more strategic assessment [of its refineries] because there are some that are less sophisticated. We will think long-term when the market gets a little bit better about selling some refineries. We think that is going to be subsequent to the next two years for 2012, 2013 and we have in mind a number of facilities that we think might have some value to someone else."[103]

The Tulsa World and the Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise report that Mulva appeared before a packed house at the Bartlesville Community Center on May 21, 2010 to present the annual company update, talk about ConocoPhillips' plans for the future, and clarify the company's plans for Bartlesville and for the Ponca City refinery.[104]

Mulva told his audience that employees in Bartlesville and Ponca City have little to fear. Although ConocoPhillips announced last year that it was tranferring or eliminating all 700 non-refinery jobs in Ponca City, ConocoPhillips plans to keep the Ponca City refinery with it's 750 employees. "We will retain only the largest and most sophisticated refineries," Mulva said. "Ponca City is a large and sophisticated refinery that is important to our refinery portfolio."[105]

Mulva added that he didn't forsee any change in the 3,100 ConocoPhillips employees in Bartlesville, and that there was actually room to accommodate an additional 800 to 1,000 more employees in Bartlesville. "There's no change in our long-term plans for Bartlesville," Mulva said. "It's a very important global support center for ConocoPhillips."[106]

"Ponca City Still a Competitive Refinery"

The announcement reinforced a statement made in February 2009 at the time that the announcement was made that ConocoPhillips non-refinery employees in Ponca City would be relocated over the next three years. "The refinery in Ponca City continues to be a competitive refinery," said John A Carrig, President and Chief Operating Officer of ConocoPhillips, when he talked to students as part of the Distinguished Speaker Series at the Michael F. Price College of Business at Oklahoma University. "Like all of our facilities, we are continuing to make investments to enable it to thrive. I don't see any particular change in the outlook for it."[107]

Jim Mulva reiterated in his conference call to financial analysts on July 14, 2011 that in answering a question by Ed Westlake of Credit Suisse that "if we have an alternative to sell one of the less sophisticated refineries in a way, we are not going to delay until this is done accomplishing and doing that."[108][109][110]

Ponca City and the Spinoff of Phillips 66 in 2012

In 1908 E. W. Marland came to Oklahoma after losing his fortune in the Pennsylvania oil fields in the panic of 1907 and by 1920 had reestablished himself and started the Marland Oil Company and building the Marland Refinery in Ponca City. Marland was a visionary and not only pioneered the use of geophysical techniques in the oil industry but was years ahead of his time as an employer providing housing, loans, medical care, and other benefits for the thousands of employees who worked at his refineries and pipelines. The refinery EW Marland built in Ponca City in 1918 has provided employment, opportunities, and benefits to tens of thousands of citizens of Northern Oklahoma in the almost 100 years since the Marland Refinery in Ponca City was built. Photo: Hugh Pickens
Beginning May 1, 2012, the day Phillips 66 was spun off as a separate downstream company, newspaper ads have appeared daily in the "The Ponca City News" asking that Phillips 66 rename its Ponca City refinery the "Marland Refinery in Ponca City" as a symbol going forward of the partnership between the oil industry and the citizens of North Central Oklahoma that honors the legacy of two great oil pioneers who brought advancement and prosperity to Northern Oklahoma, Frank Phillips and EW Marland.[111][112] Full Disclosure
Archie Dunham Says He Disagrees with Splitting Off Phillips 66 from ConocoPhillips. In 2012, ConocoPhillips split, spinning off its refining, retail, and marketing operations to form Phillips 66, while ConocoPhillips focused on oil exploration and production. Jim Mulva, CEO of ConocoPhillips and architect of the split, said that two independent companies focused on their respective industries would be more competitive. He insisted both were big enough to compete and generated enough cash to invest in their futures. Dunham stayed out of the fray, he said recently. He wrote letters to the board, arguing that an integrated company can use cash from its refining business to fund oil exploration - but he never sent them. According to Hunn, the separation is a decision with which Dunham disagrees, even now. Photo: Wikipedia

Other Stories About the Ponca City Refinery:

Implementation of the ConocoPhillips Split

On May 1, 2012 Phillips 66 issued a press release announcing that Phillips 66 had emerged as an independent downstream energy company with industry-leading businesses in refining and marketing, midstream, and chemicals. Created through a spin-off of these assets from ConocoPhillips, Phillips 66 begins regular trading on the New York Stock Exchange this morning under the ticker symbol PSX. "Our strategic approach combines one of the world's most competitive refining and marketing operations with rapidly growing midstream and chemicals businesses," said CEO Greg Garland. "Phillips 66 will be clearly differentiated from pure-play refining companies with specific plans for enhancing returns and growing shareholder distributions. We have an exciting future ahead of us."[113]

On November 11, 2011 the Tulsa World reported that Phillips 66 would be the name for the new independent oil and gasoline refining and marketing firm, created as ConocoPhillips splits into two companies. ConocoPhillips will keep the current name of the company and will concentrate on the exploration and production side while Phillips 66 will include refining and marketing portions of the company. Each company will be run independently and will have different tocker names in the stock market. The refinery in Ponca City employs about 700 people while Bartlesville will be the global center for the Phillips 66 technology organization as well as the transaction services organizations for both companies.[114] ConocoPhillips CEO Jim Mulva will resign once the split is complete and Greg Garland will be the new CEO of Phillips 66.[115] The decision to name the new entity for Phillips 66 is because of name recognition and branding. "Phillips 66 has strong brand recognition and value, and it provides a link between our rich history and our exciting future," Garland said Thursday in a news release. "Our name reflects an independent spirit and drive."[116]

On April 4, 2012 ConocoPhillips' board of directors gave its final approval for the spin-off of its downstream businesses into Phillips 66.[117] ConocoPhillips executive vice president and CFO Jeffrey Sheets announced on April 23, 2012 that ConocoPhillips is putting its final touches on its spinoff of Phillips 66 this week, and the transaction will take place as scheduled on May 1, 2012.[118]

Garland Says the Spin-off of Phillips 66 Was Executed Flawlessly

Greg Garland told investors and securities analysts at the 2012 Barclays CEO Energy-Power Conference in New York on September 5, 2012 that spin-off of Phillips 66 was executed flawlessly. "I think it's a real tribute to the dedication and the capability of the Phillips 66 employees. They did a great job of getting our feet underneath this. The Company has stood up. We're ready to go. The systems are operating well. We've been running well and capturing good opportunities in the market.[119]

How the Spinoff Affects Ponca City and Bartlesville

Rod Walton writes in the Tulsa World on April 28, 2012 that with the spinoff, Ponca City may not be affected as dramatically by the split as Bartlesville. Going back to the 2002 merger shows that Bartlesville and Ponca City were affected differently leaving the two cities in different situations today."[120]

Conoco employed nearly 1,900 people in Ponca City at the end of 2001, while Phillips had a workforce of 2,500 in Bartlesville. The ConocoPhillips numbers shrunk to only 750 refinery workers in Ponca City but swelled to 3,500 at the shared services center in Bartlesville. Ponca City is now purely a refining town, with Ponca City having lost all 750 non-refinery jobs during the three-year repositioning plan. "Today, we're a refinery town," said David Myers, executive director for the Ponca City Development Authority. "No doubt about it: the merger was not kind to Ponca City." "The dark humorists in that city used to joke that Ponca City got the first name in the merger but little else," writes Walton. "ConocoPhillips opted to shut down a carbon fibers plant early on and eliminated the rest of the 750 non-refinery jobs beginning in 2009.""[121]

The Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise editorialized on April 29, 2012 that Jim Mulva has "proven to be a true friend to the City of Bartlesville."[122] According to Rod Walton, Bartlesville was a big beneficiary of the ConocoPhillips merger and seems to have lived a charmed life economically over the past ten years. Although the home of Frank Phillips doesn't employ 9,000 company workers as it did in the early days, the 1,000 employees added since 2002 have kept downtown buildings such as Plaza and Adams full of mid-level computer, credit and other support personnel. But now Bartlesville operations are in flux and there is much uncertainty about the future. "All employees are being moved to one of the two companies, with co-workers who once sat side to side now literally shifted to separate buildings," writes Walton. ConocoPhillips will employ about 1,700 people in the downtown Plaza and Frank Phillips Tower Center buildings and in the Adams warehouse. Phillips 66's Bartlesville workforce will number 1,900 people, housed in the main Adams and Phillips buildings and the Research and Development Center on the west edge of the city.[123] The Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise reported on April 29, 2012 that the "split or 'repositioning' as it has been called by company officials, has required many existing local employees to shift jobs and even physically move from one building to another within the extensive downtown Bartlesville office complex" adding that "while no one can predict the future with perfect clarity, Bartlesville appears no worse for the wear during this complex process."[124]

ConocoPhillips CEO Ryan Lance and Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland reassured its employees in Oklahoma in an op-ed they wrote for the Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise titled "ConocoPhillips, Phillips 66 have deep roots in Bartlesville" that "ConocoPhillips and Phillips 66 together employ nearly 4,500 people in Oklahoma, an increase in recent years. Going forward, we will both maintain Global Services Centers in Bartlesville providing essential finance, information technology and other vital support to our personnel around the world. Elsewhere, Phillips 66 will continue operating the Ponca City Refinery, by far Oklahoma’s largest, and will remain the leading gasoline marketer. ConocoPhillips will continue producing oil and natural gas from the Anadarko Basin and the Panhandle area." Lance and Garland added that "we continue encouraging both current and incoming employees to maintain our proud tradition of community service. Bartlesville is a special place to work, live and raise a family, and we want to help keep it that way. This is an exciting time for ConocoPhillips and Phillips 66. All of our Oklahoma communities are great homes to our people and businesses, and we both look forward to long and bright futures here."[125]

"The Phillips and Conoco merger has taught everyone, Poncans and Bartians alike, to simply expect the unexpected," writes Walton. "In other words, who knows what ConocoPhillips and Phillips 66 will look like 10 years down the road?" "We do have a strong Conoco retiree group that lives here," says Dave Myers. "There's still talk in the community, still those who'd like to go back to the old days. I think most people have moved on."[126][127]

The Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise reported on September 12, 2012 that Greg Garland visited Bartlesville on September 11, 2012 to speak to the Chamber of Commerce and told members of the chamber that Bartlesville is of strategic importance to Phillips 66. “As we were approaching the repositioning and spinning Phillips 66 out of ConocoPhillips, there was never any question that Bartlesville would continue to be a strategic and important part of our company, in the support of our company operations, for a very long time,” Garland said. Garland added that Phillips is “pretty much at capacity” in Bartlesville. “I don’t see us moving a lot of people into Bartlesville,” he said, adding that Bartlesville will always be a core asset for the company. “There’s not big plans to move in a big section of the workforce. We just don’t have the capacity or the space here today to do that.”[128]

Visit of Phillips 66 Leaders to Ponca City

On March 27, 2012, the Ponca City News reported that leaders from Phillips 66 visited Ponca City and were met by community leaders.

On the Phillips 66 side were Bob Herman, Future Lead of Health, Safety and Environment; Pete Stynes, Ponca City Refinery Manager; Larry Ziemba, future Lead of Refining, including Projects and Procurement, and President, Global Refining; Chantal Veevaete, future Human Resources; and Tim Taylor, future Commercial, Marketing, Transportation and Business Development.

On the Ponca City side were City Manager Craig Stephenson; Lee Evans, Chair of the Ponca City Area Chamber of Commerce; David Myers, Ponca City Development Authority; Rich Cantillon, Chamber of Commerce/Tourism Bureau; Carl Renfro, community leader; and Larry Murphy, Chair of the Ponca City Development Authority.[129]

Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland, although originally scheduled to visit Ponca City with his management team, was not able to attend. Ponca City Mayor Homer Nicholson, retired from ConocoPhillips after 38 years service, was also unable to attend.

Proposal to Rename Phillips 66's Refinery to the "Marland Refinery in Ponca City"

On March 12, 2012 a web site was created asking the management of Phillips 66 to consider honoring EW Marland, the oil pioneer who built the refinery in 1919 and developed the oil industry in North Central Oklahoma by restoring the name of the Phillips 66 refinery in Ponca to its original name, "Marland Refinery in Ponca City," as a gesture of goodwill to the community of Ponca City.

"The Ponca City News" recently announced that with the split of ConocoPhillips into two companies, the ConocoPhillips operation in Ponca City, Oklahoma will soon be renamed Phillips 66.

Frank Phillips, the founder of the Phillips 66 Oil company, was a man who knew how to use his courage and initiative and great administrative ability to create industry and wealth in Oklahoma leaving a legacy in the oil company that bears his name that will always be a monument to his memory.

But there is another Oklahoma oil pioneer who was equally important in developing the oil industry and bringing prosperity and advancement to Northern Oklahoma and that man was EW Marland.

EW Marland pioneered the use of geological techniques in the oil industry and was years ahead of his time as an employer providing housing, loans, medical care, and other benefits for thousands of employees who worked at his refineries and pipelines but Marland lost everything to the powerful JP Morgan banking interests - even losing his name on the oil company that he founded in Ponca City.

It is altogether fitting and proper that Phillips 66 honor the heritage of oil development in Northern Oklahoma by recognizing Frank Phillips and EW Marland.

The executives of Phillip 66 have honored the memory of Frank Phillips by choosing to name their new company for Phillips. We think Phillips 66 should honor the legacy of oil pioneer EW Marland by naming their refinery in Ponca City for Marland, the man who started the refinery and brought advancement and development to North Central Oklahoma.[130]

It would mean a great deal to the residents of Ponca City for Phillips 66 to acknowledge the history and heritage of the oil industry in Oklahoma by honoring these two great oil pioneers, Frank Phillips and EW Marland.

Renaming the refinery the "Marland Refinery in Ponca City" will serve as a symbol going forward of the partnership between the oil industry and the citizens of North Central Oklahoma that honors the legacy of these two great oil pioneers.[131]

A full page advertisement by Phillips 66 announcing its "intent on continually earning the trust of the communities we serve and operating with the highest levels of integrity" appeared in the Ponca City News on May 1, 2012.[132] A quarter-page advertisement congratulating Phillips 66 on its creation and asking Phillips 66 to honor the legacy of EW Marland appeared in the Ponca City News on May 1, 2012.[133][134]

Archie Dunham Says That He Disagrees with the Decision to Split Off Phillips 66 from ConocoPhillips

David Hunn wrote in the Houston Chronicle on September 28, 2016 that sixteen years ago, on his way to a black-tie fundraiser in Oklahoma City, Archie Dunham, then chief executive of the Houston oil company Conoco, stepped out of hotel elevator just as Jim Mulva, his counterpart at Phillips Petroleum of Oklahoma, emerged from another nearby. "Low prices and rising costs were driving a wave of mergers in the industry, including the blockbuster combination of Exxon and Mobil, and leaving smaller companies like Conoco and Phillips vulnerable to takeover," writes Hunn. "Dunham didn't like the idea of getting gobbled by a major oil company; he took the opportunity to broach the idea of a merger - a merger of equals - with Mulva." Big oil companies had been circling Conoco for some time when Dunham found himself in a hotel lobby with Mulva, the Phillips CEO. Dunham, in a recent interview, said Phillips seemed like a good partner to him. They had strengths in different parts of the world that complemented each other, he said, but they also came from essentially the same place. "We felt like our cultures, values, were very similar," Dunham said.

After running into each other at the Renaissance Waterford on that evening in 2000, Dunham and Mulva quickly parted, wary of being spotted together and tipping anyone off to their discussion. But they soon met again, secretly, in Colorado. Alone in a room in the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, they talked for four hours about business, family and values. A few months later, on a stormy day in November 2001, the two men met in Tulsa, Okla. to announce the merger that would create world's sixth biggest integrated oil company. The new firm would have $50 billion in revenues, $60 billion in assets, 8.7 billion barrels in oil reserves and 58,000 employees worldwide. Dunham persuaded Mulva to name the new company ConocoPhillips, and keep it headquartered in Houston. The city's easy access to international flights made the decision practical. "Besides, I was a Houstonian," Dunham said. "I wanted Houston to have the headquarters." In exchange, Dunham took the chairman slot; Mulva became chief executive.

Dunham retired in 2004. In 2012, the company split again, spinning off its refining, retail, and marketing operations to form Phillips 66, while ConocoPhillips focused on oil exploration and production. Mulva, still CEO then, said that two independent companies focused on their respective industries would be more competitive. He insisted both were big enough to compete and generated enough cash to invest in their futures. Dunham stayed out of the fray, he said recently. He wrote letters to the board, arguing that an integrated company can use cash from its refining business to fund oil exploration - but he never sent them. According to Hunn, the separation is a decision with which Dunham disagrees, even now.[135]

News from the Ponca City Refinery

Introduction

Statue of E. W. Marland on the Town Square of Ponca City. Photo: Hugh Pickens

In 1908 E. W. Marland came to Oklahoma after losing his fortune in the Pennsylvania oil fields in the panic of 1907 and by 1920 had reestablished himself and started the Marland Oil Company building the Marland Refinery in Ponca City, Oklahoma. Marland was a visionary and not only pioneered the use of geophysical techniques in the oil industry but was years ahead of his time as an employer providing housing, loans, medical care, and other benefits for the thousands of employees who worked at his refineries and pipelines. The refinery EW Marland built in Ponca City in 1918 has provided employment, opportunities, and benefits to tens of thousands of citizens of Northern Oklahoma in the almost 100 years since the Marland Refinery in Ponca City was built.

This report contains news and commentary about Ponca City, the Ponca Refinery, E. W. Marland and his legacy, Phillips 66 and other Phillips 66 refineries around the world, ConocoPhillips, and the petroleum industry in Oklahoma.

Other Stories About the Ponca Refinery:

Latest News about Phillips 66 and the Ponca Refinery

September 22, 2017: Phillips 66 Unloads Stake in Controversial Dakota Access Pipeline to its MLP

Phillips 66 Unloads Stake in Controversial Dakota Access Pipeline to its MLP. Phillips 66 has agreed to sell its 25% stake in the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL), its stake in another company that holds a 25% stake in the Bakken Pipeline and 100% of its interest in a coking unit at its Sweeny refinery, to its midstream partner, Phillips 66 Partners L.P. for a total consideration of $2.4 billion. North Dakota was the focus of large Native American protests as the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe said the project threatens cultural sites and their drinking water source. Photo: Joe Brusky Flickr

24/7 Wall Street reported on September 22, 2017 that Phillips 66 has agreed to sell its 25% stake in the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL), its stake in another company that holds a 25% stake in the Bakken Pipeline and 100% of its interest in a coking unit at its Sweeny refinery, to its midstream partner, Phillips 66 Partners L.P. for a total consideration of $2.4 billion. Phillips 66 Partners plans to fund the $1.7 billion cash portion of the transaction with a combination of debt, private placement of common units, and additional units valued at $240 million issued to Phillips 66. The master limited partnership (MLP) also will assume $625 million of Phillips 66 Bakken Pipeline debt and $100 million of Phillips 66 debt on the coking unit. "This is the largest acquisition PSXP has made to date," said Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland. "This acquisition supports our EBITDA growth objective by adding solid fee-based assets to the Partnership and keeps us on track to deliver our 30 percent distribution growth target. To meet our $1.1 billion of annual run-rate adjusted EBITDA goal by the end of 2018, we do not anticipate accessing the equity market, other than through selective use of our at-the-market program."[136]

September 20, 2017: Hurricane Harvey Delays Large Part of $6 billion Chevron Phillips Expansion at Sweeny Complex

My San Antonio reported on September that a large portion of Chevron Phillips' $6 billion expansion at Sweeny Complex is being delayed until next year after Hurricane Harvey's floodwaters created additional problems. The larger Baytown portion of the expansion project, which was originally expected to be finished by now, won't be completed until next year, Chevron Phillips said. The project involves a massive ethane cracker - on a plot the size of 44 football fields - that will separate a component of natural gas called ethane, which will provide the feedstock for some 1.5 million metric tons a year of ethylene, a common building block of plastics. Chevron Phillips said it is now on track to be finished by the end of March with it achieving full production by mid-2018.[137]

September 20, 2017: Phillips 66 is Selling Their StorageTek Campus in Louisville Colorado

The Denver Post reported on September 20, 2017 that Phillips 66 is selling their 432 acre StorageTek campus in Louisville to California’s Bancroft Capital, which is using it to woo Amazon as the web retail giant hunts for a second headquarters. “We’ve been chasing this deal for a decade and a half,” said founder Doug McDonald. “Amazon is a great fit for Boulder County and could be a game-changer for public transportation and connectivity.” Conoco, then ConocoPhillips, bought the property in 2008 for $58.5 million, with plans to turn the former Storage Technology/SunMicrosystems campus into a world-class research and training campus focusing on sustainable energy.[138][139]

September 19, 2017: Phillips 66 Alliance Refinery Donates $30,000 grant to the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana (CRCL)

The Plaquemines Gazette reported on September 19, 2017 that Phillips 66 has made a $30,000 grant to the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana (CRCL) to fund a major habitat restoration project in Plaquemines Parish. On Sept. 9, more than 30 Phillips 66 Alliance Refinery employees and volunteers from the local area took part in a planting event at the Bayou Dupont Terrace Project. The group planted 4,500 plugs of native marsh grass which will help redevelop part of our coastline and provide improved natural flood defense.[140]

September 14, 2017: Texas Homeowners Sue Phillips 66 over Flooded Homes near Sweeny Refinery

ABC Channel 13 reported on September 14, 2017 that homeowners in Brazoria County have filed a lawsuit against Phillips 66 alleging that Phillips intentionally dammed the area around Sweeny Refinery with concrete and boxcars, directing the flow of water into residential areas in Sweeny and nearby Magnolia during Harvey. Plaintiffs also claim the water was contaminated with chemicals from the refinery and are asking for cash damages.

Phillips 66 released the following statement to ABC13 regarding the lawsuit: "Phillips 66 is committed to protecting the health and safety of the people involved in our operations and in the communities where we operate. During severe weather events like Hurricane Harvey, we have plans in place to protect our employees, our facilities and our communities. We are aware of concerns from the community suggesting that our actions to protect the refinery contributed to additional flooding in the area. We do not believe that to be the case, however, we are investigating the issue and have been working with local authorities. Although we experienced significant flooding in the refinery, our actions minimized the potential for release of feedstocks and products that could have negatively impacted the community and the environment."[141]

September 14, 2017: Chevron Phillips Chemical Anticipates a Delay in Startup of its New 1.5 million tonne-per-year Ethane Cracker in Cedar Bayou

Chemistry World reported n September 14, 2017 that Chevron Phillips Chemical anticipates a delay in startup of its new 1.5 million tonne-per-year ethane cracker in Cedar Bayou because of damage by Harvey. The cracker was expected to be completed this year, but rains left parts of the facility under five to eight feet of water. "We’re just now getting back into the facility to evaluate the recovery efforts there, and I don’t have a forecast yet,’ Phillips 66 chairman Greg Garland told the Barclays conference. Garland said the cracker itself faced ‘very limited damage,’ but the contractors working on the project have been off for weeks since the storm."[142]

September 12, 2017: Sweeny Refinery Has Restarted

Phillips 66 announced at their Operations Information Center on September 12, 2017 that operations have resumed at the following sites that were impacted by Harvey:

  • Sweeny Refinery has restarted.
  • The Phillips 66-operated Pasadena refined products terminal and connecting pipelines.
  • Beaumont Terminal.
  • Freeport Terminal.
  • Gulf Coast Fractionators facility in Mt. Belvieu[143]

September 6, 2017: Sweeny Refinery to Return to Full Production by Mid-September

Reuters reported on September 6, 2017 that Phillips 66 says Sweeny Refinery will return to full production by mid-September.[144]

September 6, 2017: 25-50 Gallons Of Oil Spilled In Leak Near Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery

CBS Channel 5 reported on September 6, 2017 that an estimated 25 to 50 gallons of oil apparently leaked from a pipeline, causing a spill into San Pablo Bay near the Phillips 66 refinery. Crews from the Coast Guard and the Fish and Wildlife’s Office of Spill Prevention and Response searched the area but did not find any signs of an oil sheen or visibly oiled wildlife. The environmental group Center for Biological Diversity issued a statement about the spill and criticized a proposal being considered by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District to allow the oil company to more than double the number of oil tankers allowed to make deliveries at the Rodeo refinery. “Harmful oil spills are becoming all too common for refineries in the Bay Area,” the center’s statement said. “Why would the air district allow Phillips 66 to double the number of oil tankers coming into the Bay? The next accident could be bigger and spill dirtier oil, which would spell disaster for our beautiful Bay and the communities around the refinery.”[145]

September 5, 2017: Phillips 66 Donates $4 million to Harvey Relief Efforts

Phillips 66 Donates $4 million to Harvey Relief Efforts. Phillips 66 will contribute $4 million to assist Hurricane Harvey relief efforts in southeast Texas. Phillips 66 shut down down its 247,000-barrel-a-day Sweeny refinery near Houston on August 27, 2017 due to possible flooding in the area and to keep employees safe. Phillips 66 was able to keep the Lake Charles and Alliance refineries open. Photo: SC National Guard Wikimedia Creative Commons Public Domain.

Bartlesville Radio reported on September 5, 2017 that Phillips 66 announced it will contribute an additional $3 million to assist Hurricane Harvey relief efforts in southeast Texas. The donation will be shared equally by the Rebuild Texas Fund, United Way of Greater Houston and the American Red Cross and will bring Phillips 66’s total contributions to $4 million since the storm. Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland says officials thoughts and prayers continue to be with all those affected by the unprecedented disaster, including many employees, friends and neighbors across southeast Texas. Garland says we recognize the road to recovery will be long, but remain deeply committed to helping communities rebuild.[146]

September 3, 2017: Phillips 66 Assesses Damage at Sweeny Refinery After Tropical Storm Harvey

Reuters reported on September 3, 2017 that Phillips 66 says that 600 people are at Sweeny Refinery assessing and repairing damage from Tropical Storm Harvey in preparation for restarting the plant.[147]

September 3, 2017: Phillips 66 Requests Jones Act Waiver to Supply Alliance Refinery

Reuters reported on September 3, 2017 that Phillips 66 has requested a Jones Act waiver to allow it to use foreign vessels to move crude or products to and from its 260,000-barrel-per-day Alliance refinery in Louisiana after Hurricane Harvey. The Jones Act requires all goods transported by water between U.S. ports be carried on U.S.-flag ships, constructed in the United States, owned by U.S. citizens, and crewed by U.S. citizens. Waivers can only be granted based on interest of national defense such as national emergencies.[148]

September 2, 2017: Workers Repair Levee Breach Near Phillips 66 Alliance Refinery

WDSU reported on September 2, 2017 that Plaquemines Parish officials are working to repair a levee that breached near Phillips 66's Alliance Refinery during tidal surge caused by Hurricane Harvey. Parish officials said the breach does not pose a risk of flooding to homes or Louisiana Highway 23 near the refinery. Officials said the land is remote and not easily accessible. Parish and DOTD personnel spent the day filling Hesco Baskets and transporting them to the landing zone to stage for air operations while a barge arrived carrying rocks that will be used in the repair. Crews will begin placing the rocks into the breach throughout the night, officials said.

This is not the first time the levee has breached. In 2016, the Louisiana National Guard helped the parish place sandbags to repair the levee. Officials said the breach grew to about 70 feet wide when the levee broke last spring.[149]

September 1, 2017: Phillips 66 Lake Charles Refinery Stays Open After Harvey by Tapping Into US Strategic Petroleum Reserves

The Houston Chronicle reported on August 31, 2017 that Phillips 66 says their Lake Charles Refinery is still running, and that Phillips 66 is taking 500,000 barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve's West Hackberry site that's just south of Lake Charles in Louisiana to keep its crude supplies going while many of the pipelines from Texas are shuttered. "The SPR release will help ensure that we can maximize our refined product supply in order to provide reliable energy during a difficult time that includes supply and logistics challenges following Hurricane Harvey," Phillips 66 said. More than 20 percent of the nation's oil refining capacity is currently offline because of Harvey with Texas outages from Corpus Christi to Houston to Port Arthur. That includes Phillips 66's Sweeny refining campus and Citgo's Corpus Christi refinery.[150]

Platts reported on September 1, 2017 that Phillips 66's Lake Charles Refinery is no longer cut off from tanker deliveries now that the Calcasieu Ship Channel and Lake Charles port have reopened, eliminating the need for further SPR loans. Phillips 66 spokesman Dennis Nuss said the refinery decided it no longer needed to borrow the additional 300,000 barrels of sour crude allocated by DOE. "As certain things open back up, then that would obviously help our supply and we wouldn't need it all," Nuss said. The loaned government crude was already flowing by pipeline from the SPR's West Hackberry cavern to the nearby refinery Thursday. "That's happening pretty quickly. It's in progress," Nuss said.[151]

August 27, 2017: Phillips 66 Shuts Down Sweeny Refinery after Tropical Storm Harvey

Fox Business reported on August 27, 2017 that Phillips 66 is shutting down its 247,000-barrel-a-day Sweeny refinery near Houston due to possible flooding in the area and to keep employees safe."We are continuously monitoring the progress of Tropical Storm Harvey and preparing for potential flooding over the next several days," the company said in a statement on its website. "To ensure the safety of our employees and due to expected flooding in Brazoria County, we have initiated a shutdown of our Sweeny Refinery in Old Ocean, Texas."[152] Chevron Phillips has also shut down its massive Cedar Bayou petrochemical complex in Baytown as flooding overtook much of the Houston region.

The Lake Charles Refinery and Alliance Refinery and other refined product terminals in the Gulf Coast region continue to operate.

August 15, 2017: Hancock College Receives $25,000 donation from Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refinery

The Santa Maria Times reported on August 15, 2017 that Hancock College received a $25,000 donation from Phillips 66 to support students seeking degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Designed as a four-day orientation to introduce freshmen and their parents to STEM education, the program features hands-on activities and presentations focusing on topics such as applying for financial aid, transitioning from high school to college and highlighting student resources. As part of the program, students will tour the Phillips 66 refinery in Santa Maria.[153]

August 13, 2017: Frank Phillips Historic Home Saved by Bartlesville, Phillips Foundation

Saving the Frank Phillips Home in Bartlesville. Serious budget cuts have forced the Oklahoma Historical Society to give up operation of the Frank Phillips Home, one of the state’s most significant historic homes but the Frank Phillips Foundation, owner and operator of Woolaroc, is taking over a lease on the historical home in Bartlesville and is actively working to fund an operating endowment to preserve it for future generations of Oklahomans. Photo: Jerry Poppenhouse.

The Tulsa World reported on August 13, 2017 that serious budget cuts have forced the Oklahoma Historical Society to give up operation of the Frank Phillips Home, one of the state’s most significant historic homes but the Frank Phillips Foundation, owner and operator of Woolaroc, is taking over a lease on the historical home in Bartlesville and is actively working to fund an operating endowment to preserve it for future generations of Oklahomans.

Bob Blackburn, director of the Oklahoma Historical Society, told the Tulsa World earlier this year that the group’s state funding has been slashed by more than 40 percent in the past eight years. Bartlesville officials were notified over a year ago that the Frank Phillips Home was one of the facilities that would need additional funding and support or it would be closed. The city of Bartlesville and Woolaroc worked out an agreement whereby Woolaroc would take over the operation of the facility. “It was a natural for us,” said Bob Fraser, director of Woolaroc.. “But, there were still quite a few details to work out, legally and financially, to make it work.”

According to the deed, if the Oklahoma Historical Society could no longer operate the facility, ownership was to be transferred to the city of Bartlesville. If the city was unable to operate the museum, the deed called for the demolition of the significant historical site. “That was about 18 months ago, and after talking with officials with the city of Bartlesville we were not going to let that happen under any circumstance,” said Bob Fraser, CEO of Woolaroc. “If we let that happen to the house, Frank would have come down from heaven and kicked our tails.”[154]

Fraser said bringing the Frank Phillips Home and Woolaroc together under the Frank Phillips Foundation ownership is a perfect fit. “We are excited about the possibility of bringing the Frank Phillips Home under our wing,” he said. “We knew with the issues in state funding that the future of the Oklahoma Historical Society’s ability to own and operate the home was in question. The Foundation is the right fit to carry on the legacy of Frank and Jane Phillips with both Woolaroc and the Frank Phillips Home.” Once all of the paperwork and agreements are decided by the Oklahoma Historical Society, the city of Bartlesville, the Frank Phillips Foundation, the heirs of the Phillips family and the court system, Fraser said the Foundation will have endowment funds available to preserve the historic home for generations to come. “The Oklahoma Historical Society has done a great job and it’s not easy preserving a 100-year-old home,” Fraser said. “We also have a vision to not only maintain this integral part of Bartlesville history, but to bring new life to it too.”[155]

August 12, 2017: Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Upends Oil Transport

The Bismark Tribune reported on August 11, 2017 that for the first month of commercial service of the Dakota Access Pipeline, oil leaving the state by rail dropped 20 percent. At its peak, crude by rail transport was 800,000 barrels per day out of the state. In recent months, it has hung from 300,000 to 400,000 barrels per day. Justin Kringstad, director of the North Dakota Pipeline Authority, estimates 65,000 to 90,000 barrels per day left the region by rail in June. "For the first time, starting in June, we are now in an environment where we have adequate pipeline capacity,” said Kringstad. “There is technically enough pipeline to move all of the production.”

The question becomes how long will pipeline capacity stay ahead of production. Kringstad estimates current capacity will last until about the mid 2020s. This is based on calculations that assume either 65 new wells per year drilled over the next six years or 90 new wells per month over the next four years. According to Department of Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms, the department has permitted 100 wells for drilling in May, 109 in June and 146 in July. In May, 66 wells were completed and preliminary numbers show 63 were completed in June. Total production decreased slightly, by 1 percent, to 1.04 million barrels per day in June, with production expected to remain above the 1 million barrel mark through the summer months.[156]

According to Amy Sisk writing in 'Inside Energy' on August 14, 2017 Dakota Access Pipeline is rapidly upending the transportation sector of the oil industry, and it’s impact has only just begun. One big change has been that before Dakota Access came online this spring, trains were still carrying a significant amount, about 25 percent. But in just the line’s first month, that number dropped way off, down to just 7 percent.

Bigger changes could be yet to come. “When a new pipeline system typically goes into service, they do not operate at full capacity initially,” said Justin Kringstad, director of the North Dakota Pipeline Authority. So the numbers could change even more down the road as Dakota Access builds up to carry 500,000 barrels per day to Illinois, where that oil will be taken on additional pipelines to the Gulf Coast. “I don’t anticipate us being at full capacity with Dakota Access for quite some time, whether that’s 3 months, 6 months,” Kringstad said.

"Oil companies are breathing a sigh of relief that the pipeline’s operational," concludes Sisk, "as they absorb the ripple effects it’s sending throughout the industry."[157]

August 12, 2017: New Web Site Allows Citizens to Monitor Air Quality Near Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery

New Web Site Allows Citizens to Monitor Air Quality Near Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery. A new air monitoring website and app launched this week that allows residents who live near refineries in California to access real-time information about what’s concentrated in their air, report odors or upload pictures of unusual emissions, and get specific information about chemicals and pollutants and their effects.

The Vallejo Times Herald reported on August 12, 2017 that a new air monitoring website and app launched this week allows residents who live near refineries in California to access real-time information about what’s concentrated in their air, report odors or upload pictures of unusual emissions, and get specific information about chemicals and pollutants and their effects. This is the first time citizens can view activity as a whole all over the region, instead of going to each specific refinery or municipality. Air Watch Bay Area is a labor of love jump-started by academics from Drexel University and Carnegie Mellon, who teamed up with local air quality activists in hopes of creating a more transparent data center for residents.

For example when the Phillips 66 Rodoeo Refinery had a spill last September, and residents of Benicia and Vallejo reported strong gas odors with some people being hospitalized, the “mystery” around that spill dragged out for months and was only officially resolved in June of this year when the Air District confirmed the spill and slapped violations on the refinery. Had the Air Watch app been available, Constance Beutel said, people could’ve reported their symptoms and the odors, then seen all the other people with the same reports and where they were concentrated. Data from independent air monitors in Rodeo, Crockett, and elsewhere could be viewed to give folks some idea what they were smelling and more importantly, what could be making them sick, and why. “I could go to the Air Watch website, look for reports where I am or view other areas around refineries and start to see clusters,” Beutel said. “Then I could look at wind direction.”[158]

August 5, 2017: Solano County Supervisor Opposes Increased Oil Tanker Traffic to Rodeo Refinery

The Vallejo Times Herald reported on August 5, 2017 that Solano County Supervisor Monica Brown has penned a strongly-worded letter to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, opposing Phillips 66’s proposal to more than double its oil tanker fleet to Rodeo Refinery. Brown suggests holding community meetings in Benicia and Vallejo to discuss the proposal and get feedback from constituents on the D.E.I.R. She also said that the public should be informed of the meetings by every means possible, through newspapers, social media and websites. “My constituents were impacted by the last Phillips 66 spill and deserve to have a voice in something that has already so negatively impacted them,” she said.[159]

August 2, 2017: Phillips 66 Rejects Venezuelan Crude Oil that Doesn't Meet Specs

The NY Times reported on August 2, 2017 that Phillips 66 imports of heavy crude from Venezuela has dropped by more than two-thirds this year in part due to quality problems, and the company has cancelled at least one cargo in recent months. Venezuela's heavy crude supply to Phillips 66's Sweeny refinery in Texas fell to 33,500 barrels per day (bpd) in June from 105,000 bpd in January, according to Thomson Reuters Trade Flows data. The contract between Phillips and Venezuela's PDVSA allows a maximum supply of some 170,000 bpd. Phillips 66 has also asked for price discounts for other shipments of Venezuelan crude, according to sources from state-run oil company PDVSA.[160]

August 1, 2017: Phillips 66 Beats Quarterly Earnings Estimates with Increased Profits from Refineries

Reuters reported on August 1, 2017 that Phillips 66 reported a bigger-than-expected rise in quarterly profit helped by increased earnings from its refining business which rose more than 50 percent to $224 million in the second quarter due to higher volumes and lower costs. Phillips 66's earnings from its chemicals business rose to $196 million from $190 million helped by higher volumes and improved margins. On an adjusted basis, Phillips 66 earned $569 million or $1.09 per share. That was higher than analysts' expectation of $1.01 per share.[161]

“We delivered good operating performance, generated strong cash flow and made significant progress in several growth initiatives during the quarter,” said Greg Garland, chairman and CEO of Phillips 66. “The Bakken Pipeline and new storage capacity at the Beaumont Terminal were placed into service, and CPChem reached mechanical completion of two polyethylene units as part of its U.S. Gulf Coast Petrochemicals Project. Additionally, the Billings Refinery completed an advantaged crude project to enhance returns. The completion of these projects improves our future earnings and cash generation capability.”

The $235 million improvement in Refining from the prior quarter was largely driven by higher volumes and lower costs due to reduced turnaround activity. Realized margins for the quarter were $8.44 per barrel, compared with $8.55 per barrel in the first quarter. Phillips 66’s worldwide crude utilization rate was 98 percent, up from 84 percent in the prior quarter. Pre-tax turnaround costs for the second quarter were $154 million, compared with first-quarter costs of $299 million. Clean product yield was 85 percent in the second quarter, unchanged from the first quarter.[162]

July 27, 2017: EPA Director Scott Pruitt Visits Phillips 66 Research Facility in Bartlesville

Bartlesville Radio reported on July 27, 2017 that Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt visited Phillips 66 Research Facility in Bartlesville this week and talked to leaders there as part of Pruitt 's Back to Basics Agenda -- an effort he implemented to take the EPA back to its core mission. Pruitt says he sees Phillips 66 as making an effort to do the right thing, not just to meet a government mandate.[163]

July 27, 2017: Phillips 66 Seeks to Double Oil Tanker Traffic to Rodeo Refinery

KQED reported on July 27, 2017 that Phillips 66 wants to more than double the number of oil tankers from 59 ships a year that travel through San Francisco Bay to unload crude at its refinery in Rodeo. Phillips 66 wants to increase that limit to 135 and to raise the daily average of oil unloaded at the terminal from about 51,000 barrels to 130,000. The company says the extra tanker deliveries would replace crude oil currently delivered by pipeline. It “poses an incredible new risk of oil spills to San Francisco Bay,” Sejal Choksi-Chugh, executive director for Baykeeper, said in an interview. “We’re really concerned about the increase in the number of tankers that the refinery is proposing to bring in.”

The refinery’s move toward an increase in shipping crude to its Rodeo facility and away from pipeline transfers comes after officials in San Luis Obispo County rejected the company’s proposal to transport more oil by train to its refinery there. Paul Adler, a Phillips 66 spokesman, confirmed in an email that the oil that would be brought by extra ships to the refinery would be different from the crude transported by pipeline from Central California. He declined to comment further on the proposal, adding that he would attend Thursday’s air district public scoping meeting in Vallejo where residents could ask questions about the project.[164]

July 22, 2017: Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Says Phillips 66 Borger Refinery Leads Texas in Particulate Emissions

The Amarillo Globe News reported on July 22, 2017 that Phillips 66’s Borger Refinery emitted more particulate matter than any other oil refinery from 2012 to 2016, according to data from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. The refinery exceeded its allowed particulate threshold 34 times over those five years, spewing more than 300 tons in total. Emission outbursts ranged from six minutes and 20 pounds to more than two weeks and 124,000 pounds. Quantifying the pollutants’ impact on Texas Panhandle residents is difficult without a detailed scientific study, according to Erick Butler, West Texas A&M University assistant professor of environmental engineering. Factors such as wind dispersion and proximity to the refinery magnify or shrink the risk of disease.

However in a written statement, Phillips 66 director of media and external relations Dennis Nuss challenged the TCEQ data, saying it was inaccurate based on faulty refinery reporting up until February 2016. “In 2016, the Borger Refinery identified it had been over-reporting emissions for Particulate Matter of 10 Microns or less (PM10) and met with TCEQ to inform them of the reporting error,” Nuss wrote. “We have recalculated PM10 emissions to meet TCEQ reporting requirements, however, the publicly available original emission reports will remain unchanged. Based on updated calculations, the Borger Refinery PM10 emissions are significantly less than reflected in this report.”[165]

July 19, 2017: US Considers Sanctions Against Venezuelan Crude That Could Affect Phillips 66

US Considers Sanctions Against Venezuelan Crude Which Could Affect Phillips 66. Phillips 66 bought 46.2 million barrels of crude oil from Venezuela in 2016 which is refined at Phillips 55 Sweeny Refinery. Photo by imelda Flicker Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The NY Times reported on July 18, 2017 that the Trump administration is considering imposing sanctions on additional Venezuelan officials, one of several options under discussion as a rebuke to President Nicolás Maduro’s government and his efforts to consolidate authority. Bloomberg reported on July 11, 2017 that Valero, Phillips 66 and Chevron Corp. buy hundreds of thousands of barrels of the country’s heavy crude every day. The White House has weighed a petroleum embargo, a step a trade group representing refiners including Valero, Phillips and Chevron urged last week that it not take. “Today’s oil sales for Maduro may be tomorrow’s oil sales for the opposition,” said Kevin Book, head of the Washington-based research firm ClearView Energy Partners. “What does Venezuela need after Maduro? The answer is going to be oil sales to the United States.”

The U.S. has accused the Maduro government of human rights violations, and President Donald Trump called the turmoil there -- with at least 80 lives lost in street protests in the past two months -- “a disgrace to humanity.” According to Bloomberg, the White House began considering new sanctions after Maduro’s May announcement that he would try to rewrite the country’s constitution in a way that critics said would tighten his grip on power.

But if the Trump administration does impose new sanctions, those probably won’t include an ban on Venezuelan oil imports, according to people familiar with the matter. The argument made by the U.S. refiners resonates: An embargo would hurt both economies. In the U.S., it would squeeze margins for refineries that rely on Venezuelan crude, and potentially raise gasoline prices. Nearly 10 percent of U.S. oil imports come from the South American nation, much of that going to the Gulf Coast. Companies that run Gulf Coast refineries, including Valero and Chevron, have spent millions retooling their facilities to process the sour, tar-like crude for which Venezuela is famous. Chevron declined to comment for this story and Valero didn’t respond to requests for comment. Dennis Nuss, a spokesman for Phillips, said the company supports “the Trump administration acting in the best interests of the United States.”

According to Bloomberg, Gulf Coast refiners including Valero Energy, Chevron Corp. and Phillips 66 have spent millions tailoring their plants to use Venezuela’s unique brand of heavy, tar-like crude. "Disruptions are part of the game in the oil market, and refiners no doubt have backup plans. But the companies may see profit decline if they’re forced to reduce gasoline and diesel output or to find replacement supplies from the Middle East or other regions." Phillips 66, in a statement, said a U.S. ban wouldn’t prevent Venezuela from selling its crude elsewhere on the global market. Phillips 66 bought 46.2 million barrels of crude oil from Venezuela in 2016.[166] According to the US Energy Information Agency, crude oil bought by Phillips 66 from Venezuela is refined at Sweeny Refinery.[167][168]

July 8, 2017: Fire Fighters Contain Blaze Near Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery

Fire Fighters Contain Blaze Near Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery. A fast-moving brush fire in Rodeo has scorched at least 370 acres of dried grass and burned its way close a Phillips 66's Rodeo Refinery but firefighters were able to halt the flames from reaching the refinery.

NBA Bay Area reported on July 8, 2017 that a fast-moving brush fire in Rodeo has scorched at least 370 acres of dried grass and burned its way close a Phillips 66's Rodeo Refinery but firefighters were able to halt the flames from reaching the refinery. The blaze is 75 percent contained as of Saturday night, and crews will remain on scene overnight in order to reach full containment and battle any hot spots.[169]

July 8, 2017: Fake News Story Says Phillips 66 Will Close Bartlesville Research Center

The Bartlesville Examiner Enterprise reported on July 8, 2017 that Phillips 66 found itself in the center a fake news tsunami last week after a bogus story quoted the company’s CEO as saying the Bartlesville research center would be closed and demolished. The fake story looked real at first glance on Facebook. It looked like every other Facebook post. It included a photo, and was posted by channel45news.com. If you clicked on the link, the post takes you to channel45news.com and what appears to be a legitimate news story. The story announced plans to demolish the research center and build a new one in Dallas. “The newly vacant land will be used to research radioactive effects on crops grown for feeding livestock in local markets across Oklahoma and Southern Kansas. The research will provide valuable information on the effects of radioactivity and its effect on livestock used for food. When asked about the destination for the possibly radioactive fed animals the CEO could not at the time comment.”

Phillips 66 issued a statement refuting the hoax. “This story about demolishing the research center is a hoax. Phillips 66 only disseminates news throughout its owned media channels such as our website and social media accounts, and via press release distribution services and statements to legitimate news outlets.”[170]

July 7, 2017: Phillips 66 Blames Contractor for Hydrofluoric Acid Leak at Ferndale Refinery That Sent 7 Workers to the Hospital

Seven Worker Were Sent to the Hospital After a HydroFluoric Acid Leak at Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery. Seven contract workers were taken to St. Joseph hospital on February 11, 2017 after a toxic hydrofluoric acid leak at Phillips 66's Ferndale Refinery. The leak was from the refinery's alkylation unit, the Bellingham Herald said, citing a company statement. Alkylation units use hydrofluoric acid to convert refining byproducts into octane-boosting components of gasoline.

The Bellingham Herald reported on July 7, 2017 that Phillips 66 is appealing its $37,800 fine for a February hydrofluoric acid leak at its Ferndale Refinery that sent seven workers to the hospital. The Washington State Department of Labor & Industries deemed the incident as “serious" and found that Phillips “did not implement safe work practices for the control of hazards for the employees” and the company “did not inform the contract employer of the known potential fire, explosion or toxic release hazards related to the contractor’s work and the process.”

Phillips disagrees with the assessment of the fine, saying a contractor was at fault. “The incident in question occurred when a trained contractor improperly disconnected an enclosed rod out tool from an open drain valve in the alkylation unit,” Phillips stated in its appeal. “The incident was not caused by the failure to develop or implement safe work practices, but by a contractor’s failure to follow them." A hearings officer will decide the matter by Aug. 28, according to L&I spokeswoman Elaine Fischer.[171]

July 7, 2017: Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery Donates Boston Whaler to Whatcom County Fire Department

Discover Ferndale reported on July 7, 2017 that Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery has replaced a 21-foot Boston Whaler boat and donated it to Whatcom County Fire District 17 (Sandy Point). “The fire district is in need of a boat to assist with off-shore emergencies in the Sandy Point area, hence the in-kind donation,” said Josh Summers, Phillips 66 public affairs director. Whatcom County Fire District 17 Fire Chief Jim Petrie pointed to examples of how, in 2016, his responders could have used a waterborne vessel during their emergency response. “Last summer alone there were three incidents right off of the Sandy Point peninsula where boats were either sinking or caught fire,” said Petrie. “Firefighters were called but had to watch helplessly from the beach.”[172]

July 5, 2017: Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refinery Donates $25,000 to Dunes Center

The Santa Maria Sun reported on July 5, 2017 that Phillips 66 is donating $25,000 to Guadalupe's Dunes Center to go toward educational opportunities to underserved students in programs such as science, technology, engineering, and math. Education programs that will benefit from funding include guided student field trips to Oso Flaco Lake, classroom science presentations, and informal programs available through 10-week-long after-school programs held in partnership with local schools and community organizations. Recent topics include geology and botany; oceanography will be offered this summer.[173]

July 4, 2017: Flaring Create Dark Smoke Plume over Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery

Discover Ferndale reported on July 4, 2017 that flaring caused by activated safety system at the Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery at 3901 Unick Road sent up a plume of smoke over west Ferndale, alarming some nearby residents. According to Josh Summers, director of public affairs at Phillips 66, “All personnel are safe and the refinery is operating normally.” The plume subsided shortly after it began but the black cloud it created could be seen floating to the southeast as it dissipated.[174]

July 1, 2017: Two Oil Tanker Crashes Raise Concerns About Safety of Oil Trucks Going to Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refinery

Two Oil Tanker Crashes Raise Concerns About Safety of Oil Trucks Going to Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refinery. the recent crash of a tanker truck carrying 6,200 gallons of highly-flammable crude oil to Phillips 66's Santa Maria Refinery has raised concerns about the 52 trucks a day carrying thousands of gallons of crude that rumble through San Luis Obispo County to the Phillips 66 refinery on the Nipomo Mesa for at least another year. Another Phillips 66 oil tanker crash occurred last fall that ended in a driver’s death. Photo Cal Fire SLO

The Tribune reported on July 1, 2017 that the recent crash of a tanker truck carrying 6,200 gallons of highly-flammable crude oil to Phillips 66's Santa Maria Refinery has raised concerns about the 52 trucks a day carrying thousands of gallons of crude that rumble through San Luis Obispo County to the Phillips 66 refinery on the Nipomo Mesa for at least another year. The crash occurred 2.5 miles from its destination at the Phillips 66 refinery when the brakes went out and it rolled off the road to avoid a car. No one was injured, and less than a gallon of oil spilled. “It gives us concern that if that happened before, it will happen again. That’s just the inevitability of it,” said Laurance Shinderman, of Nipomo, who is active in the Mesa Refinery Watch Group. The intersection of Willow Road and Highway 1 where the semitruck crashed last week is frequented by tanker trucks and is a concern to local residents like Shinderman, who witness cars zooming by in low visibility sometimes caused by low-lying fog. They are especially concerned because of a sharp right turn near the intersection.

Another Phillips 66 oil tanker crash occurred last fall that ended in a driver’s death. According to the California Highway Patrol, Elias Garcia, 45, of Bakersfield had just unloaded his truck when his wife called to check on him about 2 a.m. Sept. 13, 2016. Garcia told her he was tired and on his way home. He never made it. Officers suspect he fell asleep at the wheel around 7:30 a.m. on Highway 166 near New Cuyama. The tanker swerved over the double-yellow lines and slammed into several oncoming trucks. He was ejected into a dirt field and pronounced dead at the scene.

Hundreds of tanker trucks have been delivering oil to Santa Maria Refinery, and to a pump station in Santa Maria to fill a supply gap created by the shutdown of the Plains All American Pipeline in Santa Barbara County in May 2015. The district last year issued a notice of violation to the company for violating Health and Safety Code and county rules by failing to inform the county about the refinery receiving oil trucks. Phillips 66 wracked up civil penalties for 61 days that could have been assessed at up to $610,000. It settled the violation with the county in May by agreeing to pay $15,914 to the district.[175]

June 30, 2017: Phillips 66 Donates $39,000 to Wyandotte High School to Put a Laptop in the Hands of Every Student

The Pawhuska Journal reported on June 30, 2017 that Phillips 66 made a grant of $39,000 to purchase more than 200 Chromebooks to be used starting this coming school year. Superintendent Troy Gray said the contribution by Phillips 66 will give Wyandotte High School students direct access to technology. “Dallas Gramm, a local pipeliner with Phillips, came to us and brought this to us. We’re looking at going one-to-one with our kids, which means that every high school student will have their own Chromebook and case,” Gray said. “They can take that from class to class and take it home with them. It’s impossible for us with budget cuts to make this happen without their help.”[176]

June 28, 2017: Firm That Provided Security on Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Did Not Have Permit to Operate in North Dakota

Firm That Provided Security on Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Did Not Have Permit to Operate in North Dakota. North Dakota's governor, top law officer and military leader all say they were unaware that a private security firm hired by the developer of the disputed Dakota Access oil pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, has been operating illegally in the state without a license. North Dakota's Private Investigative and Security Board first notified TigerSwan in September it was unlicensed, and in December rejected its application, citing the alleged criminal history of the company's president. Photo: Forum News Service

The Billings Gazette reported on June 28, 2017 that North Dakota's governor, top law officer and military leader all say they were unaware that a private security firm hired by the developer of the disputed Dakota Access oil pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, has been operating illegally in the state without a license. North Dakota's Private Investigative and Security Board first notified TigerSwan in September it was unlicensed, and in December rejected its application, citing the alleged criminal history of the company's president. Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, the state's top law enforcement officer, said he did not "recall being made aware" of TigerSwan's involvement or lack of a license. "Certainly, If I had known they were operating, I would have advised them to comply with the law," he said.

The regulatory board has asked a state judge to stop TigerSwan's armed workers from continuing to monitor the pipeline system and requested administrative fines be levied against the company and its president, James Reese, for operating without a license, a misdemeanor carrying a potential sentence of 30 days in jail and a $1,500 fine. The regulatory board alleges in court documents that TigerSwan employees with semi-automatic rifles and handguns protected workers and equipment at construction sites, conducted intelligence on protesters including placing or trying to place undercover agents within the protest groups, and even monitored traffic on a state highway. The board also says TigerSwan is still providing round-the-clock security along the pipeline in the state.

Maj. Gen. Alan Dohrmann, the leader of the state's National Guard, said he did not know until Wednesday that TigerSwan was operating illegally. "The National Guard had absolutely no interaction with them," said Dohrmann, whose troops spent months monitoring the protest and helped law enforcement remove protesters from the site in south-central North Dakota in February. "If there was any interaction between our folks and them, it was only through casual conversation," Dohrmann said. "Through official Guard channels, there was no coordination."

TigerSwan was founded by retired military special forces members. Internal company documents indicate that employees conducted an aggressive, multifaceted operation against pipeline protesters that included maintaining a close working relationship with public law enforcement. "When you have an organization like TigerSwan come in and start to influence decisions by law enforcement and even leadership in the state, you have to step back and say, where is the safety, where is the justice?" Standing Rock Sioux Chairman Dave Archambault said.[177]

June 28, 2017: 330-ton Reactor Makes Journey to Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery

330-ton Reactor Makes Journey to Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery A 90 foot-long, 24 foot-wide, 330-ton reactor made its four-day journey from Luka, Mississippi on a barge via the Tennessee River to the Ohio River and finally to the Mississippi River for use in the process of controlling reactions in making gasoline.Photo: Joe Badman, The Telegraph

The Telegraph reported on June 28, 2017 that a 90 foot-long, 24 foot-wide, 330-ton reactor made its four-day journey from Luka, Mississippi on a barge via the Tennessee River to the Ohio River and finally to the Mississippi River for use in the process of controlling reactions in making gasoline. The reactor replaces an older operating unit, said Wood River Refinery spokesperson Melissa Erker. “Continued investment in the operating equipment to ensure safe and reliable operations is an important focus of the Wood River Refinery,” said Erker. Wood River Refinery’s project engineering team has overseen the project, to later be handed off to the operations team and other skilled crafts workers at the facility.[178]

June 23, 2017: Opponents of Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline File Lawsuit in Louisiana

The New Orleans Advocate reported on June 23, 2017 that opponents of the Bayou Bridge Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, have sued the state of Louisiana for granting a permit needed to allow construction claiming the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources violated the state constitution when it issued a Coastal use permit because officials neglected the negative impact of the pipeline. "The most urgent problem is how the pipeline will block evacuation from the Burton Lane Community in St. James. Residents complain that they are trapped without an escape route in the event of an emergency, spill or release," a coalition of environmental groups wrote in a news release. The plaintiffs, who will be represented by the Tulane Environmental Law Clinic, have pressured the state to produce a more thorough environmental impact statement.[179]

June 21 , 2017: Tickets Go on Sale for "Lydie Marland in the Afterlife" at Ponca Playhouse

Ponca Playhouse to Present "Lydie Marland in the Afterlife" Photo: Lowell Sargeant

Ponca Playhouse announced on June 21, 2017 that tickets have gone on sale for the play "Lydie Marland in the Afterlife" this summer as part of the "Oklahoma Pride" series, now in its sixth year. Ponca Playhouse's production will be the world premier of an expanded version of the original play originally presented at "The Festival of Independent Theatres" in Dallas, Texas in May, 2013. This expanded version was written especially for production in Ponca City by Ponca Playhouse by playwright by Isabella Russell-Ides. The play will be sponsored and produced by Hugh Pickens and Dr. S. J. Pickens.

Loosely based on the life of Lydie Marland, as told in the book “The Marland Tragedy,” Lydie was the niece and adopted daughter, then wife of oil magnate and Oklahoma governor, E.W. Marland. Her life was a fairy tale of riches turned Greek tragedy. From wife of one of the wealthiest men in the world to wayward bag lady, she was lost for twenty-two years in the landscape of America.

The play will run on July 13, 14, 15, 16, 20, 21, 22, 23. Tickets will go on sale in June and will be $20.

Tickets can be purchased online at Oklahoma Pride Annual Series by calling Ponca Playhouse at 580-765-5360 or at the Playhouse box office at 301 S. 1st Monday through Friday from 11am to 3 pm.

June 19, 2017: James Cullin Says Moving Away from the Ponca City Refinery Improved His Health

The Lehigh Valley Business reported on June 19, 2017 that James Cullin was born in Ponca City down the street from the Ponca City Refinery and that he experienced first hand the effects the facility had on his health as a child. When he was younger, Cullin said, his doctor strongly encouraged him to move. “Getting out of that neighborhood when I moved into the dorms my freshman year of college, my health improved. Go figure,” Cullin said. “My health improved again when I moved out of state. Again, go figure. All this only served to emphasize the importance to me of getting away from a fossil fuel-dominated energy industry.” Despite his personal and professional support for developing renewable energy sources, Cullin said there is no way fossil fuel demand can be eliminated from the energy sector, given the state of the country’s infrastructure. “It is neither feasible nor realistic to expect a complete changeover to renewables in a short time,” he said. “There will always likely be a need for small-scale use of fossil fuels, but long-term, big-picture, converting our energy infrastructure to utilize 100 percent renewable sources is the only viable option if we don’t want to irreversibly screw up the planet.”[180]

June 16, 2017: Phillips 66 Slapped With Two "Public Nuisance" Violations for Oil Sheen Incident at Rodeo Refinery Marine Terminal that Resulted in 1,500 Odor Complaints and 120 Hospital Visits

Phillips 66 Slapped With Two "Public Nuisance" Violations for for Oil Sheen Incident at Rodeo Refinery Marine Terminal that Resulted in 1,500 Odor Complaints and 120 Hospital Visits. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District issued two “public nuisance” violations to Phillips 66 stemming from a September 20, 2016, oil sheen incident on the San Pablo Bay that resulted in nearly 1,500 odor complaints and an estimated 120 visits to Solano County hospitals. “The air district thoroughly investigated this incident and determined the Phillips 66 Refinery and the Yamuna Spirit oil tanker operator played a role in this event and both parties will be held accountable,” said Jack Broadbent in a statement, executive officer at the district. Photo: Michael Macor, The Chronicle

The Times Herald reported on June 16, 2017 that the Bay Area Air Quality Management District issued two “public nuisance” violations to Phillips 66 stemming from a September 20, 2016, oil sheen incident on the San Pablo Bay that resulted in nearly 1,500 odor complaints and an estimated 120 visits to Solano County hospitals. “The air district thoroughly investigated this incident and determined the Phillips 66 Refinery and the Yamuna Spirit oil tanker operator played a role in this event and both parties will be held accountable,” said Jack Broadbent in a statement, executive officer at the district. On the day of the event, a noxious smell blanketed the city of Vallejo. The fire department reported that over 800 residents called complaining of the strong smell of natural gas, gasoline, and “rotten eggs.” The odor was so strong that it could be detected as far away as Redwood and Broadway. A shelter-in-place order was given around 8 p.m. for south Vallejo and it was lifted the following morning. Vallejo Mayor Bob Sampayan applauded the air district’s decision. “I hope we can find these people accountable,” Sampayan said by phone on Friday afternoon. “There was no reason to have this happen.” Fines for these violations have yet to be assessed by the air district.[181]

June 15, 2017: Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery Sponsors Engineering Camp for Sixty High School Students

Riverbender.com reported on June 15, 2017 that sixty high school students attending Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s Engineering Camp are learning how engineering impacts society thanks to sponsorship of the camp by Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery, with additional support from MiTek and the Illinois Professional Land Surveyors Association. Students participate in a variety of interactive experiments, design projects and field trips including building and programming robots, designing a water filtration system, mixing concrete, gliding on a hovercraft and more. Our campers bring incredible gusto and creativity to the camp, and we genuinely feed off that energy,” said Chris Gordon, PhD, associate dean in the SIUE School of Engineering. “Each camp is a unique, fun experience.” “The profession isn’t widely understood, so we’re trying to introduce young people to those concepts,” said Mark Grinter, PLS, associate professor and chair of the Department of Construction Management. “We’ve got this big campus with lots of different environments that allow us to do field exercises, including the prairie, lake, central core and woods.”[182]

June 13, 2017: Phillips 66 Celebrates 100th Anniversary on June 13

Phillips 66 Celebrates 100th Anniversary on June 13. Phillips Petroleum Company was incorporated 100 years ago on June 13th, 1917 by brothers Lee Eldas "L.E." (left) and Frank Phillips of Bartlesville. Photo: ConocoPhillips

Bartlesville Radio reported on June 13, 2017 that Phillips Petroleum Company was incorporated 100 years ago on June 13th, 1917 by brothers Lee Eldas "L.E." and Frank Phillips of Bartlesville. Brothers Frank and L. E. (Lee Eldas) Phillips consolidated their companies and began operating with leases throughout Oklahoma and Kansas and assets of $3 million. Assets grew to $103 million by 1924.

By 1927 Phillips Petroleum began selling gasoline in Wichita, Kansas, the first of more than 10,000 service stations across the country. Phillips Petroleum became heavily involved in the natural gas industry immediately after the discovery of the Panhandle gas field of Texas and the Hugoton field in Kansas. Eight years after incorporation, Phillips was the largest producer of natural gas liquids in the United States. In 1927, Phillips started up its first petroleum refinery in Borger, Texas, designed to produce gasoline as an automotive fuel. It opened its first service station, to sell gasoline in Wichita in November of 1927. In 1930, the company developed its "Phillips 66" trademark.[183][184]

During a stop in St. Louis while en route back to Creston from Chicago in 1903, Phillips encountered C. B. Larabee, an old friend from Iowa. He was serving as a Methodist missionary to the Osage Indians west of Bartlesville in Indian Territory. The area, which is now Osage County, Oklahoma, was rich in oil. What proved to be a decades-long boom was just getting under way. Later that year, after Phillips and Gibson made two trips to Bartlesville, Phillips and his younger brother L.E. Phillips organized the Anchor Oil & Gas Company with Gibson's assistance.

Anchor opened an office in Bartlesville in 1905, secured a driller and drilled its first wildcat well, the Holland No. 1. The men struck oil on June 23, 1905. The brothers' second and third wells were dry holes, and they had barely enough money left to drill a fourth well, the Anna Anderson Number One. The Anna Anderson, completed September 6, 1905, was a gusher, and the successful well enabled the brothers to raise $100,000 through the sale of stock. The Anna Anderson was the first of 80 consecutive producing wells drilled for the brothers' company

Phillips once said to employees, to whom he was known as "Uncle Frank": "Work hard and demonstrate loyalty, and I'm a great guy to work for. Do neither, and there is no one worse." On another occasion, he said, "I am egotistical. I exercise the 'privilege and prestige of the office.' I'm bombastic, hard to get along with, an easy touch, a farm boy at heart, and conveniently hard of hearing. I'm just a sentimental old man. I'm tough. and I know it. I'm the boss, and don't let anybody try to question it."[185]

June 12, 2017: Bay Area Residents Asked to Comment on Proposal to Expand Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery Marine Terminal

Phillips 66 Responsible for Oil Sheens on San Pablo Bay from Rodeo Refinery Oil Terminal. The spill left two sheens on the bay, including one just over a mile long by 40 yards wide on the water in the northern San Pablo Bay area, according to the U.S. Coast Guard, the lead agency investigating the incident. A second sheen was later identified during a Coast Guard overflight near the Phillips 66 Rodeo refinery marine terminal. Photo: Michael Macor, The San Francisco Chronicle

The East Bay Times reported on June 12, 2017 that Phillips 66 wants to receive and process more crude and gas oil delivered by ship for their Rodeo Refinery while reducing the amounts of crude currently delivered to the refinery by pipeline. The revision would not affect the characteristics of the oils the refinery is able to process, the press release adds. The Bay Area air district will hold a community meeting in Hercules on June 22 about the scope and content of the upcoming environmental analysis of Phillips' marine terminal proposal. Air District staff members will make a presentation, and community members will get a chance to ask questions and make comments.[186]

Phillips 66 Responsible for Oil Sheens on San Pablo Bay from Rodeo Refinery Oil Terminal in October 2016

The East Bay Times reported on October 20, 2016 that the mysterious oil sheens that appeared on San Pablo Bay on September 20, 2016 were connected to a crude oil tanker or the Phillips 66 refinery, the U.S. Coast Guard announced. The spill left two sheens on the bay, including one just over a mile long by 40 yards wide on the water in the northern San Pablo Bay area, according to the U.S. Coast Guard, the lead agency investigating the incident. A second sheen was later identified during a Coast Guard overflight near the Phillips 66 Rodeo refinery marine terminal. Authorities were unable to determine if the sheen found in the bay originated from the Yumuna Spirit of the Phillips 66 facility. The U.S. Coast Guard said the vessel and the facility are responsible for recovering federal related response costs. The Coast Guard could not determine what caused the odor that sent dozens of people to hospitals in Vallejo with complaints of headaches, nausea and dizziness on September 20, 2016.[187]

KQED reported on October 18, 2016 that officials have revealed a clue that could help determine what caused the oil spill in San Pablo Bay a month ago and a sickening odor that sent dozens of people to the hospital in Vallejo around the same time. Results of tests taken of the substance found in the water in late September show that it was crude oil from the Middle East, according to an official with California’s lead agency for responding to oil spills. Randy Sawyer, chief environmental health and hazardous materials officer for Contra Costa County Health Services, says the crude must have come from an oil tanker at a marine terminal in Rodeo. “Based on the analysis and where the sheen was located, the oil sheen originated from the ship while it was unloading to Phillips 66,” Sawyer said. I’s unclear how the oil might have leaked from the vessel. “I know that Phillips did check their piping and there were no leaks,” Sawyer said. “There may have been a portion of the piping (that was) not tested.”

Phillips 66 declined to comment on the investigation and activity of the Yamuna Spirit at its marine terminal. “Phillips 66 generally does not comment on activity as it relates to our crude supply and transportation arrangements,” said Aimee Lohr, a refinery spokeswoman.

When the investigation is concluded, local environmentalists say whoever is responsible should be held accountable. “The perpetrators need to face stiff penalties for this absolutely unacceptable oil spill,” said Patrick Sullivan, an Oakland-based spokesman for the Center for Biological Diversity. “But even the steepest fines won’t undo the damage this oil has done to the bay,” Sullivan said. “That’s why we’ve got to move away from shipping dirty crude through California’s fragile coastal ecosystems.”[188]

June 8, 2017: Why Phillips 66 Continues to Invest in Refinery Modernization

Why Phillips 66 Continues to Invest in Refinery Modernization. At Bayway Refinery (shown above), Phillips replaced the existing older reactor with modern technology, which would enable it to turn the same 145,000 barrels of oil per day it currently processes into 4,000 additional barrels a day of higher-value gasoline and diesel. As a result, Phillips 66 can earn a higher-margin off the barrels it refines. Photo by William Hartz Flicker Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland told analysts during the company's latest conference call that while he thinks "refining is a good business. It's just, long-term, I just don't see it growing." Now Matthew DiLallo has published an interesting article on Motley Fool on June 8, 2017 where he examines the seeming paradox that although Phillip 66 has no plans to invest in growing its refining capacity, the company still spent $384 million on growth-focused refining projects last year. The answer is that these projects aren't about increasing Phillips' processing capacity but instead will grow Phillips' ability to earn more money from its existing refining assets. "For example, one of the projects the company undertook was modernizing the Fluid Catalytic Cracking Unit (FCC) at its Bayway refinery in New Jersey," writes DiLallo . "It replaced the existing older reactor with modern technology, which would enable it to turn the same 145,000 barrels of oil per day it currently processes into 4,000 additional barrels a day of higher-value gasoline and diesel. As a result, Phillips 66 can earn a higher-margin off the barrels it refines."

Phillips has similar projects at Billings Refinery where the the Vacuum Improvement Project will enable it to process more Canadian crude and at Lake Charles Refinery in Louisiana where a new isomerization unit will increase production of higher-octane gasoline blend components. Phillips also plans to complete a diesel recovery project at its Ponca City refinery later this year and has a similar FCC modernization underway at its Wood River refinery in Illinois that should start up in 2018.

According to DiLallo, Phillips 66 has no plans to process any more oil per day than it currently refines. "That said, it wants to maximize the value of those barrels, which is why it's investing in smaller projects that can increase its ability to process lower-cost blends of oil and improve the percentage of higher-value refined products it produces. These investments should lower costs and improve margins, enabling the company to boost the profitability of its existing refineries."[189]

June 5, 2017: Chevron Phillips Announces Expansion at Cedar Bayou Plant

Businesswire reported on June 5, 2017 that Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LP has successfully completed a low viscosity polyalphaolefins (PAO) capacity expansion at its Cedar Bayou plant in Baytown, Texas. The 20 percent capacity expansion enables the company to meet the increasing demand for high-performance lubricants in automotive and industrial applications. The project improves process safety and overall unit efficiencies while reducing waste generation for Cedar Bayou’s PAO unit. The feedstock for the new unit will be provided from Cedar Bayou’s recent 100,000-metric-tons-per-year expansion of its normal alpha olefins capacity. Construction began in April 2016 and supported up to 135 construction and engineering jobs.[190]

June 2, 2017: Strange Odor Said to Be From Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery Sends Students Home Early

Odor Said to Be From Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery Sends Students Home Early. Students at Horizon Middle and Cascadia, Skyline and Eagleridge elementary schools, all within a mile of each other near Thornton Road, reported a strange odor at about noon on June 1, according to the Ferndale School District. Staff and students also reported feeling sick, with symptoms of burning eyes and coughing. Students were sheltered in place while the cause of the odor was investigated. The Northwest Clean Air Agency responded to the reports of the strong odor after receiving phone calls from residents starting around 1:30 p.m. One caller said the source appeared to be the Phillips 66 refinery at 3901 Unick Rd., about two miles southwest of the schools.

The Lyden Tribune reported on June 2, 2017 that students at Horizon Middle and Cascadia, Skyline and Eagleridge elementary schools, all within a mile of each other near Thornton Road, reported a strange odor at about noon on June 1, according to the Ferndale School District. Staff and students also reported feeling sick, with symptoms of burning eyes and coughing. Students were sheltered in place while the cause of the odor was investigated. The Northwest Clean Air Agency responded to the reports of the strong odor after receiving phone calls from residents starting around 1:30 p.m. One caller said the source appeared to be the Phillips 66 refinery at 3901 Unick Rd., about two miles southwest of the schools. Officials from Phillips 66 told a NWCAA inspector that an “upset,” or operational problem, in the refining process caused a strong sulfur odor on site, and that it dissipated by mid-afternoon. “There could be any number of causes [for the upset] during the operation of large, complex industrial processes,” said Seth Preston, air agency representative. “In this case, we are working with Phillips 66 to determine what exactly happened and the cause of the problem.”

Data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration showed that winds were blowing in the direction of the schools at the time of the Thursday refinery upset, he said. Although there is no direct link, Preston said the reactions of students and others in the area were consistent with the strong odors reported at the refinery. The NWCAA is working with Phillips to determine the cause, he said. Responding agencies on site, including a NWCAA inspector, could not locate or verify an exact source of the odor.[191]

However according to the Bellingham Herald by June 6, 2017 the Northwest Clean Air Agency said that they haven’t been able to verify the source. “The stumbling block for us is that by the time we got an inspector up there to investigate, there was no detectable odor,” said Seth Preston, a spokesman for the agency based in Mount Vernon. It’s possible the Phillips refinery was involved, said John Gargett, deputy director of emergency management with the Whatcom County Sheriff's Office. But he’s skeptical. The upset at the refinery occurred around 8:30 a.m., long before people started to smell something in Ferndale, according to Phillips’ report to local officials. “Were they related?” Gargett said. “Maybe, but that’s about as far we’ve gotten.” Officials have looked into many possible causes: local farms, or a pipeline leak, or even something unpleasant being shipped by rail, but so far they’ve come up with nothing. The other companies that refine or transport oil products along the shoreline of Whatcom County – BP and Kinder Morgan – also found no problems.[192]

June 2, 2017: Phillips 66 Awards Scholarship to Ponca City Senior

The Ponca City News reported on June 2, 2017 that Zachary Pando, son of Phillips 66 employee Maurilio Pando, will receive a $16,000 college scholarship from the Phillips 66 Dependent Scholarship Program. The competitive program awards outstanding college-bound students whose parents work for Phillips 66 or one of its subsidiaries. The Phillips 66 Dependent Scholarship Program will annually award as many as 66 four-year scholarships of $16,000 each for higher education at any accredited institution.[193]

Refinery Manager Pete Stynes told the Ponca City Lions Club on October 10, 2012 that about 800 employees and contractors work at the refinery with the direct employment of 625 Phillips employees.[194]

May 26, 2017: Nine Bartlesville Area Seniors Win Phillips 66 Awards Scholarships

Nine Bartlesville Area Seniors Win Phillips 66 Awards Scholarships. Photo: Bartlesville High School by Granger Meador Flickr Creative Commons

Bartlesville Radio reported on May 26, 2017 that nine Bartlesville area seniors received a $16,000 college scholarship from the Phillips 66 Dependent Scholarship Program: Samantha Coats, Kaitlyn Cole, Alexis Jergenson, Ashley Raatz, and Henry and Jack Williams who all attend Bartlesville High School plus three other students from the Bartlesville area: Katelynn Morgan from Oologah-Talala High School, Nathan Schaffner at Collinsville High School, and Kaleigh Townley of Barnsdall High School, won scholarships.[195][196]

Merl Lindstrom, vice president of technology for Phillips 66, told Bartlesville’s Daybreak Rotary Club on January 23, 2015 that approximately 1,750 Phillips 66 employees work out of the company’s offices in downtown Bartlesville and another 450 are based at the Research Center in west Bartlesville for a total of 2,200 Phillips 66 employees in Bartlesville.[197]

June 2, 2017: Phillip 66 Sweeny Refinery Reports Power Blip

Fox Business reported on June 2, 2017 that Phillips 66 Sweeny Reingery reported a power blip and emissions. "The deluge system activated at the Cogen Unit causing the GSU2 transformer to arc, resulting in a low voltage power dip," the refinery said in a statement to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. "This resulted in the tripping of three transformers on the Electrostatic Precipitator." The refinery said the transformer reset itself and power was restored. "The power blip lasted only seconds but was enough to cause the excess opacity," it said.[198]

May 31, 2017: San Francisco Pollution Board Moves Closer to Capping Greenhouse Gas Emissions at Phillips 66 and Other Refineries

The Times Herlad reported on May 31, 2017 that the San Francisco Bay Area’s air pollution board took a big step toward becoming the first in America to cap greenhouse gas emissions from oil refineries including the Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery. Air district officials said the rule to limit greenhouse gases on the Bay Area’s five oil refineries is needed to prevent an increase in the pollution if oil refineries switch to using dirtier crude oil sources from places like the Canadian tar sands area. “This rule will be part of a larger effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” said Jack Broadbent, executive officer of the Bay Area Air Quality Management District. “This action is important in light of the anticipated withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement by President Trump.”

A divided audience of some 200 people attended a meeting about the rule. Oil refiners said the rule could end up having no impact on global climate change. Oil refining could shift from the Bay Area to states with more lenient environmental laws, providing no net reduction in greenhouse gases, oil industry representatives said. Oil refinery workers and petroleum company representatives were unhappy, saying the rule could limit production at the plants, cost jobs, and raise fuel prices.

Oil refineries are the largest single industrial source of greenhouse gases in the Bay Area. The Bay Area’s five refineries are Chevron in Richmond, Shell in Martinez, Valero in Benicia, Tesoro north of Concord, Phillips 66 in Rodeo.[199]

May 28, 2017: Fugitive Causes $1 million in Damage to Phillips 66 Borger Refinery During High Speed Car Chase

Amarillo.com reported on May 28, 2017 that Hutchinson County law enforcement caught a fugitive wanted in at least three counties after a chase that damaged the Chevron Phillips 66 refinery in Borger. Angel Vasquez allegedly crashed through several gates at the chemical plant, causing extensive damage. Hutchinson County Sheriff Kirk Coker said the estimated damages may be near $1 million. “He was doing 85 mph (in a 20 mph zone) when he broke the gate,” he said. The suspect totaled the pickup, which was stolen from Amarillo, while on the grounds of the plant and continued on foot. A civilian used his helicopter to assist, and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice brought in canines. When the suspect was located, he’d changed clothes. Coker said he was in possession of $12,000 to $15,000 worth of radios from the chemical plant, “where he apparently broke in and found the clothes he changed into.”[200][201]

May 27, 2017: Military-Style Tactics Used Against Protesters of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Police Use Water Cannons on Dakota Access Protesters in Freezing Weather. Police used water cannons to disperse a group of about 400 protesters against the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, as they tried to move past a barricaded bridge toward construction sites for the project. As temperatures in Cannon Ball, N.D., dropped into the 20s, police in riot gear sprayed activists with a hose mounted atop an armored vehicle and formed a line to prevent them from advancing up the road.

The Des Moines Register reported on May 27, 2017 that TigerSwan, founded by retired members of the U.S. military's Delta Force unit, was employed by Energy Transfer Partners to target protesters opposed to the Phillips 66 funded Dakota Access Pipeline with military-style counter-terrorism measures and closely collaborated with law enforcement authorities in five states. The Intercept, a non-profit watchdog journalism organization, says it obtained internal TigerSwan documents that described the anti-pipeline movement as an "ideologically driven insurgency with a strong religious component" and compared the anti-pipeline activists to jihadist fighters. "While we can expect to see the continued spread of the anti-DAPL diaspora … aggressive intelligence preparation of the battlefield and active coordination between intelligence and security elements are now a proven method of defeating pipeline insurgencies," according to internal TigerSwan communications, the report said.

The leaked documents include situation reports prepared by TigerSwan operatives in North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Illinois and Texas between September 2016 and May 2017, and delivered to Energy Transfer Partners, the report said. "They offer a daily snapshot of the security firm’s activities, including detailed summaries of the previous day’s surveillance targeting pipeline opponents, intelligence on upcoming protests, and information harvested from social media. The documents also provide extensive evidence of aerial surveillance and radio eavesdropping, as well as infiltration of camps and activist circles," according to The Intercept. David Goodner, an Iowa activist who helped to plan anti-pipeline protests in southeast Iowa's Lee County last fall, told The Register Saturday he believes The Intercept's report is the tip of the iceberg.

Adam Mason, state policy director for Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement, said The Intercept report confirms his belief that "big business and big ag" are pulling the levers of government in Iowa. "This is the perfect example where you see law enforcement and public safety officials working together for big corporations to the detriment of everyday people," Mason said.[202]

May 26, 2017: Phillips 66 Gets Go-Ahead to Sue San Luis Obispo County Supervisors Over Santa Maria Refinery Oil Train Terminal

The San Luis Obispo Tribune reported on May 26, 2017 that San Luis Obispo Superior Court Judge Barry T. LaBarbera said he will allow Phillips 66 to sue the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors in a lawsuit that includes new allegations based on what happened at hearings on the project March 13 and 14 when speakers from across California urged the board to reject the so-called bomb trains. Supervisors voted 3-1 to deny the company’s plan to extend railroad at its Santa Maria Refinery on the Nipomo Mesa to allow deliveries of crude by rail from across North America.

The judge has now ruled against the county and environmental groups with a decision to allow Phillips 66 to file a new civil complaint. Environmental groups had argued that the company’s litigation was an attempt “to undermine and circumvent local agency jurisdiction.” LaBarbera said he would not address that issue and cited case law that said, generally, a judge will not consider the validity of the proposed complaint when deciding whether it can be filed. In its lawsuit, the company will ask the court to direct the board to set aside its findings about environmentally sensitive habitat at the location of the proposed project. The case will return to court in August.[203]

May 25, 2017: Phillips 66 Pays New Jersey $39 million Settlement Over Ground Water Contamination

KRGV reported on May 25, 2017 that New Jersey officials say they reached a $39 million settlement with Phillips 66 over ground water contamination. Attorney General Christopher Porrino says Phillips 66 (then ConocoPhillips) was one of 50 oil and chemical firms sued in 2007 by the state over ground water contamination. The state argued that the defendants were responsible for contamination from a gasoline additive called MTBE. In 2012 ConocoPhillips transferred some assets and liabilities, including MTBE cases, to Phillips 66. Phillips 66 Spokesman Dennis Nuss says the case was settled on "mutually acceptable" terms.[204]

May 23, 2017: Oklahoma Legislature In Turmoil over Taxing Oilmen to Fill the $878 million Budget Gap

Oklahoma Legislature In Turmoil over Taxing Oilmen to Fill the $878 million Budget Gap. Lawmakers trying to fix Oklahoma's $878 million budget gap, the state's worst budget problem in decades, has sent the legislature spiraling into chaos focusing blame on the usually sacrosanct oil and natural gas industry because a sharp cut approved two years ago in oil and gas production taxes has led to severe budget problems for schools and social services. Photo: Oklahoma State Capital by duggarr11 Flickr Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Associated Press reported on May 23, 2017 that lawmakers trying to fix Oklahoma's $878 million budget gap, the state's worst budget problem in decades, has sent the legislature spiraling into chaos focusing blame on the usually sacrosanct oil and natural gas industry because a sharp cut approved two years ago in oil and gas production taxes has led to severe budget problems for schools and social services. Oklahoma's tax rate on oil and gas production has been 7 percent, similar to other oil producing states. But with tax revenues flush during the recent oil boom, the Legislature agreed to lock in a 2 percent rate for the first three years when wells are most productive. The cut soon backfired when oil prices declined and tax revenues began to shrink.

Earlier this month, Tulsa oilman and banker George Kaiser, one of the state's wealthiest residents, wrote a stinging open letter published in newspapers calling his industry's justification for its low tax rate a "myth." "We drill where God put the hydrocarbons, not where the tax rate is lowest," Kaiser wrote. Dozens of smaller, independent producers formed a lobbying group to call for revoking the tax break during a well's first few, most profitable years and a recent study of effective tax rates, including property taxes, paid by the oil and gas industry in nine major energy states shows Oklahoma's rate of 3.2 percent is the lowest. Neighboring Texas, the largest producer, had an effective rate of 8.3 percent.

But other industry leaders, including oil barons Harold Hamm, the chairman and CEO of Continental Resources, and Larry Nichols, founder and chairman emeritus of Devon Energy are fighting back. Ads attacking lawmakers who would consider a rate hike have been running on television and in newspapers, and large pieces of oilfield equipment were parked outside the Capitol to protest any change. Democrats in the Legislature, who are leading the push for higher rates, say the industry is turning a blind eye to the damage the revenue loss is causing to communities, especially schools, where arts, sports and Friday classes are being cancelled. "They don't want to pay their fair share," said House Democratic leader Rep. Scott Inman, whose members wouldn't agree to a rate lower than 5 percent on any new wells drilled. "If the oil and gas industry wins the day ... the people who lose are the citizens."[205]

May 17, 2017: Five Years After the Split Phillips 66 Stock Price Increased 150% While ConocoPhillips Declined

Five Years After ConocoPhillips Split Phillips Flourishes While ConocoPhillips Stagnates. ConocoPhillips cut its workforce 30 percent during the oil bust in 2015 and 2016 and reduced capital spending 70 percent since 2014. In February 2016, when oil prices fell to a 12-year low of just over $26 a barrel, the company cut its shareholder dividend by two-thirds to 25 cents a share. ConocoPhillips, meanwhile, continues to get smaller. Photo: Hugh Pickens

On May 1, 2012 Phillips 66 issued a press release announcing that Phillips 66 had emerged as an independent downstream energy company with industry-leading businesses in refining and marketing, midstream, and chemicals. Created through a spin-off of these assets from ConocoPhillips, Phillips 66 begins regular trading on the New York Stock Exchange this morning under the ticker symbol PSX. "Our strategic approach combines one of the world's most competitive refining and marketing operations with rapidly growing midstream and chemicals businesses," said CEO Greg Garland. "Phillips 66 will be clearly differentiated from pure-play refining companies with specific plans for enhancing returns and growing shareholder distributions. We have an exciting future ahead of us."[206]

Five years after the split ConocoPhillips stock has fallen 9% while Phillips 66 has increased 150%. ConocoPhillips cut its workforce 30 percent during the oil bust in 2015 and 2016 and reduced capital spending 70 percent since 2014. In February 2016, when oil prices fell to a 12-year low of just over $26 a barrel, the company cut its shareholder dividend by two-thirds to 25 cents a share. Meanwhile Phillips 66 began with an initial dividend of $0.20 and has recently increased their quarterly dividend to $0.70 per share.[207]

May 16, 2017: ConocoPhillips Stockholders Reject Executive Compensation Plan

The Houston Chronicle reported on May 16, 2017 that stockholders delivered a stern rebuke to ConocoPhillips rejecting its proposed compensation plan for top executives by a wide margin as more than two-thirds of ConocoPhillips' shareholders voted against or abstained in an advisory vote on its biggest paychecks, an unusually large upset for a Fortune 100 company. ConocoPhillips used Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp., Royal Dutch Shell and BP among its corporate benchmarks for executive compensation, according to regulatory filings but critics note that ConocoPhillips' stock price has slid by nearly half, to $47.13 a share $86 a share at the peak of the oil boom in 2014 leaving the company's stockmarket value at only half the size of its closest peer on the list, BP. "Conoco may see them as peers and competitors, but in today's world, it looks out of whack," said Chris Crawford, president of compensation consultancy Longnecker & Associates in Houston. While it appears ConocoPhillips has responded to shareholder concerns by reducing Lance's pay in recent years, it likely has not been quick enough for investors' tastes, he added.

ConocoPhillips cut its workforce 30 percent during the oil bust in 2015 and 2016 and reduced capital spending 70 percent since 2014. In February 2016, when oil prices fell to a 12-year low of just over $26 a barrel, the company cut its shareholder dividend by two-thirds to 25 cents a share. ConocoPhillips, meanwhile, continues to get smaller. This year it is on track to sell $16.3 billion in assets with the sale of natural gas holdings in the San Juan Basin that straddles New Mexico and Colorado and most of its Canadian oil sands assets.[208] Meanwhile Phillips 66 stock price has risen 150% since the company split from ConocoPhillips five years ago and their an initial dividend of $0.20 has increased to $0.70 per share.

May 15, 2017: Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline is Ready to go in Louisiana Despite Protests

400 Come Out to Protest Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline in January 2017. “This is like 50 times the amount of people we have at most of these meetings,” said Scott Eustis, adding that the proposed pipeline was “the biggest and baddest I’ve seen in my career”. Now Louisiana environmental groups are gearing up for a second hearing on February 8, 2017. "I expect we will have a bigger turnout, because people are fired up," said Anne Rolfes, director of the Louisiana Bucket Brigade environmental group. "... This opposition is really unprecedented." Photo: Desmogblog

"The Baton Rouge Business Report reported on May 15, 2017 that s the second phase of the controversial Bayou Bridge pipeline awaits permit approval from state and federal agencies, Stupp Corp. has more than 117 miles of the custom-ordered pipe, equating to 30,000 pipe tons, sitting at its Baton Rouge facilities, ready to go once the project gets the green light. Bayou Bridge is jointly owned by subsidiaries of Phillips 66 Partners, Energy Transfer Partners and Sunoco Logistics Partners. “The pipe will be ready to go once they tell us to start doing the load-outs,” says Chip McAlpin, Stupp’s vice president-corporate strategy and development. “One of the benefits of some of the reduced capacity or utilization in the pipeline industry right now is that we’re not as full, from a yard standpoint, as we have been in previous years, so we have existing space to store the pipe.”

Until the regulatory permitting process is complete, ETP is unable to provide a timeline for construction. While the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources granted a coastal use permit in early April, go-aheads are still needed from the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers before construction can begin. Energy Transfer Partners spokesperson Vicki Anderson Granado says starting early with the pipe milling was necessary to keep the project on schedule. “I guess you could say that it’s a little bit of a risk, but your infrastructure projects in this country would lag greatly if you waited until all of the permits were done before you started the milling process.” Besides, she adds, the 24-inch-diameter pipe could be used on other projects in a worst-case scenario.[209]

According to opponents of Bayou Bridge Pipeline, "the installation of over 160 miles of pipe and supporting infrastructure across 11 parishes will impact more than 600 wetland acres and cross almost 700 bodies of water, including the drinking water for hundreds of thousands of Louisiana residents. Each of the three companies involved in this project have woeful safety records, with leaks, spills, and explosions as norms."

May 12, 2017: Phillips 66 Donates $1 million to Oklahoma University Learning Space

NewsOK reported on May 12, 2017 that Phillips 66 will donate $1 million to Oklahoma University to support construction of a new academic building and research laboratory on OU's Engineering Quadrangle. OU President David Boren recommended the regents name the Diversity and Inclusion Learning Space to honor Phillips 66 in appreciation of the gift. The new learning space will feature a 70-inch monitor for project viewing, student printers and two small study rooms. It will include movable furniture that will allow students to create the study environment best suited for their projects and will encourage student and faculty interaction and collaboration.[210]

May 10, 2017: Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Leaked 84 Gallons in April

AP reported on May 11, 2017 that Dakota Access pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, leaked 84 gallons of oil in South Dakota in April, which an American Indian tribe says bolsters its argument that the pipeline jeopardizes its water supply and deserves further environmental review. The April 4 spill was relatively small and was quickly cleaned up, and it didn’t threaten any waterways. The leak occurred at a rural pump station in the northeast of the state as crews worked to get the four-state pipeline fully operational. The oil was contained on site by a plastic liner and containment walls and quickly cleaned up. Some oil-contaminated gravel will be disposed of at an area landfill.

The Standing Rock Sioux tribe said the leak proves that the pipeline is a threat to its water and cultural sites. “These spills are going to be nonstop,” tribal Chairman Dave Archambault said. “With 1,200 miles of pipeline, spills are going to happen. Nobody listened to us. Nobody wants to listen, because they’re driven by money and greed.”[211]

May 9, 2017: Phillips 66 Makes Forbes List of Top 500 Employers with 5,000 or More Workers

Forbes reported on May 9, 2017 that Phillips 66 made their annual 2017 list of the 500 best large employers with 5,000 or more workers, placing #265 out of 500. Statista surveyed 30,000 American workers to gather their opinions of their employers. On a scale of zero to ten, it asked how likely they were to recommend their organization to friends or family. Those results were the most important factor in determining a company’s ranking on this list. Statista then asked employees to recommend other companies outside of their own. Those ratings also informed the ranking, but to a lesser degree. Among their category (Construction, oil and gas operations, mining and chemicals), Phillips 66 placed #11 out of 25 companies in that category.[212]

May 9, 2017: Book Published on John Joseph Matthews, Biographer of E. W. Marland

Book About Biographer of E. W. Marland to Be Released. A biography of Osage writer John Joseph Mathews, author of "The Life and Death of an Oilamn," the definitive biography of Ponca City oilman and Oklahoma governor E. W. Marland will be released on May 11, 2017. What Matthews achieved in Life and Death of an Oilman is revelation, in simple, beautiful language, of a complex personality in a world of many sides and many layers. Photo: Amazon

The Pawhuska Journal-Capital reported on May 9, 2017 that a biography of Osage writer John Joseph Mathews, author of "The Life and Death of an Oilman," the definitive biography of Ponca City oilman and Oklahoma governor E. W. Marland will be released on May 11, 2017. The book, “John Joseph Mathews: Life of an Osage Writer", is written by Michael Snyder, a teacher of English, humanities and Native American studies at Oklahoma City Community College. Snyder admitted to being fascinated with Mathews — a cerebral tribal leader who penned Osage historical works “Wah-Kon-Tah” and “The Osages: Children of the Middle Waters,” as well as the biography of E.W. Marland. “I hope all of my friends will read it, since it is an inherently fascinating story,” Snyder said, adding that writing the book “was a labor of love into which I invested years of my life.” The foreword to Snyder’s book was provided by Russ Tallchief, an Osage-descended administrator at Oklahoma City University.[213]

According to Edith Jamison Copeland, "what Matthews has achieved in Life and Death of an Oilman is revelation, in simple, beautiful language, of a complex personality in a world of many sides and many layers. Marland the lover of beauty, who longed to create a beautiful world for all those around him, whose every effort began in joy and enthusiasm and ended in frustration and defeat, is the central figure of every page. In the background, centering their careers upon Marland's or checkmating him to defeat, are many others; the bankers whom he feared; the "bright young men" who made up his organization; the Indians who watched his activities and commented sardonically "white men ack like tomorrow they ain't gonna be no more world' . The years of careful study and research which make the book authentic are well concealed beneath the smell of oil, the clink of dollars, and the writer's sense of brooding destiny which hangs over the pages. The result is worth more than a single reading."[214]

John Joseph Mathews (1894–1979) is one of Oklahoma’s most revered twentieth-century authors. An Osage Indian, he was also one of the first Indigenous authors to gain national renown. Yet fame did not come easily to Mathews, and his personality was full of contradictions. In this captivating biography, Michael Snyder provides the first book-length account of this fascinating figure. Born in the town of Pawhuska in Indian Territory, Mathews attended the University of Oklahoma before venturing abroad and earning a second degree from Oxford. He served as a flight instructor during World War I, traveled across Europe and northern Africa, and bought and sold land in California. A proud Osage who devoted himself to preserving Osage culture, Mathews also served as tribal councilman and cultural historian for the Osage Nation.[215]

May 9, 2017: Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery Donates $25,000 for Flood Relief Efforts

Riverbender reported on May 9, 2017 that Phillips 66 has made a $25,000 donation to the American Red Cross Greater St. Louis Chapter to help with flood relief efforts in the area communities that neighbor the Wood River Refinery and the company’s terminal and lubricants assets in the region. “Phillips 66’s generous gift of $25,000 provides for the critical needs of those that are impacted by the flooding in our region. Hundreds of local residents will receive comfort and care now and in the months to come thanks to the company’s commitment to the Red Cross,” said Cindy Erickson, Red Cross of Eastern Missouri CEO.[216]

May 3, 2017: Phillips Increases Dividend to $0.70 per share

Reuters reported on May 3, 2017 that Phillips 66 increased their quarterly dividend by 11 percent to $0.70 per share.[217]

May 3, 2017: Phillips 66 Doesn't See its Future in Refineries but in Chemicals and Pipelines

David Hunn wrote in the Houston Chronicle on May 3, 2017 that according to Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland U.S. demand for gasoline is falling and that trend will continue so the company's future is not in refineries but in pipelines and chemicals. Garland says refining will begin to make up a smaller portion of its portfolio because gasoline demand is on a long slide downhill. An uptick in 2015, driven by cheap U.S. fuel and lots of driving, surprised the industry. But it didn't last. Millennials are driving less. They're using bikes, public transportation and ride-sharing companies like Uber more. Even the quintessential American truck, the Ford F-150, is getting better gas mileage. The new F-150 is 20 percent more fuel efficient than older models, Garland said. "In 10 years, if we're driving the same, we're going to see less need for transportation fuel," Garland said. "Given that as a backdrop, you don't want to invest in adding capacity in a declining market."

Phillips' long-term future lies in chemicals, executives said. Not only does the company have access to cheap natural gas as feedstock, Gulf ports also provide access to foreign markets, where expanding economies and rising middle classes are increasing demand for petrochemical products, particularly plastics. The U.S. shale revolution has opened vast underground reservoirs of inexpensive natural gas, a feedstock for chemicals and plastics. "The Middle East and U.S. Gulf Coast are going to be the two best places in the world to make petrochemicals, long-term," Garland said. Phillips has already begun expanding its pipelines and chemical facilities. Eighteen months ago, it opened a plant at its Old Ocean complex, southwest of Houston, to separate natural gas liquids into components such as ethane, butane and propane, which are used in making plastics and other petrochemicals. It built a massive ethane cracker at its Cedar Bayou plant in Baytown to break down natural gas and create ethylene, the most common building block of plastics.[218]

May 3, 2017: Phillips 66 CEO Garland Predicts Future Mergers and Acquisitions in the Refining Industry

Phillips 66 CEO Garland Predicts Future Mergers and Acquisitions in the Refining Industry. Phillips CEO Greg Garland thinks that declining U.S. demand for transportation fuels will create opportunities for refining industry consolidations through mergers and acquisitions. Photo: Scott Hess Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Reuters reported on May 3, 2017 that Phillips CEO Greg Garland thinks that declining U.S. demand for transportation fuels will create opportunities for refining industry consolidations through mergers and acquisitions in the long term. "I do think the fundamental demand shifts are going to make for opportunities to consolidate at some point in the industry," Garland told reporters following the independent refiner’s annual meeting of shareholders. However, Garland said he does not foresee large-scale consolidations in the near term. "I don’t think you’re going to see big consolidations in the near-term."[219]

May 2, 2017: Five Reasons Why Phillips 66 Had a Strong Quarter

According to Matthew DiLailo at Motley Fool Phillips 66 had a strong quarter, trouncing the consensus estimate by a whopping $0.51 per share, which was roughly 10 times higher than the $0.05 per share analysts expected. As Greg Garland highlighted in his remarks during the Q1 conference call there were five reasons to believe that Phillips 66 is in a strong position going forward.

  • Turnarounds are Complete: "During the quarter, we successfully completed several major turnarounds in Refining and Chemicals. This represents our highest level of turnaround activity in a quarter since the formation of our company," said Garland. "Our first quarter earnings largely reflect the impact of this downtime, but also highlight the benefit of our diversified and engraved portfolio." The successful completion of these projects and turnarounds in Refining and Chemicals should drive better results in future quarters.
  • Chemicals are Strong: Garland noted that the joint venture with Chevron "had solid results on strong demand and improved margins." The O&P business was particularly robust, delivering $161 million in adjusted earnings, up 53.3% versus the fourth quarter thanks to improved margins, higher volumes, and lower costs.
  • Midstream is Growing: Garland said that Phillips 66 "continue[s] to successfully execute our Midstream growth program," noting that several of its largest growth projects are either complete or nearing completion, including the Freeport LPG Terminal, which operated at capacity during the quarter, driving a significant improvement in NGL-related earnings.
  • Phillips 66 Partners continues to Execute to Plan: Garland reiterated that its MLP, Phillips 66 Partners, remains an important part of our midstream growth strategy." Garland reaffirmed the expectation that Phillips 66 Partners will "reach its growth goal of $1.1 billion in run-rate EBITDA by the end of 2018."
  • Dividends Should Continue Trending Higher: "[Phillips 66] continue[s] to maintain our commitment to our distributions to our shareholders," said Garland. "During the first quarter, we returned over $600 million to shareholders in the form of dividends and share buybacks. We remain committed to our strategy: executing our growth plans, enhancing returns and rewarding our shareholders. The projects we have coming online, they're well positioned to increase cash flow. We believe our integrated downstream portfolio remains a differentiating factor that provides upside in a rising U.S. production environment."[220]

April 29, 2017: Ponca Playhouse Announces Auditions for "Lydie Marland in the Afterlife"

Ponca Playhouse Announces Auditions for "Lydie Marland in the Afterlife" Photo: Lowell Sargeant

Ponca Playhouse announced on April 29, 2017 that auditions for the play "Lydie Marland in the Afterlife" will be on Monday, May 8 and Tuesday, May 9 at Ponca Playhouse at 301 S 1st St in Ponca City, Oklahoma, OK 74601-5237. Ponca Playhouse's production will be the world premier of an expanded version of the original play originally presented at "The Festival of Independent Theatres" in Dallas, Texas in May, 2013. This expanded version was written especially for production in Ponca City by Ponca Playhouse by playwright by Isabella Russell-Ides. The play will be sponsored and produced by Hugh Pickens and Dr. S. J. Pickens.

In a first for Ponca Playhouse, the play will have two directors, Sam Stuart and Ryan Brown, who will each direct their own separate cast of two actresses. Auditions will be coming up on Monday, May 8 and Tuesday, May 9 at 730 pm at the Playhouse. We will be looking for two women for each cast for a total of four women. "Young Lydie" will be an actress about 17 - 26 years old. "Old Lydie" will be an actress who will be made up to look 87 years old and then 50 years old. The Playhouse will present the separate casts on alternating days of performance. The play will run on July 13, 14, 15, 16, 20, 21, 22, 23. Tickets will go on sale in June and will be $20.

April 28, 2017: Phillips 66 is Pursuing High-Return Quick-Payout Projects in Refining

Greg Garland told analysts during the quarterly earnings conference call on April 28, 2017 pursuing high-return quick-payout projects in refining. "At the Billings Refinery, we're increasing heavy crude processing capability to 100%. This project is expected to be finished later this quarter. At Bayway and Wood River Refineries, we're modernizing SCC units to increase Phillips 66 is clean product yield. Both of these projects are expected to complete in the first half of 2018." Garland added that during the quarter, Phillips 66 had major turnarounds at the Ferndale, Bayway, Lake Charles and Wood River refineries. "So during the quarter, we successfully completed several major turnarounds in Refining and Chemicals. This represents our highest level of turnaround activity in a quarter since the formation of our company."[221]

April 28, 2017: Phillips 66 Reports First Quarter Gain After Disappointing Year

FueldFix reported on April 28, 2017 that Phillips 66 saw an improvement in its first quarter earnings in 2017, following a disappointing year in which the company’s profits fell 75 percent from 2015. Low to non-existent profit margins made 2016 a rough year for U.S. refiners, as oil prices rose and gasoline prices remained low. Companies can expect to see an improvement this year, as fuel prices are expected to increase for much of 2017. “We have successfully completed several major turnarounds in refining and chemicals,” said Greg Garland, chairman and CEO of Phillips 66. “First-quarter earnings reflect this downtime and also highlight the benefit of a diversified portfolio. Our Chemicals business had solid results on good demand and improved margins. The Freeport LPG Export Terminal is fully operational, and we have several Midstream and Chemicals projects nearing completion.”[222]

April 28, 2017: Phillips 66 Refineries Only Ran at 84 Percent Capacity in Q1 2017

Reuters reported on April 28, 2017 that Phillips 66's refineries ran at 84 percent of capacity in the first quarter, primarily due to overhauls at refineries in California, Illinois, Louisiana and New Jersey but expects its refineries to run in the mid-90 percent range of their combined capacity in the second quarter. Greg Garland thinks demand for motor fuels will decline in the United States over the next few years due to changes in automobile efficiency and does not expect to increase refining capacity. "To invest in refining to add capacity still doesn't make sense to us," Garland said. "I think to invest to reduce your cost structure, gain access advantage to crudes and some yield, those are all good investments that we should be making."[223]

April 28, 2017: Phillips 66 Gives $30,000 to Ponca City Public Schools for Stem Education

The Ponca City News reported on April 28, 2017 that Phillips 66 has given a $30,000 grant to Ponca City Public Schools to support the implementation of hands-on science kits in the elementary schools including kits on Exploring Forces in Motion-Kindergarten; Organisms-first grade; Floating and Sinking-second grade; Butterflies-third grade, Electric Circuits-fourth grade and Ecosystems-fifth grade. “I am a big believer in our hands-on science kits,” said Teri Vogele, Ponca City School Associate Director of Elementary Curriculum. “I believe these kits are highly beneficial to our students. Through these kits they receive an engaged, hands-on experience rather than a canned science curriculum from a textbook. They are actually working through the scientific process, making predictions, gathering and graphing data and developing engineering and technology skills.[224]

April 27, 2017: Phillips 66 to Shut Down Billings Refinery for 56 Days in Major Turnaround

The Billings Gazette reported on April 27, 2017 that Phillips 66's Billings Refinery is undergoing a complete shut down as it ramps up for major maintenance and improvements that include replacing the refinery's 68-year old fluid catalytic cracker and adding a process to enable it to process more heavy Canadian crude oil. The “turnaround,” which occurs every five years, will take almost two months to complete and cost several hundred million dollars with 2,500 employees and contractors working on site during its peak. The gradual plant shut down began on April 15, with a total shut down by the beginning of May, said Ryan Wegner, the refinery’s finance and public affairs manager. The refinery will go back online by June. The total turnaround will take about 56 days. One major maintenance item will be to replace the refinery’s fluid catalytic cracker, or FCC, which is a major processing unit that breaks heavy gas oil into other products like gasoline. The FCC is the original unit installed 68 years ago when the plant was built in 1949, Wegner said. Although regular maintenance has kept the unit running, the company decided it was time to replace it, he said. Also included in the turnaround will Phillips 66’s Vacuum Improvement Project, which will allow the refinery to to handle up to 100 percent heavy Canadian crude oil.[225]

April 26, 2017: Phillips 66 Pays $61,000 Fine for Environmental Violations at Borger Refinery

News Channel 10 reported on April 26, 2017 that Phillips 66 settled for almost $61,000 for the release of pollutants including hydrogen sulfide and sulfur dioxide from its oil refinery near Borger in what the state of Texas has called "violations of environmental laws".[226]

April 26, 2017: Ponca Playhouse to Present "Lydie Marland in the Afterlife"

Ponca Playhouse to Present "Lydie Marland in the Afterlife" Photo: Lowell Sargeant

Ponca Playhouse announced on April 26, 2017 that they will be presenting the play "Lydie Marland in the Afterlife" this summer as part of the "Oklahoma Pride" series, now in its sixth year. Ponca Playhouse's production will be the world premier of an expanded version of the original play originally presented at "The Festival of Independent Theatres" in Dallas, Texas in May, 2013. This expanded version was written especially for production in Ponca City by Ponca Playhouse by playwright by Isabella Russell-Ides. The play will be sponsored and produced by Hugh Pickens and Dr. S. J. Pickens.

Loosely based on the life of Lydie Marland, as told in the book “The Marland Tragedy,” Lydie was the niece and adopted daughter, then wife of oil magnate and Oklahoma governor, E.W. Marland. Her life was a fairy tale of riches turned Greek tragedy. From wife of one of the wealthiest men in the world to wayward bag lady, she was lost for twenty-two years in the landscape of America.

In the play the lights come up on the heroine returning to consciousness shortly after her death. Lydie had been a vagabond for decades after the economic downfall and death of her oil-baron husband. As she begins to recall her glorious early days, her younger self enters, an apparition in her marcelled hairdo and white frock. The playwright Russell-Ides takes a novel approach to the mystery of what awaits us on the other side and constructs a believable journey that leaves room for hope, redemption, and reflection on a life lived.

Playwright Russell-Ides makes clear that Lydie was no gold-digger. But from the time Lydie (and her teenage brother George) were adopted by their aunt and uncle, Mary Virginia and E. W. Marland, they were treated to extravagance beyond comprehension, after a life of struggle and impoverishment. It’s implied Lydie simply wanted her dazzling, blissful new existence to continue without interruption. Her doting uncle ushered her into a completely different milieu, filled with parties, travel, luxury and pleasure. “Lydie Marland in the Afterlife” makes it easy to understand why she was willing to wed her adoptive dad and uncle.

Russell-Ides’ play, in which the older, dead Lydie confronts her younger self, is a fascinating rumination on choices and tries to answer the question, “'If you could give yourself advice from years of experience, what would you say?” but really it answers, “What would your younger self say back?” And would you even trust old-you?

“Lydie Marland in the Afterlife” is an engrossing, amusing, richly depicted portrait of a woman who was flawed, and just as subject to the cruelties of fate as the rest of us. More than just creating a sympathetic case for Lydie Marland, Isabella Russell-Ides draws us into her exhilarating life, revealing a woman who jumped in headfirst, whether she was on a European spending spree, fox hunt, protest march or cleaning motel bedrooms. Whatever the outcome she embraced the world with sentience and verve.

Russell-Ides got the idea for “Lydie Marland in the Afterlife” eight years ago while she and her husband were returning to Dallas after visiting family in Kansas. “We saw a sign on I-35 advertising the Marland Mansion,” says the playwright. “We visited the mansion and fell in love with its beauty and its history.”

"Russell-Ides said it was the broken marble statue, one made in Lydie’s youth that had been supposedly destroyed before she disappeared, that made her fall in love with the story," says Mary L. Clark. “She called it 'a case of broken identity.'”

The play will run on July 13, 14, 15, 16, 20, 21, 22, 23. Tickets will go on sale in June and will be $20.

April 20, 2017: Phillips 66 Reports Sulfur Dioxide Emissions at Borger Refinery

Fox Business reported on April 20, 2017 that Phillips 66 reported above-normal gas emissions of Sulfur Dioxide at its Borger Refinery. "A release of SO2 [sulfur dioxide] to air at Unit 43 SRU [sulfur recovery unit] Incinerator Stack exceeded 500 pounds," the refinery said in a statement to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. "An investigation into the cause of the incident will be conducted." The emissions lasted less than two hours.[227]

April 17, 2017: Phillips 66 Won't Appeal Decision to Stop Oil Trains Coming to Santa Maria Refinery But the Fight is Not Over

The San Luis Obispo Tribune reported on April 17, 2017 that Phillips 66 won’t appeal San Luis Obispo County’s decision rejecting its oil-by-rail plan to the California Coastal Commission, but it will continue the fight in court. “The window is closed, and they did not file an appeal. The Board of Supervisors’ decision stands,” said Cassidy Teufel, a senior energy scientist with the Coastal Commission.

However in an amended petition filed against the county on March 22, 2017 in San Luis Obispo Superior Court, Phillips 66 contends the county missed a filing deadline over the issue of environmentally sensitive habitat and also that the zoning law is unconstitutional because it doesn’t allow Phillips an opportunity to be heard. If Judge Barry LaBarbera agrees with the company, the county Planning Department would have to revisit its findings, triggering a new land-use decision. His decision could be challenged to an appellate court. “They knew they were going into strong headwinds (if Phillips filed an appeal with the Coastal Commission). Now they’re going to try to make an end run around on a technicality,” said Laurance Shinderman, a volunteer with the rail spur-opposition group, Mesa Refinery Watch Group. “A good neighbor wouldn’t do that."[228]

April 13, 2017: Controversial Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline to Start Interstate Service May 14

Reuters reported on April 13, 2017 that the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, will begin interstate crude oil delivery on May 14, 2017. Thousands of protesters demonstrated in North Dakota and Washington, D.C., many staying to support the tribe in a makeshift camp near the pipeline's construction site last fall. Many opponents also said reliance on the pipeline and the petroleum it was intended to carry would exacerbate climate change. Among Trump's first acts in office was to sign an executive order that reversed a decision by the Obama administration to delay approval of the pipeline.[229]

April 13, 2017: Phillips 66 Borger Refinery to Donate $100,000 to Area Fire Departments

News Channel 10 reported on April 13, 2017 that Phillips 66 plans to donate $10,000 each to ten area volunteer fire departments near its Borger Refinery following devastating wildfires across the Texas Panhandle. Volunteer fire departments in Fritch, Whitedeer, Stinnett, Panhandle, Skellytown, Spearman, Wheeler, Lefors, Gruver, and Mobeetie will each receive $10,00 in a presentation at Frank Phillips College in Borger on April 18. "In March 2017, volunteer fire departments worked tirelessly to control the fire and protect the safety of neighbors. With safety as a top priority, Phillips 66 is committed to helping communities recover after natural disasters, and fire departments are a critical piece of community safety infrastructure," said the company in a news release.[230]

April 5, 2017: Small California Towns Are Facing Off Against Oil Companies Like Phillips 66 and Winning

Small California Towns Are Facing Off Against Oil Companies Like Phillips 66 and Winning. “[This] is a pretty new effort to work with leaders and community organizations to engage in local elections that are critical for climate and environmental justice issues,” said Whit Jones, the East Coast–based campaign director for Lead Locally. “We partnered with community organizations in California last year to make sure that voters’ demands to stop oil train terminals, or to stop fracking, were heard at the ballot box.” Photo: Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refiney project protest, July 11, 2015 by Stand.Earth Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Grist reported on April 5, 2017 that on March 14, 2017 the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors shut down a Phillips 66 crude-by-rail plan to bring oil into its Nipomo Mesa refinery. The 3-to-1 vote (with one recusal) against the proposal represented a huge change in a county that for years had supported refinery projects. “[This] is a pretty new effort to work with leaders and community organizations to engage in local elections that are critical for climate and environmental justice issues,” said Whit Jones, the East Coast–based campaign director for Lead Locally, a new project of the Advocacy Fund and which provided electoral support in Benicia, Oxnard, and Arvin. “We partnered with community organizations in California last year to make sure that voters’ demands to stop oil train terminals, or to stop fracking, were heard at the ballot box.” Another new group, Leadership for a Clean Economy, also worked in these communities, in partnership with many local environmental justice organizations.

With the U.S. Environmental Protection Administration now headed by Scott Pruitt, a climate change denier, environmentalists may attempt more victories at the local level. “They’re simpler, in a way,” Jones said of local policy campaigns. “The people in the community understand the issues because these things are proposed in their backyards. This isn’t some obscure, abstract conversation about the nation’s energy policy or climate change; this is about whether or not a polluting facility will be sited in their town.”

Other California towns have also successfully fought large oil companies. In the Kern County town of Arvin, which 10 years ago won the dubious distinction of having the smoggiest air of any U.S. city, a 23-year-old city councilman was elected mayor on a promise to regulate the oil industry and protect the city’s water and air — a huge task in California’s biggest oil-producing county. Benecia, a small refinery town in Northern California stood up against its biggest employer and taxpayer. Valero, the Texas-based petroleum giant, had sought routine approval for a huge crude-by-rail project. The city council of Benicia, however, decisively rejected Valero’s proposal. “We had a small, but extremely well-informed group of people who have been working on these issues for a long time,” said Benicia Mayor Elizabeth Patterson, “and I give all the credit to that group.” Patterson is a longtime environmentalist who has been mayor since 2007 and was reelected in November.[231]

April 5, 2017: Controversial Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline Gets Approval from Louisiana Department of Natural Resources

The Advocate reported on April 5, 2017 that Louisiana's Department of Natural Resources has granted a coastal use permit for the controversial Bayou Bridge oil pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, though more approvals will needed before the project can break ground. Although Bayou Bridge has DNR's blessing, it still needs the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to sign off on the design before construction can start. DEQ is still going through hours of testimony and some 20,000 public comments submitted since a public hearing in January, said spokesman Greg Langley. Upon review, the department will determine whether to award a water quality certificate.

Conservationists have opposed the pipeline, saying it would damage south Louisiana wetlands and put wildlife and residents at risk of oil-contaminated water. Scott Eustis, of the Gulf Restoration Network, criticized the state's limited focus. His group called on DNR to require the pipeline company to dig deeper under Bayou Lafourche to safeguard the water supply against any leaks. "We don't understand how DNR can't consider — isn't considering — the safety of the drinking water for 300,000 people in Louisiana," he said. Proponents of the pipeline have said Bayou Bridge would be far safer than carting oil via trucks, trains and boats, and an industry-funded LSU study estimates it would generate $829 million in economic activity, mostly during construction.[232]

April 5, 2017: How Trump's Border Tax Would Hit U.S. Refiners Like Phillips 66

Nilanjan Choudhury wrote at Zacks on April 5, 2017 that the Republican-controlled House of Representatives’ plan for a Border Tax include trimming the corporate income tax from 35% to 20%, while imposing a 20% tax on all imports and exempting export revenue from taxable income. This will affect refining companies like Phillips 66 that use oil as an input from which they derive refined petroleum products like gasoline, the prime transportation fuel in the U.S. According to Choudhury, Phillips 66 imported 130 million barrels of crude last year. A proposed border tax adjustment would significantly increase the cost of that imported oil, which makes up about 40% of the refining industry’s daily input needs. "The ruling will almost certainly lead to refiners’ looking to increase their usage of untaxed domestic oil, ensuing a jump in U.S. crude demand and prices," writes Choudhury. "This will translate into higher input costs for all refiners almost immediately. With margins already narrow, the companies wouldn’t hesitate to offload a major part of the additional burden to end-users. As refiners pass on their higher feedstock cost to the consumers, American drivers will face higher retail gasoline prices – estimated between 30 cents a gallon to $1 a gallon."[233]

The Houston Chronicle reported on February 3, 2017 that Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland said that a proposed border tax on imports would cause gasoline prices for American drivers to skyrocket as much as 40 cents a gallon. "It's going to get mostly passed through," Garland told analysts during an earnings call. Garland noted that the tax proposal has pros and cons for his company. It would mean higher taxes on refining, but also lower taxes on corporate profits and the company's petrochemical exports. The proposal also could cause oil prices to rise and boost profits for U.S. exploration and production companies.[234]

April 4, 2017: Phillips 66 Proposes to Close Warwick Office in UK Eliminating 59 Positions

Phillips 66 Proposes to Close Warwick Office in UK Eliminating 59 Positions. Phillips 66 confirmed that there are proposals to shut down its 120-employee office in Warwick in the UK. It is currently unknown what will happen to the 120 jobs people hold at the office. Phillips 66's logo was displayed on Warwick Castle during the Carols at the Castle event in December, where A warm-up of Christmas songs were also provided by the Phillips 66 choir, as part of the company's community involvement. Photo: Warwick Courier

The Warwick Courier reported on April 4, 2017 that Phillips 66 confirmed that there are proposals to shut down its 120-employee office in Warwick in the UK. It is currently unknown what will happen to the 120 jobs people hold at the office but it is believed the organisation will try and relocate some of the jobs to its other two sites in London or at its Humber Refinery in Lincolnshire.

“Phillips 66 is committed to its future in the UK, as demonstrated by continued investment," said a spokesman for Phillips 66. "The UK businesses recently initiated a review to ensure it was well-positioned for a sustainable future in a challenging and ever-evolving market. The review has resulted in a proposed repositioning of our business. The proposal streamlines our support functions and consolidates the business into two core locations: the Humber Refinery, the heart of our UK business, and London, the commercial and trading centre of the UK. As a result it is proposed that our Warwick office will be closing first quarter 2018. The proposed repositioning is subject to the completion of the necessary Information and Consultation processes. It is proposed that the majority of our Warwick-based Marketing roles, with some exceptions, will re-locate to our Aldersgate office in London. In total 116 Warwick-based employees are impacted by this proposed repositioning. Whilst we hope to be able to relocate a significant number of employees from Warwick and have them continue their roles from our London or Humber office, we do recognise the challenge of this proposed change. We expect that a number of employees will elect not to relocate, and we anticipate 59 roles (of which 12 of these are currently vacant) will be eliminated across the three locations as a result of the proposed repositioning."[235]

April 4, 2017: Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Is Complete

FuelFix reported on April 4, 2017 that construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, is complete and the pipeline is now being filled with crude to prepare it for service in mid-April. Energy Transfer Partners expects it to take a few more weeks to fill the line with oil. Then the company will fill the next line in the system. The company expects the full Bakken system to be in service by June 1.

Dakota Access was the focus of heated protests and sometimes violent clashes with authorities for months last year. Environmentalists saw it as a symbol of global warming and the proliferation of fossil fuel use. The Standing Rock Sioux, who tapped the Missouri River for tribal water, argued that the pipeline’s river crossing threatened the tribe’s main water source, and also traversed sacred burial grounds.[236]

April 3, 2017: Deadline Looms for Phillips 66 to Appeal Rejection of Santa Maria Refinery Rail Project

The San Luis Obispo Tribune reported on April 3, 2017 that Phillips 66 only has until April 14 to appeal San Luis Obispo County’s rejection of its proposed Santa Maria Refinery oil-by-rail project to the California Coastal Commission. The county issued a notice of final county action last week, announcing that Phillips 66 had exhausted its appeals at the county level and can now appeal the matter to the Coastal Commission, triggering a 10-business-day countdown to the filing deadline. The company has not announced whether it will appeal to the commission.[237]

April 2, 2017: Protests Against Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Provide Blueprint for Actions Against Other Pipelines

Associated Press reported on April 2, 2017 that although prolonged protests against the Dakota Access pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, have failed to stop the flow of oil through at least for now, they have provided inspiration and a blueprint for protests against pipelines in other states including the Bayou Bridge Pipeline in Louisiana, also funded in part by Phillips. Despite the setbacks, Dakota Access protest organizers don't view their efforts as wasted. They say the protests helped raise awareness nationwide about their broader push for cleaner energy and greater respect for the rights of indigenous people. "The opportunity to build awareness started at Standing Rock and it's spreading out to other areas of the United States," said Dave Archambault, the chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, which has led the legal push to shut down the pipeline project. The tactics used in North Dakota — resistance camps, prominent use of social media, online fundraising — are now being used against several projects including the Sabal Trail pipeline that will move natural gas from Alabama to Florida; the Trans-Pecos natural gas pipeline in Texas; the Diamond pipeline that will carry oil from Oklahoma to Tennessee; and the Atlantic Sunrise pipeline that will move natural gas from Pennsylvania to Virginia. "A big part of our message was not just to nationalize the fight against Dakota Access, but to highlight regional issues that people are facing," said Dallas Goldtooth, an organizer with the Indigenous Environmental Network. "To use our momentum."

Hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of Dakota Access opponents congregated at the main protest camp for half a year, often clashing with police to draw attention to their cause. More than 750 people were arrested between early August and late February, when the camp was closed in advance of spring flooding season. The prolonged protest garnered widespread and consistent attention on social media, and it has filtered down, to some degree, to the pipeline protests elsewhere. That has elevated activists' concerns from local demonstrations to a national stage, according to Brian Hosmer, an associate professor of Western American history at the University of Tulsa.

For now, the energy industry and its allies say they're unconcerned. The Dakota Access movement wrote the new playbook for pipeline opponents, but it might be less effective under Trump, said Craig Stevens, spokesman for the MAIN Coalition, a group of agriculture, business and labor entities that long spoke in favor of the pipeline. Trump approved its completion shortly after taking office and he has taken other steps favorable to the fossil fuel industry while rolling back Obama-era environmental protections.[238]

April 2, 2017: Work Moves Ahead at Ponca Refinery to Modernize No. 1 Crude Unit

Work Moves Ahead at Ponca Refinery to Modernize No. 1 Crude Unit. Phillips 66 is replacing two old furnaces with one high efficiency furnace. Workers at Ponca Refinery recently set the new 80-foot tall, 70,000 pound stack on top of the new furnace. Photo: Courtesy of Phillips 66

The Ponca City News reported on April 2, 2017 that work is moving ahead at Ponca Refinery in the project to modernize No. 1 Crude Unit by replacing two old furnaces with one high efficiency furnace. Workers at Ponca Refinery recently set the new 80-foot tall, 70,000 pound stack on top of the new furnace.[239]

The No. 1 Crude Topping Unit (CTU) is one of three crude units in the refinery that process raw crude oil in parallel. Crude topping units are the first major refinery processes that meet crude oil and fractionate it into several different boiling fractions. These streams are normally charged to downstream units for further processing. For simplification, the No. 1 CTU can be divided into five basic sections; preheat train and desalter, preflash drum, atmospheric crude tower, tar stripper, and vacuum tower. Raw crude oil is pumped with charge pumps through the raw crude preheat train, which is a series of heat exchangers that transfer heat from the CTU product, pumparound, and recycle streams to the raw crude oil, to the crude oil desalters. The desalters use temperature, pressure, injected water, emulsion breaker chemicals, electric field, and residence time to remove metallic salts, water, and other impurities, thereby preventing fouling of downstream heat exchangers, salt formation in furnaces, and equipment corrosion. The crude oil from the desalters is pumped by desalted crude pumps through two more preheat trains that operate in parallel. Hot crude from the two preheat trains combines and flows to crude flash drum, D-29. By the reduction of pressure, part of the hot crude oil is vaporized in the crude flash drum and flows to crude tower W-1. The hot liquid from the crude flash drum is pumped through additional heat exchangers and then crude charge furnace H-1 before entering W-1.

Crude Tower W-1 uses distillation to remove the lightest gravity products from the crude oil. The product streams from W-1 are wet gas overhead, light straight run gasoline (LSR), reforming naphtha, kerosene, heating oil distillate (HOD), atmospheric gas oil, and reduced crude tower bottoms. The crude tower bottoms stream is heated in furnace H-5 and then fed to tar stripper tower W-21. The tar stripper tower uses an atmospheric flash to remove light gas oil (LGO) and heavy gas oil (HGO) from the W-1 reduced crude. The tar stripper bottoms stream is heated in vacuum furnace H-16 and then fed to vacuum tower W-17. The No. 1 CTU vacuum tower uses sub-atmospheric pressures to separate the remaining heavy hydrocarbons into light vacuum gas oil (LVGO), heavy vacuum gas oil (HVGO) and a resid bottoms product stream.[240]

March 31, 2017: Proposal to Limit Greenhouse Gases Could Affect Phillips 66's Rodeo Refinery

The Mercury News reported on March 31, 2017 that 120 people attended the workshop that the Bay Area Air Quality Management District held about its two proposed rules aimed at limiting air pollution from five Bay Area oil refineries near San Francisco including Phillips 66's Rodeo Refinery. Environmentalists and some plant neighbors said a proposed numeral cap on greenhouse and other emissions is needed to prevent increased pollution if plants switch to dirtier crude oil sources such as from Canadian tar sands areas. “We think this cap is needed to prevent serious and irreversible effects,” said Greg Karras, a senior scientist with Communities for a Better Environment, a statewide environmental group with offices in Oakland. “The rule is designed to allow other measures to reduce emissions, but we have to stop increasing them first.”

Some oil industry workers attacked the cap. They said refineries have reduced their air emissions dramatically over the past four decades and yet the proposed cap could lead to production cuts and losses of high-paying jobs. “I am very concerned the cap would cost jobs,” said Mike Miller, president of the United Steelworkers Local 326 unit chair representing workers at the Phillips 66 refinery in Rodeo. While the push to reduce fossil fuel use will produce more solar industry jobs, Miller said, it would be difficult for refinery workers with homes and families to survive on $13-an-hour jobs as solar installers. Air pollution district managers do not support the cap. They said they fear the cap would be vulnerable to a legal challenge as unfairly singling out the oil industry. The cap also could interfere with the state’s cap-and-trade system in which industries can buy pollution credits to offset their greenhouse gas emissions.[241]

March 31, 2017: Protesters of Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline Plan More Resistance

Protesters of Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline Plan More Resistance. Dozens of protesters opposed to the Bayou Bridge Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, organized at a traffic circle near the University of New Orleans and marched to deliver a letter expressing their opposition to the nearby local office of the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, an agency whose approval the project needs. Photo:Juley Dermansky for Desmog Blog

The New Orleans Times Picayunme reported on March 31, 2017 that dozens of protesters opposed to the Bayou Bridge Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, organized at a traffic circle near the University of New Orleans and marched to deliver a letter expressing their opposition to the nearby local office of the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, an agency whose approval the project needs. "The installation of over 160 miles of pipe and supporting infrastructure across 11 parishes will impact more than 600 wetland acres and cross almost 700 bodies of water, including the drinking water for hundreds of thousands of Louisiana residents," the letter reads. "Each of the three companies involved in this project have woeful safety records, with leaks, spills, and explosions as norms." Anne Rolfes with the Louisiana Bucket Brigade indicated this would be just the first protest from the environmental group aimed at stopping the pipeline Energy Transfer Partners wants to stretch from Nederland, Texas, to St. James Parish. Phillips 66 and Sunoco have joint interests in the $670 million undertaking.

Advocates say the Bayou Bridge Pipeline offers a far safer alternative to shipping crude and natural gas by truck or train. Plus, it would give Louisiana its biggest share yet of resources that have largely been confined to neighboring facilities in Texas. "It's the safest and most economical way to transport crude," Gifford Briggs, vice president of the Louisiana Oil and Gas Association, said last month. "People should be celebrating this project."[242]

March 28, 2017: After Oil Train Rejection, Phillips 66 May Increase Number of Oil Trucks into Santa Maria Refinery

The San Luis Obispo Tribune reported on March 28, 2017 that now that the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors has rejected the plan to import up to 6.6 million gallons of crude each week by train, Phillips 66 may increase the number of trucks bringing oil to the Santa Maria Refinery. It would take an average of 819 tanker truck deliveries a week to the refinery to match the supply that could have been delivered every week by three 80-car trains according to data available in an environmental impact report prepared for the rail project that the supervisors rejected. Hundreds of tanker trucks a week already deliver oil to the refinery and to a pump station in Santa Maria to fill a supply gap created by the shutdown of the Plains All American Pipeline in Santa Barbara County in May 2015. Phillips 66 has not said exactly how many oil tanker trucks are delivering to the refinery, but a current land-use permit limits all truck traffic — whether bringing in crude or moving out petroleum coke product — to an average of 367 trucks a week.

The possibility that Phillips 66 could again increase oil trucking to the refinery was cited by Supervisor Debbie Arnold as one of the reasons she cast the sole vote on March 15 to allow Phillips 66 to build a 1.3-mile rail spur from its Nipomo Mesa refinery to the main rail line, opening up access to oil fields across North America. “My fear is the decision today puts more trucks hauling flammable materials on our roads, our already crumbling roads, with our many, many distracted drivers, creating a higher risk for accidents than train transport would,” Arnold said during that Board of Supervisors meeting.

Nipomo residents say the Phillips 66 trucks travel all hours of the day and night, from Highway 101 to Willow Road to the refinery off Highway 1. The drivers “drive safely and slow,” said Laurance Shinderman of the Mesa Refinery Watch Group, which opposed the oil-by-rail proposal because of the potential for a catastrophic derailment. “They’re not barreling down the road,” Shinderman said of the trucks. “They are professional drivers, you can tell.”[243]

March 26, 2017: Residents near the Santa Maria Refinery Built a Successful Movement to Keep Phillips 66's Oil Trains Out of Their Town

Residents near the Santa Maria Refinery Built a Successful Movement to Keep Phillips 66's Oil Trains Out of Their Town. “They said we aren’t going to bring in any oil that’s dangerous,” Akel said, “and we stood up at a meeting and said, ‘Are you bringing in Bakken crude from North Dakota?’ And they said, ‘We may.’ We went crazy on that. Bakken crude killed 47 people in Lac-Mégantic [Quebec].” “Obliterated a whole town,” said Laurance Shinderman. When Phillips said it would transport crude oil in “the absolute safest tankers that exist,” said Akel, the group did its homework. There are no fail-safe tankers. “Guess what? When they fall over, they rupture and everything goes boom.” Photo: Police helicopter view of Lac-Mégantic, the day of the derailment Wikipedia

The Los Angeles Times published a story on March 26, 2017 about how a group of 12 California citizens started a movement with one burning mission: to keep Phillips 66's oil trains out of their backyard in Nipomo, California near Phillips 66's Santa Maria Refinery.

In December 2013, a couple of neighbors from an upscale residential development on California's Central Coast attended a community meeting at a middle school in Arroyo Grande to learn about a new project proposed by oil giant Phillips 66 for its Santa Maria refinery, which sits near the ocean below the Nipomo Mesa, where they live. For more than two years, Martin Akel emailed a professional-caliber, monthly newsletter to about 2,000 supporters, 1,000 government officials and several hundred members of the media. At public hearings, the oil train opponents delivered lots of grim news about the dangers of crude oil trains, which they called “bomb trains,” but overall they were upbeat. Wearing referee shirts, they would set up tables adorned with bowls of candy. “We’d say, ‘Stop by the zebra table and we will orient you,” said Akel. “If they spoke, we would give them candy. I spent a lot of money on candy, and I didn’t put in for reimbursement.”

What the neighbors, mostly retired professionals who had moved here from places such as Irvine and New Jersey, loved most about the area was its bucolic splendor, lower cost of living, and slower pace. Phillips 66 had always shipped oil to and from the Santa Maria refinery by pipeline. Now it was proposing a new way to deliver the crude: by train. And it would have to build a new rail spur at its refinery to accommodate mile-long oil trains, coming in on Union Pacific’s main line, at the rate of three a week, each carrying 2.2 million gallons of crude.

Each time Phillips 66 or its proponents claimed that oil trains were safe, that the kind of oil it wanted to transport was safe, or that Union Pacific tracks are safe, the Mesa Refinery Watch Group was able to point and laugh. They researched every oil train derailment and explosion, the type of oil transported, the type of tankers used, and track conditions. “They said we aren’t going to bring in any oil that’s dangerous,” Akel said, “and we stood up at a meeting and said, ‘Are you bringing in Bakken crude from North Dakota?’ And they said, ‘We may.’ We went crazy on that. Bakken crude killed 47 people in Lac-Mégantic [Quebec].” “Obliterated a whole town,” said Laurance Shinderman. When Phillips said it would transport crude oil in “the absolute safest tankers that exist,” said Akel, the group did its homework. There are no fail-safe tankers. “Guess what? When they fall over, they rupture and everything goes boom.”

“Phillips 66 used to come to Trilogy every year and ply residents with shrimp and booze,” said Akel. “Around Christmas,” said Gary McKible. “It was a goodwill thing.” “They haven’t been for two years,” said Akel. “Maybe it was something we said.”[244]

March 24, 2017: Phillips 66 Bayway Refinery to Sponsor Union County Falcon Cam

Tap into Union reported on March 24, 2017 that Phillips 66 Bayway Refinery will be sponsoring educational programming around the Union County Falcon Cam bringing no-cost wildlife education programs to administrators, teachers, and students throughout Union County, New Jersey. Thanks to this new partnership, students, scientists, and other wildlife enthusiasts all over the world will have more opportunities to study a pair of rare peregrine falcons that have made their nest on the roof of the historic 17-story Union County Courthouse Tower, located in the bustling center of midtown Elizabeth. “The Phillips 66 company vision is providing energy, improving lives. Our Phillips 66 sustainability efforts are built on four pillars: operational excellence, environmental commitment, social responsibility, and economic performance. Bayway Refinery is proud to demonstrate our social responsibility with the sponsorship of the Peregrine Falcon Educational Programs in Union County. We are excited to be part of a program that will help make learning fun and inspire children within our community,” said Mike Bukowski, Bayway Refinery Manager.[245]

March 22, 2017: Greg Garland's Salary Increases from $22.9 million in 2015 to $25.1 million in 2016

Reuters reported on March 22, 2017 that according to SEC filings Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland's salary increased from $22.9 million in 2015 to $25.1 million in 2016.[246]

March 17, 2017: Phillips 66 Announces 130-mile Long Rodeo Pipeline in West Texas

Fuelfix reported on March 17, 2017 that Phillips 66 hopes to build a 130-mile Rodeo pipeline to the Midland area to transport oil from the surging Delaware Basin portion of the Permian that’s west of Midland to terminals in the Odessa-Midland area. The Reeves-Odessa Origination Project, nicknamed Rodeo, is slated for completion in the second half of 2018. Phillips 66 is not revealing project costs. The pipeline initially would transport 130,000 barrels of crude daily and eventually ramp up to 450,000 barrels a day. The pipeline would be 130 miles long, but that’s not counting various laterals built off of the mainline.[247]

March 13, 2017: San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors Chambers Packed for Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refinery Rail Spur Appeal Hearing

San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors Chambers Packed for Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refinery Rail Spur Appeal Hearing. Oil train opponents gathered at noontime outside the courthouse across the street from the government center for a "SLO Clean Energy Crossroads Rally," which featured a human train and chants of, "Hey, Phillips, what do we know?" "No, trains in S-L-O." Photo: David Middlecamp The Tribune

The Santa Maria Times reported on March 13, 2017 that the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors chambers were filled with 160 opponents of a controversial proposal by Phillips 66 to bring crude oil to its Santa Maria Refinery via trains. Half of those spoke during the daylong meeting and most speakers voiced opposition to the plans. "This is the first time in 15 years we have ever spoken outside Santa Barbara County," said Ken Hough, Santa Barbara County Action Network executive director. "We never had the need to ... until now." Hough told the supervisors that his organization stands with Santa Barbara County in its opposition to the proposed rail spur project. Oil train opponents gathered at noontime outside the courthouse across the street from the government center for a "SLO Clean Energy Crossroads Rally," which featured a human train and chants of, "Hey, Phillips, what do we know?" "No, trains in S-L-O."

Phillips 66 has argued the rail spur is necessary for the company to support plant operations because it doesn't own local crude oil production fields and must transport crude to the facility. Crude oil now is piped to the Phillips 66 facility that's located on the Nipomo Mesa, as well as trucked in to the plant. "I'm here to tell about a project that's crucial to the viability of the refinery," said Jim Anderson, Phillips 66 maintenance superintendent, noting that since the shutdown of the Plains All American pipeline, which spilled near Refugio State Beach in 2015, production at the refinery has been reduced by 50 percent.[248]

People from the Central Coast as well as from Northern California protested, some carrying signs that said “No Way in San Jose” and “Stop Oil Trains.” U.S. Rep. Salud Carbajal, San Luis Obispo Mayor Heidi Harmon, Northern Chumash Tribal Council spokesman Fred Collins and Northern Chumash Tribal Council member Violet Cavanaugh were among the speakers. Afterward, protesters marched from the County Government Center through downtown, led by a symbolic train formed by members of 350 Silicon Valley, a San Jose-based climate change group. “We came to speak out against the oil trains. It also affects us,” said Justin Massey, who traveled to San Luis Obispo with the Sacramento Climate Coalition. “It’s an immense risk for a very shortsighted profit for Phillips 66.”[249]

March 13, 2017: Phillips 66 Hires Carmichael Lynch to Handle Creative, Brand Strategy, Media Planning and Buying, Analytics, Digital and Cause Marketing

Adweek reported on March 13, 2017 that Phillips 66 has named Carmichael Lynch as its new agency of record to handle creative, brand strategy, media planning and buying, analytics, digital and cause marketing for the client’s Phillips 66, 76 and Conoco fuel brands. “Carmichael Lynch came to the table with an understanding of our business needs, our values and our company culture,” said Phillips 66 senior director of brands Sarah Bolding in a statement. “Their integrated resources produced an outstanding creative product and 360-degree plan.” According to Kantar Media, Phillips 66 spent approximately $8 million on measured media in 2015 and $6 million from January to November of 2016.[250]

March 10, 2017: Thousands March in Washington DC to Protest Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Thousands March in Washington DC to Protest Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline. Thousands of indigenous nations and environmental activists descended on Washington, D.C. for what they called the Native Nations Rise march and rally. The 1.5 mile march from the US Army Corps of Engineers headquarters to the White House was the culmination of a week-long event that included cultural workshops and panels. Protesters wore traditional garb and danced, while speakers in the adjacent park rallied the audience by leading marchers in "We stand with Standing Rock" chants. The crowd of approximately 2,000 at Native Nations Rise was diverse and in high spirits despite the blustering wind and intermittent rain. Photo: NeverMindtheEnd Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Mother Jones reported on March 10, 2017 that thousands of indigenous nations and environmental activists descended on Washington, D.C. for what they called the Native Nations Rise march and rally. The 1.5 mile march from the US Army Corps of Engineers headquarters to the White House was the culmination of a week-long event that included cultural workshops and panels. Protesters wore traditional garb and danced, while speakers in the adjacent park rallied the audience by leading marchers in "We stand with Standing Rock" chants. The crowd of approximately 2,000 at Native Nations Rise was diverse and in high spirits despite the blustering wind and intermittent rain. Rachel, 19-years-old, drove to the rally from Columbus, Ohio. "Fast-tracking the pipeline was the final nail in the coffin for me," she says. Cody, who is 21 and drove east with Rachel, is still a Bernie Sanders supporter because "he was the only one who came out," in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. Signs declaring, "Water is Life" and "People Over Pipelines" peppered the crowd. It is unclear what will happen next and if the tribes have any more legal avenues to stop the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. As indigenous people sang tribal songs and chanted in their languages in front of the Trump White House, one visual message was clear: In the middle of the park where demonstrators gathered was a large, red, "Make America Great Again" hat—with an arrow through the middle.[251][252]

March 10, 2017: Judge Rules Against Phillips 66's Legal Appeal over Planning Commission’s Decision to Reject Santa Maria Refinery Rail Spur Project

Cal Coast News reported on March 10, 2017 that San Luis Obispo Judge Barry LaBarbera ruled against a legal appeal filed by Phillips 66 over the SLO County Planning Commission’s decision to reject the oil company’s Nipomo rail spur project paving the way for board of supervisors hearings on the project to begin next week. Phillips 66 sought to obtain a court order sending the case back to the planning commission on the grounds that the commission misapplied land use rules in designating an area to be an environmentally sensitive habit area (ESHA), and thus rending the location undevelopable. The planning commission made the designation after the rail spur project was already accepted, violating a land use ordinance deadline and wasting the company’s time and money, Phillips 66’s attorneys argued.

The judge sided with Phillips 66 on one point. The oil company had argued that the ordinance the planning commission used to reject the project was unconstitutional because it is vague. The California Constitution bars the county from ruling on that matter, LaBarbera said. According to LaBarbera’s ruling, Phillips 66 can file an amended complaint pertaining to the constitutionality issue alone. Special board of supervisors hearings on the Phillips 66 appeal are set to begin Monday and continue through the week.[253]

March 7, 2017: Judge Rules Against Native American Tribes Seeking to Stop Phillip 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

NPR reported on March 7, 2017 that U.S. District Judge James Boasberg has denied a request by the Standing Rock Sioux and Cheyenne River tribes to halt construction of the final piece of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Explaining he believed the tribes were unlikely to prevail in their lawsuit at this point, Boasberg denied their request to halt construction on the pipeline, or stop oil from flowing through it once it is complete. The pipeline company, Energy Transfer Partners, has been drilling under Lake Oahe for weeks, and said oil could start flowing through that section of the pipeline as early as next week.

In a statement after the decision was announced, Chase Iron Eyes, the lead counsel for the Lakota People's Law Project, which is supporting the legal challenges to the pipeline, wrote "Oil should never be allowed to flow through this pipeline until the legal process has played out in the courts."[254]

March 2, 2017: Brazoria County Commissioners Approve 10-year, 100 percent Property Tax Abatement for Proposed $1.3 billion Complex at Phillips 66 Sweeny Site

The Brazosport Facts reported on March 2, 2017 that Brazoria County commissioners unanimously approved a 10-year, 100 percent property tax abatement if a proposed $1.3 billion complex is placed at the Phillips 66 Sweeny site. The natural liquid gas fractionator will divide natural gas liquids into marketable purity products. Officials have begun preliminary economic and engineering analyses for at least one fractionation and associated pipelines to meet a growing domestic and international demand for natural gas liquids supplied by the United States, Phillips 66 spokesman Rich Johnson said in an emailed statement. Construction is projected to begin in February 2019 if the company selects the Brazoria County site, with a targeted completion date of April 2020, the application states. The project will create 1,300 jobs at peak construction, finishing with 300 construction jobs and 12 permanent jobs. “We’re really excited to be engaging in a project that’s going to be part of the community, employ people in the community, be an economic benefit to folks in the community in Brazoria County,” Phillips 66 Real Estate Services Senior Advisor Chris Cisneros said. “As other projects come along, we’re hoping to consider Brazoria County. We’re looking forward to potentially being right here in Brazoria County close to our refinery and close to people we know and people we care about.”[255]

February 24, 2017: Phillips 66 Billings Refinery Makes $20,000 Grant to Billings Public Library Foundation

The Billings Gazette reported on February 24, 2017 that the Phillips 66 Billings Refinery made a $20,000 grant to the Billings Public Library Foundation to purchase enough technology to fill six community crates that will each hold up to 60 educational activities for students of all ages. Teen librarian Cody Allen that each crate is packed with gadgets around a theme like astronomy, computer coding, robotics, engineering, science, and audio-visual, including movie-making. The astronomy tote, for example, contains a telescope, along with an electronic tablet so that several students at once can see the celestial body that the telescope is pointed at. Beginning this summer, teachers and others, including the employees of agencies that serve children, will be trained on using the crates. After that, the totes will be available for checkout. Parents of home-schooled students can also receive the training and check out the totes.[256]

February 23, 2017: Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline is 99 Percent Complete

Reuters reported on February 23, 2017 that according to Energy Transfer Partners 99 percent of its controversial Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, is complete after receiving all federal authorizations necessary earlier this month. The crude pipeline will begin or continue line fill in late March or early April, according to executives on its fourth-quarter earnings call. It will then begin "demand charges" on subscribed volumes by June 1. The company added that it had not yet launched its next open season for additional shippers, but expects to do so in the next 30 to 60 days. It said it remains in dialogue with potential shippers currently.[257]

February 22, 2017: Victim of Hydrofluoric Acid Leak at Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery Released from Hospital

The Bellingham Herald reported on February 22, 2017 that the Phillips 66 contractor who was hospitalized after a hydrofluoric acid leak at Phillips 66's Ferndale Refinery earlier this month has been released, Dennis Nuss, a company spokesman, said in an email. Six other workers – five contractors and a Phillips employee – were also taken to St. Joseph Hospital after hydrofluoric acid was released at the refinery and were released hours after being admitted. Phillips 66 has not released the man’s name or the nature of his injuries. The cause of the leak remains under investigation, Nuss said.[258]

February 17, 2017: Remains of Missing Worker Recovered After Phillip 66 Pipeline Explosion

The Times-Picayune reported on February 17, 2017 that the remains of pipeline worker Josh Helms, who had been missing since the February 9 explosion at a Philips 66 pipeline in Paradis, have been recovered, according to Louisiana State Police Troop B spokeswoman Melissa Matey. Six workers, including Helms, were cleaning the pipeline when the fire erupted around 7 p.m. February 9. Two were taken to the hospital with injuries, including a contract worker who was later flown to a burn unit in Baton Rouge, according to St. Charles Parish Sheriff Greg Champagne said. The other worker was released from the hospital. "The Phillips 66 family is saddened by the loss of our colleague, Josh Helms," the company wrote on its Facebook page. "We extend our deepest sympathies to his family and friends."[259]

February 17, 2017: San Jose Residents Rally To Derail Plan That Would Send Phillips 66 Oil Tankers Through Their City to Phillips' Santa Maria Refinery

The Mercury News reported on February 17, 2017 that San Jose residents and local activists have organized a march Sunday and community meeting Thursday to remind the public that the fight to prevent flammable crude oil from being hauled on rail through Willow Glen and other neighborhoods up and down the state isn’t over. Although the San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission last year denied Phillips 66’s request to expand its refinery in Santa Maria, the company appealed the decision to that county’s board of supervisors, which is expected to review the proposal next month. If the board approves the refinery expansion, Phillips 66 plans to send 80 tank cars carrying about 2.2 million total gallons of Bakken crude oil from Canada or North Dakota roughly 2,500 miles to the refinery, cutting through Diridon Station and northern Willow Glen along the way. “A lot of people in San Jose think this project is over with because the planning department in San Luis Obispo rejected it,” said Stew Plock, a member of 350 Silicon Valley. “The problem is the oil company can appeal it, which is what they’ve done. That’s why we’re trying to reawaken people to the fact that this is not over yet.”

District 6 Councilwoman Devora “Dev” Davis, who grew up in North Dakota where much of the crude oil would come from, is no stranger to the controversial project. A number of derailments and other disasters related to oil trains have been documented in her native state over the past several years, which is why she doesn’t want them coming through her district. “Running oil trains through residential areas is dangerous, and I am opposed to it,” Davis said in a statement. “Oil trains in other parts of the country have caused tragic disasters over the last few years. We must avoid the danger through our densely populated city.”

Representatives from Phillips 66 declined to comment.[260]

The Mercury News reported on February 22, 2017 that climate change group 350 Silicon Valley and several hundred Willow Glen residents had planned to march along Lincoln Avenue in downtown Willow Glen on February 19, 2017 until the torrential rainfall interfered.[261]

February 16, 2017: Fluid Catalytic Cracker at Ponca Refinery Rumored to be Shut

Catalytic Cracker at Ponca Refinery Rumored to be Shut. The fluid catalytic cracker was said to be shut at Phillips 66's Ponca Refinery. "Phillips 66 saying no impact to crude runs so I think this is a buy the rumor, sell the fact type of situation," a second US crude trader said Thursday. The trader did not clarify if he spoke with Phillips 66 or if that was hearsay. Photo: Part of the Catalytic Cracker

Platts reported on February 16, 2017 that West Texas Intermediate light sweet crude oil at Midland, Texas, fell Thursday by its largest amount since mid-December on market talk of reduced rates and/or unit outages at two regional refineries and a pipeline. March-delivered WTI at Midland ended the day at March cash WTI plus 10 cents/b, down 45 cents/b from Wednesday and the largest single-day decline since December 20, 2016. The decline came following several unrelated issues, each of which has the potential to cause an increase in supply in crude in the region. The fluid catalytic cracker was said to be shut at Phillips 66's 200,000 b/d Ponca City, Oklahoma, refinery. "Phillips 66 saying no impact to crude runs so I think this is a buy the rumor, sell the fact type of situation," a second US crude trader said Thursday. The trader did not clarify if he spoke with Phillips 66 or if that was hearsay.[262]

February 13, 2017: Dead Phillips 66 Contractor Has Been Identified, Pipeline Fire Extinguished After Three Days

Fox 8 reported on February 13, 2017 that the fire at a Phillips 66 pipeline in Paradis is out, according to St. Charles Parish officials. As of 7:15 a.m. Monday the fire is out but crews are still purging the line to make sure the area is "gas safe." Tristan Babin, Public Information Officer for St. Charles Parish said the purging will take a few hours. No one has been up close to the pipe as of now. Over the weekend, the worker who died in the accident was identified as Josh Helms of Thibodaux. The dousing of the fire was expected to allow the St. Charles Parish Coroner's Office to begin its investigation into Helms' death, officials said. A message left with the Coroner's Office was not returned.[263][264]

February 13, 2017: Federal Judge Rejects Request to Block Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

The Washington Post reported on February 13, 2017 that U.S. District Judge James E. Boasberg turned down a request to temporarily block construction on the Dakota Access pipeline, saying there would not be any risk of immediate harm until oil starts flowing. Boasberg denied a request by two Native American Lakota tribes for a temporary restraining order, ordered the pipeline company to provide weekly updates about when it expected oil to begin flowing, leaving open the possibility of further court intervention. He set a date of Feb. 27 for a hearing on whether to issue a preliminary injunction at that time. “Because there is no immediate harm because oil is not going to flow immediately, I deny the” temporary restraining order, Boasberg said from the bench after an hour-long hearing. The case is an early test of the power of President Trump’s executive orders. The president has been trying to speed up the pipeline’s completion, while the tribes and environmental groups have argued that the administration’s actions violate administrative procedure and treaty obligations. Jan Hasselman, an attorney for the environmental group Earthjustice and an adviser to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, said the tribes expect to file a new, broader motion in the next couple of day seeking partial summary judgment under the National Environmental Policy Act, Clean Water Act and Administrative Process Act. The motion Boasberg rejected Monday was based solely on religious freedom grounds, with the Standing Rock Sioux and the Cheyenne River Sioux arguing that the Missouri River and Lake Oahe are integral parts of their sacred rights and beliefs. The pipeline, they said, would “desecrate the Tribe’s sacred waters” and pose “plain irreparable harm.”

“We’re disappointed with today’s ruling denying a temporary restraining order against the Dakota Access pipeline, but we are not surprised. We know this fight is far from over,” said Chase Iron Eyes, a member of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and lead counsel in a group defending Lakota rights. Iron Eyes said the tribes would continue to pursue legal remedies and push for the completion of a full environmental impact statement. “It tells you they’re overlooking our role as a tribal government, as a sovereign nation,” said Frank White Bull, a member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Council. “Of course it’s disappointing, but it is not the end of the fight. Our fight is perpetual as long as the Lakota people are in existence.”[265]

February 12, 2017: Missing Worker Believed Dead in Phillips 66 Pipeline Blast in Louisiana

Reuters reported that Josh Helms, of Thibodaux, Louisiana, missing since a Thursday night explosion at a Phillips 66 natural gas liquids pipeline station in Louisiana is believed dead, the company said. The body of the missing worker is thought to be near the site of the fire, which continued to burn on Saturday, Phillips 66 said in a statement. The blaze, though reduced in size, still prevented searchers from reaching the site on Saturday. Helms joined Phillips 66 when the company acquired the River Parish pipeline system in November. Helms has worked on pipelines for eight years.[266]

February 12, 2017: One Worker Remains Hospitalized After HydroFluoric Acid Leak at Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery

One Worker Remains Hospitalized After HydroFluoric Acid Leak at Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery. According to a report from the Center for Public Integrity, Hydrofluoric acid, known for its ability to race long distances in a cloud, is extremely toxic. It causes lung congestion, inflammation and severe burns of the skin and digestive tract. It attacks the eyes and bones. Experiments in 1986 detected the acid at potentially deadly levels almost two miles from the point of release. The Phillips 66 refinery in Ponca City is one of three refineries in Oklahoma that use Hydrofluoric acid. The HF Alkylation Unit (Alky) at Ponca City Refinery uses hydrofluoric (HF) acid as a catalyst to promote the reaction of olefin with isobutane to form high-octane gasoline blending components. A few companies, under pressure from advocacy groups and regulators, have switched to a modified form of the acid, which still poses significant risks to workers and communities but is less likely to travel as far.

Reuters reported that one contract worker remained hospitalized on Saturday after a hydrofluoric acid leak at Phillips 66's Ferndale, Washington, refinery on Friday, the company said in a statement. The leak was from the refinery's alkylation unit according to a report on the Bellingham Herald newspaper website. Alkylation units are considered the most dangerous in a refinery because a release of hydrofluoric acid from an explosion or fire could spread a possibly lethal vapor cloud across surrounding communities.[267]

Dangers of Hydrofluoric Acid

According to a report from the Center for Public Integrity, Hydrofluoric acid, known for its ability to race long distances in a cloud, is extremely toxic. It causes lung congestion, inflammation and severe burns of the skin and digestive tract. It attacks the eyes and bones. Experiments in 1986 detected the acid at potentially deadly levels almost two miles from the point of release. Despite decades-old warnings that the compound, commonly called HF, could cause mass casualties — and despite the availability of a safer alternative — 50 of the nation’s 148 refineries continue to rely on it. At least 16 million Americans, many of them unaware of the threat, live in the potential path of HF if it were to be released in an accident or a terrorist attack, a joint investigation by the Center for Public Integrity and ABC News has found. The government maintains closely controlled reports outlining worst-case scenarios involving highly hazardous chemicals. The Center reviewed reports for the 50 refineries that use HF. The reports describe the most extreme accidents anticipated by the plants’ owners. The information is not published and is not easily accessible by the public.

According to a report from the Center for Public Integrity, the refining industry plays down the risks of Hydrofluoric acid, saying it has adequate safeguards in place and the chances of a catastrophic accident at any one location are slim. “There hasn’t been any HF release that has impacted the communities,” said Charles Drevna, president of the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association. “We’ve controlled them.” The industry should take the threat more seriously, said Paul Orum, a chemical safety consultant who works with public-interest groups. “These are low-probability, high-consequence events, which is why any individual company is not, by itself, motivated to make potentially expensive changes to a safer technology,” Orum said. Refiners use HF as a catalyst to make high-octane gasoline. A few companies, under pressure from advocacy groups and regulators, have switched to a modified form of the acid, which still poses significant risks to workers and communities but is less likely to travel as far. No refinery owner has embraced a product known as solid acid catalyst, which union officials and chemical safety experts say is far safer than HF. The industry says that making a switch would prove too complicated and expensive. The cost of shifting from HF to alternatives is somewhere between $50 million and $150 million per refinery.[268]

Hydrofluoric Acid Used at Ponca City Refinery

According to a report by KOCO News in 2011, the Phillips 66 refinery in Ponca City is one of three refineries in Oklahoma that use Hydrofluoric acid. The other Oklahoma refineries that use Hydrofluoric acid are the Valero Refinery in Ardmore and the Gary Williams Corporation Refinery in Wynnewood.[269] According to a memorandum from the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality Air Quality Division dated June 8, 2010, the HF Alkylation Unit (Alky) at Ponca City Refinery uses hydrofluoric (HF) acid as a catalyst to promote the reaction of olefin with isobutane to form high-octane gasoline blending components. The olefin feed stream to the unit is produced in the fluid catalytic cracking and delayed coking processes. As mentioned in the No. 5 FCCU process description, the olefin feed is split into a propane-propylene stream (PP) and a butane-butylene stream (BB). The BB stream is treated for H2S removal in the Alky Unit BB Merox Treater prior to feeding the SHP (Selective Hydrogenation Process) unit to remove butadiene and isomerize 1-butene. On the way to the Alky, the PP stream can be processed through the Catalytic Polymerization Unit. Isobutane makeup feed is either produced in the Butamer Unit or purchased from outside the Refinery.[270]

Hydrofluric Acid Unit Injured Three Workers at Phillips 66's Borger Refinery in 2014

Channel 7 Amarillo reported on March 18, 2014 that two Phillips employees and a contractor were injured in an accident at Borger refinery that took place at about 5 pm on March 18, 2014. The injured were taken to Golden Plains Community Hospital to receive medical treatment and the condition of the individuals is not life threatening. One employee is at Golden Plains Community Hospital, the second has been transported to the Lubbock Burn Center, and the contract worker is under observation at Golden Plains Community Hospital. Scanner traffic indicated the injured had been exposed to hydrogen sulfide. Phillips is investigating the incident.[271]

According to the Borger News-Herald the incident occurred during turnaround at the unit that handles hydrofluric (HF) acid. The hydrofluric acid unit was shut down at the time the accident occurred. Phillips did not confirm the exact nature of the incident. Phillips is investigating the cause and implications of the incident and details are still being clarified as the influx of turnaround workers has increased traffic inside the plant. "We want to figure out exactly what happened," said Dennis Nuss, a Senior Advisor for Phillips 66 who works with Project Communications. "We want to make sure that something similar will not happen again." When asked if the incident was due to either a chemical exposure or a fire, Nuss said, "There was no fire." The Borger News-Herald is reaching out to contract companies and contractors for more information and will update the story as more information is released.[272]

February 11, 2017: Phillips 66 Pipeline Worker Still Missing As Fire Continues to Blaze in Paradis

The Advocate reported on February 11, 2017 that one worker is missing and another recuperating in a hospital burn unit as a Phillips 66 natural gas pipeline in St. Charles Parish was still ablaze almost a full day later. Officials and plant workers could do little Friday but seal off the section of pipe that caught fire and wait for the gas inside to burn off. Authorities warned it could be hours or days more before the flames were entirely extinguished, although the fire had shrunk considerably by early evening. Todd Denton, general manager of midstream operations for Phillips 66, the company that owns the pipeline, said Friday it was the most serious industrial accident of his career. “I can’t express strongly enough the concern I have and that the Phillips 66 family has for those impacted,” he said. The missing worker and those who were injured have yet to be identified by company officials. One worker received treatment at a nearby hospital and was released, while another was listed in fair condition after being airlifted to the regional burn unit at Baton Rouge General Hospital.

The fire began in a fenced-off, 800-square-foot area around which six workers — three employed by Phillips 66 and three by Blanchard Contractors — were trying to clean out a section of the pipeline, officials said. Oil and gas companies routinely send pieces of equipment called “pigs” down the line to clear debris from the inside of a pipe. To launch a pig, crews typically burn off the fuel in the pipe, then seal off the section so it can be depressurized. Then they load the pig, seal the pipe back up and open the valve, allowing the liquefied natural gas to push the equipment through. “We were receiving that pig,” Denton said. “We don’t know what happened after that.” Between depressurizing and pressurizing the pipeline and burning off gas, running the equipment can be dangerous, experts said, especially if all the gas doesn’t burn off or if there’s a leak in the line or some other problem.

Environmental groups seized on the fire as an example of the dangers posed by pipelines carrying fossil fuels. Those groups hope to halt the construction of another line, the Bayou Bridge Pipeline, in which Phillips 66 is a partner. Conservationists are planning to rally outside the state Department of Environmental Quality at 10:30 a.m. Monday to keep up the opposition. “As the Phillips 66 pipeline fire continues to burn, can we really trust their assurances that another pipeline would be safe?” Cyn Sarthou, executive director of the Gulf Restoration Network, asked in a statement. “Clearly, if the Bayou Bridge pipeline is built, it will place our communities and our workers at risk.” Regulators argued that the comparison doesn’t hold water. The Venice-Paradis line that caught fire Thursday transports liquid natural gas, while Bayou Bridge would carry crude oil. "In terms of the regulatory community, (the fire) doesn't have any bearing on” the Bayou Bridge debate, said DEQ spokesman Greg Langley.[273]

February 11, 2017: Hydroflouric Acid Leak at Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery Injures Seven Workers

Reuters reported on February 11, 2017 that seven contract workers were taken to St. Joseph hospital after a toxic hydrofluoric acid leak at Phillips 66's Ferndale Refinery. The leak was from the refinery's alkylation unit, the Bellingham Herald said, citing a company statement. Alkylation units use hydrofluoric acid to convert refining byproducts into octane-boosting components of gasoline.[274] The gas leak occurred about 5 p.m. in the refinery at 3901 Unick Road. “Our internal response team immediately activated the emergency response plan and the leak was contained within the property,” Phillips 66 stated. “There was no threat to the public, to anybody in the area,” said Assistant Chief Larry Hoffman of Whatcom County Fire District 7, which serves the Ferndale area. Other workers “sheltered in place as a precaution,” Phillips 66 said. There also was a report of a precautionary evacuation. A horn was blown at 6:13 p.m., signaling the all-clear for people to resume normal work activity.[275]

February 10, 2017: Sixty Homes Evacuated, Two Workers Taken to Hospital, One Worker Missing in Phillips 66 Pipeline Fire in Paradis Louisiana

Sixty Homes Evacuated, Two Workers Taken to Hospital, One Worker Missing in Phillips 66 Pipeline Fire in Paradis Louisiana. Sixty homes in Paradis, Louisiana were evacuated, two workers were taken to a local hospital, and another is unaccounted for after an explosion and fire at a Phillips 66 pipeline station. Two of the workers were hospitalized — one taken to a burn center— and three had minor or no injuries, the sheriff said. The remaining worker was unaccounted for, and a helicopter was being brought in to help search for him. Workers are now attempting to shut a high pressure line, a spokesman for the parish said. Photo: Matthew Hinton/The Advocate via AP) (Associated Press)
Officials evacuated 60 homes within a couple of miles of the Phillips 66 pipeline in Paradis . Officials evacuated 60 homes within a couple of miles of the pipeline as officials let the fire burn off. That could take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, the sheriff said. The evacuation perimeter, which remained in effect as of 8 a.m. Friday, is Louisiana Highway 635 to 306 Bayou Gauche Road. Graphic: Carlie Kollath Wells, NOLA.com The Times-Picayune

Reuters reported on February 10, 2017 that sixty homes in Paradis, Louisiana were evacuated, two workers were taken to a local hospital, and another is unaccounted for after an explosion and fire at a Phillips 66 pipeline station. Two of the workers were hospitalized — one taken to a burn center— and three had minor or no injuries, the sheriff said. The remaining worker was unaccounted for, and a helicopter was being brought in to help search for him. Workers are now attempting to shut a high pressure line, a spokesman for the parish said. "It's a very high pressure, high intensity fire," Champagne said. "When you get close to it, it is really singeing." The source of the product in the pipeline has been shut off, but the fire could burn for hours or at least a day, Champagne said. "It is a loud and scary fire, but it is burning off." "Phillips 66 is in the process of accounting for all employees and contractors who were working at the site at the time," the spokesman said.[276]

Champagne said the source of the 20-inch pipeline had been shut off but the fire would have to burn off the rest of the liquid inside, which could take hours or even days. “They tell us the best thing that can happen right now is for the product to burn off,” he said. The pipeline was carrying a highly volatile byproduct of natural gas, which was burning cleanly and very hotly over a 30- to 40-foot area, the sheriff said. “It’s just a big blow torch,” he said.[277]

Officials evacuated 60 homes within a couple of miles of the pipeline as officials let the fire burn off. That could take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, the sheriff said. The evacuation perimeter, which remained in effect as of 8 a.m. Friday, is Louisiana Highway 635 to 306 Bayou Gauche Road. Those evacuated from the east side of Highway 635 were allowed to return home late Thursday. The west side of Highway 635 remains under an evacuation order. The Edward A. Dufresne Community Center at 274 Judge Edward Parkway in Luling is being used as a shelter for evacuees. Paradis is about 30 minutes west of New Orleans.[278]

February 9, 2017: Construction Resumes on Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline After Government Grants Final Easement

The LA Times reported on February 9, 2017 that despite months of protests led by tribal groups and an expanded environmental review ordered in the final days of the Obama administration, construction on the Dakota Access oil pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, resumed less than 24 hours after the government granted a final easement allowing for completion of the disputed project. Energy Transfer Partners said that it had “received all federal authorizations necessary to proceed expeditiously to complete construction of the pipeline.” The company, based in Texas, said it expects to have in hand $2.6 billion in loans for the project “within the next several days” and for the pipeline to be operational no later than June.

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, which has led protests against the pipeline, has said it will continue to oppose its completion in court and, if necessary, fight the operation of the pipeline if it is completed. The nearby Cheyenne River Sioux tribe, which has joined the Standing Rock Sioux in legal battles, filed a request in federal court in Washington on Thursday for a restraining order to stop construction. The Standing Rock Sioux have encouraged people who have been protesting the pipeline near its reservation for months to leave and focus instead on political and legal efforts across the country. Those efforts include divestment. On Tuesday, Seattle became the first city in the nation to end its relationship with a bank in protest of the pipeline. The Seattle City Council voted unanimously to sever ties with Wells Fargo, which manages about $3 billion for the city annually.[279]

February 9. 2017: Environmental Lawsuit Against Phillips 66 Borger Refinery Benefits Students

News Channel 10 reported on February 9, 2017 that after Phillips 66 Borger refinery failed to meet environmental requirements, they were fined by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) and proceeds from the lawsuit are benefiting students in the Borger School District. Any time environmental lawsuits like this are settled, a portion of the financial penalty is paid to a Supplemental Environmental Project. Phillips 66 was penalized $13,688 for failing to meet environmental air standards. Approximately 40 percent of the penalty was paid to a SEP which, in this case, is Borger Independent School District (ISD). These funds will help pay for new school buses with reduced fuel emissions. "We have an older fleet of buses, so it's nice to add a newer bus to our fleet, especially if it has better emissions," said Rebecca Calder the communication coordinator for Borger ISD.[280]

February 8, 2017: Phillips 66 Warns of Employment Scam at Humber Refinery

The Grimsby Telegraph reported that Phillips 66 Humber Refinery is warning about a job offer scam it has been embroiled in. Would-be employees have been asked in a phishing email to provide application fees in the scam. In a statement, the company said: "These fraudulent communications have been sent to individuals through various channels and are typically distributed via email, social media or by phone solicitation in which individuals are encouraged to provide personal or financial information." Phillips 66 enjoys phenomenal responses to recruitment campaigns, often done in conjunction with the Grimsby Telegraph. The company's name and logo has been used in the elaborate phishing hoax, which looks to capitalise on the fact Phillips 66 is seen as a top employer. "Email communications from our company will never request sensitive financial or personal information such as social security number, passport information, date of birth, credit card numbers, banking information, etc."[281]

February 3, 2017: Why Phillips 66 Earnings Were Such a Disappointment This Quarter

Jordan Blum wrote at Fuel Fix that Phillips 66 saw its quarterly profit fall 75 percent from 2015 to close out a “disappointing” quarter with $163 million quarterly profit compared to $650 million in earnings at the end of 2015 and $1.56 billion profit for the year versus $4.23 billion in 2015. U.S. refiners struggled in 2016 with low or non-existent profit margins on fuel products as oil prices grew and low gasoline prices lagged behind. On a positive note, the fourth quarter saw Phillips 66 bring its new liquefied petroleum gas export terminal in Freeport online that allows the company to ship propane and butane worldwide. The company also touted major projects coming online this year, such as Chevron Phillips’ massive petrochemical expansion being finished later this year in Baytown and Old Ocean. In December, Phillips 66 said it will cut its capital spending by 25 percent this year, taking a conservative approach as the energy sector pulls out of the two-year oil bust.[282]

Matthew DiLallo wrote at Fox Business that Phillips 66 faced a tough operating environment in 2016 as rising costs, and other issues, squeezed margins but those problems grow worse during the fourth quarter, as a range of items across several of the company's other business segments caused its earnings to deteriorate even further. According to DiLallo, Phillips 66's refining segment turned in an atrocious quarter, reporting an adjusted loss of $95 million. "One of the reasons Phillips 66's refining segment dropped into the red was because it also had a major refinery turnaround during the quarter, which resulted in its utilization rate falling to 93%, causing volumes to slip. Add in some other company-specific pricing issues for volumes shipped on certain pipelines, and it seemed like everything that could go wrong during the quarter did."

Phillips' DCP Midstream joint venture seemed to be turning things around thanks to rising commodity prices. Unfortunately, that growth did not materialize during the quarter. Instead, adjusted earnings fell from $75 million last quarter to $33 million in the fourth quarter. Several of Phillips 66's other midstream businesses performed poorly during the quarter. Earnings in its transportation segment declined 14% to $69 million while NGL earnings slumped more than 50%, primarily due to start-up costs at its LPG export terminal.

DiLallo says that the final flaw for the quarter was the unexpectedly deep decline in earnings at Phillips 66's other two business segments: Chemicals and marketing and specialties. Phillips 66's chemicals joint venture with Chevron reported a 35% drop in adjusted earnings, which fell to $124 million due primarily to lower margins and turnaround activities while adjusted earnings in the marketing and specialties segment plunged 47.6% over the prior quarter to $140 million.

The investor takeaway is that broad themes drove the earnings underperformance across Phillips 66's segment results in this quarter. "First, the company faced higher input costs from rising oil prices, which squeezed margins across all its segments. On top of that, the company experienced several one-time issues associated with asset turnarounds, which impacted volumes. When combined, these formed a one-two punch that knocked down earnings rather quickly. Unfortunately, these problems are par for the course for energy manufacturing companies like Phillips 66."[283]

February 3, 2017: Garland Says Dakota Access Pipeline Will Start Operations in the Second Quarter

Reuters reported on February 3, 2017 that Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland said he expects the Dakota Access Pipeline to start operations in the second quarter, even though the project - which has sparked protests by Native Americans and environmentalists - is still in the midst of legal battles and a U.S. regulatory review. "Commercial operations are expected to begin in the second quarter of 2017, pending the issuance of an easement from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to complete work beneath the Missouri River on DAPL," Phillips 66 said in its earnings news release. On February 1, 2017, the U.S. Army said it had taken initial steps to "expeditiously review requests for approvals to construct and operate" the pipeline per an order issued by President Donald Trump, but the project's easement has not yet been approved. It is unclear whether the second-quarter timeline would be met unless the easement is granted soon. The comment period ends on Feb. 20, and even if the easement were granted immediately after, ETP has estimated a 90-to-120-day drilling period.[284]

February 3, 2017: Garland Says Donald Trump's Proposed Border Tax Could Spike Fuel Costs by 40 Cents a Gallon

The Houston Chronicle reported on February 3, 2017 that Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland said a proposed border tax on imports would cause gasoline prices for American drivers to skyrocket as much as 40 cents a gallon. The U.S. still imports large amounts of crude from Canada, Latin America, the Middle East and other parts of world, all of which would be subject to the border taxes floated by House Republicans and President Donald Trump. With refining profit margins already tight, companies would unload as much of the additional tax burden on consumers as possible, said Greg Garland, CEO of Phillips 66 of Houston. "It's going to get mostly passed through," Garland told analysts during an earnings call. Garland noted that the tax proposal has pros and cons for his company. It would mean higher taxes on refining, but also lower taxes on corporate profits and the company's petrochemical exports. The proposal also could cause oil prices to rise and boost profits for U.S. exploration and production companies.[285]

February 1, 2017: Phillips 66 Loses Court Battle Over Paid Leave

Pension & Benefits Daily reported on February 1, 2017 that the Washington State Court of Appeals has agreed with two Phillips 66 workers that the company’s failure to offer specifically designated sick leave didn’t strip them of protections offered by state law, which forces employers offering paid leave to extend that leave to workers caring for sick family members. The dispute centers on a Washington statute forcing employers that offer paid leave to make that leave available for workers who care for sick family members. Two union-represented Phillips 66 workers filed a lawsuit in 2015 claiming that the company made them choose between using vacation days or taking unpaid leave to care for sick family members. According to the workers, they should have been able to take paid leave through Phillips’ short-term disability insurance policy. Phillips argued that it didn’t have to open up short-term disability benefits for workers’ family care needs, because it allowed workers to take vacation days in the event of their own illness or that of a family member. The court disagreed. In its view, the vacation days offered to Phillips employees didn’t qualify as paid leave “for illness” under the terms of the Washington law. This meant that Phillips’ disability plan—the only clear avenue for employees to take sick leave—could be liable for providing paid family leave, the court said.[286]

January 31, 2017: Trump Administration Orders Army Corps of Engineers to Issue Final Permit for Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

The Washington Post reported on January 31, 2017 that according to two North Dakota GOP lawmakers who support the project, the acting secretary of the Army has instructed the Army Corps of Engineers to provide the final permit needed to complete the Dakota Access pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66. “This will enable the company to complete the project,” said Sen. John Hoeven, “which can and will be built with the necessary safety features to protect the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and others downstream.”

A statement by the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, provided by its policy adviser Jodi Gillette Tuesday night, said that while a final easement had not yet been granted, tribal members planned to challenge any such action in court. “The Army Corps lacks statutory authority to simply stop the [Environmental Impact Statement] and issue the easement. The Corps must review the Presidential Memorandum, notify Congress, and actually grant the easement. We have not received formal notice that the EIS has been suspended or withdrawn. To abandon the EIS would amount to a wholly unexplained and arbitrary change based on the president’s personal views and, potentially, personal investments,” the statement added. “We stand ready to fight this battle against corporate interest superseding government procedure and the health and well-being of millions of Americans.”

Given the likely court challenge, it is unclear when work on the pipeline would restart. The tribal council has asked the few hundred protesters who remain on site to leave, in part because of harsh weather conditions. Last fall, hundreds of law enforcement officers from different states and counties confronted protesters with water cannon, tear gas and pepper spray. Arrests reached a peak of more than 140 protesters. On Sunday, according to Hoeven, another 20 additional Bureau of Indian Affairs law enforcement officers arrived at Standing Rock to help local authorities.[287]

January 30, 2017: Phillips 66 Plans To Remediate Former Oil Refinery near Duncan, Oklahoma

Phillips 66 Plans To Remediate Former Oil Refinery near Duncan, Oklahoma. One concern on the property is for Claridy Creek, which runs along the east side of the property, as well as two or three portions of the parcel that were used as landfills and impoundments. Due to the size of the property, there will be some areas where dig and haul will be implemented. Photo: Phillips 66

SWOK News reported on January 30, 2017 that Phililps 66 plans to remediate 446 acres near Duncan, Oklahoma where a refinery was formerly located south of Duncan on Refinery Road and old U.S. 81. The property was in use as a refinery from the 1920s to 1983 and had several different owners during that time period. Stephens County purchased the property in 2003. Phillips 66 signed the agreement for the remediation process in 2003, according to Jeremy Anthon, who made a Power Point presentation for Phillips 66 to Stephens County Commissioners.

One concern on the property is for Claridy Creek, which runs along the east side of the property, as well as two or three portions of the parcel that were used as landfills and impoundments, according to the Anthon. Due to the size of the property, there will be some areas where dig and haul will be implemented.[288]

January 28, 2017: An Unexpected Delay Emerges in Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

NPR reported on January 28, 2017 that just as President Trump takes power promising to ramp up oil and gas production, a sudden resignation in the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) threatens to delay projects like the Dakota Access Pipeline. Norman Bay, one of just three current members of the commission, said he would resign effective February 3, even though his term isn't up until next year. Bay's decision leaves FERC with just two members — not enough for the required quorum to make decisions. Some projects that have been through years of regulatory review and were nearing the finish line could now be in limbo for months.

It's unclear what impact the FERC delay might have on the Keystone and Dakota Access pipelines, which Mr. Trump aimed to green light through executive actions this past week. Even if the president chooses someone quickly, the process will likely take several months — the appointment requires Senate confirmation. Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), chair of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, says she will make it a top priority. "After next week, FERC will need a full complement of commissioners as soon as possible so that it can tackle the important work on its busy docket," Murkowski said in a statement. "The senate's challenge will be to promptly consider, without undue delay, FERC nominations once they are received."[289]

The Washington Post reported on February 3, 2017 that although a least a half-dozen major pipeline projects totaling more than $10 billion hang in the balance as FERC seeks a third commissioner to allow the commission to resume normal operations, the turmoil at FERC would not affect the proposed Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines because FERC does not issue permits for oil pipelines. Without a quorum, pipeline approvals on projects including the $2 billion Nexus pipeline in Ohio and Michigan; the $1 billion PennEast pipeline in Pennsylvania and New Jersey; and the $450 million Northern Access pipeline in Pennsylvania and New York could be delayed by months or even a year if Democrats fight Trump’s nominations, said Jeff Tittel, director of the New Jersey chapter of the Sierra Club, adding that Trump’s appointment of a new acting chair precipitated the FERC crisis.[290]

January 24, 2017: Trump Gives New Life to Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

The Washington Post reported on January 24, 2017 that President Trump signed executive orders clearing the way for the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline to move forward. Trump also signed an executive order to expedite environmental reviews of other infrastructure projects, lamenting the existing procedures “incredibly cumbersome, long, horrible permitting process.” Trump said that both pipeline projects would be subject to renegotiation but it remained unclear how Trump’s order would restart the pipeline projects or expedite environmental reviews.

As news of the move surfaced Tuesday morning, oil industry officials hailed it as overdue. “Making American energy great again starts with infrastructure projects like these that move resources safely and efficiently,” said Stephen Brown, vice president of federal government affairs at Tesoro Companies.

The Standing Rock Sioux tribe and other Native American groups have been protesting the project, which they say would imperil their water supplies and disturb sacred burial and archaeological sites. The Army Corp of Engineers called a halt to the project in December to consider alternative routes. “We all saw the incredible strength and courage of the water protectors at Standing Rock, and the people around the world who stood with them in solidarity,” said Greenpeace Executive Director Annie Leonard. “We’ll stand with them again if Trump tries to bring the Dakota Access Pipeline, or any other fossil fuel infrastructure project, back to life.”[291]

January 23, 2017: White House Press Secretary Strongly Suggests Trump Will Push Through Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Alternet reported on January 23, 2017 that White Press Secretary Sean Spicer heavily implied during a press conference on January 23, 2017 that President Trump would overturn the permit denial that is prohibiting the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, from being built through the Standing Rock Reservation in the Dakotas. "I'm not going to get in front of the President's executive actions," said Spicer, "but I will tell you that areas like the Dakota and Keystone pipeline are areas that we can increase jobs, increase economic growth, and tap into America's energy supply. That's something that he's been very clear about." Trump has previously stated that he supports the completion of the pipeline. In December, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced that it would not grant the final permit needed for the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline to be completed and that it would conduct an environmental impact review before continuing any part of the process. According to Alternet, while the permit denial was always perceived as temporary, it was a major win for the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and the activists who supported its fight against the pipeline.[292]

January 23, 2017: Comment Period Extended for Construction of Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline Until February 13

KATC reported on January 23, 2017 that the The LDEQ, Office of Environmental Services, and USACE, CEMVN has extended the period to receive comments regarding a Water Quality Certification Application and Department of Army (DA) Permit Application prepared for Bayou Bridge Pipeline from January 16, 2017, to February 13, 2017.[293]

January 23, 2017: Phillips 66 to Buy Crude from U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve

Reuters reported on January 23, 2017 that Phillips 66 submitted a winning bid in an auction held earlier this month by the U.S. Department of Energy to buy crude from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR). The sale is part of a resolution to sell up to $375 million of crude in fiscal 2017 to fund operational improvements to the infrastructure that holds the reserves. The Department of Energy Strategic Petroleum Reserve plans to sell approximately 8 million barrels of sweet crude oil from the Big Hill, Bryan Mound, and West Hackberry SPR sites. Deliveries are anticipated to take place beginning in March, with the potential for early deliveries in February, the Department of Energy previously said.[294]

January 20, 2017: Employees Allege Phillips 66 Violated California Labor Codes

The Northern California Record reported on January 20, 2017 that three California residents, Kyndl Buzas, Raudel Covarrubias and Daniel Runions, allege that they were required to work 12-hour shifts, were never provided rest breaks and that Phillips failed to provide their employees accurate wage statements. The plaintiffs request a trial by jury and seek all unpaid wages, damages, statutory and civil penalties, restitution, enjoin the defendant, disgorgement, all legal fees plus interest and any other relief as the court deems just.[295]

January 18, 2017: Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline is Shaping Up to Be Another Dakota Access Pipeline

Nick Cunningham writes at Oil Price that Energy Transfer Partners has another potential controversy on its hands with the Bayou Bridge Pipeline that could turn into the sequel to the Keystone XL and Dakota Access sagas. Energy Transfer Partners, along with joint owners Phillips 66 Partners and Sunoco Logistics Partners L.P., are proposing the Bayou Bridge Pipeline (BBP), a 163-mile pipeline that will run from Lake Charles, Louisiana to a key oil hub just west of New Orleans in St. James Parish. The oil will end at a terminal owned by NuStar Energy L.P., from which the oil could reach any number of customers, such as refiners along the Gulf Coast or be sent abroad as exports.

"The problem with the Bayou Bridge Pipeline is that it runs across the Atchafalaya Basin, a national heritage area that also happens to be the world’s largest natural swamp. It is home to endangered wildlife and also has a successful crawfishing industry. The pipeline route through the world’s largest swamp will cross 600 acres of wetlands and 700 bodies of water, which provide drinking water to over 300,000 people. Because of this, there are signs that a popular resistance akin to the Dakota Access protests is starting to emerge. At a packed public hearing on January 12, a raucous crowd filled with pipeline critics from disparate backgrounds spoke out against the project. The crowd jeered and hissed at former Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu, who testified in favor of the Bayou Bridge Pipeline. She now lobbies on behalf of Energy Transfer Partners.

According to Cunningham this may seem like a local story, but so did the Dakota Access Pipeline until mid-2016. Protests that delay construction have a tendency of blowing up the issue into a national flashpoint. "Protest can be dismissed as mere sideshows, but they can have a concrete impact. When financial analysts warn investors to steer clear of companies like Energy Transfer Partners because of the political risk, the public backlash to large infrastructure projects should be taken seriously," concludes Cunningham. "Even as the protests in the frozen prairie of North Dakota could be in their final act, the spotlight could shift more than 1,000 miles to the south to the swampy wetlands of the bayou."[296]

Both the Bayou Bridge Pipeline and Dakota Access Pipeline are funded in part by Phillips 66.

January 18, 2017: Federal Study on Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline to Move Forward

ABC News reported on January 18, 2017 that U.S. District Judge James Boasberg denied Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners' request to stop the Corps from proceeding until he rules on whether the company already has the necessary permission to lay pipe under Lake Oahe, the water source for the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. The Army published a notice Wednesday of its intent to prepare an environmental impact statement on the Lake Oahe crossing. ETP won't be able to lay pipe under the reservoir while the study is ongoing; it is currently blocked from doing so anyway. A study could take up to two years, but the study notice can be withdrawn if Boasberg were to eventually rule that ETP has permission for the crossing, Army attorneys said. The notice says public comments will be accepted until Feb. 20 on "potential issues, concerns and reasonable alternatives" that should be considered in a study.

The Standing Rock Sioux and its supporters believe the four-state pipeline threatens drinking water and cultural sites. The tribe issued a statement Wednesday saying the study is "yet another small victory on the path to justice."[297]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

January 17, 2017: Environmental Groups Gear Up for Second Hearing Against Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline

400 Come Out to Protest Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline. “This is like 50 times the amount of people we have at most of these meetings,” said Scott Eustis, adding that the proposed pipeline was “the biggest and baddest I’ve seen in my career”. Now Louisiana environmental groups are gearing up for a second hearing on February 8, 2017. "I expect we will have a bigger turnout, because people are fired up," said Anne Rolfes, director of the Louisiana Bucket Brigade environmental group. "... This opposition is really unprecedented." Photo: Desmogblog

The Advocate reported on January 17, 2017 that Louisiana environmental groups are gearing up for round two in a battle against the proposed 163-mile Bayou Bridge Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, that they say they fear will foul the state's wetlands and water. A public hearing last week in Baton Rouge for a required U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permit drew more than 400 people, but activists expect a bigger turnout on February 8, 2017, said Anne Rolfes, "because people are fired up." "... This opposition is really unprecedented."

The subject of next month's hearing is the state Department of Natural Resources permit needed for portions of the pipeline that would pass through state-designated Coastal Zones in St. James and Assumption parishes, said DNR Communications Director Patrick Courreges. DNR began reviewing the permit early last year and initially closed the public comment period in May, but Courreges said the agency decided to hold a public hearing based on the increasing amount of attention the project has received in recent months. "When this project was originally being looked at, there wasn't that much interest," he said. Rolfes said the pipeline company can expect continued protests to block the project, even if it receives the required approvals from regulators who she accused of generally doing "big oil's bidding." "They will not lay this pipeline," she vowed.[298]

January 17, 2017: Builders of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline File Motion to Bar Environmental Study by US Corps of Engineers

Yahoo News reported on January 17, 2017 that Energy Transfer Partners, builders of the Dakota Access Pipeline funded in part by Phillips 66, has filed a motion to bar the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from initiating an environmental study for its controversial Dakota Access pipeline crossing at Lake Oahe in North Dakota. ETP has requested that a U.S. District Court judge for the District of Columbia stop the Corps from initiating the environmental impact statement process until a ruling has been made on whether the company already has necessary approvals for the pipeline crossing. The Corps said it would publish a notice in the Federal Register on Wednesday stating its intent to prepare an environmental impact statement for the requested easement at Lake Oahe. The notice will invite interested parties to comment on potential issues and concerns, as well as alternatives to the proposed route, which should be considered in the study.[299]

January 16, 2017: Basinkeepers Release Policy Statement on Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline

The IND reported on January 16, 2017 that Atchafalaya Basinkeeper and the Louisiana Crawfish Producers Association-West released a policy statement Monday on the proposed Bayou Bridge Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66 that says in part that bfore granting any permits which will use an existing right-of-way (corridor), we ask the Corps of Engineers to:

1. Conduct a thorough analysis of all existing violations already on the proposed right-of-way.
2. Conduct an EIS to determine the effects that those violations, such as illegal dams and spoil banks, are having into the wetlands, including to navigation on waters of the U.S., fisheries, the ecology and aesthetics of the wetlands.
3. Conduct a study on the economic consequences that these violations are having on the fisheries, ecotourism and any other industry affected by them.
4. Put the right-of-way out of commission until it is brought back into compliance. Make violators accountable by mandating that they correct the problems which they created.

Before granting a permit to Bayou Bridge to build a new pipeline in the Atchafalaya Basin we want the Corps of Engineers to:
1. Review all existing pipeline permits by Energy Transfers and/or any of their subsidiaries. [(We know that Energy Transfer also owns Florida Gas, responsible for building the Florida pipeline across the Atchafalaya Basin, one of the most damaging pipelines ever built.)
2. Identify all lack of compliance issues related to those permits.
3. Make Energy Transfer bring those right-of-ways back into compliance, and fix all damages done to wetlands as a consequence of any and all violations.[300]

January 15, 2017: 400 Activists Protest Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline at Public Hearing

400 Come Out to Protest Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline. The Bayou Bridge Pipeline, if approved, would carry 480,000 barrels of oil per day a final 162 miles across the state to refineries and ports, through eight watersheds and long stretches of fragile wetlands. Graphic: Phillips 66 Investor Presentation, September 2015

The Guardian reported on January 15, 2017 that Scott Eustis, a coastal wetland specialist with the Gulf Restoration Network, was surprised to be joined by more than 400 others when he attended a public hearing in Baton Rouge about the Bayou Bridge Pipeline, a pipeline extension partially funded by Phillips 66 that would run directly through the Atchafalaya Basin, the world’s largest natural swamp. “This is like 50 times the amount of people we have at most of these meetings,” said Eustis, adding that the proposed pipeline was “the biggest and baddest I’ve seen in my career”. The Bayou Bridge Pipeline, if approved, would carry 480,000 barrels of oil per day a final 162 miles across the state to refineries and ports, through eight watersheds and long stretches of fragile wetlands.

At the public hearing in Baton Rouge on Thursday, the first speaker, Cory Farber, project manager of the Bayou Bridge pipeline, said it was expected to create 2,500 temporary jobs. When Farber then said the project would produce 12 permanent jobs, the crowd laughed heartily. “Those who have airboat companies and equipment companies that specialize in putting in equipment, they’re not opposed to pipelines because of the short-term jobs,” said Jody Meche, president of the state Crawfish Producers’ Association, one of dozens who spoke at the hearing. “But once that pipe is in there, the jobs are gone.”

Debate was fierce. Pro-pipeline speakers – oil industry reps, state representatives, a retired Louisiana State University professor – pointed out that many pipelines already run through the Atchafalaya Basin and said pipelines were in general the safest way to transport oil – in the case of the Bayou Bridge pipeline, 280,000 barrels per day of crude to the Gulf coast region, with the potential for 480,000. Where most in attendance worried about potential oil spills and their effect on drinking water, Meche was more concerned with ways existing pipelines have, he said, “crippled” the fishing industry. “They excavated the trench that they put the pipe in and then [they didn’t clean up] and it leaves a dam behind that blocks the water flow,” he said on the microphone, “until there’s not enough oxygen in the water for the crawfish, the fish, or anything.”

Native Americans dotted the crowd, many of them fresh from Standing Rock. “The Native Americans in North Dakota get a lot of credit for showing people their power,” Eustis said. Lifelong Iberia Parish resident Andrea Kilchrist, 71, described the violence she had witnessed at Standing Rock: peaceful protesters battered with sonic grenades, tear gas, mace, and cannons. “If you think this company is not going to do the same thing here — it’s going to do the same thing here,” she warned the room. “I hate pain. I’m afraid of pain and broken bones,” she continued, her voice shaking. “But on that first day, if y’all give that permit, I will be sitting in front of a bulldozer.”

As activists see it, Louisiana residents are starting to really care about environmental issues and, more importantly, to make themselves heard. “A lot of times we don’t get this opportunity to speak up,” said Eustis, still admiring the surprisingly large crowd. “[These oil companies] want to just roll over us. “But after Katrina, and the BP spill, and the Baton Rouge flood last year – 100,000 people displaced from their homes because of climate change – I guess we’re finally just sick of this.”[301][302]

January 15, 2017: Phillips 66 Bayway Refinery Donates $30,000 for Nature Outpost

Tapinto reported on January 15, 2017 that Phillips 66 Bayway Refinery has donated $30,000 to fund an outdoor pavilion and associated activities at Phil Rizzuto Park that will serve as a headquarters for learning about ecology and the need to preserve nature in urban communities. "Phillips 66 is proud to sponsor projects that protect and enhance the environment and add benefits to our local communities," said Nancy Sadlon, manager, Phillips 66 Bayway Refinery Public Affairs. “The County of Union is proud to partner with Groundwork and Phillips 66 to promote environmental education in one of the state’s most populated regions,” said Freeholder Chairman Bruce H. Bergen.[303]

January 13, 2017: Phillips 66 Pays Multi-Million Dollar Settlement for Alleged "Double-Dipping" into Oklahoma's Petroleum Storage Tank Cleanup Fund

Details Emerge in Deal to End Multi-Million Dollar Lawsuit by State of Oklahoma against Phillips 66 for Alleged "Double-Dipping" into a Petroleum Storage Tank Cleanup Fund. The state of Oklahoma received $2.8 million and an outside law firm working on contingency for Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt received $942,000 from a little-publicized settlement with Phillips 66 over alleged "double-dipping" into a petroleum storage tank cleanup fund. Photo: Cleanup work on removing old underground storage tanks that held petroleum products. EcologyWA Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

NewsOK reported on January 13, 2017 that the state of Oklahoma received $2.8 million and an outside law firm working on contingency for Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt received $942,000 from a little-publicized settlement with Philips 66 over alleged "double-dipping" into a petroleum storage tank cleanup fund. Pruitt's lawsuit alleged Phillips 66 had collected money from the indemnity fund even after it used private insurance proceeds for the environmental remediation. Pruitt, who typically issues news releases touting legal victories, didn't publicize the settlement award or issue a news release. The only public mention of it came in meeting minutes at the Oklahoma Corporation Commission. The settlement agreement doesn't specify how much of the award went to the outside law firm, only that "the Oklahoma attorney general shall be responsible for paying any attorney fees." The Phillips 66 case and others like it have been touted by Pruitt supporters as an example of the attorney general being willing to go after energy companies. Related lawsuits against BP and Chevron over indemnity fund payments were filed by his predecessor in late 2010.[304]

Phillips 66 previously paid $2 million in 2014 to settle allegations it helped itself to Utah’s Petroleum Storage Tank Fund for cleaning up damage from leaking fuel storage tanks even though it had insurance to cover the cleanups. Phillips was said to have relied on the fund for cleanups at 82 service stations. "Consistently, these guys were saying, ‘No, we don’t have any insurance,'” said Therron Blatter, a branch manager for underground storage tanks at the Utah Division of Environmental Response and Remediation. “Clearly, they did have the insurance.”[305]

According to the Salt Lake City Tribune Phillips 66 was accused of defrauding the Utah’s Petroleum Storage Tank Fund to the tune of $25 million for cleanups associated with leaking underground tanks. In its lawsuit filed in 2012, the division alleged ConocoPhillips collected $25 million in payouts to cover cleanups at 82 service stations by falsely reporting that these sites were not covered by independent insurance. The suit sought to recover this money, plus punitive damages and fines totalling $10,000 for every day ConocoPhillips violated the law. But as lawyers gathered evidence it became apparent some of the claims were not that strong, said Brent Everett, director of the state Division of Environmental Response and Remediation. Officials said they are satisfied with the $2 million settlement, which amounts to less than 10 percent of what they originally claimed was misappropriated.[306][307]

January 12, 2017: Showdown Looms Over Phillips 66 Funded Bayou Bridge Pipeline

The Greater Baton Rouge Business Report reported on January 12, 2017 that the $750 million Bayou Bridge Pipeline project being jointly pursued by subsidiaries of Phillips 66, Sunoco Logistics and Energy Transfer Partners, will face off against environmentalists at a public hearing on January 12, 2017 over the proposed 162-mile Bayou Bridge pipeline, which, if approved, will run from Lake Charles through the Atchafalaya Basin to St. James Parish. Advocates of the project are expected to argue that pipelines are the safest, most environmentally friendly and cost effective way to transport oil, noting also that the proposed pipeline will join an existing network of pipelines crisscrossing the state. “This is not the first pipeline that will run through the Atchafalaya,” says Tommy Foltz, executive vice president of the Consumer Energy Alliance.

But environmentalists are expected to take issue with the claim that pipelines are safe. Anne Rolfes with the Louisiana Bucket Brigade, who will be among those attending tonight’s hearing, notes that Louisiana had 144 pipeline accidents in 2016. “Our pipelines are falling apart,” Rolfes says. “They are leaking. They have holes in them. They are rusty and corroded. Our state should be forcing industry to repair the current pipelines rather than permit a new one.” The state should also be exploring alternative fuel sources like solar and wind energy, which represent the economic development opportunities of the future, Rolfes says. “One of the fastest growing sectors of job growth is in renewable energy and we’re dealing with these guys who are stuck thinking about fossil fuels,” she says.[308]

January 12, 2017: Six Environmental Groups Join Against Phillips 66 Lawsuit Regarding Santa Maria Rail Project

Edhat Santa Barbara reported on January 12, 2017 that six environmental groups were granted permission to intervene in a lawsuit brought by Phillips 66, challenging the San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission's denial of the company's proposal to construct a crude oil train terminal for the Santa Maria Refinery. Phillips 66's lawsuit challenges the Planning Commission's determination that the site for the proposed oil train terminal contains rare and valuable habitat that is protected under the California Coastal Act and the County's local policies and ordinances. In granting the motion to intervene, the court ruled that the groups have an interest in protecting the environment as well as an interest in participating in further hearings on the project. The court allowed the environmental groups to join the lawsuit so that they could "continue to participate in and protect the environmental review process" as it relates to the Phillips project and the determination that the project would impact environmentally sensitive habitat. Now that the environmental groups are parties to the lawsuit, they plan to file a motion asking the court to dismiss the case as premature. The hearing on that motion is scheduled for February 16, 2017.[309]

January 10, 2017: Darren Cunningham Replaces Julian Stoll as New Refinery Manager at Phillips 66's Humber Refinery

Phillips 66's Humber Refinery in North Lincolnshire. Darren Cunningham has been appointed as the new refinery manager at Phillip 66's Humber Refinery replacing Julian Stoll. Under Stoll's tenure, Humber Refinery completed a mega-turnaround, a feat unlikely to be seen again, as the largest shutdown in the site's near 50-year history was twinned with the replacement of the crude oil reception pipeline beneath the Tetney coastline. Photo Credit: Wikipedia David Wright Creative Commons Attribution Share-alike license 2.0

The Grimsby Telegraph reported on January 10, 2017 that Darren Cunningham has been appointed as the new refinery manager at Phillip 66's Humber Refinery replacing Julian Stoll. Cunningham has previously been the refinery manager at Bayway Refinery for the past four years and returns to Humber after previously serving as operations manager for Humber Refinery until 2008. Cunningham will be Humber's fourth refinery manager in little over four years, following Julian Stoll, Brian Coffman and Mike Wirkowski, who left in 2012.

Stoll has been promoted to regional vice president for refining and will be relocating to Phillips Headquarters in Houston, Texas. Under Stoll's tenure, Humber Refinery completed a mega-turnaround, a feat unlikely to be seen again, as the largest shutdown in the site's near 50-year history was twinned with the replacement of the crude oil reception pipeline beneath the Tetney coastline. Following the huge projects, timed to coincide, Humber was named number one business unit in the entire Phillips 66 portfolio, recognizing operational excellence. At the time of the award, Mr Stoll said: "It was a tremendous performance. We shut down the most complex UK refinery, repaired it, brought it back online and ran for the rest of the year without any serious process issue. I've never seen that before, it was really world class performance. It was very fulfilling."[310]

January 4, 2017: DCP Midstream And DCP Midstream Partners Merge

Nasdaq reported on January 4, 2017 that DCP Midstream, a 50/50 joint venture between Phillips 66 and Spectra Energy, and DCP Midstream Partners, announced that they have signed and closed a transaction combining all of the assets and debt of DCP Midstream with DPM, simplifying the corporate structure and creating the largest natural gas liquids or NGL producer and gas processor in the United States.

The new company (DPM) will construct a new 200 MMcf/d cryogenic natural gas processing plant (Mewbourn 3) in the DJ Basin, its tenth plant in the basin, projected to be in service by the end of 2018. Additionally, DCP collaborated with several key producers to form a cooperative development plan which provides a framework to add another 200 MMcf/d plant by mid-2019. Together, these projects will increase capacity by 50 percent to 1.2 billion cubic feet per day to support growing processing needs of producers. DPM will also complete the next phase of its Grand Parkway low pressure gathering project and associated compression expansions by the end of 2018.

DPM is in the process of constructing additional field compression and plant bypass infrastructure that will add approximately 40 MMcf/d of incremental capacity during the summer of 2017. The new plants will connect to the Front Range Pipeline, one-third owned by DPM, for NGL takeaway to Mont Belvieu, Texas. Total capital investment for the plant and associated gathering is expected to be up to $395 million.

DPM will expand NGL takeaway capacity on Sand Hills Pipeline by 30 percent, or 85,000 barrels per day (BPD) to 365,000 BPD, through the addition of four pump stations and a pipeline loop (Sand Hills expansion) to meet NGL production growth from owned and third party plants in the Delaware Basin.[311]

DCP Midstream previously announced in April, 2016 they were eliminating 300 positions nationwide. After the 300 cuts, DCP will still employ about 2,900 overall. In a prepared statement, DCP Chairman and CEO Wouter van Kempen said the joint venture reduced its 2016 capital budget down to $250 million. In comparison, Phillips 66’s contribution alone to DCP’s capital budget last year was $550 million. Van Kempen noted DCP completed most of its capital construction program last year. “This is a challenging environment that we are managing through and we continue to execute on our strategy to reset our break-even cost to ensure we are the most reliable, safe, low-cost midstream services provider sustainable in any environment,” van Kempen said in a prepared statement.[312]

In September, 2015 Spectra Energy and Phillips 66 announced they would attempt to prop up their troubled natural gas liquids joint venture with $1.5 billion in cash and a share of two pipelines. DCP Midstream has been in trouble since last year as prices for the fuels have fallen and Spectra and Phillips 66 pushed DCP Midstream into a corporate restructuring earlier this year. In February, DCP Midstream announced plans to cut about 20 percent of its corporate staff and consolidate much of its remaining workforce in Denver and Houston. The latest transaction is intended to shore up the company’s balance sheet and ease its access to credit, the two companies said in the announcement. “The contribution of the one-third interests in Sand Hills and Southern Hills will diversify DCP Midstream by enhancing the balance of fee-based assets while building on the re-contracting work already underway,” said Greg Ebel, chairman and CEO of Spectra Energy, in a written statement.[313]

December 29, 2016: Seven Rail Cars Overturn at Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery

The Belleville News-Democrat reported on December 29, 2016 that seven cars overturned at the Wood River Refinery in Roxana on Thursday morning, spilling about one gallon of acid that was quickly contained, according to officials. “We are monitoring the area, and there are no injuries or impacts to the community. Refinery operations are not impacted,” read a statement from Wood River Refinery. Norfolk Southern spokesman Dave Pigeon said the material that leaked was a waste product from the refining process known as spent sulfuric acid. It can eventually be recycled and reused, he said, but is transported as hazardous materials. There were seven cars derailed in the incident, Pigeon said, with five cars that came to rest on their sides while two remained upright. As of 3:30 p.m., Norfolk Southern workers had uprighted three of those five cars.[314]

December 29, 2016: Standing Rock Activists Target Profits of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

The Guardian reported on December 29, 2016 that Native American activists are targeting the Dakota Access pipeline’s finances in an effort to further strain the oil corporation and cause continuing delays that they hope could be disastrous for the project focusing on an approaching January 1, 2017 deadline that the operator, Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), has cited in court records. ETP wrote in a filing this year that the pipeline “committed to complete, test and have DAPL in service” by the start of 2017. And if the company did not meet its contract deadline, then its shipping partners had a “right to terminate their commitments”. But in emails to the Guardian, DAPL spokeswoman Vicki Granado claimed that January was just an “initial target” and not a “contractual date”, which is “much later”, though she refused to say when. Her statement, which contradicts the company’s official court testimony on multiple occasions, has prompted accusations that the corporation has either committed perjury or is lying to reporters. Regardless of the significance of the January date, opponents of the project argued that the continuing suspension of the project is already having a big impact on the ETP’s bottom line.

The financial challenges for Energy Transfer come at a time when the company is already in a precarious economic situation due to broader industry trends, analysts said. Global oil prices began to collapse in 2014 after shippers committed to DAPL, and production in the Bakken Shale oil field has fallen, which has created major hardships for drillers, according to the recent Ieefa report. That means the existing pipeline infrastructure may be adequate to handle regional oil production, and that if the contract deadline does expire, shippers could be eager to pull out or renegotiate favorable terms.

LaDonna Brave Bull Allard, a Standing Rock tribe member who owns land where one of the main camps remains in place, said the DAPL corporation was “panicking” about its finances and misleading the public. The company should not be trusted, she said, noting that the construction site was being monitored to ensure that DAPL workers do not start drilling under the Missouri river, which provides the tribe’s water supply. “We are preparing because we know we have a fight on our hands. We will be standing our ground no matter what.”[315]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

December 29, 2016: U.S. Refiners Face Severe Labor Shortage For Deferred Maintenance

U.S. Refiners Face Severe Labor Shortage For Deferred Maintenance. A recent survey found that 74 percent of Texas contractors are having trouble filling hourly craft worker positions, and a majority of them believed they would continue to struggle over the next year. Photo: State Library of Victoria College Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Reuters reported on December 29, 2016 that refiners are now competing for pipe fitters and ironworkers with a host of billion-dollar energy projects, including Cheniere Energy's liquefied natural gas export terminals and a new petrochemical unit for Dow Chemical and without undertaking the work they need, refineries run the risk of more unscheduled outages at plants. "Putting off work definitely affects the safety of the refinery," said Ed Lee, an independent refinery safety consultant. U.S. refiners are expected to spend $1.26 billion on planned maintenance next year, up 38 percent from this year and the highest level since at least 2010 as a spate of unexpected outages have hit refineries nationwide, taking hundreds of thousands of barrels off the market and boosting gasoline prices and margins. "Refiners are going to have trouble finding even the lowest skilled workers, such as scaffold builders, and you can't do work at a refinery without a scaffold," said said Anthony Salemme, a vice president at IIR. "That's going to complicate scheduling and even extend outages." According to IIRC the coastal region from Brownsville, Texas to New Orleans - the largest U.S. refining region - will be short roughly 37,400 craftsman needed to complete all of the planned capital projects in 2017. "We are definitely feeling the labor shortages in skilled craft labor," said Paul Tooze, construction manager for the oil, gas and chemicals business at Bechtel.

A recent survey conducted by the Associated General Contractors of America found that 74 percent of Texas contractors are having trouble filling hourly craft worker positions, and a majority of them believed they would continue to struggle over the next year. More than 60 percent of the respondents said they bumped up salaries to attract more skilled craft workers. "These shortages have the potential to undermine broader economic growth by forcing contractors to slow scheduled work or choose not to bid on projects, thereby inflating the cost of construction," said Stephen Sandherr, head of the Associated General Contractors.[316]

Phillips 66 recently announced that the Ponca Refinery is beginning the largest turnaround since 2011 which at its peak will involve more than 1,000 contract laborers from approximately 35 different companies. The turnaround requires a large monetary investment from the company and there is a large outlay of dollars spent in the Ponca City community as contract laborers will fill hotel and motel rooms, RV parks, and rental properties and will spend money throughout the community. [317]

December 23, 2016: Enbridge Stalls on Purchase of Stake in Phillips Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

The Duluth News Tribune reported on December 23, 2016 that Enbridge Energy Partners L.P. and its joint venture partner Marathon Petroleum Corp. now have until March 31, 2017 to back out of a deal to purchase a stake in the Dakota Access Pipeline, according to a recent Securities and Exchange Commission filing. The previous deadline to terminate the sale was December 31, 2016. The Enbridge/Marathon purchase was announced August 2, 2016 just before pipeline protests erupted around a river crossing north of the Standing Rock Reservation. SEC filings show the joint venture is to pay $2 billion for a 49 percent interest in Bakken Holdings Co. LLC, a subsidiary of Energy Transfer Partners and Sunoco Logistics Partners that owns 75 percent of the Dakota Access pipeline. Phillips 66 owns the remaining 25 percent of the Dakota Access Pipeline. None of the companies involved cite a reason to push back the termination date in SEC filings, though uncertainty over the project’s future could play a part.[318] "If Enbridge and Marathon thought that completion of the pipeline was a done deal, the money would have been a done deal too," said Energy analyst Antonia Juhasz. "This means they are worried and are not feeling secure enough to turn over their cash, putting even more financial pressure on Energy Transfer Partners."[319]

December 23, 2016: Phillips 66 Alliance Refinery Donates $65,000 to Sorrento Fire Department

The Creole reported on December 23, 2016 that Phillips 66 recently donated $50,000 to the Sorrento Fire Department to help with both aging equipment and losses suffered during the August flood with some of the money used to replace a 20-year-old fire truck by matching a grant. Several assets in south Louisiana, including a Sorrento salt cavern in the McElroy Swamp, were acquired by Phillips 66 earlier this year.[320]

December 20, 2016: Phillips 66 Donates $35,000 to Amarillo Police for Training

Myhighplains reported on December 20, 2016 that Phillips 66 Amarillo Pipeline Division has made a grant of $35,000 to the Amarillo Police Department to provide updated supervisory and leadership training to police supervisors.[321]

December 19, 2016: Vallejo Mayor Wants Phillips 66 and Other Refiners to Pay for Air Monitoring Equipment After Oil Spill in San Pablo Bay

KQED reported on December 19, 2016 that incoming mayor of Vallejo is calling on Phillips 66, Valero, Shell, and Tesoro to foot the bill for new air monitors for five Bay Area cities that sit near local refineries after a mysterious odor sickened dozens of Vallejo residents around the same time an oil spill was discovered in San Pablo Bay in September. The U.S. Coast Guard’s investigation into the oil spill concluded that the spill came from either the marine terminal for Phillips 66 Rodeo refinery or an oil tanker that was unloading crude there. “I think as a good neighbor, Conoco Phillips 66 should be concerned about providing air quality monitors to the surrounding communities,” said Mayor-elect Bob Sampayan. “I want to see a more expanded role with the oil companies in providing information should we have this kind of incident occur again.” A spokesman for Phillips 66 did not respond to a request for comment, and a representative for the Western State Petroleum Association said the industry group has no comment.[322]

December 18, 2016: Pickens Sponsor First Formal Dinner in E. W. Marland's Private Dining Room at the Mansion in 75 Years

Pickens Sponsor First Dinner in Marland Estate Formal Dining Room in 75 Years. Guests at the First Dinner Served in E. W. Marland's Formal Dining Room in 75 Years included (from left to right) Mary Gierek, District Attorney Brian Hermanson, Ruslyn Hermanson, Deloris Pickens, Dr. S. J. Pickens, Joseph Gierek. Hugh Pickens, Marcia Keathly, David Keathly, Barbara Rozell, Ponca City Mayor Homer Nicholson, and Diane Anderson of Phillips 66. Photo: Leslie Schauviliege

The Ponca City News published a paid article on December 18, 2016 about a formal dinner that took place in E. W. Marland's private dining room at the Marland Mansion. A party of twelve guests were served dinner in the formal dining room on December 10, 2016 courtesy of Hugh Pickens and Dr. S. J. Pickens, the signature sponsors of this year's Gala at the Mansion supporting the Marland Mansion Estate Foundation. Dinner has not been served in the Marland's private dining room at the Mansion since Mr. Marland's passing in 1941. Although Marland lost his oil company to banking interests in the 1920's and closed the mansion, he would reopen the “Palace on the Prairie” to parties and formal dinners during his tenure as Governor of Oklahoma from 1935 to 1939. "We are honored to have the opportunity to sponsor the Marland Gala this year," said Pickens, "and especially honored to be the first guests to have dinner in E. W. Marland's formal dining room in over 75 years."

Terron Liles, Chairman of the 2016 Marland Gala, made every effort to create the ambiance of a formal dinner just as it would have been served in the 1920’s when Marland was building his vast oil empire. Marland was an Anglophile, so dinner was served Downton Abbey style just as it would have been served to Marland and his guests. Wait staff dressed as footman and maids in formal attire served the meal with grace and elegance. "We want to express our sincere gratitude to the Pickens for being our major sponsor for the 2016 Gala," said Terron Liles, Chairman of the Marland Foundation, “and we want to thank them for their generosity toward the Marland Gala, The Marland Estate Foundation and the Marland Mansion as a whole." “My husband and I would like to thank Terron Liles, the organizer of the Gala, David Keathly, Executive Director of the Marland Estate, our guests, and those who prepared and served the food throughout the night, and everyone else associated with the Gala,” said Dr. Pickens. “This has truly been a night to remember that we will treasure for the rest of our lives.”[323]

December 16, 2016: Phillips 66 Awards Three Grants to City of Ponca City for $120,000

The Ponca City News reported on December 16, 2016 that Phillips 66 has award three grants to the city of Ponca City for a total of $120,000 intended to enhance the environment and safety of the community. A $60,000 Pillar of Safety grant will be used to purchase and install musical-themed playground equipment at Garfield Park. A $30,000 Pillar of Safety grant will be used to purchase mobile repeaters for the City of Ponca City’s public safety communication radio system in order to enhance public safety and emergency operations. A $30,000 Pillar of Environmental grant will be used to purchase and distribute dual smoke and carbon monoxide battery operated detectors that will be distributed on a first come, first serve basis to income-qualifying homeowners.[324]

The Ponca City News reported on December 21, 2016 that in addition to the three grants already announced on December 16, 2016 Phillips 66 is contributing two additional grants for a total of $165,000. The grants include a pillar of Safety grant to McCord School for installation for protection to ensure safety for the children on the playground and a pillar of education and literacy a grant to Ponca City High School to help grow the robotics program, which will benefit from funding to help students with materials and components and help defray the cost of competitions.[325]

December 16, 2016: Phillips 66's Freeport LPG Export Terminal is Now Fully Operational

Businesswire reported on December 16, 2016 that Phillips 66's Freeport LPG Export Terminal located in Freeport, Texas, is fully operational. The company loaded its first contracted cargo on the Commander, a very large gas carrier that departed the terminal on December 16. “The startup of the Freeport LPG Export Terminal is the culmination of a four-year effort to develop a new U.S. Gulf Coast natural gas liquids (NGL) market hub that also includes Phillips 66 Partners’ 100,000 barrel-per-day Sweeny fractionator and 7.5 million barrel Clemens storage facility,” said Greg Garland, chairman and CEO of Phillips 66. “The new liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) export terminal gives customers the ability to place multi-grade LPG products directly into global markets through Port Freeport, which provides immediate blue water access with minimal congestion.”

The Freeport LPG Export Terminal can simultaneously load two ships with refrigerated propane and butane at a combined rate of 36,000 barrels per hour. Supply is sourced from the Phillips 66 Partners’ Sweeny fractionator and Clemens storage facility, which is connected by pipeline to the Mont Belvieu Hub.[326]

December 15, 2016: Osage Nation Wants to Increase Oil and Gas Production

The 'Million Dollar Elm' was in front of the County Courthouse in Pawhuska, Oklahoma. Millions of dollars were bid for oil rights in Osage County beneath the tree in the 1920s, thus its designation as the "Million Dollar Elm." In 1970 the Oklahoma Petroleum Council and the Oklahoma Historical Society dedicated a monument to the elm. Although the tree died of Dutch elm disease during the early 1980s and was cut down, its memory remains. Photo: Rex Brown Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0)

Oil and Gas 360 published an article on December 15, 2016 about the history of mineral rights and oil and gas production in the Osage Nation since 1870 when the remainder of Osage land in Kansas was sold and the proceeds used to relocate the tribe to Indian Territory. According to the article the Osage Nation has a long history of smart deal making and being expert negotiators. “By their delays in agreeing to removal, the Osage benefited by the change in administration; they sold their lands to the administration of President Ulysses S. Grant, for which they received $1.25 an acre rather than the 19 cents previously offered to them by the US.” The Osage were one of the few American Indian nations to buy their own reservation, and they retained more rights to the land and sovereignty as a result. Unlike its arrangements with other Native American tribes, in 1906, the U.S. Congress reserved the entire Osage Minerals Estate for the benefit of all of the Osage members.

“Already rich from leases of their grazing lands, the Osage grew exponentially more wealthy after the discovery of oil on their lands. In 1895 Henry Foster of Kansas acquired a blanket lease that covered the entire Osage Reservation, more than 1.5 million acres—the ‘Foster lease’. Over the next two decades the Osages’ ‘underground reservation’ would produce more wealth than had all of the American gold rushes combined.” Unlike other landholders, the Osage were able to retain collective ownership of subsurface mineral rights, rather than having to accept allotments to individual owners. Instead, tribal members received ‘headrights’ that assured them an equal share of mineral rights.

The Osage Nation has been vocal about getting the U.S. government to speed up oil and gas permitting on its reservation. In March of 2016, a delegation of tribal councilmembers testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Appropriations Committee, Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies, chaired by Oklahoma Congressman Tom Cole. The Osage councilmembers testified as follows: “Congress called us Headright Owners. Each Headright Owner had one share of royalty from the production of oil and gas in the Osage Minerals Estate. The Osage Minerals Estate has been producing oil since 1896, making it one of the oldest fields in the United States. Our Minerals Estate contains proven reserves. In 2015, it was estimated that our Headright owners would receive about $13.6 billion in royalties from 2012 to 2027. That’s about $1 billion a year."

Everett Waller, chairman of the Osage Nation Minerals Council, is one Osage tribal member and a former Bureau of Indian Affairs employee who is doing everything in his power to remove the federal agency’s roadblocks to new drilling on Osage lands. "We’re going to use the new 3D technology just like they’re going to use on the old fields in Texas. The projections there are through the roof. I have some of the largest dome caps in the world here, and if we can find one out of the three they predict are here, we’re going to be in business. I’m going to have all workovers ready to go, and if we have to, we’ll go to court to get the permitting done. I believe the new technology is going to bring us new production, and that’s going to be the key to survival here."[327]

December 13, 2016: Protesters of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Say 176,000 Barrel Oil Spill in western North Dakota 'Validates Struggle'

176,000 gallons of crude oil spilled went into the Ash Coulee Creek, just 150 miles from the Dakota Access pipeline protest camp. North Dakota officials estimate that more than 176,000 gallons of crude oil has leaked from the Belle Fourche Pipeline over the past week into the Ash Coulee Creek in western North Dakota validating the concerns of those who spoke out against the project for months, activists said. "The spill gives further credence to our position that pipelines are not safe," said Tara Houska, a Native American environmental activist who has resided at the camp since August. "Oil companies' interest is on their profit margins, not public safety." Photo: Jennifer Skjod/North Dakota Department of Health

NBC News reported on December 13, 2016 that North Dakota officials estimate that more than 176,000 gallons of crude oil has leaked from the Belle Fourche Pipeline over the past week into the Ash Coulee Creek in western North Dakota validating the concerns of those who spoke out against the project for months, activists said. "The spill gives further credence to our position that pipelines are not safe," said Tara Houska, a Native American environmental activist who has resided at the camp since August. "Oil companies' interest is on their profit margins, not public safety." One of the protesters' central arguments for months has been that, despite assurances from Energy Transfer Partners — the Dallas-based company funding the $3.7 billion project — an oil spill would be inevitable. And the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe believes that a spill would devastate the Missouri River, which is the main water source for the tribe. In an interview last month, Energy Transfer Partners CEO Kelcy Warren told NBC News that he could not assure the tribe that an oil spill could not potentially occur. Warren would only say that the Dakota Access Pipeline was prepared to withstand such an event. "They can say they have all the latest technologies to safeguard against a leak," Standing Rock Sioux Chairman Dave Archambault II told NBC News. "But when that leak happens, and it will, all those safeguards will go out the window."[328]

The leaking segment of the pipeline was built in the 1980s. Since then, construction materials and pressure monitoring equipment have improved, and tighter regulations have been put in place. "It's hard to compare one company, especially one that has had a pipeline in the ground for maybe 40 or 50 years, to a brand new pipeline," says Carl Weimer, executive director of the nonprofit Pipeline Safety Trust. "It's not just the old ones that fail, new ones can fail also." Since 2010, according to data from the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, operators have reported about 200 crude oil spills per year, on average. Most of them are comparatively small — think a few bathtubs full or less. The Belle Fourche pipeline leak is the largest in North Dakota since 2013. But the same company that owns and runs the pipeline was involved in another oil spill in Montana in 2015 that leaked 30,000 gallons of crude into the river. At one point, tests showed traces of oil in the local drinking water. Still, generally these incidents are low probability, high impact events, and John Stoody with the Association of Oil Pipelines says they remain the most efficient way to go. "They're also the safest way to move crude oil and petroleum around," says Stoody.[329]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

December 12, 2016: Donald Trump Says He'll Solve the Dakota Access Pipeline Question

UPI reported on December 12, 2016 that President-elect Donald Trump promised quick action on the Dakota Access oil pipeline if it's not "solved" by the time he's scheduled to take office in January. "Let me not answer the Dakota [oil pipeline question] because perhaps that'll be solved by the time I get there, so I don't have to create enemies on one side or the other," Trump told Fox News. "But I will tell you when I get to office, if it's not solved, I'll have it solved very quickly." Trump did not elaborate on what "solved" implied.[330]

December 9, 2016: Phillips 66 Cuts Capital Spending by 25 Percent in 2017

Fuelfix reported on December 9, 2016 that Phillips 66 will cut its capital spending by 25 percent next year, spending $2.7 billion in capital spending in 2017 — not counting joint ventures — with nearly $1.5 billion going to pipeline and terminal projects, and more than $900 million toward refining improvements. “The reduction in capital spending from prior years reflects that fewer projects meet our return thresholds in the current business environment,” Phillips 66 Chairman and CEO Greg Garland said in a prepared statement, noting an ongoing emphasis on share buybacks and investor dividend growth. One of the big 2017 projects is completing the Bayou Bridge Pipeline from its Beaumont terminal to St. James, La. Only the Louisiana portion of construction remains. Phillips 66 also will spend another $1.1 billion next year on joint ventures like Chevron Phillips Chemical and DCP Midstream. Chevron Phillips next year will complete its U.S. Gulf Coast Petrochemicals Project near Houston to produce much more chemicals and plastics from Baytown and Sweeny.

Phillips 66 is also a 25 percent owner of Energy Transfer Partners’ Dakota Access project. According to the NY Times Energy Transfer Partners, the nation’s biggest pipeline operator, has lost $450 million dollars from delays in the completion of the Dakota Access Pipeline and its standoff with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe over a section running through tribal lands could mean an additional $80 million a month in losses. According to the Wall Street Journal U.S. District Judge James Boasberg has denied a request by Energy Transfer Partners LP to quickly force the federal government to approve the final link in its Dakota Access pipeline, but said he would take up the issue next year ordering lawyers for Energy Transfer Partners and the Justice Department to file motions by January 31, 2017.[331][332][333]

December 9, 2016: Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery Donates $125,000 to Playground Project

The Alton Daily News reported on December 9, 2016 that Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery has donated $125,000 toward Alton's Gordon Moore Park that will be a part of massive upgrades at the facility along Illinois Route 140.[334] “Phillips 66 is a company that believes in the importance of celebrating diversity and achieving inclusion within our community,” Phillips 66 spokesperson Megan Allen said. “This project is a perfect representation of the values we respect and abide by as a company. It was a natural connection for us to be involved in the development of this playground.”[335]

December 7, 2016: Court Orders Further Review of Phillips 66 Propane Project at Rodeo Refinery

The East Bay Times reported that Contra Costa Superior Court Judge Barry Goode has voided a land use permit and the certification of an environmental report for a propane project at the Phillips 66 petroleum refinery issuing an order voiding the land use permit and the Environmental Impact Statement's certification, pointing to shortcomings in the EIR’s analysis of emissions and air pollution. The Phillips 66 Propane Recovery Project calls for installing new equipment to recover and sell propane and butane instead of burning the fuel at the refinery or flaring off excesses. The refinery has said the project will reduce pollution while creating well-paying jobs and generating taxes. It would involve construction of new distillation columns and absorber towers, a hydrotreater, six propane storage vessels, a loading rack, two rail spurs, some additions and modifications to ancillary facilities, and perhaps a new steam boiler.

“Phillips 66 is pleased with the court’s conclusion that the county’s environmental analysis was performed correctly regarding almost every claim raised by the plaintiffs,” refinery spokesman Paul Adler said in an email this week. “With respect to the limited issues in the air impacts analysis that the Court found lacking, we are reviewing that portion of the Court’s decision.”[336]

December 7, 2016: First Dinner to be Served in Marland's Formal Dining Room at Marland Mansion in 75 Years

First Dinner Served in Marland's Formal Dining Room at Marland Mansion in 75 Years. A party of twelve guests will have dinner in the formal dining room courtesy of Hugh Pickens and Dr. S. J. Pickens, the signature sponsors of this year's Gala at the Mansion supporting the Marland Mansion Estate Foundation. Photo: Hugh Pickens

The Ponca City News reported on December 7, 2016 that something is happening in Ponca City that hasn't occurred for at least seventy-five years. On December 10 dinner will be served in E. W. Marland's private dining room at the Marland Mansion for the first time since 1941. A party of twelve guests will have dinner in the formal dining room courtesy of Hugh Pickens and Dr. S. J. Pickens, the signature sponsors of this year's Gala at the Mansion supporting the Marland Mansion Estate Foundation. The Marland Gala is a fundraiser for the Marland Estate Foundation whose mission is to restore and preserve the historic, architectural landmark and to educate people on the E.W. Marland story.

Dinner has not been served in the Marland's private dining room at the Mansion since Mr. Marland's passing in 1941. Although Marland lost his oil company to banking interests in 1929 and closed the mansion, he would reopen the mansion to parties and formal dinners during his tenure as Governor of Oklahoma from 1935 to 1939. "We are honored to have the opportunity to sponsor the Marland Gala this year," said Pickens, "and especially honored to be the first guests to have dinner in E. W. Marland's formal dining room in over 75 years."

The Pickens' invited guests include Ponca City Mayor Homer Nicholson, Barbara Rozell, Kay County District Attorney Brian Hermanson, Ruslyn Hermanson, Marland Estate Manager David Keathly, Marcia Keathly, Phillips 66 Community Affairs and Public Relations Head Diane Anderson, Deloris Pickens, and Joseph Gierek, owner of the Gierek Art Gallery in Tulsa and his wife Mary Gierek. "We want to express our sincere gratitude to the Pickens for being our major sponsor for the 2016 Gala," said Terron Liles, Chairman of the Marland Foundation, “and we want to thank them for their generosity toward the Marland Gala, The Marland Estate Foundation and the Marland Mansion as a whole."[337][338][339]

December 5, 2016: Trump Team Pledges Support for Completing Blocked Dakota Access Pipeline

The Wall Street Journal reported on December 5, 2016 that a spokesman for President-elect Donald Trump said the incoming administration supports completing the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66. “With regard to the Dakota Access Pipeline, that’s something that we support construction of and we’ll review the full situation when we’re in the White House and make the appropriate determination at that time,” said Jason Miller, a spokesman for Mr. Trump. The statement by the Trump transition team, however, cast doubt on whether that decision would hold any sway after the new administration takes over in January. Pipeline experts said that Mr. Trump would have several options once he takes office to enable the $3.8 billion pipeline to proceed. That could include directing the Secretary of the Army to reinstate a previous permit for the reservoir crossing, or issuing an executive order approving the pipeline.[340]

However Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), the top Democrat on the Natural Resources Committee and an early ally of Dakota Access opponents, praised Obama’s decision. He said this “big win for tribal rights, for environmental quality and for every American who has stood in solidarity with the water protectors” should survive after Obama leaves office. “It now falls to the Trump administration to follow the law, treat this entire process with the respect and seriousness it demands, and honor the sacrifices of the Americans who put themselves in harm’s way to demand justice at Standing Rock,” Grijalva said.[341]

December 5, 2016: Could Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Lose Its Contracts with Oil Companies on January 1?

Democracy Now reported on December 5, 2016 that according to Amy Goodman, a new report exposes "The Rickety Finances Behind the Dakota Access Pipeline," published by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis and the Sightline Institute that spotlights a potential economic weakness of the project: the January 1st deadline by which Energy Transfer Partners had promised oil companies it would have completed construction. Missing the January 1st deadline opens up the possibility the pipeline company may lose its contracts with oil companies.

"One of the fundamental findings of our report was that the oil market has changed dramatically since the pipeline was first proposed in early 2014," says Clark Williams-Derry. "Back then, oil prices were at $100 a barrel or more, and oil production in North Dakota was rising. It kept rising and rising. And all the forecasts said that oil prices were going to remain high and that oil production in North Dakota was going to remain robust. But almost as soon as the companies signed up its first set of shippers, the first commitments from oil companies to ship through the pipeline, you started to see oil markets collapse. You saw prices fall from $100 a barrel down to $50 a barrel. And as that happened, oil companies in North Dakota started to pull back. They stopped—they weren’t drilling as much. A lot of them were starting to lose money from some of their oil projects in the Bakken region in North Dakota. And so, what you started to see is a decline in production. You’ve already seen a 20 percent dip in production in the Bakken region since oil prices started to collapse. And it’s still collapsing. It’s still declining by a percent or two every month. And if those declines—that decline in production continues, well, it’s not clear that the pipeline’s capacity is going to be needed at all."

“Oil markets have changed radically since ETP first locked in its contracts,” Williams-Derry said. “Shippers have to be asking themselves if the contracts they signed in early 2014 still make sense. ETP boxed itself in with the January 1 deadline.”[342][343]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

December 4, 2016: Corps of Engineers Blocks Drilling of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Oil Pipeline

The NY Times reported on December 3, 2016 that the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has won a major victory in its battle to block the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, being built near its reservation when the Department of the Army announced that it would not allow the pipeline to be drilled under a dammed section of the Missouri River. The announcement set off whoops of joy inside the Oceti Sakowin camp. Tribal members paraded through the camp on horseback, jubilantly beating drums and gathering around a fire at the center of the camp. Tribal elders celebrated what they said was the validation of months of prayer and protest. “It’s wonderful,” Dave Archambault II, the Standing Rock tribal chairman, told cheering supporters who stood in the melting snow on a mild North Dakota afternoon. “You all did that. Your presence has brought the attention of the world.” The Standing Rock Sioux had objected to the pipeline’s path so close to the source of their drinking water, and said any spill could poison water supplies for them and other reservations and cities downstream. They also said the pipeline’s route through what are now privately owned ranches bordering the river crossed through sacred ancestral lands.

The Army said it would look for alternative routes for the $3.7 billion Dakota Access pipeline. “The best way to complete that work responsibly and expeditiously is to explore alternate routes for the pipeline crossing,” Jo-Ellen Darcy, the Army’s assistant secretary for civil works, said in a statement. The move could presage a lengthy environmental review that has the potential to block the pipeline’s construction for months or years.

Though the Army’s decision calls for an environmental study of alternative routes, the Trump administration could ultimately decide to allow the original, contested route. Representatives for Mr. Trump’s transition team did not immediately respond to requests for comment. There was no immediate response from Energy Transfer Partners, but its chief executive, Kelcy Warren, has said that the company was unwilling to reroute the pipeline, which is intended to transport as much as 550,000 barrels of oil a day from the oil fields of western North Dakota to a terminal in Illinois.[344]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

December 1, 2016: Phillips 66 presents check for $57,000 for Flint Hills Maps in Butler County, Kansas

The Butler County Times Gazette reported on December 1, 2016 that Phillip 66 presented a $57,000 check to all of the schools in Butler County, Kansas for the display of a new Flinthills map, showing students just where it is they live, and where the Tall Grass Prairie is located. “The idea is too many children who grow up in the Flint Hills, grow up believing they are from no where,” said Emily Connell, who is part of the program. The latest map was dedicated at Flinthills Primary School in Cassoday recently, at which time a major donor for the Butler County schools, Phillips 66, was recognized. The goal was to be in 150 schools in the Flint Hills and they are close to 170. When they get in the Oklahoma schools in the region they will be close to 180 schools. It is important to realize all of the Butler schools were funded through Phillips,” Connell said. “All of this is because of Phillips. It’s huge to have a corporation like Phillips step forward.”

The whole idea behind the map is place-based education. It includes not only a map of the Flint Hills but also the Tall Grass Prairie and information about the area on each of the maps, with different maps created for elementary, middle school and high school/college levels. This is the first time a map has shown the remaining native tall grass prairie. Ninety-six percent of it has been plowed and developed, making the tall grass prairie the most altered ecosystem there is.[345]

November 30, 2016: Ponca Refinery Begins Largest Turnaround Since 2011

Ponca Refinery Begins Largest Turnaround Since 2011. Ponca Refinery is beginning the largest turnaround since 2011 which at its peak will involve more than 1,000 contract laborers from approximately 35 different companies. Photo: Hugh Pickens

The Ponca City News reported on November 30, 2016 that the Ponca Refinery is beginning the largest turnaround since 2011 which at its peak will involve more than 1,000 contract laborers from approximately 35 different companies. The turnaround requires a large monetary investment from the company and there is a large outlay of dollars spent in the Ponca City community. Contract laborers will fill hotel and motel rooms, RV parks, and rental properties and will spend money throughout the community. The city of Ponca City will benefit from tax revenues that come from this project. “This investment is just another example of the company’s commitment to Ponca City and the area for the long term,” said Tim Seidel, manager of the Ponca City Refinery. “It shows our company’s support to the Ponca City Refinery. Our employees who call Ponca City home are committed to make our refinery the best in the industry.”[346]

A turnaround is a planned break in production so that maintenance may be performed. Most refineries go through a turnaround every three to five years. Each turnaround requires extensive planning and careful coordination of labor and materials. Most often, the shutdown happens when production is at its lowest and required skilled labor is readily available. Some turnarounds take a few weeks to complete. Others may need a few months. Turnarounds depend entirely on the extent of the project and any problems that occur or are found along the way. Most refineries go through an extensive inspection and testing process during a turnaround. If the inspection or testing identifies a problem, the time may be extended.[347]

November 30, 2016: Ponca Refinery Will Start Revamp of their Largest Crude Fractionation Unit in 2017

The Ponca City News reported on November 30, 2016 that the Ponca Refinery is in the early construction stages of revamp to its largest crude fractionation unit which will allow the refinery to convert a larger percentage of crude oil into motor fuel (specifically more diesel); replace older equipment with state of the art, energy efficient equipment; and will enable the refinery to run more local grades of Oklahoma crude. The project, which is in its early constructions stages now will start in 2017.[348]

November 30, 2016: Ponca Refinery Has Hired Fifty New Operators and Maintenance Personnel in Last Two Years

The Ponca City News reported that Ponca Refinery has hired close to 50 new operators and maintenance personnel in the last two years. “Over the past two years, Phillips 66 PCR has hired close to 50 new operators and maintenance personnel. We have a strong partnership with Northern Oklahoma College, which has the Process Technology (PTech) degree program that helps with having qualified operator candidates,” according to Tim Seidel, refinery manager. “Also Pioneer Tech, right here in Ponca City is a critical partner to provide educational and training programs for our mechanical craft workers for both employees and contractors. “New in 2016, the refinery started an instrumentation internship program, partnering with the Oklahoma State University-Information Technology’s (OSU-IT), four-year degree plan. In the same two year time period, we have hired nine engineers and scientists with the off-campus hires coming primarily from our core universities of OU, OSU and KSU.”[349]

The Ponca City News reported on October 14, 2012 that Refinery Manager Pete Stynes spoke to the Ponca City Lions Club on October 10, 2012 about Phillips 66's Refinery in Ponca City and said that 800 employees work at the refinery with the direct employment of 625 Phillips employees.[350]

November 30, 2016: Two Thousand Veterans to Protect Protesters of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

UPI reported on November 30, 2016 that the Veterans Stand For Standing Rock group says it plans to have up to 2,000 veterans help protect Dakota Access Pipeline protesters from what it describes as abusive and humiliating tactics committed by a "militarized police force." The group has called on veterans joining the protest to bring body armor, gas masks, earplugs and shooting mufflers, due to possible use of a sound cannon by police and asked veterans not to bring drugs, alcohol or weapons. "This event ... will not tolerate hate, violence or divisive behavior of any kind. We're doing this to support our country so let's do it with honor, working together," the group wrote on Facebook. "We can stop this savage injustice being committed right here at home. If not us, who? If not now, when?"

Police forces have been criticized for using tear gas and other non-lethal methods, such as rubber bullets and water cannons amid freezing temperatures, to disrupt the protests. "Are you going to treat us veterans who have served our country in the same way as you have those water protectors?" said Loreal Black Shawl, a Native American eight-year U.S. Army veteran. "We're not there to create chaos. We are there because we are tired of seeing the water protectors being treated as non-humans."

North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple this week signed an emergency evacuation order to clear Dakota Access Pipeline protesters from U.S. Army Corps of Engineers territory.[351] Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

November 23, 2016: Phillips 66 Donates $25,000 To Help Cushing Recovery From Earthquake

The Ponca City News reported that Phillips 66 presented a $25,000 donation to the the American Red Cross to help to help people affected by the 5.0 earthquake in Cushing, Oklahoma on Nvember 6, 2016 as well as increase earthquake and disaster preparedness education throughout the Cushing area and Northwest Oklahoma. “It is Phillips 66’s pleasure to team up with an outstanding organization such as the Red Cross and be able to give back to the Cushing community,” said Rodger Lewis, manager, central pipeline division, Phillips 66. “Our employees who work in the community immediately recognized a need to help their fellow citizens affected by the recent earthquake. Supporting the communities where we operate aligns with our core values of safety, honor and commitment, and we hope our donation will help those in the Cushing community who are in need of assistance.”[352]

November 21, 2016: Police, Citing ‘Ongoing Riot,’ Use Water Cannons in Freezing Weather on Protesters Against Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Police Use Water Cannons on Dakota Access Protesters in Freezing Weather. Police used water cannons to disperse a group of about 400 protesters against the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, as they tried to move past a barricaded bridge toward construction sites for the project. As temperatures in Cannon Ball, N.D., dropped into the 20s, police in riot gear sprayed activists with a hose mounted atop an armored vehicle and formed a line to prevent them from advancing up the road.

The Washington Post reported on November 21, 2016 that police used water cannons to disperse a group of about 400 protesters against the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, as they tried to move past a barricaded bridge toward construction sites for the project. As temperatures in Cannon Ball, N.D., dropped into the 20s, police in riot gear sprayed activists with a hose mounted atop an armored vehicle and formed a line to prevent them from advancing up the road. Protesters also reported being pelted with rubber bullets, tear gas and concussion grenades during the standoff, which lasted until late Sunday night.

Protesters, who call themselves “water protectors,” have argued that the barricade prevents emergency services from reaching the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation and a nearby camp they have used as a staging ground for demonstrations. “Folks have a right to be on a public road,” said Dallas Goldtooth. “It’s absurd that people who’ve been trying to take down the barricade now have their lives at risk.” The sheriff’s department told the Tribune that the bridge has been closed since October because transportation officials were concerned about its structural integrity.[353]

November 21, 2016: Phillips 66 to Host Chamber of Commerce at Ponca Refinery

The Ponca City Chamber of Commerce reported on November 21, 2016 that Phillips 66 will be hosting an open house for chamber members on November 22, 2016 in E. W. Marland's board room and office at the Ponca Refinery.

November 16, 2016: Scores Arrested in Nationwide Protests Against Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

NBC News reported on November 16, 2016 that dozens of protesters against Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, were arrested in what organizers called a "National Day of Action" by self-proclaimed "water protectors" near Army Corps of Engineers offices from Los Angeles to New York City. The protests planned for more than 300 communities across the U.S. were an intended show of solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Indian tribe, which says its drinking water and way of life are threatened by the proposed pipeline. In Los Angeles, an estimated 1,500 protesters gathered peacefully in the financial district, while hundreds participated in a march at Daley plaza in Chicago. Sen. Bernie Sanders joined a crowd in front of the White House, and police in riot gear met protesters marching in Denver. In Mandan, North Dakota, about 40 miles from where the pipeline would cross on the border of the Standing Rock Sioux Indian Reservation, 350 protesters blocked a railroad with a pickup truck and other debris. More than 25 were people were arrested, some on felony charges, according to the Morton County Sheriff Department.

Over 1,500 anti-Dakota Access Pipeline protesters marched in Lower Manhattan, many holding signs and placards decrying the pipeline, and others warning of a bleak future for their cause under a Trump administration. "It's important for us to show solidarity across the country for those of us who can't be there at Standing Rock," said Korina Emmerich, a Brooklyn resident and member of the Puyallup tribe. "It's so important to show that we are not stopping until they stop building the pipeline," said Emmerich, carrying a sign that read "Don't sign our Mother Earth over to pollution, war + greed."

The fate of the project lies with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. For weeks, the agency has been conducting a federal environmental review of the land in question. In its letter Monday, the Corps did not provide a timeline for its final decision.[354]

November 14, 2016: Phillips 66 Loads First Cargo From Billion Dollar Freeport LPG Terminal

Houston Business Journal reported on November 14, 2016 that the first cargo of propane and butane out of Phillips 66's new liquefied petroleum gas export terminal in Freeport, Texas, has been loaded and departed — ahead of the facility’s full-start in December. When it enters full operation in mid-December, the Freeport LPG terminal will have an export capacity of about 4.4 million barrels per month. The entire Gulf Coast region exported 20.34 million barrels of LPGs in August, according to the most recent data released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Phillips 66 broke ground on the Freeport LPG terminal in August 2014, when it was expected to cost about $1 billion. The new LPG export terminal is at Phillips 66's existing marine terminal in Freeport, south of Houston. The company will get the fuel from its Sweeny complex in Old Ocean and its Gulf Coast Fractionators facility in Mont Belvieu.[355]

November 14, 2016: Garland Sells $6.4 Million in Phillips 66 Stock

Gurufocus reported on November 14, 2016 that Phillips 66 CEO Greg C. Garland sold 76,165 shares of Phillips on November 10, 2016 at an average price of $83.48 a share for a total sale of $6.4 million.[356]

November 12, 2016: What Will the Trump Presidency Mean for Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline?

NBC News reported on November 12, 2016 that according to Kelcy Warren, CEO of Energy Transfer Partners, the incoming Donald Trump administration will ensure the completion of the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota. "I'm 100 percent sure that the pipeline will be approved by a Trump administration," said Warren. "I believe we will have a government in place that believes in energy infrastructure." In June, Warren donated $100,000 to the Trump Victory Fund, a joint fundraising committee for Trump's campaign, and a further $3,000 directly to the Trump campaign. For his part, Trump's campaign financial disclosure forms revealed the President-elect's investments totaling between $500,000 and $1 million in Energy Transfer Partners, suggesting a possible vested financial interest in the completion of the pipeline.

Warren, who has remained publicly silent on the pipeline for months as protests forced a halt in the pipeline's construction, labeled most of the protesters at Standing Rock as "violent mobs." He repeatedly praised the work of local law enforcement, despite reports of police brutality, unlawful arrests and mistreatment in jail. "It's unbelievable how they've conducted themselves," said Warren.

Standing Rock Sioux Chairman Dave Archambault II said that Warren's remarks reflected the mindset of a "Dallas-based billionaire" unconcerned with the well being of his tribe. "Energy Transfer Partners' assertion that there are no sacred sites affected is another example of how they ignore our voice and fail to listen to our serious concerns," Archambault said in the statement. "Once again, a Dallas-based billionaire and the state of North Dakota's archeologists continue to render our voice meaningless regarding our own understanding of our traditions, spirituality and culture."[357] Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

November 5, 2016: Iowa Landowners Criticize Work on Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline: 'They Show No Respect'

Iowa Landowners Criticize Work on Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline: 'They Show No Respect.' Countless landowners across Iowa have petitioned county inspectors, supervisors and state regulators, claiming that questionable construction practices are worsening tensions between landowners and Dakota Access LLC, funded in part by Phillips 66. "It's evidence that even as the pipeline nears completion in Iowa, opposition to the pipeline and the way it has been built shows no signs of ebbing," writes Kim Hardy. "And some say the state has failed to do enough to protect landowners who now have pipeline running through their property. Dakota Access, however, maintains it has upheld its commitments to landowners. Photo: The DAPL (Dakota Access Pipeline) being installed between farms, as seen from 50th Avenue in New Salem, North Dakota. Tony Webster Flickr Creative Commons. Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Des Moines Register reported on November 5, 2016 that countless landowners across Iowa have petitioned county inspectors, supervisors and state regulators, claiming that questionable construction practices are worsening tensions between landowners and Dakota Access LLC, funded in part by Phillips 66. "It's evidence that even as the pipeline nears completion in Iowa, opposition to the pipeline and the way it has been built shows no signs of ebbing," writes Kim Hardy. "And some say the state has failed to do enough to protect landowners who now have pipeline running through their property. Dakota Access, however, maintains it has upheld its commitments to landowners."

Cyndy Coppola said she and her nephew have found several 30-inch steel rings and other debris on their 80-acre family farm in Calhoun County. She was astonished to see that crews have no garbage bins on site to collect refuse as they go. "I guess our biggest complaint is they show no respect," said Coppola, 68, who lives in Des Moines and was arrested for trespassing while protesting construction on her land in October. Inspectors have assured Coppola that crews eventually will come back to clean up the site. But she's skeptical, even as she watches debris getting pushed underground by heavy construction equipment. She worries that buried debris will eventually end up wrecking a combine during harvest. "We don’t think they’re going to make any effort to unbury what's already been covered up," she said. "That's a joke, because they’ve just gotten by with it all along."

Dakota Access spokeswoman Vicki Granado said the company takes its construction commitments "very seriously." And she said no complaints concerning the 1,295 parcels under construction in Iowa have been determined to be founded by the Iowa Utilities Board or county supervisors. "It is our goal to maintain this record throughout the rest of construction," Granado said, "which is nearing completion in Iowa."[358] Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

November 3, 2016: Chevron Phillips Chemical’s Ethane Cracker at Baytown Likely Will Cost Another $250 million to $500 million

Platts reported on November 3, 2016 that Chevron Phillips Chemical’s ethane cracker, a 50/50 JV of Phillips 66 and Chevron Corp., likely will cost another $250 million to $500 million because a months-long delay has pushed its target startup to the second half of 2017. Phillips 66 Chief Executive Greg Garland told analysts last week that the delay will probably raise the cost of the project in Baytown, Texas, by 5%-10% “just due to delays we are seeing in construction,” though two associated polyethylene plants 86 miles away in Sweeny, Texas, are expected to be mechanically complete in the second quarter and start up by mid-2017 as planned. About $5 billion of the combined $6 billion project is related to the cracker. Phillips 66 President Tim Taylor said the main push behind the delay is construction amid a tight craft labor squeeze.[359]

November 3, 2016: Fluor takes $154 million Hit on Delayed Chevron Phillips Petrochemical Expansion in Baytown

Fuelfix reported on November 3, 2016 that Fluor, which is building Chevron Phillips’ “U.S. Gulf Coast Petrochemicals Project” in a joint venture with Japan-based JGC, said it recorded a $154 million impairment charge for the project in the third quarter. “We are very disappointed in the construction progress on a fixed-price Gulf Coast project that led to a significant charge this quarter,” said David Seaton, Fluor chairman and CEO. Seaton confirmed Fluor will take a net loss on the entirety of the project. He cited weather delays, which were caused by Houston-area flooding in the spring, as well as problems with “piping performance” during the construction process. There was also one fatality in May when a Fluor contractor died after an on-site accident. Last month, Chevron Phillips acknowledged some minor delays caused by weather and additional retraining needed for some craft workers.[360]

November 2, 2016: Obama Says Army Corps is Weighing Whether to ‘Reroute’ Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

The Washington Post reported on November 2, 2016 that President Obama said Tuesday that his administration was considering ways to “reroute” the Dakota Access Pipeline after a week of violent clashes between authorities and activists protesting the controversial project. “We’re monitoring this closely,” Obama said. “My view is that there is a way for us to accommodate sacred lands of Native Americans. And I think that right now the Army Corps is examining whether there are ways to reroute this pipeline. We’re going to let it play out for several more weeks and determine whether or not this can be resolved in a way that I think is properly attentive to the traditions of First Americans." Even as Obama raised the possibility of rerouting the pipeline, he seemed to suggest that it would go forward.

But many climate activists have called on Obama to halt the project altogether, the way he blocked construction of the Keystone XL pipeline last year between Canada and the U.S. Gulf Coast. Jamie Henn, a spokesman for the environmental group 350.org, said in an email Wednesday that it would be hypocritical for Obama to allow the pipeline to be completed. “There’s no reroute that doesn’t involve the same risks to water and climate,” Henn said. “The president must submit Dakota Access to the same climate test as Keystone XL, a test it will surely fail.”[361]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

October 31, 2016: Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery Pays Civil Penalty to Settle Wastewater Pollution Case

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported on October 31, 2016 that Phillips 66, ConocoPhillips and WRB Refining — the past and present operators of the Wood River Refinery have agreed to pay a civil penalty of $125,000 and install new wastewater control systems at the refinery after alleged releases of wastewater contaminants that exceeded the facility’s permitted levels. Pollutants that exceeded allowable levels for the facility included mercury, fecal coliform, ammonia and other byproducts. Courts records show the exceedances were documented in monthly reports submitted by the refinery to the Illinois EPA from 2011 to 2016. Phillips 66 issued a statement saying the settlement “acknowledges the improvements the refinery has already made to improve the refinery’s wastewater treatment performance, as well as outlines additional investments the refinery is committed to implement.”[362]

October 28, 2016: Garland Expects Permit "in Relatively Short Order" to Complete Dakota Access Pipeline

Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland Expects Permit "in Relatively Short Order" to Complete Dakota Access Pipeline. Greg Garland expects a permit will be granted to build a controversial oil pipeline under the Missouri River near Native American land in North Dakota. "There's not that much left to be finished once we get the easement to go underneath the Missouri River," Garland told analysts on a conference call. "So I think that can be wrapped up in relatively short order." Photo: #NoDAPL-Solidarity from Oakland, CA Peg Hunter Flickr Creative Commons. Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Yahoo reported on October 28, 2016 that Greg Garland expects a permit will be granted to build a controversial oil pipeline under the Missouri River near Native American land in North Dakota. "There's not that much left to be finished once we get the easement to go underneath the Missouri River," Garland told analysts on a conference call. "So I think that can be wrapped up in relatively short order." The U.S. Justice and Interior Departments along with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers halted construction under the Missouri in September due to protests by Native American tribes who say the pipeline would disturb sacred land and pollute waterways supplying nearby homes. Construction is continuing on sections of the pipeline away from the Missouri River, Garland said. Phillips owns 25 percent of the project.[363]

October 28, 2016: Phillips 66 Quarterly Profit Plunges Prompting Cuts in 2016 Capital Expenditures

Reuters reported on October 28, 2016 that Phillips 66 reported a sharp fall in quarterly profit due to lower refining margins, and cut its full-year capital expenditure forecast to about $3 billion. The company's consolidated earnings fell to $511 million, or 96 cents per share, in the third quarter, from $1.58 billion, or $2.90 per share, a year earlier.Adjusted earnings fell to $1.05 per share from $3.02 per share.[364]

Still, Phillips 66 keeps profiting, while many oil and gas producers and services companies continue to report quarterly losses. “This year we are delivering record operational excellence results, managing costs, executing our major projects and maintaining disciplined capital allocation,” Phillips 66 Chairman and Chief Executive Greg Garland said in a prepared statement. Garland said its capital spending for the full year is decreased down to $3 billion from an initial budget of $3.9 billion. The 2017 capital budget is projected to come in below $3 billion.[365]

Refining's third-quarter earnings were $177 million, compared with $149 million in the second quarter of 2016. Refining's earnings in the third quarter of 2016 included a benefit of $43 million related to a legal award. Refining's second-quarter earnings included a net charge of $3 million related to a logistics commitment that was partially offset by a favorable U.K. tax settlement. Refining's adjusted earnings were $134 million in the third quarter, compared with $152 million in the second quarter of 2016. The decrease in adjusted earnings was largely driven by higher planned turnaround expenses, partially offset by lower routine maintenance costs. Realized margins were $7.23 per barrel, in line with the prior quarter's $7.13 per barrel. Phillips 66’s worldwide crude utilization rate was 97 percent and its clean product yield was 84 percent in the third quarter. Pretax turnaround costs for the third quarter were $117 million.[366]

October 26, 2016: Analyst Says Phillips May Bid on ExxonMobile Refinery in Billings

Toronto Metro reported on October 26, 2016 that Calgary oilsands analyst Michael Dunn of GMP FirstEnergy said Cenovus may be working with American refining partner Phillips 66 to bid on a Billings, Montana, refinery owned by Imperial's parent company, U.S.-based ExxonMobil.[367] The ExxonMobile refinery is one of the highest quality plants in the Rocky Mountains, with a fluidized coking unit for refining heavy oil. The plant primarily processes crude either imported from Canada or transported from nearby Wyoming. Industry sources quoted by Reuters said that major refiners, including Chevron Corp. and Exxon Mobil, are seeking to unload their smaller refineries that aren’t associated with petrochemical manufacturing, which can be more profitable. The Billings ExxonMobil refinery is the company’s smallest and it isn't associated with petrochemical manufacturing. Rumors that ExxonMobil is interested in selling its Billings refinery have surfaced in industry publications in past years, but so far have proven unfounded. Reuters speculated that the 60,000-barrel-per day plant would be worth between $500 million and $700 million.[368]

Greg Garland says that Phillips is not in a hunt for anyone that are for sale today. "So I think historical answer is still a good answer for us," said Garland. "Yes having said that if we could find the right assets for the right value certainly we would look at it, but none of the ones that are on the market today we are not in a hunt for those."[369]

October 22, 2016: Eighty-three Arrested at Protest Against Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

UPI reported on October 22, 2016 that police in North Dakota arrested 83 protesters after violent clashes at the construction site of the Dakota Access pipeline. The protest happened in rural Mandan, N.D., where workers are installing the 1,172-mile oil pipeline that will run from the oil fields in North Dakota south as far as Illinois. A group of protesters walked some three miles off the nearest road with a large all-terrain vehicle, slashed its tires and fastened themselves to the machine, according to the Bismarck Tribune. One individual chained herself to the steering wheel. Another man put his arm through a hole in the vehicle's door, than put his hand in a bucket of dried cement.

When police arrived on scene, a group of 300 or so protesters, Native Americans who view the construction as a violation of their sovereignty along with environmentalists, refused to leave. Police formed a line near the protesters and some tried to breach the line; officers responded with the use of pepper spray. Two officers were injured, though not seriously, in the confrontation. Police said they used the least amount of force possible to remove the protesters from private property. "We want to use the most nonlethal method possible," Morton County Sheriff's Department Rob Keller told the Bismarck Tribune. It took police about five hours to clear the scene of protesters so work in the area could resume. WDAZ-TV reported protesters were mostly charge with a combination of assault on a peace officer, reckless endangerment, criminal trespass, engaging in a riot, resisting arrest and fleeing an officer on foot.[370]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

October 21, 2016: Phillips 66 Disputes Coast Guard Finding They’re Responsible for Oil Spill at Rodeo Refinery Marine Terminal

Coast Guard says Phillips 66 is Responsible for Oil Sheens on San Pablo Bay from Rodeo Refinery Oil Terminal. The spill left two sheens on the bay, including one just over a mile long by 40 yards wide on the water in the northern San Pablo Bay area, according to the U.S. Coast Guard, the lead agency investigating the incident. A second sheen was later identified during a Coast Guard overflight near the Phillips 66 Rodeo refinery marine terminal. Photo: Michael Macor, The San Francisco Chronicle

KQED reported on October 21, 2016 that Phillips 66 is rejecting a finding by the Coast Guard that a marine terminal at its Rodeo facility played a role in an oil spill in San Pablo Bay last month. After the oil sheen was discovered, the refinery told the operators of the Yamuna Spirit to stop transfer operations, according to company spokesman Paul Adler. “Phillips 66 subsequently tested the refinery’s dock transfer piping,” Adler said. “The tests were observed by several federal, state and local government agencies and there was no evidence of leakage from Phillips 66 piping and connections.” Phillips 66 shut down its marine terminal at the beginning of the investigation. A week later, it reopened the facility and allowed the Yamuna Spirit to depart.

Local environmentalists say there should have been better oil transfer procedures in place at the refinery. “Whether or not the oil spill that took place during oil transfer operations at Phillips 66 was the fault of refinery staff or the shipping company hired to transport its oil is irrelevant,” said Ian Wren, a staff scientist at Baykeeper, an organization that works to stop pollution in San Francisco Bay. “Phillips 66 should be expected to take full responsibility for this spill and any others that take place under its authority."[371]

October 20, 2016: US Coast Guard Says Phillips 66 Responsible for Oil Sheens on San Pablo Bay from Rodeo Refinery Oil Terminal

The East Bay Times reported on October 20, 2016 that the mysterious oil sheens that appeared on San Pablo Bay on September 20, 2016 were connected to a crude oil tanker or the Phillips 66 refinery, the U.S. Coast Guard announced. The spill left two sheens on the bay, including one just over a mile long by 40 yards wide on the water in the northern San Pablo Bay area, according to the U.S. Coast Guard, the lead agency investigating the incident. A second sheen was later identified during a Coast Guard overflight near the Phillips 66 Rodeo refinery marine terminal. Authorities were unable to determine if the sheen found in the bay originated from the Yumuna Spirit of the Phillips 66 facility. The U.S. Coast Guard said the vessel and the facility are responsible for recovering federal related response costs. The Coast Guard could not determine what caused the odor that sent dozens of people to hospitals in Vallejo with complaints of headaches, nausea and dizziness on September 20, 2016.[372]

KQED reported on October 18, 2016 that officials have revealed a clue that could help determine what caused the oil spill in San Pablo Bay a month ago and a sickening odor that sent dozens of people to the hospital in Vallejo around the same time. Results of tests taken of the substance found in the water in late September show that it was crude oil from the Middle East, according to an official with California’s lead agency for responding to oil spills. Randy Sawyer, chief environmental health and hazardous materials officer for Contra Costa County Health Services, says the crude must have come from an oil tanker at a marine terminal in Rodeo. “Based on the analysis and where the sheen was located, the oil sheen originated from the ship while it was unloading to Phillips 66,” Sawyer said. I’s unclear how the oil might have leaked from the vessel. “I know that Phillips did check their piping and there were no leaks,” Sawyer said. “There may have been a portion of the piping (that was) not tested.”

Phillips 66 declined to comment on the investigation and activity of the Yamuna Spirit at its marine terminal. “Phillips 66 generally does not comment on activity as it relates to our crude supply and transportation arrangements,” said Aimee Lohr, a refinery spokeswoman.

When the investigation is concluded, local environmentalists say whoever is responsible should be held accountable. “The perpetrators need to face stiff penalties for this absolutely unacceptable oil spill,” said Patrick Sullivan, an Oakland-based spokesman for the Center for Biological Diversity. “But even the steepest fines won’t undo the damage this oil has done to the bay,” Sullivan said. “That’s why we’ve got to move away from shipping dirty crude through California’s fragile coastal ecosystems.”[373]

October 20, 2016: Phillips 66 Replaces Crude Distillation Tower at Ferndale Refinery

Phillips 66 Replaces Crude Distillation Tower at Ferndale Refinery. The crude distillation tower moves along Mountain View Road earlier this month. The new 16-story tower is expected to be operating sometime in 2017. Photo: Courtesy of Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery

The Bellingham Herald reported on October 20, 2016 that Phillips 66 replacing a crude distillation tower that was installed at the Ferndale Refinery in late 1954. The 16-story tower was recently delivered to the refinery and should be in operation sometime in 2017. The tower takes heated crude oil and creates different components as it is recaptured at different temperatures. Those components include butane, gasoline, kerosene and diesel. Up to 120 contract workers will be on the project during installation and it will take about 70,000 contractor hours to complete.[374]

October 20, 2016: Phillips 66 Appeals Santa Maria Rail Project to San Luis Obispo County Supervisors

The San Luis Obispo Tribune reported on October 20, 2016 that Phillips 66. has appealed San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission’s rejection of its oil-by-rail plan to the county Board of Supervisors, setting the stage for lengthy and passionate hearings over a project that has drawn statewide attention. Phillips 66, in its appeal filed Wednesday afternoon, also is asking county supervisors to set aside the issue while it seeks an order from San Luis Obispo Superior Court that would direct the county planning department to correct what Phillips 66 says are misapplications of county land-use rules. The petition, filed Wednesday in Superior Court, also asks the court to direct the Planning Commission to set aside its findings for denial and reconsider Phillips 66’s application. A case management conference is set for Dec. 5. The Planning Commission voted 3-2 on Oct. 5 to reject the project, with Commissioners Don Campbell and Jim Harrison dissenting. Commissioner Jim Irving joined Commissioners Eric Meyer and Ken Topping on Wednesday to deny the plan.

In the meantime, environmental groups are gearing up for another fight. One such group, 350 Silicon Valley, is part of a statewide coalition of climate organizations focused on stopping the Phillips 66 project and plans to give county supervisors numerous reasons to reject the proposal, said Stew Plock, development manager for the group.[375]

October 18, 2016: Equipment Fire Called Arson on Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

UPI reported on October 18, 2016 that authorities said arson is the likely cause of an Iowa fire that caused about $2 million in damage to construction equipment on Dakota Access oil pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66. A preliminary investigation that included the FBI and the Iowa Fire Marshal found that the fires were intentionally set. It was at the same location that equipment was damaged in an Aug. 1 fire, which police suspect was started by vandals. Dakota Access LLC, the company constructing the controversial, 1,172-mile pipeline across four states, offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to a conviction in Saturday's incident.

A protest against the pipeline in North Dakota turned violent last month, and several of the approximately 800 demonstrators said they were attacked with mace or bitten by guard dogs. The rally was organized after it was noted the pipeline traverses Native American graves and sacred sites.[376]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

October 17, 2016: Phillips 66 Donates $600,000 to Ponca City Public Schools for Spatial Temporal Math

Phillips 66 Donates $600,000 to Ponca City Public Schools for Spatial Temporal Math. Phillips 66 Chief Executive Officer, Greg Garland told attendees at a forum sponsored by the Bartlesville Chamber of Commerce on August 13, 2015 that Phillip 66's commitment to Bartlesville remains strong. After the forum Garland discussed Phillips 66 and Ponca City with Ponca City resident Hugh Pickens. Pickens asked Garland what it would take for Ponca City to qualify for a grant from Phillips 66 to promote science in the Ponca City School System, like the grant of $1.7 million that Phillips 66 gave to Bartlesville Public Schools in 2014 to create new innovative laboratories on three school campuses in Bartlesville to support science, technology, engineering and math. Garland responded that he would look into the matter. Photo: Dr. S. J. Pickens

Ponca Post reported on October 17, 2016 that the Ponca City Public School district received a grant in excess of $600,000 from Phillips 66 to purchase ST (Spatial Temporal) Math licenses for all students in prekindergarten through 7th grade. ST Math is a game-based software designed to help students and enhance student comprehension and proficiency through visual learning. Students are able to learn at their own pace and to incorporate problem solving into their math lessons. ST Math utilizes a game concept that is interactive and has graphic animations that according to Mind Research, “visually represents mathematical concepts to improve conceptual understanding and problem-solving skills.”

The grant also included 3D printers for schools, iPads for the pre-K center, professional development for employees, and other supporting hardware totaling over $185,000. “Ponca City is the only school district in Oklahoma fortunate enough to have ST Math,” said Dr. Pennington. “We appreciate Phillips 66 bringing the program to us and committing more than $450,000 towards the program and supporting technology. Additionally, Phillips 66 has agreed to help pay the license renewal fee for the next three years if needed. Our teachers and students will have access to a tool that we know will increase students’ math skills and make learning fun.”

Tim Seidel, Diane Anderson (PCR Community Relations), Dr. Pennington, and Barbara Cusick (Ponca City Schools Director of Curriculum) and Teri Vogele, Associate Director of Curriculum visited students at Lincoln Elementary and West Middle to view first-hand how the program was being received and how it is helping students be more engaged and teachers to be able to teach math at several different levels. “We are excited to bring our Ponca City teachers this new tool and program to teach our students math,” said Tim Seidel. “I believe that through the application of ST MATH, we will identify opportunities and provide immediate benefits that will help students on an individual basis. Moreover, it will give teachers and students more flexibility and allow students to advance their math skills at an accelerated rate. Through this program, we hope to instill a love of math and create tomorrow’s problem solvers.”[377]

October 16, 2016: Ponca Tribe Members Protest at Phillips 66 Ponca Refinery

Over 200 Indigenous Nations have descended upon Canon Ball, ND to take a stand against Phillips 66 funded Dakota Access Pipeline. Senators Bernie Sanders, Patrick Leahy, Dianne Feinstein, Ben Cardin, and Ed Markey sent a letter to President Barack Obama asking him to direct the US Army Corps of Engineers to require a full environmental impact statement for the Lake Oahe crossing of the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded im part by Phillips 66. The senators added that "the project's current permits should be suspended and all construction stopped until a complete environmental and cultural review has been completed for the entire project." Over 200 Indigenous Nations have descended upon Canon Ball, ND to take a stand against the Dakota Access Pipeline. "You can't drink oil and you can't eat money!" Photo: Peg Hunter Joe Brusky Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)
Frank Phillips Respected Native Americans' Rights and Traditions. Phillips 66 founder Frank Phillips was well known for the respect he showed towards Native Americans, a respect that was fully reciprocated. On March 28, 1931, Frank Phillips was adopted into the Osage Tribe in a ceremony held at Woolaroc. Following the ceremony, Frank - Eagle Chief - was dressed by the Osage Chiefs in an official costume and was presented with a split buffalo hide by Zack Miller of the 101 Ranch. The adoption resolution was etched in English and Osage on the hide. It marked the first time the Osage had ever adopted a white person into their tribe.

The Osage Nation Supports the Standing Rock Sioux. The Osage Nation is providing emergency supplies to the protesters at Standing Rock and has issued a proclamation supporting Standing Rock opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline. Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners. Photo: Woolaroc
Protests Turn Violent at Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline. Protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline, owned in part by Phillips 66, turned violent as demonstrators supporting the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe faced off with private security officers from Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners and security officers threatened protesters with dogs. Tim Mentz Sr., who helped start the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Tribal Historic Preservation Office, said bulldozers had likely dug through burial grounds with little regard and without allowing members of the tribe a chance to look for human remains. Photo: Democracy Now

The Ponca City News reported in a front page story that dozens of members of the Ponca Tribe protested at Phillips 66's Ponca Refinery carrying signs decrying the pollution of water and air, a multitude of earthquakes and other negative results attributed to fracking. Tribal members also protested against oil pipelines across waterways, sacred lands and other tribal lands like the Phillips 66 funded Dakota Access Pipeline. Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners that has been the subject of months of protests by hundreds of members of the Standing Rock Sioux and supported by over 200 Indigenous Nations.[378]

October 13, 2016: United States Senators Call for a Halt to Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Senators Bernie Sanders, Patrick Leahy, Dianne Feinstein, Ben Cardin, and Ed Markey sent a letter to President Barack Obama this week asking him to direct the US Army Corps of Engineers to require a full environmental impact statement for the Lake Oahe crossing of the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66. The senators added that "the project's current permits should be suspended and all construction stopped until a complete environmental and cultural review has been completed for the entire project."

Protests over the 1,172-mile pipeline erupted again this week after Energy Transfer Partners, the company behind the project, resumed construction Monday morning. The pipeline, which would run from North Dakota to Illinois and cost $3.78 billion, has drawn criticism over its potential impact on the environment and the damage it could inflict to sacred grounds and water sources of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. In late July, the tribe filed a lawsuit against the US Army Corps of Engineers, alleging that the agency failed to properly consult the tribes before approving the pipeline. On Sunday, a federal appeals court denied the tribe's request to halt construction on the pipeline. The Obama administration repeated its request for Energy Transfer Partners to voluntarily suspend construction, but the company has disregarded that request.[379]

“In light of the decision of the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to reject the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's request for a temporary halt to construction, the project’s current permits should be suspended and all construction stopped until a complete environmental and cultural review has been completed for the entire project,” the senators wrote. “If there is one profound lesson that indigenous people have taught us, it is that all of us as human beings are part of nature. We will not survive if we continue to destroy nature.”[380]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

October 13, 2016: Phillips 66 Donates $250,000 to Bartlesville Girls and Boys Club

The Bartlesville Examiner Enterprise reported on October 13, 2016 that Phillips 66 is making a $250,000 donation to the Bartlesville Girls and Boys Club to help build the new C.J. “Pete” Silas Boys & Girls Club, which will replace the aging structure. The club plans to begin construction this fall with hopes of startings operations in the 2017-2018 school year. The state of the art facility will include a dedicated teen center, learning centers, gymnasium, technology and STEM lab, arts and music spaces, outdoor sporting courts, and an expanded kitchen to better accommodate the nutrition program. The Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation will partner with the Club construct the playing field. “It's giving back to the community, and the Boys and Girls Club is one of the great institutions and organizations (in Bartlesville),” said Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland. “When you think back to Pete Silas, the former chairman of Phillips Petroleum, he was a great guy that was loved in the industry and a great leader for the company during some difficult times. No one ever questioned his ethics or integrity, and he's known for that.”[381]

October 12, 2016: Phillips 66 Makes Multi-Million Dollar Investment in Bartlesville Research Center

Bartlesville Radio reported on October 12, 2016 that Phillips 66 joined Public Service Company and Dallas-based contractor, Brandt Companies as they broke ground on a new electrical substation at the Research Center. The substation is a multi-year, multi-million dollar investment in the Phillips Research Center.[382] According to Phillips 66 Vice President of Technology Merl Lindstrom, the new substation is part of a Infrastructure Upgrade Program following a study of the Phillips 66 Research Center to increase viability for continued use and growth long into the future. Phillips 66 Chairman/CEO Greg Garland said the new substation and infrastructure upgrades at the Research Center indicates the company’s continued presence in Bartlesville, from today through the future.[383]

October 10, 2016: Chevron Phillips' $6 Billion Houston Expansion at Baytown Nears Completion

The Houston Chronicle reported on October 10, 2016 that Chevron Phillips Chemical, a joint venture between Chevron and Phillips 66, is nearing completion of their $6 billion expansion at Baytown. The project involves a massive ethane cracker - on a plot the size of 44 football fields - that will separate a component of natural gas called ethane, which will provide the feedstock for some 1.5 million metric tons a year of ethylene, a common building block of plastics. The project adds to a petrochemical boom primarily along the Gulf Coast, where chemical and plastic makers can take advantage of cheap and ample natural gas, the feedstock for their products. The growing demand for plastics is mostly coming from Asia, primarily China, but also India and Indonesia, where rising incomes are fueling appetites for consumer goods, said Ron Corn, a Chevron Phillips senior vice president. Chevron Phillips also built what is called a low-profile flare to release fewer emissions more discreetly - as opposed to the typical tall flare that looks a ball of fire in the sky."[384]

October 5, 2016: San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission Votes to Deny Phillips 66 Santa Maria Rail Spur Project

KCBX reported on October 5, 2016 that the proposal by Phillips 66 to increase the number of trains bringing crude oil to its Santa Maria refinery will not move forward with a recommendation by the San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission with three out of five Commissioners voting to deny the request to build a rail spur at the facility. Mesa Refinery Watch Group Spokesperson Laurance Shinderman said that the issue is now likely headed to the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors, but believes the recent vote helps set a tone for future debate. "When you have the planning staff saying no to it, and now the planning commissioners saying not to it...the sentiment seems to be leaning our way," said Shinderman.

Phillips 66 Spokesperson Dennis Nuss sent a statement to KCBX via email: "We presented a strong proposal, and will review the concerns raised today and consider our options, including the right to appeal."[385]

September 28, 2016: Archie Dunham Says that He Disagrees with Splitting Off Phillips 66 from ConocoPhillips

Archie Dunham Says He Disagrees with Splitting Off Phillips 66 from ConocoPhillips. In 2012, ConocoPhillips split, spinning off its refining, retail, and marketing operations to form Phillips 66, while ConocoPhillips focused on oil exploration and production. Jim Mulva, CEO of ConocoPhillips and architect of the split, said that two independent companies focused on their respective industries would be more competitive. He insisted both were big enough to compete and generated enough cash to invest in their futures. Dunham stayed out of the fray, he said recently. He wrote letters to the board, arguing that an integrated company can use cash from its refining business to fund oil exploration - but he never sent them. According to Hunn, the separation is a decision with which Dunham disagrees, even now. Photo: Wikipedia

David Hunn wrote in the Houston Chronicle on September 28, 2016 that sixteen years ago, on his way to a black-tie fundraiser in Oklahoma City, Archie Dunham, then chief executive of the Houston oil company Conoco, stepped out of hotel elevator just as Jim Mulva, his counterpart at Phillips Petroleum of Oklahoma, emerged from another nearby. "Low prices and rising costs were driving a wave of mergers in the industry, including the blockbuster combination of Exxon and Mobil, and leaving smaller companies like Conoco and Phillips vulnerable to takeover," writes Hunn. "Dunham didn't like the idea of getting gobbled by a major oil company; he took the opportunity to broach the idea of a merger - a merger of equals - with Mulva." Big oil companies had been circling Conoco for some time when Dunham found himself in a hotel lobby with Mulva, the Phillips CEO. Dunham, in a recent interview, said Phillips seemed like a good partner to him. They had strengths in different parts of the world that complemented each other, he said, but they also came from essentially the same place. "We felt like our cultures, values, were very similar," Dunham said.

After running into each other at the Renaissance Waterford on that evening in 2000, Dunham and Mulva quickly parted, wary of being spotted together and tipping anyone off to their discussion. But they soon met again, secretly, in Colorado. Alone in a room in the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, they talked for four hours about business, family and values. A few months later, on a stormy day in November 2001, the two men met in Tulsa, Okla. to announce the merger that would create world's sixth biggest integrated oil company. The new firm would have $50 billion in revenues, $60 billion in assets, 8.7 billion barrels in oil reserves and 58,000 employees worldwide. Dunham persuaded Mulva to name the new company ConocoPhillips, and keep it headquartered in Houston. The city's easy access to international flights made the decision practical. "Besides, I was a Houstonian," Dunham said. "I wanted Houston to have the headquarters." In exchange, Dunham took the chairman slot; Mulva became chief executive.

Dunham retired in 2004. In 2012, the company split again, spinning off its refining, retail, and marketing operations to form Phillips 66, while ConocoPhillips focused on oil exploration and production. Mulva, still CEO then, said that two independent companies focused on their respective industries would be more competitive. He insisted both were big enough to compete and generated enough cash to invest in their futures. Dunham stayed out of the fray, he said recently. He wrote letters to the board, arguing that an integrated company can use cash from its refining business to fund oil exploration - but he never sent them. According to Hunn, the separation is a decision with which Dunham disagrees, even now.[386]

September 28, 2016: Health Official Says Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery Needs to Notify Local Agencies Faster Next Time it Learns of an Oil Spill Near its Facility

KQED News reported on September 28, 2016 that a top Bay Area health official said Phillips 66's Rodeo Refinery needs to notify local agencies faster next time it learns of an oil spill near its facility. Randy Sawyer, Contra Costa County’s chief environmental health and hazardous materials officer, said Phillips 66 took 10 hours to tell his agency about the spill, a delay that could have impacted the investigation. “Hours later the sheen was gone and there was no evidence of it at that location,” Sawyer said. “So we lost some valuable time in trying to determine where the oil came from.” Phillips 66 has not responded to requests for comment on its delay in contacting the county.

The refinery told the California State Warning Center shortly before 9 a.m., according to Shawn Boyd, a spokesman for the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services. The company told Contra Costa’s hazardous materials program at 11 a.m., Sawyer said. The lack of answers frustrates at least one Vallejo city official. Councilwoman Katy Miessner said the possibility that an oil spill may have sickened some of the city’s residents is cause for concern. “I think this is something we’re going to have to address,” Miessner said. “Personally, I had no idea that we were vulnerable to the refineries across the bay.”[387]

The Times Herald reported on September 27, 2016 that the City of Vallejo has released an official statement about the pungent and mysterious odor that hung heavy in Vallejo last week. Residents reported an “unknown odor” primarily centered in South Vallejo that smelled of gasoline or natural gas. After dozens of patients began arriving at local hospitals in connection with breathing problems after inhaling the odor, the city issued a shelter-in-place order and advised residents to avoid being outside if possible. After the smell was noticed, a one-mile-by-40-foot sheen in the waterways was discovered near the the Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery Marine Terminal. The odor in Vallejo gradually dissipated throughout the night. Though the shelter-in-place warning in Vallejo was lifted at 6 a.m. Wednesday, some residents took to social media to report still being able to detect something in the air. As the second day progressed, an additional sheen was eventually detected in the surrounding waters and city officials were informed about a leak that was found across the waterway at the Phillips 66 refinery.

“To date, no entity has shared any information with city officials about a possible cause of the unknown odor,” according to the city’s statement. One Vallejo resident, Liz Harkness, is not satisfied with the city’s answers about the incident and has started a petition to the “decision makers” of Vallejo and Phillips 66 Refinery in Rodeo to release more definitive answers. “Is the air truly safe?” Harkness wrote in the petition. “People are still feeling ill today! Just what is the sheen made of? Is it effecting wildlife, the bay and rivers? How much is moving upstream with the tides? Are the wetlands in danger? Especially those along Highway 37 that were just restored. Too many questions. No answers in this age of science? I feel we’re being left out. They know more than they let on, and a lot of us in the city know it.”[388]

September 23, 2016: Future Operator of Phillips Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Tops U.S. Crude Spill Charts

Operator of Phillips Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Tops U.S. Crude Spill Charts. Sunoco Logistics, the future operator of Dakota Access Pipeline, partially owned by Phillips 66 and delayed this month after Native American protests in North Dakota, spills crude more often than any of its competitors with more than 200 leaks since 2010, according to a Reuters analysis of government data. Reuters analyzed data that companies are obliged to disclose to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) when they suffer spills and found that Sunoco leaked crude from onshore pipelines at least 203 times over the last six years. Photo: Koch pipeline spill Little Falls MPCA Photos Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Reuters reported on September 23, 2016 that Sunoco Logistics, the future operator of Dakota Access Pipeline, partially owned by Phillips 66 and delayed this month after Native American protests in North Dakota, spills crude more often than any of its competitors with more than 200 leaks since 2010, according to a Reuters analysis of government data. Reuters analyzed data that companies are obliged to disclose to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) when they suffer spills and found that Sunoco leaked crude from onshore pipelines at least 203 times over the last six years. PHMSA data became more detailed in 2010. In its examination, Reuters tallied leaks in the past six years along dedicated onshore crude oil lines and excluded systems that carry natural gas and refined products. The Sunoco data include two of its pipeline units, the West Texas Gulf and Mid-Valley Pipeline. That made it the operator with the highest number of crude leak incidents, ahead of at least 190 recorded by Enterprise Products Partners and 167 by Plains All American Pipeline, according to the spill data reported to PHMSA, which is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Sunoco's spill rate shows protestors may have reason to be concerned about potential leaks. The main option that was considered for routing the line away from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe reservation was previously discarded because it would involve crossing more water-sensitive areas north of the capital Bismarck, according to the project's environmental assessment.

The company has made previous efforts to improve safety, a former Sunoco employee who declined to be identified said. It overhauled safety culture after a spill in 2000, and did so again another in 2005 that dumped some 6,000 barrels of crude into the Kentucky River from its Mid-Valley Pipeline. Sunoco acknowledged the data and told Reuters it had taken measures to reduce its spill rate. "Since the current leadership team took over in 2012, Sunoco Pipeline has enhanced and improved our integrity management program," Sunoco spokesman Jeffrey Shields told Reuters by email. This significantly cut the amount of barrels lost during incidents, he said.[389]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B Dakota Access Pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

September 21, 2016: Officials Investigate Whether Phillips 66's Rodeo Refinery Is Tied to San Pablo Bay Oil Spill

KQED reported on September 21, 2016 that the U.S. Coast Guard and state officials are investigating an oil spill in San Pablo Bay that may have produced an odor that sickened dozens of Vallejo residents Tuesday night. It’s possible the Phillips 66 Refinery in Rodeo could be connected to the incident. Vallejo city officials issued a shelter-in-place order after hundreds of residents complained of a gas-like odor, which sent dozens to the hospital. “We had over 800 calls to our dispatch center of complaints of the smell, questions about what the smell is,” Vallejo Fire Department spokesman Kevin Brown said. “Several dozen of them were medical complaints, so we took several dozen patients into local hospitals.” The U.S. Coast Guard, the California Office of Spill Prevention and Response and the Bay Area Air Quality Management District are investigating.

KQED Science Editor Craig Miller, who lives in Vallejo, described the odor as it first began wafting through the area. “The air up here first starting turning acrid around 7:00 or 7:30 last evening and gradually became more intense. I would describe the smell as some kind of heavy petroleum distill,” Miller said. “It’s similar to the smell you would get driving by an oil tank farm except much, much more intense to the point where the city finally issued a shelter in place alert around 8:30.”

A light oily sheen was discovered shortly after 8 a.m. today at the Phillips 66 Refinery Marine Terminal in Rodeo, company spokesman Paul Adler wrote in an email to KQED. "At the time, a tanker was berthed at the marine terminal," wrote Adler. "Our internal response team immediately responded to the incident and we notified the National Response Center (NRC) and the United States Coast Guard. Operations at the marine terminal have been temporarily shut down and we are working closely with the Coast Guard and other agencies regarding the response." The email indicates the exact amount of oil released is not known, and the cause of the incident is under investigation."[390]

Officials Investigate Whether Phillips 66's Rodeo Refinery Tied to San Pablo Bay Oil Spill. Tthe U.S. Coast Guard and state officials are investigating an oil spill in San Pablo Bay that may have produced an odor that sickened dozens of Vallejo residents and it's possible the Phillips 66 Refinery in Rodeo could be connected to the incident. Crews deploy a boom near a pier in San Pablo Bay at the Phillips 66 refinery in Rodeo, Calif., on September 21, 2016. Photo: Michael Macor, The Chronicle

According to the Napa Valley Register a Coast Guard helicopter crew from Air Station San Francisco Wednesday morning discovered a sheen just over a mile long and 40 yards wide in northern San Pablo Bay, and the Coast Guard and California Office of Spill Prevention and Response's pollution investigators aboard a small boat took samples to determine the source. A second sheen was identified Wednesday afternoon during a Coast Guard flight near the Phillips 66 Refinery's Marine Terminal in Rodeo, according to the Coast Guard. Several vessels and skimmers conducted containment and cleanup operations, and 1,000 feet of boom was placed in the water surrounding the refinery, Coast Guard officials said. No oiled wildlife had been observed as of this afternoon, and Coast Guard pollution investigators have not determined the source of either sheen. The Phillips 66 energy company confirmed a light oily sheen was discovered at the Marine Terminal in Rodeo this morning. Neither Phillips 66 officials nor the Coast Guard said the oil sheens are suspected of causing a mysterious odor that sickened many Vallejo residents Tuesday night.[391]

Phillips 66 officials released a statement saying: "At 8:00 a.m., a light oily sheen was discovered at the Phillips 66 Rodeo Refinery Marine Terminal. At the time, a tanker was berthed at the marine terminal. Our internal response team immediately responded to the incident and we notified the National Response Center (NRC) and the United States Coast Guard. Operations at the marine terminal have been temporarily shut down and we are working closely with the U.S. Coast Guard and other agencies regarding the response. The exact volume of material released is still being determined, and the cause of the incident is under investigation. At this time, there have been no injuries associated with the release and there is no anticipated health impact to the community. The safety of the community, the environment and our people are of utmost importance to our company and these priorities will guide our efforts as we work with the agencies on the response."

Officials said the sheen and smell were reported at the same time. "They do seem to be tied, in fact they happened at the same time. Again with the sheen being a mile long and 40 yards wide, it seems like it's more than just a coincidence that they occurred at the same time," Vallejo Fire Department spokesperson Kevin Brown said. Fire officials don't think the source of the smell is in Vallejo. Their gas detectors didn't pick up the trace of gas in the air and nothing was reported from the refineries. "We're continuing to check in with them, but so far they've reported there's been no burn offs and that there is nothing coming from them," Brown said.[392]

September 19, 2016: Federal Regulators Investigate Phillips Funded Sacagawea Pipeline

Infoforum reported on September 19, 2016 that federal pipeline regulators will be in North Dakota investigating claims from former crew members on the Sacagawea Pipeline that the coating of the pipe was not properly inspected before it was installed under Lake Sakakawea. The North Dakota Public Service Commission also has jurisdiction over the oil pipeline, but the safety allegations fall under the federal agency's area of authority, said PSC Chairwoman Julie Fedorchak. So far, the federal regulators have not notified state regulators that the Sacagawea Pipeline is out of compliance, said Fedorchak.[393] Sacagawea Pipeline Company is a joint venture owned 50 percent by Phillips 66 Partners.

September 19, 2016: Garland to Speak in Bartlesville on October 11

The Bartlesville Chamber of Commerce announced on September 19, 2016 that Phillips 66 CEO Greg Garland will speak to the chamber on October 11, 2016.

September 16, 2016: Delay in Phillip 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Could Cause $1.4 Billion in Losses in a Year

Delay in Phillip 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Could Cause $1.4 Billion in Losses in a Year. Builders of the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, filed a brief to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit detailing its estimated economic losses and claiming it could lose $1.4 billion in a year if delays continue. The government has asked the company to voluntarily halt construction 20 miles east and west of Lake Oahe, located by the Missouri River it is set to cross. North Dakota has been the focus of large Native American protests as the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, which is now suing the federal government for giving developers the right of way, says the project threatens cultural sites and their drinking water source. Photo: Joe Brusky Flickr

ThinkProgress reported on September 16, 2016 that builders of the Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, filed a brief to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit detailing its estimated economic losses and claiming it could lose $1.4 billion in a year if delays continue. “Even a temporary or limited injunction would have devastating long and short term impacts to the [Dakota Access Pipeline] project,” said the brief. In the brief, the company said customer contracts could be permanently lost if Dakota Access’ January 1, 2017 delivery schedule isn’t kept. In addition, 8,000 workers would be affected. Even a temporary delay would mean loses of over $430 million, according to Dakota Access. Just demobilizing the construction could cost $200 million. “These harms are irreparable,” Dakota Access, a company owned by Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners, said. The staggering figures the company listed have not been independently verified.

The Dakota Access pipeline has secured from the Army Corps of Engineers and the four Midwestern states most permits it needs. However, the pipeline lacks a federal easement for Lake Oahe, located by the Missouri River it is set to cross. The government also asked the company to voluntarily halt construction 20 miles east and west of the lake. North Dakota has been the focus of large Native American protests as the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, which is now suing the federal government for giving developers the right of way, says the project threatens cultural sites and their drinking water source.[394]

The Chicago Tribune reported on September 17, 2016 that a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit said in a ruling late Friday that it needs more time to consider the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's request for an emergency injunction. It said it will issue another order setting a date for oral arguments on the motion. The order "should not be construed in any way as a ruling on the merits of that motion," the panel said. Vicki Granado, spokeswoman for Dakota Access LLC, said the company does not comment on pending litigation. Craig Stevens, spokesman for the MAIN Coalition, Midwest Alliance for Infrastructure Now, called the ruling disappointing but said his group respects the panel's decision. "Judge Boasberg, in his thoughtful and thorough opinion last week, confirmed that the Army Corps of Engineers did their jobs expertly and in accordance with the law," Stevens said in a statement. "We are confident that another fair review of the corps' work will render the same decision."

The corps also issued a ruling on Friday granting the tribes a temporary permit that allows demonstrators to legally protest on federal lands managed by the agency. In turn, the tribe assumes responsibility for maintenance, damage and restoration costs, the security and safety of protesters, and liability insurance. Republican Rep. Kevin Cramer, North Dakota's lone member of the U.S. House, called the special permit a good compromise. "It protects the protesters' right to assemble and free speech, while at the same time protecting legal commerce to go forward," Cramer said. "It sets up parameters and certainly puts liability where liability belongs, with the protesters and the leaders of the protest movement."[395]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

See also:

September 16, 2016: Washington State to Limit Carbon Pollution from Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery

KPUG reported on September 16, 2016 that Washington State environmental regulators have finalized a rule that will require large industrial emitters like the BP Cherry Point Refinery and Phillips 66 Ferndale Refinery to gradually reduce carbon emissions by an average of 1.7% annually starting next year. Supporters say it’s needed to protect health and the environment. Republican Ferndale State Senator Doug Eriksen says the rule WON’T have a positive effect on the environment but WILL have a negative one on residents. “Families here in Washington state, they’re going to have to pay more to heat their homes. They’re going to have to pay more to drive their kids to school and to get to work, and really all for no reason,” says Eriksen.[396]

September 16, 2016: Judge Strikes Down Restraining Order Against Phillips Funded Sacagawea Pipeline Under Lake Sakakawea

KFYR reported on September 16, 2016 that Federal Judge Daniel Hovland has struck down a restraining order from the Three Affiliated Tribes and Chairman Mark Fox against Paradigm Energy Partners, LLC drilling two pipelines, one for natural gas and the other for oil, underneath Lake Sakakawea, allowing the project to continue. Paradigm Energy Partners is building the pipeline for Sacagawea Pipeline Company, a joint venture owned 50 percent by Phillips 66 Partners. Fox and the Three Affiliated Tribes filed for the restraining order against Paradigm Energy Partners, LLC, on August 19 for their construction of the Sacagawea Pipeline. Fox had argued that the Three Affiliated Tribes owned the mineral rights to the land, and Paradigm needed to get permission from both the United States government and the Tribes to build the line. In his ruling filed Sept. 13, Hovland decided that the United States held jurisdiction over the lake, and Paradigm properly obtained permits and easements with the Army Corps of Engineers for the project.[397]

September 14, 2016: Phillip 66's Yellowstone Pipeline Has Had Several Serious Oil Spills on the Flathead Reservation

Phillip 66's Yellowstone Pipeline Has Had Several Serious Oil Spills on the Flathead Reservation Over its 40 Year History. Yellowstone Pipeline, originally owned by Conoco, Exxon, and Union Oil and now managed by Phillips 66, has had two major oil leaks on Native American Land since 1993. A 10,000-gallon gasoline leak at Camas Creek near Hot Springs in 1993 put Yellowstone Pipeline in a difficult negotiating position just as its 20-year permit to cross the Flathead Indian Reservation was up for renewal. In addition to the Camas Creek spill, a break at Magpie Creek released about 163,000 gallons of fuel. Both leaks were reported by passing motorists and not the pipeline company; Camas Creek’s break reportedly ran 45 days before discovery. Photo: Mark Smith Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

The Missoulian reported on September 14, 2016 that the Yellowstone Pipeline, originally owned by Conoco, Exxon, and Union Oil and now managed by Phillips 66, has had two major oil leaks on Native American Land since 1993. A 10,000-gallon gasoline leak at Camas Creek near Hot Springs in 1993 put Yellowstone Pipeline in a difficult negotiating position just as its 20-year permit to cross the Flathead Indian Reservation was up for renewal. Then-Tribal Chairman Mickey Pablo said the Tribal Council “was being extra careful” about a new deal in light of at least three serious spills on the reservation from the 40-year-old pipeline.

In addition to the Camas Creek spill, a break at Magpie Creek released about 163,000 gallons of fuel. Both leaks were reported by passing motorists and not the pipeline company; Camas Creek’s break reportedly ran 45 days before discovery. “The belief among many tribal members is that the risk associated with this pipeline is too great, that enough is enough,” Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes environmental protection division manager Bill Swaney told the Missoulian in 1994. “To the tribes, it’s not a question of money, but a question of trying to protect the environment. Many in the tribal public don’t want to take this chance anymore. The pipeline’s track record has been fairly dismal.”

In 1995, Yellowstone Pipeline offered the tribe a deal paying between $25 million and $30 million over 20 years for a lease renewal across the reservation. Tribal officials said the previous 20-year deal only paid about $250,000 and was accompanied by the environmental disasters. The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribal Council voted in early 1995 not to renew the lease. On April 20, 1995, pipeline managers turned off the flow at Missoula and started transferring the fuel to trucks and rail cars to Thompson Falls.[398]

September 14, 2016: ConocoPhillips Chief Says Bartlesville Remains Vital for the Company's Success

The Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise reported on September 14, 2016 that ConocoPhillips Chairman/CEO Ryan Lance was in Bartlesville on September 14, 2016 for a Bartlesville Chamber of Commerce forum at City Church and said that Bartlesville operations of the company remain vital for future success. “(Bartlesville) is really the center, heart and soul of our company as well,” said Lance. “It’s been that way for 100 years. It’s really an important place.” Lance said while the company is streamlining many of its operations through cost-cutting, finding new efficiencies and employee reductions, ConocoPhillips Bartlesville operations will continue through the foreseeable future. “This is a functional excellence center for our company,” Lance said. “This is the place where we do all of our back office accounting and our (informational technology). We do that for the whole company out of Bartlesville. When we looked at it, it continues to be a place that is important for the company, it’s low-cost for the company. So it fits in where we are at, where we are trying to take the company.”

Over the course of his 30-plus year career, Lance said he has seen six downturns and five uptakes. Right now, Lance said, supply and inventory of crude oil is high, while demand is still soft, but the disparity is starting to even out. As a result, ConocoPhillips has lowered it’s break-even point for oil prices to $50 per barrel, while other producers are still counting on $60-$70 per barrel.[399]

September 12, 2016: ConocoPhillips Lays Off Another 90 Employees in Bartlesville After Previously Laying Off 170 in 2015

News6 reported on September 12, 20016 that ConocoPhillips has begun to lay off 90 employees in Bartlesville. ConocoPhillips employs 15,600 people worldwide with 1,400 employees in Bartlesville. The companywide layoffs amount to 6 percent of its workforce. "We expect to have approximately 90 workforce reductions in Bartlesville, which has around 1,400 employees," a company spokesperson based in Bartlesville said. The spokesman said there are no new reductions to report, but employees will be leaving the organization over the coming weeks as necessitated by each individual staff or business unit need.[400] The latest round of layoffs in Bartlesville come nearly one year after more cuts were made to the local workforce. In October 2015, ConocoPhillips reduced 10 percent of its workforce, including approximately 170 employees in Bartlesville. The spokesman could not confirm what areas of Bartlesville employees would be most affected. The majority of Bartlesville employess work in information technology, accounting and human resources for ConocoPhillips’ worldwide operations.[401]

In 2008 ConocoPhillips downsized their operation in Ponca City as about 700 office worker positions in Ponca City were relocated to Bartlesville or Houston. Most of ConocoPhillips' nonrefinery jobs in Ponca City were focused in the credit card, information technology, facilities and other support operations.[402]

September 10, 2016: Future of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Is Uncertain

US Suspends Work on Part of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline. The federal government has temporarily blocked construction on part of Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, acknowledging complaints from the Standing Rock Sioux and other tribal nations that their concerns had not been fully heard before federal overseers approved a pipeline that the tribe said could damage their water supplies and ancestral cultural sites. Photo: Joe Brusky Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Meenal Vamburkar writes at Bloomberg that the Obama administration's halt on work on a stretch of land where Energy Transfer Partners, partly owned by Phillips 66, is building its controversial Dakota Access oil pipeline could threaten to thrust the fate of the project into the hands of the next president. The government's intervention leaves Energy Transfer officials in limbo, whereas "at least with the court they had some certainty on timelines and how things are moving forward. Here they have no idea yet when this review is going to be complete," said Brandon Barnes, a Bloomberg Intelligence analyst. Though he said he sees no threat yet to completing the project on schedule by the end of the year, "we don't know how long this delay will last."

The question is whether "the prospect for future changes alleviates tension sufficiently so that things simmer down and the pipeline can go forward," said Christine Tezak, managing director at research firm ClearView Energy Partners in Washington. "If tensions don't diffuse, I don't know when we'll see it." The best-case scenario is a few months of delay, which could mean the project falls into the hands of the next administration, she said.

Last year, the Obama administration intervened to reject plans for Keystone. President Barack Obama said the project - which had been the subject of heated debate for seven years - wouldn't make a meaningful contribution to the U.S. economy, lower gasoline prices or increase the country's energy security. The Dakota Access case highlights "the need for a serious discussion on whether there should be nationwide reform with respect to considering tribes' views on these types of infrastructure projects," the Justice Department said, noting a plan to invite tribes to formal consultations this fall. "It was absolutely the right move," said Jane Kleeb, president of activist group Bold Alliance and, before the current battle, a prominent opponent of TransCanada Corp.'s Keystone XL pipeline. "They listened to the people on the ground and really looked at what's been happening."[403]

According to Reuters, should the pipeline be delayed for a substantial period, it would affect producers who had counted on demand for oil to be rapidly shipped to the U.S. Gulf, as well as shippers who could find themselves stuck with crude, putting them at risk of unloading it at a loss. It is unclear what the workaround will be if it is unable to build on the current route, though such reroutes can be costly. Other North American pipelines have in the past been rerouted in response to protests. Brigham McCown, the former head of the U.S. Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration under George W. Bush, said that reroutes can be fairly expensive, particularly if it needs to be moved substantially away from the locale of a dispute. "It could delay a project by years. If you're moving the pipeline to an area that's far enough, you may need to go through the regulatory process gain and get permits like ones for water and endangered species. It takes time," McCown said.

The lack of pipeline infrastructure also creates a problem for shippers. There is little commercial storage available in North Dakota, so storing large volumes is not a possibility. Shippers may have no choice but to sell off the oil at a loss, transport it via more expensive rail routes, or move crude through already-crowded pipelines to the U.S. storage hub of Cushing, Oklahoma. That would hurt cash-strapped Bakken producers already dealing with the two-year global oil market rout, because of competitive prices from foreign imports. "In the absence of a new alternative, (Bakken) crude will have to use the existing infrastructure to move," said Sandy Fielden, the director of research for commodities and energy at Morningstar. "Producers will have to take lower prices to compete with imports."[404]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

September 9, 2016: US Suspends Work on Part of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

The New York Times reported on September 9, 2016 that the federal government has temporarily blocked construction on part of Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, acknowledging complaints from the Standing Rock Sioux and other tribal nations that their concerns had not been fully heard before federal overseers approved a pipeline that the tribe said could damage their water supplies and ancestral cultural sites. The Justice Department and other agencies called for “serious discussion on whether there should be nationwide reform with respect to considering tribes’ views on these types of infrastructure projects.” The government’s move, announced minutes after a federal judge rejected efforts by the Standing Rock Sioux, appeared to seek to ease tensions and reset the terms of a passionate debate that has cast the 1,170-mile Dakota Access pipeline either as an economic boon for the Plains or a threat to Native American sovereignty, waters and lands.

In a joint statement from the Departments of Justice, the Interior and the Army, the government announced that the pause applied to the pipeline’s path across a sliver of federal lands and under a dammed section of the Missouri River known as Lake Oahe. The lake, created by government-built dams a half-century ago, is a water source for the Standing Rock Sioux and a focal point of the dispute. The Army Corps of Engineers intends to review its previous decisions under federal environmental and other laws that had given approval for the pipeline. The government also urged the company building the pipeline to “voluntarily pause” all construction for 40 miles around Lake Oahe. The rest of the pipeline construction would not be affected.

“Today’s news is a stunning development,” said Jan Hasselman, a lawyer with Earthjustice, an environmental legal group that is representing the Standing Rock Sioux. “It vindicates what the tribe has been saying form the beginning: The process was wrong, and the legal standards for projects like these need reform.”[405]

The Department of Justice, the Department of the Army and the Department of the Interior issued a statement regarding Standing Rock Sioux Tribe v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that included the following:

“We appreciate the District Court’s opinion on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ compliance with the National Historic Preservation Act. However, important issues raised by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and other tribal nations and their members regarding the Dakota Access pipeline specifically, and pipeline-related decision-making generally, remain. Therefore, the Department of the Army, the Department of Justice, and the Department of the Interior will take the following steps. The Army will not authorize constructing the Dakota Access pipeline on Corps land bordering or under Lake Oahe until it can determine whether it will need to reconsider any of its previous decisions regarding the Lake Oahe site under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) or other federal laws. Therefore, construction of the pipeline on Army Corps land bordering or under Lake Oahe will not go forward at this time. The Army will move expeditiously to make this determination, as everyone involved — including the pipeline company and its workers — deserves a clear and timely resolution. In the interim, we request that the pipeline company voluntarily pause all construction activity within 20 miles east or west of Lake Oahe.[406]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

September 9, 2016: Phillips 66 Finalizes Sale of Whitegate Refinery to Irving Oil

After almost four years of talking about selling Whitegate Refinery, PR Newswire reported on September 9, 2016 that Irving Oil has assumed full ownership of Whitegate Refinery and will continue full operation of the facility, including maintaining its existing workforce. "Whitegate is a great facility, and is a good fit for our company," says Arthur Irving, Chairman of Irving Oil. "We are happy to welcome the Whitegate team to Irving Oil and we are looking forward to working together."[407] Greg Garland first told reporters on December 13, 2012 that Phillips would likely look to sell its Whitegate refinery in Cork, Ireland.[408]

September 7, 2016: Judge Extends Restraining Order on Phillips Partners Sacagawea Pipeline

Wday reported on September 8, 2016 that U.S. District Judge Daniel Hovland extended the order that was requested by Paradigm Energy Partners, which is constructing two pipelines under Lake Sakakawea to transport oil and natural gas. The Sacagawea Pipeline Company is a joint venture owned 50 percent by Phillips 66 Partners. The Three Affiliated Tribes issued a cease and desist order to halt construction under the lake, which tribal leaders say required permission from the tribe. Paradigm then sued Chairman Mark Fox and Tribal Police Chief Nelson Heart in federal court, arguing the tribe has no authority to halt construction. Hovland granted Paradigm’s request for a temporary restraining order on Aug. 23 and construction on the pipeline resumed. In extending the order through Sept. 19, Hovland wrote that he needs additional time to “fully consider the complex legal issues” that are under consideration.[409]

September 4, 2016: Protests Turn Violent at Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline As Tribe Accuses Company of Desecrating Sacred Sites

Protests Turn Violent at Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline. Protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline, owned in part by Phillips 66, turned violent as demonstrators supporting the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe faced off with private security officers from Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners and security officers threatened protesters with dogs.

Tim Mentz Sr., who helped start the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Tribal Historic Preservation Office, said bulldozers had likely dug through burial grounds with little regard and without allowing members of the tribe a chance to look for human remains. Photo: Democracy Now
Frank Phillips Respected Native Americans' Rights and Traditions. Phillips 66 founder Frank Phillips was well known for the respect he showed towards Native Americans, a respect that was fully reciprocated. On March 28, 1931, Frank Phillips was adopted into the Osage Tribe in a ceremony held at Woolaroc. Following the ceremony, Frank - Eagle Chief - was dressed by the Osage Chiefs in an official costume and was presented with a split buffalo hide by Zack Miller of the 101 Ranch. The adoption resolution was etched in English and Osage on the hide. It marked the first time the Osage had ever adopted a white person into their tribe.

The Osage Nation Supports the Standing Rock Sioux. The Osage Nation is providing emergency supplies to the protesters at Standing Rock and has issued a proclamation supporting Standing Rock opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline. Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners. Photo: Woolaroc

NPR reported on September 4, 2016 that protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline, owned in part by Phillips 66, turned violent as demonstrators supporting the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe faced off with private security officers from Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners and security officers threatened protesters with dogs. The Morton County Sheriff's Department said protesters marched from their encampment onto private lands, where the pipeline is being constructed. "Once protestors arrived at the construction area, they broke down a wire fence by stepping and jumping on it," the sheriff's office said. "According to numerous witnesses within five minutes the crowd of protestors, estimated to be a few hundred people became violent. They stampeded into the construction area with horses, dogs and vehicles." the Morton County Sheriff's Department said protesters marched from their encampment onto private lands, where the pipeline is being constructed. "Once protestors arrived at the construction area, they broke down a wire fence by stepping and jumping on it," the sheriff's office said. "According to numerous witnesses within five minutes the crowd of protestors, estimated to be a few hundred people became violent. They stampeded into the construction area with horses, dogs and vehicles."[410]

According to KCTV, an estimated 500 protesters entered the construction zone. Pipeline security officers told authorities they were jabbed with fence posts and flag poles during the altercation. Witnesses report that attack dogs and tear gas were allegedly used on protesters. "They were able to stop the pipeline by giving them the run over the next ridge," said George Henry, a bystander. "But understand a few of the warriors received the gas." "I wasn't expecting them to mace, it came out of nowhere," one protester said. "They let the dogs loose on a horse, and they maced a woman in the face, this close range, that's what started it all." A spokesperson for Morton County Sheriff's Department said protestors did assault security officers working for Dakota Access.[411]

Protesters disputed the authorities' account, CNN affiliate KFYR said. Demonstrators said the guards sprayed many of the activists with pepper spray and tear gas, and some protesters were injured by the guards' dogs. "It was kind of scary," Lonnie Favel told KFYR. "A lot of people are out here with their children. Accidents happen all the time with dogs, and people could really get hurt."[412]

According to Indian Country Media, The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe filed an emergency motion Sunday for a temporary restraining order to prevent further destruction of the Tribe’s sacred sites by Dakota Access Pipeline. “On Saturday, Dakota Access Pipeline and Energy Transfer Partners brazenly used bulldozers to destroy our burial sites, prayer sites and culturally significant artifacts,” Tribal Chairman David Archambault II said. “They did this on a holiday weekend, one day after we filed court papers identifying these sacred sites. The desecration of these ancient places has already caused the Standing Rock Sioux irreparable harm. We’re asking the court to halt this path of destruction.”

“Destroying the Tribe’s sacred places over a holiday weekend, while the judge is considering whether to block the pipeline, shows a flagrant disregard for the legal process,” said Jan Hasselman, attorney for the Standing Rock Sioux. “The Tribe has been seeking to vindicate its rights peacefully through the courts. But Dakota Access Pipeline used evidence submitted to the Court as their roadmap for what to bulldoze. That’s just wrong.”[413]

NPR reported on September 6, 2016 that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it does not oppose the temporary halt of construction on the Dakota Access Pipeline, owned in part by Phillips 66. Over the weekend, the tribe filed an emergency motion asking the court to halt construction of the pipeline. In one filing, Tim Mentz Sr., who helped start the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Tribal Historic Preservation Office, said bulldozers had likely dug through burial grounds with little regard and without allowing members of the tribe a chance to look for human remains. "The Corps acknowledges that the public interest would be served by preserving peace near Lake Oahe until the Court can render its well-considered opinion on Plaintiff's Motion for Preliminary Injunction," the Corp said. "The Corps therefore does not oppose this short and discrete temporary restraining order."[414][415]

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported on September 7, 2016 that U.S. District Judge James Boasberg issued an order that work will temporarily stop between North Dakota's State Highway 1806 and 20 miles east of Lake Oahe, but will continue west of the highway because he believes the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers lacks jurisdiction on private land. The judge said he will rule by the end of Friday on the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's challenge of federal regulators' decision to grant permits to the Dallas, Texas-based operators of the Dakota Access Pipeline, which will cross North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa and Illinois. Standing Rock Sioux tribal chairman Dave Archambault II issued a statement after the ruling, saying: "Today's denial of a temporary restraining order ... west of Lake Oahe puts my people's sacred places at further risk of ruin and desecration." Attorney Jan Hasselman with Earthjustice, who filed the broader lawsuit on behalf of the tribe, noted the tribe will "know more by the end of the week about where we're heading."

Over the weekend, workers allegedly bulldozed sites on private land that Hasselman said in court documents was "of great historic and cultural significance to the tribe." The tribe's cultural expert, Tim Mentz Sr., said in court documents that the tribe believes there are human remains in the area and that it wants "an opportunity to rebury our relatives." Lawyers for Energy Transfer Partners filed court documents Tuesday morning denying that workers have destroyed any cultural sites and asking the judge to reject the tribes' request for a temporary work stoppage. The company said it "has taken and continues to take every reasonable precaution" to protect cultural sites.[416]

Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

September 2, 2016: Osage Nation Sends Support to Standing Rock Sioux Protesting Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Osage Nation Sends Support to Standing Rock Sioux Protesting Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline. “The Osage Nation supports the people of Standing Rock who are protecting the land and waters,” said Osage Nation Principal Chief Geoffrey M. Standing Bear of the situation. “People everywhere should think hard about the priorities of our society. Should the earth be used up by the human race or should we respect the limits of the earth?” Photo: Osage Nation Principal Chief Geoffrey M. Standing Bear Osage Nation

Bartlesville Radio reported on September 2, 2016 that the Osage Nation has expressed their support for the Standing Rock Sioux as they continue to protest the development of the Dakota Access Pipeline, owned in part by Phillips 66. “The Osage Nation supports the people of Standing Rock who are protecting the land and waters,” said Osage Nation Principal Chief Geoffrey M. Standing Bear of the situation. “People everywhere should think hard about the priorities of our society. Should the earth be used up by the human race or should we respect the limits of the earth?”

The Osage Nation is providing emergency supplies to the protesters at Standing Rock. Some of the items the Osages have shipped to those camped at Cannonball River include: 720 blankets, 72 all-weather heavy-duty flashlights and batteries, and 100 hand-held flashlights with batteries. More supplies will be coming from the Osage Nation and Osage Casinos. “Our Chief asked our casino staff last week to mobilize vendors and resources in support of our brothers and sisters at Standing Rock, after we heard the water supply had been cut off to the Cannonball River gathering,” said Byron Bighorse, CEO of Osage Casino. “After finding out that water was in route to them, we asked what other vital provisions they needed. It was determined that blankets, flashlights and batteries were a priority, so we immediately arranged for those items to be rush shipped to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe organizers. We are honored to help,” added Bighorse.

The Sioux Tribe website calls this “another chapter in the long history of the federal government granting the construction of potentially hazardous projects near or through tribal lands, waters, and cultural places without including the tribe.”[417][418]

September 2, 2016: Phillips 66 Donates $11,000 Towards Walking Track at Redbud Creek

The Ponca City News reported on September 2, 2016 that Phillips 66 donated $11,000 and the Woodlands Parent Teacher Association (PTA) donated another $5,000 for a one-quarter mile long walking track at Redbud Park near Woodlands School. In appreciation of the grant from Phillips 66, the track was named The Phillips 66 Walking Track at Redbud Park.

The school plans to require students to walk or run a lap around the track each day at the beginning of recess, with additional laps encouraged. In addition, the track will be used often for P.E. running activities. At other times, classes will take a “brain break” by running or walking a few laps before returning to class. The track is open for public use in the park.[419]

September 2, 2016: Court to Rule if Phillips 66 Funded Sacagawea Pipeline Needs Tribal Consent to Drill Under Lake Sakakawea

The Jamestown Sun reported on September 2, 2016 that a federal judge will issue what could be a precedent-setting decision after hearing arguments on whether Paradigm Energy Partners LLC, owned 50 percent by Phillips 66 Partners, needed consent from American Indian tribes to drill two pipelines through tribally owned minerals under North Dakota's largest body of water. After nearly five hours of testimony and legal arguments on September 1, 2016 in U.S. District Court in Bismarck, Judge Daniel Hovland took the matter under advisement, allowing drilling under Lake Sakakawea to continue until he issues his ruling while also lamenting the lack of legal opinions offered by attorneys and previous case law on the issue. "It sounds like I'm going to be left to interpret this with no guidance from anybody," Hovland said. Paradigm Energy Partners LLC has already completed a $125 million oil pipeline under the lake and is boring the hole for a companion $16.6 million natural gas pipeline over the objections of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation, otherwise known as the Three Affiliated Tribes. The hearing on Paradigm's request for an injunction against the tribe ended without a firm timeline for Hovland's ruling, but the judge noted that the restraining order expires on Monday or Tuesday and he can extend it for 14 days for "good cause." "Certainly, in my view, good cause exists because I've got a multitude of issues to sort through," he said.

Tribal officials said Paradigm offered up to $2 million during a June 9 council meeting to resolve the right-of-way and other issues related to the pipelines. "And I believe they said they had a check there," Tribal Attorney Caleb Dog Eagle recalled. Paradigm CEO Troy Andrews said that while the company never believed it needed the tribes' legal consent, "I wanted to get a deal done."[420]

September 1, 2016: Thirty Arrested in Iowa in Bid to Disrupt Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Thirty Arrested in Bid to Disrupt Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline. Thirty activists were arrested on the Farm Progress grounds in Boone, Iowa in an effort aimed at disrupting construction of the Dakota Access pipeline. Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners. Photo: Bryan Houlgrave

The Des Moines Register reported on September 1, 2016 that 30 activists were arrested on the Farm Progress grounds in Boone, Iowa in an effort aimed at disrupting construction of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66. The protest represented one of the largest demonstrations yet in Iowa against the four-state pipeline project. It also was the first time a formal effort was made to encourage a large number of arrests in a bid to obstruct construction work in Iowa. Organizers vowed afterward that additional demonstrations will be forthcoming, along with more arrests. Crystal Defatte, 31, of Bettendorf, a stay-at-home mother with three children, was among those arrested as she stood with other protesters in solidarity against the pipeline project. "Every year you hear about oil spills. I don't want oil in the water that my children drink. This is a moral responsibility for me," Defatte said.

A representative of Precision Pipeline, a contractor for Dakota Access, told the protesters they were not welcome and asked them to leave after they tried to create human chains to block four entrances to the site. Authorities then repeatedly told the protesters they had the opportunity to leave without being taken into custody, but all of those arrested refused to move.

Business leaders and union construction workers have lined up in support of the pipeline project, citing positive economic benefits and a desire for U.S. energy security.[421]

There were no violent events during the protest, and law enforcement officials at the site expressed satisfaction with how it unfolded. Among the protesters was Dick Lamb, who owns land a few miles from the protest site through which the pipeline is passing. "They are tearing through (our property), separating the precious topsoil," Lamb said. "We feel betrayed by our state government, all three branches of it. They didn't stop (the pipeline). They enabled it."[422] Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

August 31, 2016: Tyler Crowe Says Phillips 66 is One of the Best-Run Companies in the Oil and Gas Sector

Phillips 66 is One of the Best-Run Companies in the Oil and Gas Sector. According to Tyler Crowe, Phillips 66 is one of the three best run companies in the oil and gas sector - largely because CEO Greg Garland (right in photo) has done an admirable job running the company -- and allocating capital wisely. Photo by Dr. S. J. Pickens

Tyler Crowe wrote at The Motley Fool on August 31, 2016 that he thinks Phillips 66 is one of the three best run companies in the oil and gas sector - largely because CEO Greg Garland has done an admirable job running the company -- and allocating capital wisely -- since it was spun out of ConocoPhillips in 2012. Crowe says that refining and marketing produces the lion's share of the company's cash flow and profits but the growth prospects in refining are minimal, and can eat up huge amounts of capital while taking a very long time to pay off. "But the refining business also gives the company a big advantage over its integrated and producer peers. They have felt the brunt of low oil and gas prices on their bottom lines, while Phillips 66 has continued to generate big cash flows. And it's how Garland and team treat those cash flows -- and what they don't do with them -- that emphasizes how well-run the company is," writes Crowe. "Garland has so far allocated capital to growth projects in the midstream and petrochemicals space, expanding the company's own capacity instead of making splashy acquisitions that often don't generate the promised returns. By staying focused on internal growth, the company avoids a lot of the pitfalls that come with big acquisitions."[423]

August 30, 2016: Judge Rejects Motion to Restrict Protesters of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Judge Rejects Motion to Restrict Protesters of Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline. Federal udge Rebecca Goodgame Ebinger has denied a request for a temporary restraining order to prevent activists from interfering with construction in Iowa of the Dakota Access Pipeline, owned in part by Phillips 66. Dakota Access similarly tried to block demonstrators in North Dakota, where an ongoing protest by the Standing Rock Sioux tribe against the pipeline has expanded to thousands of people. Photo: Protesters in San Francisco by Peg Hunter Flicker Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

The Des Moines Register reported on August 30, 2016 that a federal judge in Des Moines has denied a request for a temporary restraining order to prevent activists from interfering with construction in Iowa of the Dakota Access Pipeline, owned in part by Phillips 66. The ruling by Judge Rebecca Goodgame Ebinger means protests aimed at halting the $3.8 billion pipeline project will apparently proceed Wednesday in rural Boone County. Ed Fallon, a leader of Bold Iowa, one of the anti-pipeline groups, said he anticipates 50 to 100 people will participate in the protests in the Pilot Mound area, and about 20 activists will risk arrest in an effort to halt the pipeline project. The Dakota Access petition was aimed at restricting Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement and Bold Iowa, both of which strongly oppose the pipeline project, as well as "unknown parties." CCI and Bold Iowa issued defiant statements after the judge's ruling, although both groups have pledged that any protests will be non-violent. However, some activists have said they will engage in civil disobedience in an effort to halt construction of the pipeline. “We have been in this pipeline fight for over two years, and have vowed to use all of the tools available to us in our fight,” said Adam Mason, state policy director at Iowa CCI. “We will not be deterred or bullied by Big Oil.”

Dakota Access, a unit of Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners, had asked the court to keep protesters at least 25 feet away from the pipeline project, suggesting it would still allow protesters to exercise their First Amendment rights of free speech.[424] Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

Dakota Access similarly tried to block demonstrators in North Dakota, where an ongoing protest by the Standing Rock Sioux tribe against the pipeline has expanded to thousands of people. Standing Rock Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II wrote in an New York Times op-ed that the overblown reaction on the part of the oil giant, as well as North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple—who declared a state of emergency over the protests—violated civil and human rights and amounted to the local government "act[ing] as the armed enforcement for corporate interests."

Meanwhile, another federal judge is expected to issue a ruling by Sept. 9 as to whether or not the Army Corps of Engineers violated the Standing Rock Sioux's treaty rights in approving the pipeline.[425]

August 30, 2016: Phillips 66 Cuts Production at Bayway Refinery

Phillips 66 Cuts Production at Bayway Refinery. Phillips 66 has cut production by roughly 5 percent at Bayway Refinery amid weak refining margins, according to a source familiar with the refinery's operations. Photo: William Hartz Flicker Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Reuters reported on August 30, 2016 that Phillips 66 has cut production by roughly 5 percent at Bayway Refinery amid weak refining margins, according to a source familiar with the refinery's operations. The U.S. gasoline crack spread, an indicator of how much refiners make from converting a barrel of oil into a barrel of gasoline, remains at its lowest level in the past five years. The U.S. diesel crack spread also remains at five-year lows. U.S. and global refining margins have been hurt by historically high gasoline and diesel inventories. Refining executives and analysts across the globe are predicting refiners are going to be forced to scale back production to reduce inventories, balance the market and boost margins. East Coast refineries see some of the weakest margins due in part to their supply constraints, and experts predict they would be among the first to cut runs.[426]

August 29, 2016: Phillips 66 Senior Vice President for Health, Safety and Environment to Retire

Houston Business Journal reported on August 29, 2016 that Debbie Adams, Senior Vice President for Health, Safety and Environment, will retire Aug. 31 after 33 years at Phillips 66. “Debbie has had a tremendous impact on our organization throughout her entire career, and has been a great partner to me and the executive leadership team,” said Chairman and CEO Greg Garland. “Under her leadership, Phillips 66 has established itself as a safety leader, achieving first-quartile performance the past two years for both combined total recordable rate and lost workday case rate.” Adams will be succeeded by Jay Churchill who got his start at Conoco in 1979 as a plant process engineer at the Lake Charles Refinery in Louisiana.[427]

August 27, 2016: Worker Killed in Accident on Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

The Associated Press reported on August 27, 2016 that a man working on the four-state Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, was killed in an apparent accident in western North Dakota, said North Dakota Public Service Commissioner Brian Kalk. Kalk said the man was on a tractor Thursday, covering the underground pipeline with soil and grass seed. Kalk said the company reported Friday that the man suffered a serious head injury, apparently while working on equipment. He was taken to a Minot hospital, where he died.[428] Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

August 27, 2016: Court Battle Brews over Phillips Funded Sacagawea Pipeline Under Lake Sakakawea

Court Battle Brews over Phillips Funded Sacagawea Pipeline Under Lake Sakakawea. The Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation asserts that Sacagawea Pipeline Company, a joint venture owned 50 percent by Phillips 66 Partners, was required but failed to get the tribe's permission to begin pipeline construction under Lake Sakakawea. The Tribal Business Council voted August 3, 2016 to issue a cease and desist order to halt all construction under Lake Sakakawea. Lake Sakakawea is the drinking water source for several western North Dakota cities, including communities on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation. Photo of Lake Sakakawea. North Dakota Parks and Recreation Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The West Fargo Pioneer reported on August 27, 2016 that the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation asserts that Sacagawea Pipeline Company, a joint venture owned 50 percent by Phillips 66 Partners, was required but failed to get the tribe's permission to begin pipeline construction under Lake Sakakawea. The Tribal Business Council voted August 3, 2016 to issue a cease and desist order to halt all construction under Lake Sakakawea. Lake Sakakawea is the drinking water source for several western North Dakota cities, including communities on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation. "Paradigm was informed on several different occasions that the consent of the MHA Nation would not be granted unless there were adequate assurances that an oil pipeline under the lake posed no threat to the MHA Nation's water resources," Tribal Chairman Mark Fox wrote in an Aug. 8 letter. "To date, that assurance has not been provided to the MHA Nation's satisfaction." Paradigm filed a federal lawsuit on Aug. 19 against Fox and Tribal Police Chief Nelson Hart arguing they have no authority to halt construction. The company is constructing two 70-mile companion oil and natural gas pipelines that will travel from McKenzie to Mountrail counties.

The Sacagawea Pipeline is also under investigation by federal pipeline regulators after former contractors said the pipeline was installed under the lake without being properly inspected. The owner of Boyd & Co. told Forum News Service the pipeline was properly inspected and he says the claims are false accusations made by workers who were fired. About 8,980 feet of the pipeline system will pass under Lake Sakakawea via the installation of about 10,980 feet of welded steel pipeline, the Corps of Engineers said in its environmental assessment. The pipeline will be installed at least 100 feet below the lakebed through horizontal directional drilling with emergency shut-off valves on either side of the lake and around-the-clock pipeline monitoring to detect leaks.[429][430][431]

August 27, 2016: Plaquemines Parish Tries to Close Breach in Levee That Protects Phillips 66's Alliance Refinery

Levee Breach Near Phillips 66's Alliance Refinery Raises Concerns. The above photo shows Phillips 66's Alliance Refinery after Hurricane Isaac struck Louisiana in September, 2012. Plaquemines Parish Emergency Management Officials are now on high alert after a breach along the bayou side levee near Alliance Refinery. Parish Council Chair Kirk Lepine wonders if aging infrastructure can weather a hurricane or bigger storm. Photo: Lower Mississippi Riverkeeper Flooding at the Alliance Refinery in Belle Chasse, Louisiana after Hurricane Isaac] Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Plaquemines Parish Tries to Close Breach in Levee Breach That Protects Phillips 66's Alliance Refinery. Two days after water began pouring through a levee in Plaquemines Parish, local officials working with the Louisiana National Guard successfully plugged the 70 foot breach with sandbags. Photo: Plaquemines Parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness

WWL Tv reported on August 27, 2016 that Plaquemines Parish Emergency Management Officials are on high alert after a breach along the bayou side levee near the Phillips 66's Alliance Refinery raised the alarm for parish leaders. The breach was discovered where a pipeline crosses the levee. Within six hours the breach had reached 20 feet wide, prompting swift response. Plaquemines Parish crews immediately reacted. Generators were on site providing light and started to work getting 2000 pound sandbags into the breach. Low lying areas along Louisiana Highway 23 in Plaquemines parish are at risk for flooding during hurricane season. Earthen levees on either side protect homeowners and industry there. “It is a grave concern of ours, and we are monitoring it every day with the resources that we have,” says Council Chair Kirk Lepine. Emergency management says the breach does not pose a flooding threat to homes or Highway 23 right now. The water is coming in from the Barataria Bay side and moving back into the drainage canal, and then moving back to Barataria Bay.

Lepine says a hurricane could change that and wonders if aging infrastructure can weather a bigger storm. Lepine says he hopes that the levee is inspected every week, but he was not sure. Lepine says with budget cutbacks, levee monitoring is now split between departments. It's something that needs to be addressed. “Before it was inspected every week. And if there were deficiencies in the levee we were notified. We tried to stay on top of it as much as we can."[432][433]

NOLA reported on August 29, 2016 that two days after water began pouring through a levee in Plaquemines Parish, local officials working with the Louisiana National Guard successfully plugged the breach with sandbags Sunday night (Aug. 28), authorities said. The breach had widened from 20 feet to more than 70 feet, but it never threatened local residences or Louisiana 23, said Plaquemines government admininstration spokesman Michael Powell.[434]

WWL reported on August 30, 2016 that a temporary patch appears to be holding, but with a tropical system churning and gaining strength in the Gulf of Mexico, a construction crew is working around the clock to repair the gap that could threaten the only hurricane evacuation route in the lower end of the parish. Officials expect a permanent fix to be in place by Friday at the earliest. “We’re going to get it. We got it down to a trickle,” said Lonnie Davis, who owns Mega Industries, the company working on the levee repair project. “This was a raging river in here when we got here. I mean, it was really bad.” The damaged levee is part of a system of non-federal back levees designed to keep flood water off of Highway 23 – the lone route out of the lower end of the parish. “It’s protecting the residents of Myrtle Grove, Ironton, it’s protecting the Phillips 66 refinery, an entire Entergy substation that provides power to our lower end,” said Patrick Harvey, Plaquemines Parish’s emergency manager.[435]

August 26, 2016: Phillips 66 Partners to buy Chevron’s South Louisiana NGL Logistics Assets

Energy Business Review reported on August 26, 2016 that Phillips 66 Partners has entered into an agreement to acquire a natural gas liquids (NGL) logistics system in southeast Louisiana currently owned by Chevron. The system comprises nearly 500 miles of pipelines and a storage cavern connecting multiple fractionation facilities, refineries and a petrochemical facility. The acquisition includes an approximately 300-mile TENDS pipeline system, which is a bidirectional NGL pipeline system connected to third-party fractionators, refineries. Phillips 66 plans to finance the transaction with cash and borrowings under the Partnership’s revolving credit facility. “This acquisition will expand the Partnership’s NGL footprint into the Louisiana market," syas Phillips 66 Partners president. "The assets are strategically located and connect offshore production, local refineries and petrochemical facilities in south Louisiana while providing significant opportunities for fee-based growth.”[436]

August 24, 2016: Native Americans Wait on Court Decision on Controversial Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Native Americans Wait on Court Decision on Controversial Phillip 66 Funded Pipeline. At least 300 people opposed to a controversial Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, waited anxiously outside a D.C. federal courthouse this afternoon for a decision on whether or not the project can to continue. And now they’ll have to wait just a little longer. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe filed a lawsuit against the Army Corps of Engineers on July 27 to stop the pipeline that would cross under the Missouri River, the reservation’s sole source of water. Photo: Sierra Club

PBS reported on August 24, 2016 that at least 300 people opposed to the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline, funded in part by Phillips 66, waited anxiously outside a D.C. federal courthouse this afternoon for a decision on whether or not the project can to continue. And now they’ll have to wait just a little longer. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe filed a lawsuit against the Army Corps of Engineers on July 27 to stop the pipeline that would cross under the Missouri River, the reservation’s sole source of water. The corps approved the pipeline last month, but the tribe argues they were not properly consulted, and that cultural and historical sites would be destroyed during construction. Judge James E. Boasberg from the United States District Court for the District of Columbia said he will make a decision about the $3.7 billion Dakota Access Pipeline on or before September 9. “We’re very concerned because construction is ongoing,” said Jan Hasselman, a lawyer with EarthJustice, an environmental advocacy organization representing the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. “In another couple of weeks or a month there won’t be anything left to protect.” The tribe, whose land is located a half-mile south of the pipeline, has resisted the project for months. People started gathering near the construction site in Cannon Ball, North Dakota, in April to stage demonstrations. In recent weeks, hundreds more arrived, and some sparked confrontations with police and construction workers. At least 28 people people were arrested for disorderly conduct and trespassing this month. The pipeline company says it halted work after some demonstrators attacked workers with rocks and bottles. With the legal ruling delayed until next month, it is uncertain what will happen at the site and to the several hundred protesters camped nearby. “We have to play by the rules the federal government has given us,” David Archambault II, chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, told PBS NewsHour. “We’re still going to pray and be in peace and ensure our strength in unity is powerful.”[437]

August 24, 2016: Iowa Farmers Complain that Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline Wrecks Their Soil

The Des Moines Register reported on August 24, 2016 that some Iowa farmers want builders of the 1,154-mile Dakota Access pipeline, owned in part by Phillips 66, to put their soil back the way they found it. Francis Goebel now has a scar running across his soybean fields where the dark, fertile topsoil is being stacked on top of several feet of hard clay mixed with clay loam and fear his soil will less suited for growing crops — and much less valuable. "Nature separated those soils for a reason, that's the way I feel," said Goebel, who runs a 164-acre century farm in Sioux County. "If nature put it there, they should put it back the way it was." Although Dakota Access is separating the rich topsoil from the soil beneath, it isn't being as careful with the next two layers, mixing the clay loam subsoil with the hard clay underneath. Goebel acknowledges he was well compensated by Dakota Access for the 12-acre easement the company obtained to cross his land. He received $21,000 per acre for the easement, plus payments for initial crop losses. But he's worried about his future corn and soybean yields. In some places, crews excavated 20 feet deep, meaning the hard clay at the bottom could end up just a couple feet from the ground. "To me, it's a scar."

Tom Konz acknowledges that it is too late for his and his neighbor's land — contractors buried the pipe last week. But he wants other Iowa landowners in the pipeline's path to remain vigilant about their soil as crews begin tearing into the ground. Konz received about $102,000 from Dakota Access, a figure that included payments for the easement, plus three years' worth of crop damage. But he said that's nothing compared with the ongoing costs of anticipated crop losses. "The rest of my life, I guarantee you will see that pipeline forever," Konz said. "It will come up as red (on a yield map). We'll fight it every year for yield loss."

But Dakota Access attorney Bret Dublinski noted that all the contested farms already had tile buried under crops to help drain fields. It is often removed, repaired and replaced, he said. "You cannot consistently argue both that Dakota Access is going to irreparably harm my soil because it hasn’t been changed in 1,000 years and then also say 'I'm concerned about my pattern tile that I put in by turning up the soil,'" Dublinski said. "… Those are arguments that simply cannot exist in the same space."[438]

August 24, 2016: Phillips 66 Shuts Gasoline-Producing Unit at Lake Charles Refinery

Reuters reported on August 24, 2016 that Phillips 66 shut a gasoline-making reformer unit at Lake Charles Refinery earlier this month, and advanced planned work on the unit, said two sources familiar with the work. The unit is slated to return to return to service in mid-September.[439]

August 23, 2016: Refinery Vessel Arrives at Ponca Refinery

The Ponca City News reported on August 23, 2016 that a 92 ton refinery vessel arrived at the Ponca Refinery on a 132 foot long trailer. The combined weight of the trailer and vessel was 180 tons.[440]

August 23, 2016: Hundreds of Native Americans Continue Months-Long Protest Against Phillips 66 Funded Dakota Access Pipeline

Native youth and supporters protest in New York against Dakota Access Pipeline. Sioux youth from the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in North Dakota rallied with supporters in Union Square after running 2,000 miles across the United States to protest the proposed Dakota Access Pipeline. Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners. Photo by Joe Catron Flickr Creative Commons. Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Nasdaq reported on August 23, 2016 that construction will remain halted on the 1,154-mile Dakota Access pipeline, owned in part by Phillips 66, as a federal judge postponed a hearing to determine whether protesters should be prevented from accessing the site near the Missouri River. Tensions between the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, which opposes the pipeline, and local police have escalated in recent weeks. More than two dozen protesters have been arrested after they blocked entry to the site 34 miles south of Mandan, N.D. The pipeline's developer, Dakota Access LLP, has filed a lawsuit seeking to block protesters from the site. Phillips 66 owns a 25% stake in the $3.7B pipeline that is being built by Energy Transfer Partners.

A coalition of Native American groups that oppose the pipeline sent out an appeal to human rights groups to come to the North Dakota site, calling the situation a crisis. The Standing Rock Sioux argue that the pipeline threatens sacred sites and poses a risk to the tribe's drinking-water supply, since they say the pipeline would cross the Missouri River just upstream from the reservation. "We are committed to peaceful defense of our water and our territory," the groups said.[441]

According to Jack Healy writing in the NY Times, people have been gathering since April, but as hundreds more poured in over the past two weeks, confrontations began rising among protesters, sheriff’s officers and construction workers with the pipeline company. Local officials are struggling to handle hundreds of demonstrators filling the roads to protest and camp out in once-empty grassland about an hour south of Bismarck, the state capital. The pipeline company says it was forced to shut down construction this month after protesters threatened its workers and threw bottles and rocks at contractors’ vehicles. Leaders from the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, whose reservation lies just south of the pipeline’s path, say the protests are peaceful. Weapons, drugs and alcohol are prohibited from the protest camp. Children march in the daily demonstrations. The protesters sleep in tents and tepees, cook food in open-air kitchens and share stories and strategies around evening campfires. There is even a day care. At morning meetings, speakers warn parents to keep their children away from the Missouri River at sunset, and remind one another they are camped out in prayer. For many, the effort was about reclaiming a stake in ancestral lands that had been whittled down since the 1800s, treaty by broken treaty. “Lands were constantly getting reduced, shaken up,” said Dave Archambault II, the tribal chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux. “I could give you a list of every wrongdoing this government did to our people. All of that is frustration pent up, and it’s being recognized.”

Energy Transfer Partners says it has the necessary state and federal permits and hopes to finish construction by the end of the year. The pipeline’s route starts in the Bakken oil fields of western North Dakota and ends in Illinois. The United States Army Corps of Engineers says it consulted extensively with tribes, including the Standing Rock Sioux, and it says that tribe has failed to describe specific cultural sites that would be damaged by the pipeline.[442] Builders say the pipeline will enable domestically produced light sweet crude oil from North Dakota to reach major refining markets in a more direct, cost-effective, safer and environmentally responsible manner. The pipeline will also reduce the current use of rail and truck transportation to move Bakken crude oil to major U.S. markets to support domestic demand. Shippers will be able to access multiple markets, including Midwest and East Coast markets as well as the Gulf Coast via the Nederland, Texas crude oil terminal facility of Sunoco Logistics Partners. According to Energy Transfer, the company holds their pipelines to a standard that exceeds state and federal regulations performing routine ground and aerial leak inspections about every 10 days, when federal rules only require these inspections every 14 days.[443]

August 23, 2016: Aging Phillips 66 Pipeline Under Rattlesnake Creek Replaced in Montana

The Missoulian reported on August 23, 2016 that Yellowstone Pipeline and Phillips 66 replaced an aging fuel pipe under Rattlesnake Creek in Missoula County, Montana that is part of a 690-mile network moving liquid fuels like gasoline and diesel between Billings and Moses Lake, Washington. Yellowstone Pipeline manages the network for Phillips 66. “Their deferred maintenance was causing concerns. If there was a break-up, there would be a lot of ice and debris that could cause scour downstream. It’s just too big a risk to leave down here," said Missoula County Environmental Health Supervisor Peter Nielsen. “The old pipeline was less than 2 feet below the streambed. We’ve been very concerned about this. The new line will be 12 or 13 feet down. This will be a lot safer when we’re done.” Yellowstone Pipeline and Phillips 66 have been replacing several water crossings in recent years, including one on the Clark Fork near Turah three years ago and one on Deer Creek east of Missoula last year. Two more replacements are expected this year, near Clinton and Bearmouth on the Clark Fork River. “Once the new line is in service, we’ll thoroughly clean the old section under the creek and permanently seal it off,” said Phillips 66 spokesman Dennis Nuss. “Our ultimate goal is to preserve and protect the creek.”[444]

August 18, 2016: Phillips Celebrates 66 Years of Splash Club Tradition in Bartlesville

Phillips Celebrates 66 Years of Splash Club Tradition in Bartlesville. The Phillips 66 Splash Club in Bartlesville is celebrating its 66th year of tradition, of fun, or hard work, of a journey to national and international significance, and of helping to mold countless children into successful adults and of excellence.

The Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise reported on August 18, 2016 that the Phillips 66 Splash Club in Bartlesville is celebrating its 66th year of tradition, of fun, or hard work, of a journey to national and international significance, and of helping to mold countless children into successful adults and of excellence. "Who would have thought that a small deed of an idea in 1950 ... would have grown into the dream of the continuing dominance of United States swimming,” said Ken Treadway who was hired in 1950 by then Phillips Petroleum Director of Recreation Bud Browning as the first Splash Club coach. That decision put in motion an amateur organization — the longest of its kind in United States history — that has influenced the lives of thousands of Bartlesville area children. The urrent Splash Club head coach Chad Englehart feels proud to be able to help celebrate the 66th Anniversary of the founding of the club and is hoping his current swimmers participate in all the doings set for Labor Day Weekend including an alumni meet on Saturday, a gathering on Saturday evening and a picnic on Sunday at Woolaroc. “I want to show them off and show what a great crop of young people we have now in the program. I want them hear what the Splash Club has meant to USA Swimming, to Bartlesville and to the adults that will be there.”[445]

Kenneth Treadway founded the Phillips 66 Splash Club on December 6, 1950. Since then thousands of swimmers have participated, including second-generation Splash Club members. The Splash Club has developed Junior National Championship, National Championship, and Olympic Trials Qualifiers. In addition, U.S. National Team members, High School All-American Swimmers, and collegiate swimmers have been fostered by Splash Club. We are recognized as one of the finest programs in the nation including members holding state records. The team name was changed in September of 2002 to reflect the merger of Phillips Petroleum Company and Conoco to the ConocoPhillips Splash Club. In 2012 the team again changed names to Phillips 66 Splash Club to reflect the separation of Phillips 66 from ConocoPhillips.[446]

August 19, 2016: Can Phillips 66 Survive with Low Refining Margins?

Can Phillips 66 Survive with Low Refining Margins? For a company that depended on refining for over 60% of its earnings in the first half of 2015, Phillips' brutally low refining margins, which dropped 40% from a year ago, should strike any investor as an alarming development. "It's hard to look past the low refining margins and it is prudent to monitor the situation," writes David Lettis at the Motley Fool. "With strong cash flows, though, as well as multiple sources of revenue and continued investment focused on future growth, Phillips 66 remains a very strong pick for long-term investors." Photo: Photolibrarian Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

David Lettis wrote at the Motley Fool on August 19, 2016 that for a company that depended on refining for over 60% of its earnings in the first half of 2015, Phillips' brutally low refining margins, which dropped 40% from a year ago, should strike any investor as an alarming development. But according to Lettis, despite the sharp decrease in Phillips' refining margin, though, there are a couple of reasons why the company remains well positioned for future growth. First, in its refining business, yield improvement projects at the Wood River Refinery are scheduled for completion in the third quarter. Additionally, improvements to increase heavy Canadian crude utilization at its Billings Refinery should be complete in the first half of 2017, and modernization projects to increase gasoline yields at its Bayway Refinery will finish up in 2018. Second, Phillips 66's midstream business is on the right track with joint ventures to develop the Dakota Access and Energy Transfer Crude Oil pipelines remaining on schedule to come online by the end of 2016 and an expansion project at its Beaumont Terminal will add 3.2 million barrels of new storage capacity by mid-2017. Finally while low refining margins are hard to overcome, Phillips actually increased its marketing fuel margins and brought in higher adjusted marketing earnings than a year ago. "This is vitally important for its long-term profitablity as it shows how the company can work through hard times for a core business," says Lettis. "It's hard to look past the low refining margins and it is prudent to monitor the situation. With strong cash flows, though, as well as multiple sources of revenue and continued investment focused on future growth, Phillips 66 remains a very strong pick for long-term investors."[447]

Jason Hall added at the Motley Fool on September 1, 2016 that one of the big reasons Warren Buffett has been loading up on Phillips 66 is that capital allocation is one of a CEO's most important jobs and Greg Garland recognizes this and has focused Phillips' growth investments on the midstream and petrochemicals businesses -- only spending on the refining business to maintain it and improve operations, versus building more refining capacity at a lower rate of return.

Warren Buffett also says that the best long-term investments are often businesses that have strong competitive and economic advantages over their competitors, which they regularly work to strengthen. Phillips 66's refining business certainly has this characteristic. "Refineries, as long as they are well-maintained and run at a high capacity, can generate huge cash flows, which on the surface can make them very attractive businesses," writes Hall. "But at the same time, building a new refinery costs billions of dollars, and growth in demand for refined products is relatively low. In other words, it's just not worth the start-up costs to build a new refinery, based on the limited need. Combined, these two things make a relatively high barrier to entry in the refining business, helping protect Phillips 66 and its competitors from any new entrants into the market."[448]

August 17, 2016: Phillips 66 Seeks 6 Months Delay in Hearing for Santa Maria Refinery Rail Spur Project

The New Times reported on August 17, 2016 that after months of lengthy hearings on Phillips 66’s project, which would allow the company to bring in crude oil by train to its Santa Maria Refinery, Phillips 66 requested that a planned comission meeting on its proposed rail spur extension project scheduled for Sept. 22 be pushed back until March 2017. Phillips said it wanted to wait until the Federal Surface Transportation Board ruled on a petition involving an oil train-related project in Benicia. The company in charge of that project, Valero, is seeking declaratory relief from the three-person federal board after the oil company’s proposal to transport 50 trains per-day carrying crude oil through the city was denied by the Benicia Planning Commission and appealed to its City Council. At the heart of the Benicia case is the issue of pre-emption, or the extent of a local government’s authority over interstate rail transportation, which is the purview of federal government. The same issue is at play in San Luis Obispo. The hearings on the Phillips 66 project featured discussions over the county’s ability to set limits or conditions on the project. “In the interest of efficiency of the commission as well as the planning staff, we believe it would be prudent to further continue the hearing on Phillips 66’s Rail Spur Extension Project until March 2017, so that all parties can benefit from the direction expected from the Surface Transportation Board,” the letter from Phillips read.[449]

Local activists fiercely oppose the Phillips project. Opponents of Phillips 66's plan to bring oil trains to Santa Maria Refinery gathered for a "Stop the Oil Trains Rally" on July 9, 2016 at Mitchell Park in downtown San Luis Obispo. Guest speakers at the rally included Arlene Burns, mayor of Mosier, Oregon, who talked about her experiences being a part of a blast zone after a Union Pacific Railroad train, towing cars filled with crude oil, derailed and exploded near her community. Fourteen cars were involved in the June 4 Columbia River Gorge accident, causing the evacuation of schools in Mosier and the shutdown of Interstate 84 between Hood River and The Dalles.[450]

August 15, 2016: No Injuries From Fire at Phillips 66's Lake Charles Refinery

No Injuries From Fire at Phillips 66's Lake Charles Refinery No injuries have been reported in a fire that started in a processing unit at Phillips 66's Lake Charles Refinery. The fire started when a heater tube failed as a hydrogen unit was being shut down at the plant, according to sources familiar with operations. As a safety precaution, both Phillips 66 employees and contract workers were evacuated from the area, but allowed to return within the hour. Photo: KPLC

Reuters reported on August 15, 2016 that no injuries have been reported in a fire that started in a processing unit at Phillips 66's Lake Charles Refinery. The fire started when a heater tube failed as a hydrogen unit was being shut down at the plant, according to sources familiar with operations. A Phillips 66 representative did not immediately comment.[451] As a safety precaution, both Phillips 66 employees and contract workers were evacuated from the area, but allowed to return within the hour.

Calcasieu Emergency Director Dick Gremillion arrived at the scene soon after it started. "They were bringing a unit down and a fire occurred," Gremillion said. "It was quickly extinguished. It did make a lot of black smoke. A lot of people were concerned about it but there is no offsite impact. The workers were brought - this is a normal safety routine that they do - workers were brought out so they could do an accountability on them, make sure they had everyone accounted for. And they completed that and they've all gone back into the plant now." Westlake Police Chief Chris Wilrye says at no time were nearby residents in danger. "Our concern is for our citizens of the community of Westlake and to make sure there was no impact to the community and there was no evacuation that needed to be taken place outside of Phillips 66 property," he said. "From speaking with the people here at Phillips 66 there's no danger to the community."[452]

August 11, 2016: ConocoPhillips Announces More Layoffs

News on 6 reported on August 11, 2016 that ConocoPhillips has announced another round of layoffs, this time for 6 percent of its employees worldwide. The company employs 15,600 people worldwide including 1,400 employees who work in Bartlesville. ConocoPhillips has not announced how many employees will be laid off in Bartlesville, and a spokesman says the company is still sorting that out. “As far as what the impact will be to Bartlesville, since we’re still early in the process, that has yet to be determined. However, we will know more in the next several weeks as we work through our formal process,” said David Austin. Last year, ConocoPhillips laid off 10-percent of its workforce worldwide including about 170 employees laid off in Bartlesville.[453]

"In 2012 ConocoPhillips split into two companies - an upstream company focused on oil exploration, and a downstream company, called Phillips 66, that is focused on refineries, chemical plants, and midstream. The Ponca City refinery went with Phillips 66 which has not announced layoffs," says Hugh Pickens, an investor who closely follows Phillips 66. "The Ponca City Refinery, which employs about 700 Phillips 66 employees and contractors, is running at almost 100% capacity and is considered to be one of the best run and most profitable of Phillips 66's fifteen worldwide refineries."

However there are some Ponca City residents who work for ConocoPhillips and commute to Bartlesville who could be impacted by the ConocoPhillips layoffs. In April, 2015 a previous ConocoPhillips' reduction in force affected some employees commuting from Ponca City to Bartlesville for a number of years. A Ponca City woman employee, who did not want to be identified told The Ponca City News, she was terminated from ConocoPhillips and sent home with others from the Bartlesville operations by cab. The 28-year employee, who had car-pooled, was terminated April 1, 2015 and transported back to Ponca City in a cab paid for by the company. A spokesman for ConocoPhillips said, “Within Bartlesville, less than 4 percent of our employees will be impacted by these workforce reductions. Anytime you have to do these kinds of reductions, it’s always very difficult.”[454]

Empty Office Buildings at Phillips 66's Ponca City Facility. ConocoPhillips has announced another round of layoffs, this time for 6 percent of its employees worldwide. Last year, ConocoPhillips laid off 10-percent of its workforce worldwide including 170 employees in Bartlesville. ConocoPhillips has not announced how many employees will be laid off in Bartlesville in this round of cutbacks. In 2008 ConocoPhillips downsized their operation in Ponca City as about 700 office worker positions in Ponca City were relocated to Bartlesville or Houston. Photo: Hugh Pickens

In 2008 ConocoPhillips downsized their operation in Ponca City as about 700 office worker positions in Ponca City were relocated to Bartlesville or Houston. "Consolidation and relocation are options we're looking at," said company spokesman Tracy Harlow. "Any and all options are still on the board right now." Most of ConocoPhillips' nonrefinery jobs in Ponca City were focused in the credit card, information technology, facilities and other support operations, Harlow said. A steering committee, including ConocoPhillips managers, was looking at options. The review started November 2008 and had not narrowed into specifics so far, Harlow said. The 750 people employed in refinery operations would not be affected by the review.[455]

August 10, 2016: Retirees to Breakfast with Ponca Refinery Manager Tim Seidel

The Ponca City News reported on August 10, 2016 that the Conoco, ConocoPhillips and Phillips 66 retirees will “Breakfast with Tim” at 830am on August 23, 2016 in the Atrium Cafeteria on the Phillips66 campus to hear the latest updates about Phillips 66 and the Ponca Refinery.[456]

August 8, 2016: Phillips 66 Donates $20,000 to New Emergency Resource Agency in Ponca City

The Ponca City News reported on August 8, 2016 that Phillips 66's Ponca Refinery donated $20,000 for the New Emergency Resource Agency in addition to some much-needed office furniture. The New Emergency Resource Agency is a part of the network of more than 825 charitable feeding programs in 53 central and western counties that feed more 90,000 hungry Oklahomans each week. The New Emergency Resource Agency serves about 70 households each week in Ponca City and is located at 500 North First Street. The New Emergency Resource Agency is experiencing an increase in the need for food assistance and relies on its partnership with the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma to fill the gap. “It’s constant, a slow steady increase and has been for the last year and a half to two years,” said Tom Short, director at New Emergency Resource Agency. “We gave away more than 300 food boxes in three hours.”[457]

August 5, 2016: Former Worker Says Phillips Funded Sacagawea Pipeline at Risk for Oil Leak

The Dickinson Press reported on August 5, 2016 that a former crew member on Sacagawea Pipeline under construction in North Dakota claims that pipe installed under Lake Sakakawea was not properly inspected and he fears the lake could be at risk. The Sacagawea Pipeline Pipeline is being constructed by Sacagawea Pipeline Company, a joint venture owned 50 percent by Phillips 66 Partners. Federal pipeline regulators are investigating the allegations, which were also brought to the North Dakota Public Service Commission’s attention this week. The owner of the pipeline contracting company stands by the work and says the claims are false accusations made by workers who were fired. Pipeline contractor Kenny Crase writes in a sworn statement filed with the PSC and federal regulators that he was ordered to skip a final coating inspection on a section of the Sacagawea Pipeline before another contractor installed the pipe under Lake Sakakawea in July. External coating protects the steel pipe from corrosion. “To me, it’s an accident waiting to happen,” Crase said in an interview with Forum News Service.

Crase says he has 34 years of construction industry experience including working for five years in North Dakota as a pipeline inspector. On this job, he was in charge of operating a device known as a holiday detector, which finds defects or bare metal spots in the pipe coating. “The coating is on it to protect it from rusting from the outside in,” Crase said. Crase said the coating crew was not allowed to complete their work. In addition, the crew was told to stay in their trucks and not allowed to do a final inspection of the coating as another contractor installed the pipe under the lake, Crase said. “I cringed when they hooked to it and pulled it because we never made a single run through there when we didn’t find holidays, which is bare metal,” Crase said. “If I was a betting man, I’d bet there’s bare metal spots.”

Mike Boyd, owner and CEO of pipeline contractor Boyd & Co., disputes the claims. Boyd said there was a section of pipe that did not meet the standards, but those workers were fired and the coating work was redone “to perfection.” The work was also approved by inspectors working for Paradigm Energy Partners, which is part of Sacagawea Pipeline Co., Boyd said. “I have 100 percent confidence in the job that was done,” Boyd said. “It’s going under the lake, we have to do it right.”[458][459]

August 3, 2016: Phillips 66 to Pay Nearly $800,000 for Pollution Violations at Rodeo Refinery

Phillips 66 to Pay Nearly $800,000 over Pollution Violations at Rodeo Refinery. The settlement covers 87 notices of violation issued to Phillips 66 for non-compliance at its refinery from 2010 through 2014. Photo by Thomas Hawk Flicker Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

The San Francisco Chronicle reported on August 3, 2016 that Phillips 66 has agreed to pay $793,250 to settle air pollution violations at its Rodeo Refinery. The settlement covers 87 notices of violation issued to Phillips 66 for non-compliance at its refinery from 2010 through 2014. About one-third of the violations stemmed from an unplanned refinery shutdown in October of 2010, which included heavy smoke from flaring. In 2011, the company was written up three times for public nuisances after the refinery was found to be spewing odors. Finally, in June of 2012, a sour water tank ruptured at the refinery, sending numerous gases, including hydrogen sulfide, into neighboring communities, according to the air district. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District fined the Rodeo refinery $230,000 in 2014. In 2011, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency named the refinery as the biggest releaser of toxic chemicals in the Bay Area.

“We are not anti-business or anti-refinery, but we want them to function properly, to put in place the equipment that needs to trap the gases that come out,” said Janet Pygeorge, president of Rodeo Citizens Association. “We breathe it. We live it every day. They need to think more about the public than the mighty old dollar.”[460]

August 3, 2016: Phillips 66 Finds Buyer for Whitegate Refinery

The Irish Independent reported on August 3, 2016 that after trying to sell their Ireland-based Whitegate Refinery for the past several years, Philips 66 has reached an agreement to sell the refinery to Irving Oil for an undisclosed sum. Irving Oil, which operates the largest oil refinery in Canada, said it views Whitegate as a key element in expanding their business in Europe. The processing facility is capable of handling 75,000 barrels of crude oil per day. “We are pleased to have signed an agreement to purchase the Whitegate refinery,” said Irving Oil chairman, Arthur Irving. “It’s a good day for our company and we’re looking forward to welcoming the Whitegate team to Irving Oil.” Irving Oil said it had been deeply impressed by Whitegate and its Irish workforce. The Canadian company said that the Irish plant had an operational track record that made it a perfect fit for their future development plans. Sale conditions are now being concluded and the deal is set to be formally closed by the year’s third quarter. Irving said it intends to continue full operation of the Whitegate plant and the maintenance of its existing workforce.[461]

July 29, 2016: Phillips 66's Profit Halved in Second Quarter as Earnings from Refining Plunge 75.3 percent

Reuters reported on July 29, 2016 that Phillips 66's profit halved in the second quarter as earnings from its refining business plunged 75.3 percent. Phillips 66's consolidated earnings fell to $496 million, or 93 cents per share, in the second quarter from $1.01 billion, or $1.84 per share, a year earlier. "My personal view is we've got a lot of inventory stacked up," Chief Executive Greg Garland said on a post-earnings call. "I think the industry's going to be facing run cuts in the second half of the year." Refining margins, the difference between the cost of crude and the price of refined products, have also been hit by a rise in global crude LCOc1 prices, which touched an eight-month high in June. Phillips 66's refining margin was $7.13 per barrel in the quarter, well below $8.22 per barrel estimated by Wells Fargo Securities analysts.[462]

Phillips 66's Profit Halved in Second Quarter as Earnings from Refining Plunge 75.3 percent. Phillips 66's consolidated earnings fell to $496 million, or 93 cents per share, in the second quarter from $1.01 billion, or $1.84 per share, a year earlier. "My personal view is we've got a lot of inventory stacked up," Chief Executive Greg Garland said on a post-earnings call. "I think the industry's going to be facing run cuts in the second half of the year." Photo: Scott Maxwell Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Garland expressed confidence in Phillips' diverse business model. Even though Refining struggled, Phillips 66 showed that it pays to have assets in Midstream & Marketing instead of just pure refining, like other independent refiners. "The market environment remained challenging as low margins continued to impact our DCP Midstream, NGL trading and Refining businesses," said Garland. "However, our fee-based Midstream business performed well, and we continue to see good demand in Chemicals. Although demand for refined products is up relative to last year, the weighted average market crack was more than $5 per barrel from where it was a year ago and crude differentials remained tight. We remain focused on executing our strategy in those areas under our control. Our growth projects are all progressing well, and we continue to see great value and opportunity long term."[463]

July 28, 2016: ConocoPhillips Losses Increase as Oil Prices Stay Low

FuelFix reported on July 28, 2016 that ConocoPhillips reported that its second quarter losses increased six times from the same period a year ago, widening from $179 million to $1.1 billion, or 86 cents per share. The results brought ConocoPhillips’ six-month losses to $2.5 billion or $2 per share; Last year, over the same period, the company had earned $93 million, or 7 cents per share. “The price environment remains challenging, but our business is running well and we continue to beat our production, capital expenditures and operating cost targets,” chief executive Ryan Lance said in a statement adding that ConocoPhillips will be “very, very cautious through 2016. “It’s going to be well into 2017 before we see real changes in price."[464]

July 29, 2016: Debottlenecking and Yield Improvement Projects Near Completion at Wood River Refinery

Phillips announced during their earnings release on July 29, 2016 that Wood River Refinery has debottlenecking and yield improvement projects that are scheduled for completion in the third quarter. [465] Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 second quarter earnings conference call on July 29, 2016 that "at the Wood River Refinery, we're undergoing debottlenecking and are on schedule for completion in the third quarter. At the Billings Refinery, efforts are underway to increase the amount of heavy Canadian crude we can run to 100%. At Bayway, work on the FCC modernization is progressing. These are all high return, quick payout projects."[466]

July 29, 2016: Billings Refinery Is Increasing its Heavy Canadian Crude Run Ability to 100 percent

Phillips announced during their earnings release on July 29, 2016 that the Billings Refinery is increasing its heavy Canadian crude run ability to 100 percent. This project is expected to be complete in the first half of 2017.[467] Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 second quarter earnings conference call on July 29, 2016 that at the Billings Refinery, efforts are underway to increase the amount of heavy Canadian crude we can run to 100%. At Bayway, work on the FCC modernization is progressing. These are all high return, quick payout projects."[468]

July 29, 2016: Bayway Refinery is Undergoing an FCC Modernization to Increase Gasoline Yield

Phillips announced during their earnings release on July 29, 2016 that the Bayway Refinery is undergoing an FCC modernization to increase gasoline yield, expected in 2018.[469] Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 second quarter earnings conference call on July 29, 2016 that "At Bayway, work on the FCC modernization is progressing. These are all high return, quick payout projects."[470]

July 29, 2016: Phillips is Still in the Process of Selling the Whitegate Refinery

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 second quarter earnings conference call on July 29, 2016 that "we're still in the process on Whitegate, I would tell you we're pleased with the progress to this point. And hopefully, as I said, I think on last quarter, our intention is we get this closed this year."[471]

July 29, 2016: After the Whitegate Sale, Phillips Doesn't Plan to Sell Any Other Refineries in 2016

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 second quarter earnings conference call on July 29, 2016 that "as we come to the end of the Whitegate process, I don't think there is a lot more in portfolio that we have on deck, certainly for 2016 or thinking about it into 2017."[472]

In answer to a question from Neil Mehta, Kevin Mitchell told analysts during Phillips 66's 2016 first quarter earnings conference call on April 29, 2016 that although Phillips has talked about divestiture of its California refineries in the past at this point Phillips will just hold on to them at this point in time. "California we talked about a lot the hold cost or the option value is really not much there is not a lot of capital in front of us in California last few year margins have been very good in California so it's a net cash contributor," said Mitchell. "And you think about could you sell asset probably but could we did good value for it, probably not and so I think we just hold it at this point in time they're good assets, they're probably mid back in terms of where they set their cost structure, but given the option value to keep, I think it'll just hang on."[473]

July 29, 2016: Freeport LPG Export Terminal is Nearing Completion

Phillips announced during their earnings release on July 29, 2016 that in Midstream, the Freeport LPG Export Terminal is nearing completion. The project is on budget with startup expected by year-end.[474]

July 29, 2016: Phillips 66 Continues to Invest in its Beaumont Terminal

Phillips announced during their earnings release on July 29, 2016 that Phillips 66 continues to invest in its Beaumont Terminal, the largest terminal in the company's portfolio. The terminal has 3.2 million barrels of new storage capacity under construction; 2 million barrels of additional crude storage are expected to be in service by year-end and 1.2 million barrels of additional product storage are expected to be in operation by mid-2017.[475]

July 29, 2016: The Sweeny Hub is Nearing Completion

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 second quarter earnings conference call on July 29, 2016 that "in the Gulf, development of the first phase of the Sweeny hub is nearing completion. Sweeny Fractionator One is operating well, however, volume mix across all of our fractionators remains impacted by heavier NGL feedstock as a result of continued ethane rejection."[476]

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 second quarter earnings conference call on July 29, 2016 that Phillips still thinks that that the Sweeny Hub is a great project and sees value creation opportunity there.

"If you think about NGL pipes coming out of the Permian and West Texas and the Eagle Ford and going by Sweeny. You think about world-class refining, world-class petrochemicals. We have the largest single site ethylene facility at Sweeny, we're building 1.2 million tons of polyethylene capacity, building the fractionator, we're building the caverns, we're building the interconnecting pipes to Bellevue and on to Freeport and then the 150,000 barrel a day LPG Export facility. So, we still like that concept and what we are creating there. I think short-term what you're seeing in the market, there's going to be stress in the LPG side of it. The frac is running well, it's running to design limits. We're seeing certainly heavier feed than what we premised. And so, we're running about 80 a day at the frac today versus 100%, but it's completely loaded in the backend of the frac. The other thing I would say is, as this project is coming up, we have a lot of project expenses that are hitting us beyond just the frac. So, think about the pipes and the caverns and the commissioning and the start-up of the LPG Export facility. So you should expect to see those costs continue through the end of 2016. But when you talk about the frac itself, we dropped it, all of it, it's at PSXP today. The EBITDA is about $100 million, so $25 million a quarter. There's a little bit of leakage that goes to the non-controlling interest, so then you take that and bring it to the net income level. And that was more than offset by the project expenses we had and the seasonal trading activities that we had in our NGL business. We're not worried about this whole NGL complex that we're building at Sweeny in terms of it coming up. And we're looking forward to getting the LPG Export up later this year, we'll start commissioning activities actually in the next couple weeks as we start thinking about that. So, I just want to say that we still really like this project a lot. And Tim, if you want to fill in anything I missed, you're welcome to do that."[477]

July 29, 2016: The Cracker Project at Sweeny and Baytown Looks to Be Complete in the Second Half of 2017

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 second quarter earnings conference call on July 29, 2016 that "there's two pieces of the cracker project. One is the derivatives project, the polyethylene plants at Sweeny and the second is the cracker at Baytown, which is just east of Houston. So, the derivatives plant, those projects are still online, they come online actually before the second half of 2017 to be complete, the cracker is now looking like it's going to complete in the second half of 2017. And that's really the change that we're seeing, primarily related to productivity and the complexity of that project we're seeing several month's delay. So, continue to progress on both of those very well, but the cracker is behind where we're seeing the derivatives project at this point."[478]

July 29, 2016: The LPG Terminal at the Freeport Export Facility is 97% Complete

Timothy Taylor told analysts during the 2016 second quarter earnings conference call on July 29, 2016 thatthe LPG Terminal at the Freeport Export Facility is about 97% complete. "There's different pieces, so we're actually right at the front end of our commissioning and drying out process, getting it ready. So, we anticipate that will be operational toward the end of the year, but we are actually essentially completing construction and now working into the commissioning piece of that business, so that's about to become operational. On the market side, and you asked about the contracts. We continue to work the contracts, as Greg said, the commodity environment is challenged today. So, I think that the commercial arm or opportunity is narrower than what we had originally planned in the short term, but we still fundamentally see that strength. And as I said, it's got to clear the market here somewhere to really make everything balanced just based on the demand side. So, we feel pretty good about the longer-term fundamentals there with some stress short-term I think on the commercial side of that. But the load across that looks really solid to us. And we continue to work that.[479]

July 28, 2016: Chevron Phillips Dedicates New Polyethylene Pilot Plant In Bartlesville

Chevron Phillips Dedicates New Polyethylene pilot plant In Bartlesville. The new pilot plant took a little more than a year to build and is composed of 20 different modules that cover approximately 11,700 square feet. The new construction in Bartlesville replaces the decades-old pilot plant that had been the focal point of polyethylene research for decades. The old plant, located across the street from the new one, is now closed. Research projects are expected to start in the new plant by the end of the year.Photo: James Gibbard Tulsa World

NewsOK reported on July 28, 2016 that Chevron Phillips Chemical, a 50-50 joint venture between Chevron and Phillips 66, officially dedicated a new Marlex polyethylene pilot plant at Bartlesville’s research and technology facility beginning the next phase for the company’s catalyst and polymer development operations. President/CEO Peter Cella said the pilot plant will allow for the research, testing and development of polyethylene processes, prior to implementation in full-scale operations. The new Bartlesville facility replaces a decades-old pilot plant that has been on the forefront of polyethylene research and development. Chevron Phillips Chemical employs just over 200 people at the facility in west Bartlesville.

Two Phillips 66 chemists, J. Paul Hogan and Robert L. Banks, discovered polypropylene in 1951 and their discovery led the way for commercially-viable plastic products such as milk jugs, containers and pipeline. “How perfect it is that our new pilot plant is right here in Bartlesville, Okla.,” Cella said. “This is the site were modern plastics got its start; this is the birthplace of modern plastics.” Skye Richey says the new plant is designed to be smarter, more user-friendly, environmentally responsible and safer for for the workers who will run it. Chevron Phillips Chemical officials did not release the cost to build the new pilot plant in Bartlesville, only to say the investment was significant.[480]

The new pilot plant took a little more than a year to build and is composed of 20 different modules that cover approximately 11,700 square feet. Cella said that the company is not releasing the new pilot plant’s price tag but described the investment as “significant.” Cella said that some jobs were created to construct the new plant but no additional hires were made at the research and technology facility. Cella said that the investment in the new pilot plant preserves those jobs. The new construction in Bartlesville replaces the decades-old pilot plant that had been the focal point of polyethylene research for decades. The old plant, located across the street from the new one, is now closed. Research projects are expected to start in the new plant by the end of the year.[481]

July 22, 2016: Phillips' Santa Maria Rail Spur Project May Be in Jeopardy

The San Luis Obispo Tribune reported on July 22, 2016 that Phillips 66 has been given an August 15 deadline to give the San Luis Obispo County department of planning and building additional information about the Santa Maria Rail Spur Project and to pay more than $240,000 in fees or the project application will be withdrawn. County policy requires that development applicants pay all the county’s costs in processing their permit, including the cost to hire consultants and write an environmental impact report. The county has estimated the cost of processing the application through the Board of Supervisors appeal hearing to be $240,697.73. In a July 8 letter to the company, county supervising planner Ryan Hostetter wrote, “This letter serves to inform Phillips 66 that without the necessary information and funding, the county cannot complete processing the application as directed by the Planning Commission.” As of July 22, the county had received only part of the information it has requested and none of the money, Hostetter said. Phillips 66 did not respond directly to questions by The Tribune on Friday as to whether the company plans to meet the county’s Aug. 15 deadline to pay the fees and provide the missing information. Instead, it sent this statement: “Phillips 66 presented a strong proposal, and we remain confident about the project,” the statement said. “We understand and respect the review and approval process with the county, and look forward to the next step in the EIR process.”

Phillips 66 also faces questions regarding their recent decision to truck oil directly into the refinery which according to the county is likely a violation of the county’s permit and will require a new permit as well as a trucking plan detailing the new oil-by-truck method. “Bringing in crude by truck is a modification of the refinery and, additionally, may have the potential to cause significant impacts,” Hostetter said in a June 30 letter to Phillips 66. The refinery’s maintenance supervisor, James Anderson, responded to the county in a letter dated July 14 in which he denied the assertions that the trucking of oil is a modification of the refinery and disputes the notion that a trucking plan is required. The letter refers to the refinery’s official name, the Santa Maria Refinery. “Phillips 66 does not need any new permits or modifications to its existing permits to deliver feedstocks by rail to SMR (Santa Maria Refinery) in the manner in which it is currently performed,” Anderson’s letter stated. “Such activity has been a long-standing practice, albeit intermittent, and is not part of the rail extension project.”[482]

July 21, 2016: ConocoPhillips to Lay Off Another 1,000 Employees

FuelFix reported on July 21, 2016 that ConocoPhillips plans for lay off another 1,000 employees, about 6 percent of its global workforce, in its latest effort to cut costs as crude prices languish around $45 a barrel. The oil explorer has finished assembling some major upstream projects, and now has “more organizational capacity than we need,” ConocoPhillips spokesman Daren Beaudo said in an emailed statement. Its operations in North America will get hit hardest. “We have taken several steps as a company to adapt to lower and more volatile prices and strengthen our position coming out of the downturn,” Beaudo said.[483]

July 14, 2016: A Catastrophic Oil Train Derailment in Oregon Raises Californian's Fears of Phillips 66's Santa Maria Rail Spur Project

Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refiney project protest in San Luis Obispo, July 11, 2015. More than 150 activists gathered for a rally at Mitchell Park in downtown San Luis Obispo to protest a proposed Phillips 66 rail spur that would add five tracks and allow crude oil to be hauled to their Santa Maria Refinery. The rally commemorated the three-year anniversary of a derailment near Lac-Mégantic, Quebec where a stopped train hauling 72 crude oil tank cars rolled downhill and derailed near the center of town. Forty-seven people were killed in ensuing explosions and fires. Flickr Creative Commons "Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refiney project protest, July 11, 2015" Photo: Stand.Earth Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Robin Abcarian reported a major story in the Los Angeles Times on July 14, 2016 titled "A catastrophic oil train derailment in Oregon raises fears on Central Coast" about Alene Burns, mayor of Mosier, Oregon, who spoke to activists in San Luis Obispo about what happened when a mile-long train loaded with crude oil derailed in Mosier in June 16, 2016.

Sixteen of 96 cars toppled from the tracks. Four exploded. The area, a windsurfing mecca known for its constant high winds, was spared more explosions only because the air was unusually still that day. “If it had been a normal, windy day,” Burns said, “the explosions would have had a domino effect.” Still, a monstrous plume of black smoke could be seen for miles. About 200 yards away, 225 schoolchildren were evacuated and began their summer vacation a week early. Their school was quickly converted to an incident command center. Twenty-three miles of I-84, which runs along the southern edge of the Columbia River, was closed, blocking access to Mosier. “Guess who couldn’t help us?” Burns said. “The first responders. They were stuck in gridlock traffic.” The Mosier fire burned for 15 hours. No one was hurt, but the town’s sewage treatment plant was inundated with 10,000 of the 42,000 gallons of spilled Bakken crude oil — a volatile, highly flammable mix. For days, toilets didn’t flush and showers didn’t work.

According to Abcarian, supervisors in counties up and down the state have officially opposed Phillips 66's Rail Spur Project to the Santa Maria Refinery. So have at least 22 city councils, from Berkeley to Los Angeles. The crude oil boom in places like North Dakota has lead to a significant increase in the number of such trains, along with a significant increase in derailments. Most people don’t want potentially explosive cargo barreling through their community. "As long as we depend so heavily on oil, we will have these battles. It makes economic sense for oil companies like Phillips to fight on," writes Abcarian. "But I take what Mayor Burns said to heart. Oil trains will derail. They are disasters waiting to happen. San Luis Obispo County supervisors are in a unique position to help protect every Californian who lives within a mile of Union Pacific’s tracks, often called “the blast zone.”"[484]

July 14, 2016: Greg Garland Says Recruiting and Retaining Millennials Was a Significant Motivator for Phillips 66's New Campus in Houston

New Phillips 66 Headquarters in Houston. Phillips 66 will move all 2,200 of its Houston-area employees into its new global headquarters in Westchase in July. The project is on 14 acres in the West chase District and will encompass 1.1 million square feet of space in multiple buildings. Plans include a parking garage, cafeteria, fitness center, coffee shop and conference center. The project will also have a running track on the roof of a garage, a soccer field and multiple dining options. Photo Credit: Houston Chronicle

Houston Business Journals reported on July 14, 2016 that one example of an energy company that has spruced up its workspace is Houston-based Phillips 66 which just unveiled its new global headquarters. The company's CEO, Greg Garland, said that recruiting and retaining Millennials was a significant motivator for the new campus. The headquarters has a yoga studio, massage parlor, putting green, spinning studio, basketball court, and a soccer field with a track. It also has a physician through Memorial Hermann Health System, as well as two credit unions with campus outposts – Houston-based Member's Choice Credit Union and Oklahoma-based Truity Credit Union. Employees can de-stress in a massage parlor, or get their suits and skirts pressed in an on-site Men's Wearhouse dry cleaner. In addition, the new headquarters contains a learning center that can seat 750 employees, a cafeteria with eight different food stations, coffee shop, convenience store, credit unions, and conference center — more or less forming a self-contained city. One of the most interesting desires for the headquarters was a soccer field big enough for a five-person team. “They were limited in space, so they put it on top of the parking garage," said Dennis Laflen, senior vice president of HOK and the Phillips 66 project manager.

One main impetus for the design is Phillips desire to attract and retain talent - especially Millennials. "Thirty-six percent of our workforce are Millennials," Garland said. "(That number) is going to grow, and these are the kinds of facilities that attract Millennials and the kind of place they want to work at. … (It’s) part of just being competitive in this market."

Phillips also has an in-house dentist at its present headquarters who will be moving to Philips 66's new building in the Westchase District. “It opened in mid-February and they have already seen 211 patient at the Phillips 66 Dental Office,” said Charles Lusk, CEO of Onsite Solutions in 2014. “It’s the wave of the future. Some groups offer mobile clinics that set up in the parking lot, but who would want to use that?" Having a dental office on site for employees and their families to use is convenient for staff and lucrative for employers. “The reality of the matter is an employee can spend four hours of his or her day for one dental appointment, when you factor in drive-time. It’s not conducive to a good work day,” said Lusk. “By having an office on site, you’re increasing productivity as well as the likelihood that someone will even go to the dentist, which makes for a healthier person.” “Some corporations are just more innovative than others. They are doing it because they know their competitors are going to do it,” Lusk said. “Phillips 66 is very forward-thinking and wanted to get up in front of the trend.”

The new Phillips 66 campus was designed by St. Louis-based HOK. Because HOK had worked with ConocoPhillips in 2009, before the spinoff, on a project in Colorado, Phillips 66 executives were familiar with its work and hired HOK for the headquarters. Design work began in 2012. “It’s been a long history with the original ConocoPhillips, and we’ve continued to work with both companies,” said Dennis Laflen, senior vice president of HOK and the Phillips 66 project manager. “From very beginning, the CEO gave clear directions. Create a campus large enough to bring people together for the first time in history.” About 80 to 85 employees from six different HOK offices collaborated on the project that finished this year, and Phillips 66 workers started to move in at 2331 City West Blvd. this month. Laflen could not disclose project costs, but a 2014 report from the Economic Development and Tourism Division of the Governor’s Office of Texas stated it was worth $71 million total.[485][486][487][488]

July 9, 2016: Activists Rally Against Phillips 66's Santa Maria Rail Spur Proposal

The San Luis Obispo Tribune reported on July 9, 2016 that more than 150 activists gathered for a rally at Mitchell Park in downtown San Luis Obispo to protest a proposed Phillips 66 rail spur that would add five tracks and allow crude oil to be hauled to their Santa Maria Refinery. The rally commemorated the three-year anniversary of a derailment near Lac-Mégantic, Quebec where a stopped train hauling 72 crude oil tank cars rolled downhill and derailed near the center of town. Forty-seven people were killed in ensuing explosions and fires.

Mayor Arlene Burns of Mosier, Oregon, spoke at the rally about a fiery oil train derailment near her town in June and urged San Luis Obispo County residents to stop the spur project. Attendees then marched to the nearby Amtrak station, many waving yellow “Stop Oil Trains Now” signs. The June 3 incident in the Columbia River Gorge near Mosier was caused by broken track bolts that derailed a train hauling more than 90 tank cars of crude oil. Some of the cars leaked oil and caught on fire, prompting Mosier, a tiny town of about 430, to evacuate its schools and many residents. “Trains derail,” said Burns. “It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when.”[489]

July 9, 2016: DCP Midstream Shuts Tulsa Office Affecting 100 Employees

The Tulsa world reported on July 9, 2016 that DCP Midstream LLC, a 50-50 joint venture between Phillips 66 and Spectra, has closed its Tulsa office affecting about 100 employees. Jerry Barnhill, a senior vice president for the midstream company, said the closure was the result of a decision to consolidate the functions being performed in Tulsa — primarily finance and accounting operations — with DCP’s Denver headquarters.[490]

DCP Midstream previously eliminated 300 positions nationwide in April, 2016 leaving about 2,900 employees overall. DCP Chairman and CEO Wouter van Kempen said the joint venture reduced its 2016 capital budget down to $250 million. In comparison, Phillips 66’s contribution alone to DCP’s capital budget last year was $550 million. “This is a challenging environment that we are managing through and we continue to execute on our strategy to reset our break-even cost to ensure we are the most reliable, safe, low-cost midstream services provider sustainable in any environment."[491]

July 8, 2016: Opponents of Phillips 66 Santa Maria Rail Spur to Stage Protest Rally in San Luis Obispo

The Santa Maria Times reported on July 8, 2016 that opponents of Phillips 66's plan to bring oil trains to Santa Maria Refinery will gather for a "Stop the Oil Trains Rally" on July 9, 2016 at Mitchell Park in downtown San Luis Obispo. Guest speakers at the rally will include Arlene Burns, mayor of Mosier, Oregon, who will talk about her experiences being a part of a blast zone after a Union Pacific Railroad train, towing cars filled with crude oil, derailed and exploded near her community early last month, according to organizers. Fourteen cars were involved in the June 4 Columbia River Gorge accident, causing the evacuation of schools in Mosier and the shutdown of Interstate 84 between Hood River and The Dalles. Organizers plan to lead a peaceful march at 1:15 p.m. from the park to the nearby Amtrak station, where additional speakers will address the crowd.[492]

July 7, 2016: H.J. Reed Speaks to Ponca City ConocoPhillips Retiree Association

The Ponca City News reported on July 7, 2016 that H.J. Reed, Manager of State Government Affairs for Phillips 66, would be the keynote speaker at the summer general meeting of the ConocoPhillips Retiree Association on July 11, 2016 at the Pioneer Technology Center. Reed will talk about key issues in the November elections and share the latest analysis regarding likely key issues and outcomes. He will speak about the 2016 Oklahoma legislative session and what the 2017 session will likely bring. Reed previously spoke to the Ponca City Chamber of Commerce's Ponca Politics on July 24, 2015.[493]

The Ponca City News reported on July 13, 2016 that H.J. Reed, spoke to the ConocoPhillips Retirees on July 11, 2016, about several scenarios for the outcome of the presidential elections, state question 779, commonly referred to as the David Boren education question, which calls for a one cent state sales tax to give teachers a raise, and what would happen at the state level if Gov. Mary Fallin should be Trump’s vice presidential pick. Reed predicted that the Republican convention will not be contested. On the local level Reed mentioned Rep. Steve Vaughan, Rep. John Pfieffer and Sen. Eddie Fields.

Ponca City Area Chamber of Commerce representatives Chairman Molly Kyler, and Sue Lunsford, Chamber volunteer, also spoke to the ConocoPhillips Retirees Association in an effort to recruit memberships to the Chamber. Dianne Anderson told about the United Way program and the recent United Way golf tournament sponsored by Phillips, which brings in the companies that have contracts with the company and this makes about $50,000 a year for United Way.[494]

July 7, 2016: Margins Tank for US Refiners This Summer, Especially on the East Coast

The Oil Tanker Maersk Catherine sailing through New York Harbor with One WTC in the background. The gasoline glut is so extreme on the East Coast that several tankers full of products were forced to sit idle in New York Harbor recently, waiting to unload. Phillips 66 has one East Coast refinery at Bayway, New Jersey. Maersk Catherine Photo by: MassMatt Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic

Reuters reported on July 7, 2016 that over the last 30 days, estimates for second-quarter earnings have fallen 17 to 20 percent for four of the major U.S. refiners including Phillips 66 as gasoline and diesel inventories stubbornly sit well above five-year averages driving down refiner margins. The U.S. gasoline crack spread 1RBc1-CLc1, a proxy for refiner margins, has dropped 34 percent in two weeks. On July 6, 2016, it hit a five-year low for this time of year of $13.10 a barrel. That is less than half the crack spread of $28 a barrel at this time last year. "An RBOB crack trading 13 bucks in the middle of driving season is unheard of," said one trader.

The situation is especially dire for U.S. East Coast refineries (PADD 1) where refiners have been cutting production. The glut is so extreme that several tankers full of products were forced to sit idle in New York Harbor recently, waiting to unload. Phillips 66 has one East Coast refinery at Bayway, New Jersey. “PADD 1 is a holy mess,” said Andrew Lebow, senior partner at Commodity Research Group in Darien, Connecticut. “It is very unusual. If a market becomes extremely oversupplied, like PADD 1, they are going to have to cut runs.”

According to Reuters, inventories have grown despite evidence that U.S. motor travel continues to surge. Analysts noted that U.S. refiners switched to maximum gasoline mode earlier than usual during a fleeting moment of high margins in the early part of 2016. Imports also have been higher than normal in recent weeks, adding to the glut. John Auers, executive vice president at Turner, Mason & Co, a Dallas-based consultancy, said he remains bullish on gasoline demand and refining margins this summer, noting that gasoline and diesel inventories can draw down just as fast they fill up. “I think we will see some significant drawdowns in July and August, and that will help margins,” Auers said. “I think $50 a barrel for crude oil will be the high water mark, so gas prices will remain low and we will have a record driving season this summer."[495]

June 29, 2016: Boilermaker Sues Phillips 66 for Negligence at Wood River Refinery

The Madison Record reported on June 29, 2016 that James Mason filed a lawsuit June 22 in Madison County Circuit Court against Phillips 66 Company, ConocoPhillips WRB Partner LLC, Phillips 66 WRB Partners Holdings, Cenovus Energy US LLC and WRB Refining LLC, doing business as Conoco Phillips Wood River Refinery, alleging negligence in failing to provide a safe place to work. According to the complaint, on June 23, 2014, while in the course of working as a boilermaker at Conoco Phillips Wood River Refinery, Mason touched a wooden pole on which certain electrical equipment existed, causing him to be electrocuted and suffer serious injuries. The plaintiff alleges the defendants failed to keep the area in safe and proper condition to prevent electric shock, failed to repair electric equipment near the wooden pole and failed to ground the wooden pole to prevent shock.[496]

June 25, 2016: Lake Charles Refinery Celebrates 75 Years of Operation

The Lake Charles Refinery, located in Westlake, La. Lake Charles Refinery Photo by: Cory O'Quinn Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic

American Press reported on June 25, 2016 that Phillips 66's Lake Charles Refinery recently celebrated its 75th anniversary in a ceremony that lauded employees, contractors and community stakeholders. The refinery officially began operating in 1941 as the Continental Oil Co to supply jet fuel during World War II. The $4.5 million project was run by 100 employees and had a crude oil capacity of 7,500 barrels per day. Between 1960 and 2002, the company changed its name to Conoco, was acquired by DuPont, became its own company again, and merged to form ConocoPhillips. In 2012, the company split and Phillips 66 began operating as its own refining and marketing business. Today, the refinery has a crude oil output of 249,000 barrels per day and 770 employees. “The names may have changed over the years, but our plans to operate safely with honor and commitment remain,” said Refinery Manager Rich Harbinson.

“ConocoPhillips has been a good neighbor to the city of Westlake, no doubt. They’re always giving,” said Westlake Mayor Bob Hardy worked at the refinery for years before going into local politics. Sowela Technical Community College Chancellor Neil Aspinwall said the company has invested heavily in Sowela by providing internships for students, equipment for Sowela structural programs, and over $2 million toward the construction of a 12,000-square-foot process technology building. “Phillips 66 is a great example of what we can accomplish when industry takes a role in the educational process and the preparation of the workforce,” Aspinwall said.[497]

According to Ponca City resident Hugh Pickens, in the 1960s the Lake Charles Refinery was known as the sister refinery to Conoco's Ponca City Refinery. "It was very common for employees in Ponca City to be transferred to Lake Charles and vice versa." Pickens noted that the Ponca Refinery will be celebrating an anniversary of its own in just two years. "In 2018 the Ponca Refinery, originally called the Marland Refinery, will be celebrating one hundred years of operation."

June 22, 2016: California Refineries Brace for Potential Disruptions Ahead of Possible Blackouts This Summer

Phillips 66's Santa Maria Refinery near Arroyo Grande, California. Refiners in southern California are bracing for potential disruptions ahead of possible blackouts this summer after the closure of a key natural gas field prompted state regulators to warn of power and gas shortages. Phillips 66 has two refineries that could potentially be affected: the Santa Maria Refinery and the Rodeo Refinery. The Santa Maria facility is located in Arroyo Grande, Calif., while the Rodeo facility is in the San Francisco Bay Area. Photo by 350.org Flicker Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Reuters reported on June 22, 2016 that refiners in southern California are bracing for potential disruptions ahead of possible blackouts this summer after the closure of a key natural gas field prompted state regulators to warn of power and gas shortages. Phillips 66 has two refineries that could potentially be affected: the Santa Maria Refinery and the Rodeo Refinery. The Santa Maria facility is located in Arroyo Grande, Calif., while the Rodeo facility is in the San Francisco Bay Area. The combined Phillips refineries have a total crude oil processing capacity of 120,000 bpd. According to Reuters concerns about disruptions to refining operations have intensified as a heat wave swept the region, testing power grids that rely heavily on natural gas for fuel. Power generators face strained gas supplies after operations stopped at SoCalGas' Aliso Canyon facility, the second largest natural gas field in the Western United States. The six major refineries operating in the region require immense amounts of natural gas and electricity delivered on a consistent basis to run smoothly.

Any stoppages at the refineries would likely cause gasoline prices to rise in California, which is largest and most expensive gasoline market in the continental United States. In the event of even a brief power outage, a refinery would need between five to seven days to return to full production, assuming there is no damage, according to industry players. "Our facilities are designed to run at a steady-state - not ramp up and down sporadically. The notion of 'turning down' a facility does not take into account the physical nature of the refining process," the Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA) said in a statement.[498]

June 20, 2016: Phillips 66 Gives $100,000 to University of Arkansas

University of Arkansas reported on June 20, 2016 that Phillips 66 has presented the university with a $100,000 check in support of various initiatives in the Walton College and the College of Engineering, including the Technology Awareness Program, Supply Chain Management Research Center, the Engineering Career Awareness Program and the SAP Support Program. During their visit to campus, the Phillips 66 team met with faculty and staff from the College of Engineering to discuss the possibility of increasing the number of engineers hired from the university. “We recognize that the partnerships we have at schools like the University of Arkansas are critical to Phillips 66,” said Pam McGinnis, chief procurement officer for Phillips 66 and an alumna of the College of Engineering. “Our university partners are helping us build the depth and breadth of capabilities our company needs to provide energy and improve lives now, and in the future. And they’re instilling a passion for excellence in our future workforce.”[499]

June 19, 2016: Lewis & Clark Community College has a Two-Year Associate’s Degree Program in “Process Operations” to Train People for the Phillips 66 Refinery in Wood River

Lewis & Clark Community College has a Two-Year Associate’s Degree Program in Process Operations. Newly hired refinery workers can earn $75,000 a year many students land refinery jobs before they graduate, and finish the program part-time. “They are in demand right now,” Scheffel said. Tuition for all two years runs about $8,200 for Metro East residents, plus books. Photo: Lewis & Clark Community College

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported on June 19, 2016 that Lewis & Clark Community College has a two-year associate’s degree program in “process operations” to train people for the Phillips 66 refinery in Wood River. “We have a miniature refinery on our Edwardsville campus,” says Kent Scheffel, vice president of enrollment services at Lewis & Clark. Newly hired refinery workers can earn $75,000 a year and many students land refinery jobs before they graduate and finish the program part-time. “They are in demand right now,” Scheffel said. Tuition for all two years runs about $8,200 for Metro East residents, plus books.[500]

Lewis & Clark Community College’s process operations technology program was developed in collaboration with ConocoPhillips in Wood River, Ill., and in consultation with the Center for the Advancement of Process Technology in the Gulf Coast region and the Sigma Aldrich partnership, which resulted in a professional and focused plan of study. Completion of the program provides a high probability of placement as a process operations technician within the process industry. Process technicians learn how to operate furnaces, distillation columns, reboilers, heat exchangers, steam systems, and cooling-water systems — the essential elements of all process industries. With degree credentials and supervised on-site internship experience in hand, students qualify for a career in the nationally critical field of petroleum refining, oil and gas production, petrochemicals production, biochemicals production, base chemicals production and power generation. Employment opportunities as a process operations technician will be expansive — within the region and across the nation.[501]

Lewis and Clark’s Process Operations Technology program is one of only 18 nationally accredited “endorsed colleges” through the North American Process Technology Alliance (NAPTA). “We went from a regional accreditation to a national one, and have hit the highest tier of accreditation as an endorsed college, which is powerful recognition of the work we’ve done developing the program, as well as what our students have accomplished,” said Mike Morgan, coordinator and instructor in Process Operations Technology at Lewis and Clark Community College. “We are also the first college, of only 18 endorsed schools across the country, located in the Midwest.” Also known as “specialized” or “professional accreditations,” these credentials ensure that specific vocational programs are meeting national quality standards. The 18 endorsed schools, now including Lewis and Clark, each have an active advisory committee, have completed a comprehensive program audit and have been approved for endorsement by the NAPTA, an active partner with CAPT. “As our first member from another alliance, (Lewis and Clark is) setting an example for other schools to follow, and further strengthening our efforts to build consistency and sustainability for PTEC across North America,” said NAPTA President W. Eric Newby.

Process Operations Technology graduates go on to earn approximately $20 to $35 per hour. Lewis and Clark graduates have gone on to work for companies like Abengoa AG, Afton Chemical, Ameren UE, Calumet Petroleum, Center Ethanol, Covidien, Elementis, Eastman Chemicals, Explorer Pipeline, GS Robbins, Jost Chemical, Kinder-Morgan, Marathon Pipeline, Marathon Refining, Metropolitan Sewer District, Prairie State Energy, Phillips 66 Refining, Proctor & Gamble, Shell Off-shore, Sigma-Aldrich, Solvay Flourides and SunCoke. “It’s definitely an exciting time for Process Operations Technology, which continues to grow,” Morgan said. “As the need for industry grows, and with companies looking to replace anywhere from 30-50 percent of their workforce over the next five years, there are numerous opportunities available for employment in refineries, chemical plants, water treatment facilities and more.”[502]

June 14, 2016: American Gods TV Series Is Filming in Ponca City

American Gods TV Series is Filming in Ponca City. American Gods is an upcoming television series created by Bryan Fuller and Michael Green for Starz, based on the novel of the same name by author Neil Gaiman.

The Ponca City News reported on June 14, 2016 that the a crew from the Starz! Network is in Ponca City filming a few scenes from “American Gods,” a Hugo and Nebula Award-winning novel by Neil Gaiman. The crew has been filming on Grand Avenue and on South 1st Street.[503] Members of Ponca Playhouse who gathered at the Black Box Theatre saw the film crew on the corner of South 1st and Oklahoma Street as they exited from the annual Riga-Tony Awards the evening of June 14, 2016.

American Gods is an upcoming television series created by Bryan Fuller and Michael Green for Starz, based on the novel of the same name by author Neil Gaiman. Fuller and Green will script the first episode and serve as showrunners. Gaiman will executive produce along with Fuller, Green, Craig Cegielski, Stefanie Berk and Thom Beers. The series will focus on the mysterious Shadow, a man who is released from prison a few days early after serving a three-year sentence for bank robbery when his beloved wife Laura is killed in a car accident. Flying home for the funeral, Shadow is seated next to a man who introduces himself only as Mr. Wednesday, and this man knows more about Shadow's life, both past and present, than is possible. Shadow comes to learn that Wednesday is, in fact, the god Odin of Norse mythology and that all of the gods that mankind has ever believed in are alive in human form and live among regular people. Shadow is soon thrust into a gathering conflict between the Old gods and the so-called "New gods", the gods of money and technology who believe there is no longer room on Earth for the old gods.

On January 28, 2016, Ricky Whittle was cast as the lead character, Shadow Moon. On March 2, 2016, it was announced that Ian McShane had been cast as Mr. Wednesday.It was later announced on March 17, 2016 that Emily Browning will play Laura Moon, Shadow's wife. On March 23, 2016 it was announced that Sean Harris, Yetide Badaki and Bruce Langley would play the respective roles of Mad Sweeney, Bilquis and Technical Boy. On April 14, 2016, Jonathan Tucker and Crispin Glover were cast as Low Key Lyesmith and Mr. World. On April 21, 2016, Cloris Leachman was cast as Zorya Vechernyaya, Peter Stormare as Czernobog, Chris Obi as Mr. Jaquel, and Mousa Kraish as the Jinn. Showrunner Bryan Fuller estimated in May 2015 that the show would likely air in "late 2016";however, it is now set to premiere in early 2017. The shooting was scheduled to begin on March 1, 2016 in Toronto and continue until September.[504]

June 11, 2016: Phillips 66 Donates $25,000 to Sweeny Petrochemical Academy

The Brazoport Facts reported on June 11, 2016 that Phillips 66 is making a $25,000 grant to the Sweeny Petrochemcial Academy locared in Sweeny, Texas, home of Phillips Sweeny Refinery and Petrochemical complex. “The petrochemical academy will ensure a trained workforce to staff the industrial expansion in Sweeny and Freeport as well as replacing employees electing to retire,” said Phillips 66 Spokeswoman Regina Slaydon. Phillips 66 has supported the Sweeny ISD petrochemical academy since its inception in 2014, Slaydon said, and contributing money to allow as many students as possible to attend furthers that partnership.[505]

June 10, 2016: Profit Margins Shrink for US Refiners like Phillips 66 because of Oversupply of Gasoline

Retuers reported on June 10, 2016 that an unusual glut of gasoline - just as refiners are ramping up to produce more - has caught them on the wrong side of distillate margins for the second time in less than 12 months. Instead of producing bigger profits for refining gasoline, refiners like Phillips 66 are seeing margins shrink because of oversupply, potentially leading to disappointing earnings. "Refiners killed the gasoline golden goose this year by overproducing. They were actually making summer gasoline during winter. That says it all," said Nevyn Nah, oil products analyst at Energy Aspects. Earnings per share at top U.S. refiners, including Phillips 66, Valero and Marathon Petroleum, are expected to fall well short of analysts' expectations in the second quarter, according to StarMine, a unit of Thomson Reuters.

The surprise strength in diesel has also caught refiners off-guard. Prices of distillates, which include heating oil and diesel, have seen an unusual surge in recent weeks due to robust overseas demand combined with lower domestic production. Typically, gasoline trades at a premium to diesel during the hot months of June, July and August. However gasoline's premium to diesel and heating oil fell is now only one cent, down from a peak of 29 cents in early April. "Gasoline is on the verge of trading under diesel... in JULY!!! That's insane," a trader at a U.S. bank said in an instant message.[506]

June 10, 2016: Phillips 66 to Help Fund $746 Million Superfund Cleanup of Portland Harbor

Environmental Leader reported on June 10, 2016 that the EPA will ask more than 150 companies and other groups to foot the $746 million bill to clean up the Portland Harbor Superfund Site. Of the 150 potentially responsible parties identified by the EPA, 10 have already agreed to help with the cleanup process including Phillips 66. The 10 companies, which call themselves the Lower Willamette Group, include Arkema, Bayer CropScience, BNSF Railway Company, Chevron, Phillips 66, Union Pacific Railway and the city of Portland. The Lower Willamette Group (LWG) is composed of the ten parties who signed agreements with EPA to conduct the remedial investigation and feasibility study of the Site and four other parties who have contributed financially to the project. Lower Willamette Group spokesperson Barbara Smith told Oregon Public Broadcasting that the group is happy to see a cleanup plan for the river.

The pollution at the superfund site stems from a variety of industries, including shipbuilding, wood treatment and lumber milling, storage of bulk fuels and manufactured gas production, chemical manufacturing and storage, municipal sewer overflows and industrial storm water. The EPA says that hazardous substances found at the site include polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), dioxins/furans, pesticides and heavy metals, which can harm people and the environment. At the end of this first seven years, the EPA says health risks from the site’s pollution will drop as much as 100 times below the current levels.[507]

June 6, 2016: Phillips 66 to Move Into New Houston Headquarters in July

New Phillips 66 Headquarters in Houston. Phillips 66 will move all 2,200 of its Houston-area employees into its new global headquarters in Westchase in July. The project is on 14 acres in the West chase District and will encompass 1.1 million square feet of space in multiple buildings. Plans include a parking garage, cafeteria, fitness center, coffee shop and conference center. The project will also have a running track on the roof of a garage, a soccer field and multiple dining options. Photo Credit: Houston Chronicle

Houston Business Journal reported on June 6, 2016 that after almost four years of construction, Phillips 66 will move all 2,200 of its Houston-area employees into its new global headquarters in Westchase in July. The company will move employees from four locations: The Pinnacle Building at 3010 Briarpark Drive, The Reserve Building at 3250 Briarpark Drive, One Briarlake Plaza at 2000 W. Sam Houston Parkway South and 600 North Dairy Ashford. The 14-acre campus is anchored by 13- and 15-story office towers connected via a 3,000-square-foot walking bridge and an eight-floor parking garage. [508]

The headquarters has a yoga studio, spinning studio, basketball court, and a soccer field with a track. It also has an on-site dentist and physician through Memorial Hermann Health System, as well as two credit unions with campus outposts – Houston-based Member's Choice Credit Union and Oklahoma-based Truity Credit Union. Employees can de-stress in a massage parlor, or get their suits and skirts pressed in an on-site Men's Wearhouse dry cleaner. "Thirty-six percent of our workforce are Millennials, and (that number) is going to grow, and these are the kinds of facilities that attract Millennials," Garland said when asked about the campus' amenities. "(It's) part of just being competitive in this market."[509]

June 6, 2016: Greg Garland Sells Almost $5 Million of Phillips Stock

The Bibey Post reported on June 6, 2016 that the Chairman and CEO of Phillips 66 and company’s insider Greg Garland sold 62,500 shares of Phillips stock at $80.0 of a share. The transaction’s shares had a value of around $4,996,881 U.S. Dollars. Garland now owns 122,930 shares of Phillips stock.[510]

June 3, 2016: Western States Petroleum Association Sues State of California Over Emission Standards at Rodeo Refinery

Courthouse News Service reported on June 3, 2016 that the Western States Petroleum Association, or WSPA, sued the Bay Area Air Quality Management District in Contra Costa Superior Court, claiming the agency acted arbitrarily when it installed new rules aimed at curtailing emissions at five Bay Area refineries by 20 percent. The refineries include Chevron in Richmond, Tesoro outside of Convord, Phillips 66 in Rodeo, Valero in Benicia and Shell in Martinez. WSPA — along with Valero Refining, Tesoro Refining & Marketing and Phillips 66 — say the district did not perform the necessary environmental review, known as a CEQA analysis, when it implemented the new rules. It further asserts the mandate unfairly targets the oil and gas industry as the emissions reduction was not implemented in any other industry. The plaintiffs want the court to order the Bay Area Air Quality Management District to set aside the rules aimed at curtailing emissions at the five locations, as well as an injunction that prohibits the agencies from implementing certain provisions in the future. WSPA says the five refineries that comprise the Contra Costa-Solano refinery belt — the largest in California — account for less than three percent of air pollutants in the area.[511]

June 1, 2016: Proposed Carbon Cap Plan Would Affect Phillips 66's Ferndale Refinery

The Bellingham Herald reported on June 1, 2016 that Washington state regulators have unveiled an updated plan to limit greenhouse gas emissions from large polluters, the latest attempt by Gov. Jay Inslee to push ahead with a binding cap on carbon emissions after struggling to win approval from legislators. The rule would initially apply to facilities that release at least 100,000 metric tons of carbon a year including Phillips 66's Ferndale Refinery. Under the proposed rule, expected to be finalized in late summer, large emitters would be required to reduce carbon emissions by about 5 percent every three years, and show they achieved an average reduction of 1.7 percent per year.

Kris Johnson, president of the Association of Washington Business, said his group is still concerned about the potential economic damage from this new regulation. “Placing a cap on carbon emissions that targets Washington’s best employers sends the wrong signal to businesses of all sizes, both those that are here already and those hoping to relocate here, by driving up energy costs for employers and families at a time when we are already beginning to see signs of an economic slowdown,” he said in a statement.

But some critics said the proposed rule doesn’t require enough emissions reductions and disregards current science. “We are extremely disappointed,” said Andrea Rodgers, an attorney representing young activists who sued the state to adopt new rules to limit carbon emissions based on the best-available science.[512]

May 31, 2016: Phillips Does Maintenance Work on FCCU at Borger Refinery

Nasdaq reported on May 31, 2016 that Phillips 66's Borger Refinery is undergoing two weeks of maintenance on equipment related to its gasoline-making uniy. "Unit 40 FCCU [fluid catalytic cracking unit] is scheduled to clean half of the blower surface condenser," it said in a filing with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. "Unit 40 FCCU will reduce charge to minimize the possibility of process upset." The FCCU isn't scheduled to shut down during the work, which is due to end June 13, but that it may lead to plant emissions.[513]

May 26, 2016: Phillips Reports Equipment Problems at Sweeny Refinery

Nasdaq reported on May 26, 2016 that Phillips 66 reported problems with equipment and emissions at its Sweeny refinery in Texas. "The wastewater plant regenerative thermal oxidizer (RTO) went into standby mode, and the bioreactor tank, Tank 69, vented," it said. "This RTO standby mode is a continuation of operational issues resulting from the May 21, 2016 power failure." Phillips said the emissions began May 24, 2016 and ended May 25, 2016.[514]

May 21, 2016: Phillips 66 Moves Closer to Sale of Whitegate Refinery in Ireland

Phillips 66's Whitegate Refinery. Phillips 66 could announce the sale of Whitegate oil refinery as early as next week with negotiations believed to be at an advanced stage. Ireland's only refinery has been on the market since November 2015 when its current owner Phillips 66 took the decision to again seek a buyer after earlier attempts to offload it in 2014 failed.. Photo: Phillips 66

The Irish Examiner reported on May 21, 2016 that Phillips 66 could announce the sale of Whitegate oil refinery as early as next week with negotiations believed to be at an advanced stage. Ireland's only refinery has been on the market since November 2015 when its current owners Phillips 66 (P66) took the decision to again seek a buyer after earlier attempts to offload it in 2014 failed. According to sources, a preferred bidder has been identified from a shortlist of interested companies which included private equity firm ArcLight Capital, Irving Oil, UK-based PTFPlusOne and Valero Energy. Canadian family-owned Irving Oil are understood to be the frontrunners in the sales process. Irving is a gas and oil processing, transporting and marketing company headquartered in Saint John with additional operations in the US state of New Hampshire. The Canadian firm was one of the companies touted as a potential buyer for Whitegate in 2007.

Whitegate reported losses in 2014 of more than $280m representing a fivefold increase on the $58m loss it made the previous year. Phillips 66 reduced the value of the plant and equipment resulting in an impairment cost of $127.6m in addition to its $146m operating loss.[515]

May 18, 2016: Opponents Vow to Stay in Fight Against Phillips 66 Santa Maria Rail Project

Chris McGuinness wrote in the New Times on May 18, 2016 that feelings ran high at the meeting of the SLO County Planning Commission when commission members moved forward with plans to approve a modified version of the proposed Phillips 66 rail spur project, with members of the audience booing commissioners who expressed their support of the project, and cheering those who did not. Heidi Harmon, a local activist and opponent of the project, said that the commissioners' actions at the meeting may have been disheartening but would also serve to further galvanize those who oppose it. "I think they were disappointed and disgusted, but not discouraged," Harmon said. "I think they were trying to thread the needle," said Laurance Shinderman, a member of the Mesa Refinery Watch Group, an organization that opposes the project. "They bought into Phillips' shell game. ... We were disappointed." Whatever the commission's final decision is, it can still be appealed to the SLO County Board of Supervisors, the California Coastal Commission, and eventually the court system. The project will come back before the Planning Commission Sept. 22, and will include reopening public comment.[516]

May 16, 2016: San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission Agrees to Move Forward with Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refinery Rail Project

KSBY reported on May 16, 2016 that the San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission agreed to move forward with a proposal to extend a rail spur at the Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refinery. There was a consensus by straw vote to approve the project in the future but no formal vote was put on the record. Many people have expressed concerns over the safety risks associated with the project, which is expected to result in three oil trains traveling into the refinery each week. The commissioners suggested some conditions for the project that will be later formalized. Another Planning Commission meeting is scheduled for September 22, when the commissioners will open up those conditions for public comment. Even if the Planning Commission does give final approval to the project, it still would have to go through the County Board of Supervisors for an appeals process and then the Coastal Commission.[517]

May 11, 2016: Petroleum Engineer Explains "Rockets and Feathers" in the Refining Business

Robert Rapier, a former engineer at Phillips 66's Billings Refinery, wrote in Investors Business Daily on May 11, 2016 about a well-known phenomenon in the refining business called “rockets and feathers.” "It means that when oil prices rise, gasoline prices go up like a rocket," says Rapier. "But when oil prices fall, gasoline prices drift down like a feather." Several studies have confirmed this effect, which is driven by consumer behavior. When gasoline prices are climbing consumers will drive out of their way to save a nickel on a gallon of gasoline. Competition is more intense, but every filling station has a financial incentive to keep up with increases in the price of crude and wholesale gasoline. But when prices are falling consumers do less comparison shopping. As a result, refiners and retailers are much slower to reduce prices as oil prices fall. According to Rapier a general rule of thumb is that falling oil prices earn refiners higher margins, while rising crude costs hurt them.[518]

May 10, 2016: Mid-Continent Refineries Including Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery Brace for Prolonged Shutdown of Canadian Oil After Wildfires

Argus Media reported on May 10, 2016 that Midcontinent refiners including Phillips 66 will likely tap into crude storage at Cusing and use Gulf coast pipelines to make up for Canadian crude supplies curtailed by wildfires raging through Alberta, Canada that have displaced thousands from communities tied to oil sands development and shut in more than 1mn b/d of production. Refiners did not yet know exactly how the disaster would affect crude shipments into the US midcontinent, which averaged 2.1mn b/d last year but sources familiar with operations expected some kind of disruption and said companies were making plans for alternate supplies. In the wake of the fires those refiners may now turn to continued access to near-record volumes at the crude oil storage hub in Cushing, Oklahoma. Crude in Cushing storage has swollen to a record 67.5mn bl this year, and were last week at 66.3mn bl. Taking Cushing crudes would be a change in diet for refiners like BP, Marathon Petroleum and Phillips 66, which have all undertaken major expansions to their ability to process oil sands crude over the past five years. Phillips 66 declined to comment on specific supply adjustments but said the company does expect reductions to its crude supply. The US independent refiner imported an average 200,000 b/d in 2015 for the 356,000 b/d Wood River refinery in Roxana, Illinois, it operates with Canadian integrated firm Cenovus.[519]

According to Reuters oil producers and refiners are bracing for a prolonged shutdown and possible supply constraints from Canada's vast oil sands region as a destructive wildfire raged for a second week. Officials said resuming operations would be a challenge and no timeline had been considered. "This production is not gone for good, yet when fires are controlled, restarting production will take several more weeks, even without damage," energy analysts at Morgan Stanley said in a note. Three firms have issued warnings of "force majeure" events, including BP Plc, which produces oil in Canada via a partnership with Husky, Suncor Energy Inc, the largest Canadian oil producer, and U.S. refiner Phillips 66. Force majeure is an unforeseen event that prevents a party from fulfilling a contract. The notices were for the inability to deliver on some contracts for Canadian crude. Record U.S. inventories and plentiful supplies in storage in western Canada will offset some of the losses from the blaze but prolonged outages in the oil sands, which has the world's third-largest crude reserves, could roil producers and traders' contracts and order books.[520]

May 6, 2016: Documentary "High Stakes" Premieres with the 'Real Story' of E. W. Marland, Preempting Hollywood's Inaccuracies

Documentary "High Stakes" Tells the 'Real Story' of E. W. Marland. Rob Boddick and Leasha Combes portray E.W. and Lydie Marland in a re-enactment from the documentary “High Stakes: The Life and Times of E.W. Marland.” This depicts a party at the mansion at which E.W. introduces Lydie as his new wife. Photo: High Stakes

The Tulsa World reported that “High Stakes: The Life and Times of E.W. Marland" premiered in Ponca City on May 6, 2016 and will premier in Tulsa on May 12, 2016. The hope is that people learn the real story of oilman, politician, and philanthropist E. W. Marland from the documentary and want to tour the Marland Mansion and the Marland Grand Home to learn more of the story.[521] The documentary, filmed by Scott Swearingen and Steve Herrin, was funded by a grant of $100,000 from the Marland Estate Foundation. “The project was completely funded with no city funds used,” said David Keathly, director of the Marland Mansion. "We have been working on it over a year.”[522]

The impetus for the documentary came in February, 2013 when Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein announced “The Ends of the Earth,” a film about E.W. Marland based on a screenplay from Oscar-winner Chris Terrio of “Argo". The hot film project seemed to come together quickly with Jennifer Lawrence slated to play Lydie Marland, the governor’s second wife, and David Russell selected to direct the picture. Residents of Ponca City were excited to learn that a movie would be made about one of it's most prominent citizens as rumors circulated that principal filming and production of the major motion picture would be done in Ponca City and that Christian Bale or Johnny Depp were being considered for the role of E. W. Marland.

But in May, 2013 a Ponca City citizen alerted local civic leaders to the contents of Chris Terrio's screenplay and passed on a copy of the script for "The Ends of the Earth." When members of the E.W. Marland Estate Foundation were given the opportunity to take a look at Terrio's screenplay and it's “dramatic license, or, well, inaccuracies,” said Scott Swearingen, they decided that something needed to be done. "There was going to be an emphasis on drama, with the facts going by the wayside. The [Marland Estate] Foundation was concerned that people come to see the mansion with that story in mind. The wrong story,” said Swearingen, co-producer of the documentary, who has crafted video productions for exhibits at Gilcrease Museum of Art and the Woody Guthrie Center. Apparently Marland was not going to be shown in a good light, said Swearingen. “Lydie was going to be the heroine of the story, which would show her doing things to help employees that E.W. wouldn’t do, when it was actually E.W. who had instituted the policies that helped these employees.” The foundation hired Swearingen and Herrin to “tell the story as it happened — to get it right.”

Meanwhile the Hollywood production of "The Ends of the Earth" ” has now gone silent and all involved have moved on to other projects. E. W. Marland's story is "a great story about never giving up. It’s remarkable to see how a person accumulates so much money and then loses it in a perfect storm. Why would you need to fictionalize this?” says Steve Herrin, one of the producers of "High Stakes". “The real story is so much more interesting than anything Hollywood could come up with.”[523]

May 4, 2016: Philips 66 Transfers Ownership of Ponca Refinery's Standish Pipeline to Phillips 66 Partners LP

Businesswire reported on May 4, 2016 that Phillips 66 Partners LP announced that it has reached agreement with Phillips 66 to acquire the Standish Pipeline, a refined petroleum products pipeline system extending from Phillips 66’s Ponca City Refinery in Ponca City, Oklahoma, to the Partnership’s North Wichita Terminal in Wichita, Kansas. Also involved in the sale are the remaining 75 percent interest in Phillips 66 Sweeny Frac LLC, which owns the newly constructed Sweeny Fractionator One and Clemens Caverns storage facility. The total value of the sale is $775 million. “The acquisition provides the Partnership with full ownership in Sweeny Fractionator One and the Clemens Caverns, further diversifying our fee-based portfolio,” said Greg Garland, Phillips 66 Partners chairman and CEO. “The addition of the Standish Pipeline is consistent with our plan to build out our current systems that are strategically integrated with Phillips 66 refineries. We remain on track to deliver our stated five-year compound annual distribution growth target of 30 percent through the end of 2018.”[524]

May 3, 2016: Rancher Files Lawsuit Against Phillips 66 for Pollution from Pipeline from Santa Maria Refinery

Cal Coast News reported on May 3, 2016 that Rob Rossi, an owner of the more than 14,000 acre Santa Margarita Ranch, filed a lawsuit against ConocoPhillips and Phillips 66 on Friday for allegedly operating a pipeline that has contaminated a portion of his ranch. The pipeline extends 78 miles from Phillips 66's Santa Maria refinery to a junction pipe station in the San Joaquin Valley. In the years since the pipeline was constructed, the defendants removed or replaced the pipeline twice. During one of the maintenance projects, hydrocarbons were discovered to have leaked into the soil, according to the lawsuit. The Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board then opened an investigation that led to the discovery of oil related contaminants in the soil and groundwater in areas adjacent to the pipeline. The contaminates discovered showed that the leaks were not only historical but current, as some of the chemicals found were not added to oil until 2000, according to the lawsuit. In his lawsuit, Rossi is seeking that the defendants stop any continuing pipeline leaks, clean up any contamination from its pipeline on the property, reimburse Rossi for expenses related to the leaks, indemnify Rossi, pay damages for injury to the property, pay civil penalties for contaminating drinking water and pay Rossi’s legal costs. “Defendants’ petroleum hydrocarbon contamination on the headquarters property, in addition to posing a continuing threat to human health and the environment, has impeded and, until abated, will continue to impede Rossi’s ability to freely and beneficially use, enjoy and develop his property,” the lawsuit says.[525]

April 29, 2016: Ponca Refinery Earns $33.8 Million in Annualized Profit for Phillips 66 in Q1 2016

Ponca Refinery Earns $33.8 Million in Annualized Profit for Phillips 66 in Q1 2016. Ponca Refinery was the fourth most profitable of Phillips' fifteen worldwide refineries for Q1 2016. Ponca Refinery earned $8.5 million for Phillips in the first quarter of 2016 for an annualized profit of $33.8 million. Click graphic to expand. Graphic: Hugh Pickens

Phillips 66 reported their first quarter earnings for 2016 on April 29, 2016 and the results of analysis of earnings for Phillips' Refining Business Segment show Ponca Refinery is the fourth most profitable of Phillips' fifteen worldwide refineries. Ponca Refinery earned $8.5 million for Phillips in the first quarter of 2016 for an annualized profit of $33.8 million. Phillips' Sweeney Refinery in Old Ocean, TX and Alliance Refinery in Belle Chasse, LA tied as the most profitable refineries with $9.2 million in earnings for an annualized profit of $36.9 million. The annualized profit of Phillips 66's five most profitable refineries for the first quarter of 2016 are:[526]

  • Sweeny Refinery - $36.9 million
  • Alliance Refinery - $36.9 million
  • Lake Charles Refinery - $35.7 million
  • Ponca Refinery - $33.8 million
  • Bayway Refinery - $32.8 million

See Appendix 4 for detailed calculations:

April 29, 2016: Phillips 66 Net Earnings Fall 61 percent as Refining Margins Plummet

FuelFix reported on April 29, 2016 that Phillips 66 saw its quarterly net income crater by 61 percent as the spread between falling crude oil and refined products prices — like gasoline and other fuels — dropped dramatically. Phillips 66 still reported quarterly earnings of $385 million on Friday, but that was down greatly from $987 million during the beginning of 2015, and from $650 million in the fourth quarter. “Weaker margins impacted our financial results in the first quarter,” said Greg Garland, chairman and CEO of Phillips 66, said in a prepared statement. “Our businesses ran well, and we remain focused on operating excellence with industry-leading safety performance.” Phillips 66 profits from their chemicals sectors dipped only slight from a year ago, but the refining earnings alone fell by 84 percent from $538 million down to $86 million. Last year, refining represented well more than half of Phillips 66’s profits.[527]

April 29, 2016: Garland Says Efforts Are Underway to Increase Heavy Canadian Crude at Billings Refinery to 100%

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 first quarter earnings conference call on April 29, 2016 that t the Billings refinery, efforts are underway to increase the amount of heavy Canadian crude we can run to 100%.[528]

April 29, 2016: Crack Spreads in the Central Corridor including Ponca Refinery Were 24% Lower This Quarter

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 first quarter earnings conference call on April 29, 2016 that in the Central Corridor lower margins accounted for the majority of the reductions in adjusted earnings from the fourth quarter as market cracks were 24% lower.[529]

April 29, 2016: Santa Maria Refinery Continues to Be Affected by Plains Pipeline Outage

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 first quarter earnings conference call on April 29, 2016 that the Santa Maria continues to be affected by the Plains Pipeline outage.[530]

April 29, 2016: Sweeny Hub is Nearing Completion

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 first quarter earnings conference call on April 29, 2016 that development of the first phase for the Sweeny Hub is nearing completion. "The LPG export terminal is 80% complete, is on time and on budget," said Garland. "The completion of the terminal will represent a major step in the development of a world class energy complex within integrated refining, chemical and midstream assets. PSXP remains an important part of our midstream growth strategy the fee based assets within its portfolio continue to perform well."[531]

April 29, 2016: Phillips Expects to Conclude the Divestiture Process with Whitegate Refinery This Year

In answer to a question from Neil Mehta, Kevin Mitchell told analysts during the 2016 first quarter earnings conference call on April 29, 2016 that Phillips has a process underway for divestiture at Whitegate and we expect that will conclude this year.[532]

April 29, 2016: Phillips Is Not Actively Seeking to Divest Santa Maria, Wilmington, and Rodeo Refineries in California

In answer to a question from Neil Mehta, Kevin Mitchell told analysts during the 2016 first quarter earnings conference call on April 29, 2016 that although Phillips has talked about divestiture of its California refineries in the past at this point Phillips will just hold on to them at this point in time. "California we talked about a lot the hold cost or the option value is really not much there is not a lot of capital in front of us in California last few year margins have been very good in California so it's a net cash contributor," said Mitchell. "And you think about could you sell asset probably but could we did good value for it, probably not and so I think we just hold it at this point in time they're good assets, they're probably mid back in terms of where they set their cost structure, but given the option value to keep, I think it'll just hang on."[533]

April 29, 2016: Wood River Refinery is On Schedule for Debottlenecking Project This Quarter

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 first quarter earnings conference call on April 29, 2016 that at the Wood River Refinery we’re undergoing debottlenecking in our own schedule for completion in the third quarter[534]

April 29, 2016: FCC Modernization is on Schedule at Cedar Bayou

Greg Garland told analysts during the 2016 first quarter earnings conference call on April 29, 2016 that work on the FCC modernization is on schedule at Cedar Bayou.[535]

April 29, 2016: How Educational Attainment of Students in Ponca City Schools Compares to Other Districts in Northern Oklahoma

Educational Attainment for Students in Cities in Northern Oklahoma. According to the data, students in the Ponca City School District have "about average" test score with educational attainment about 0.2 years below the average expected level of achievement within the United States. For comparison students in the Bartlesville School District about about 0.9 years above the average expected level of achievement within the United States. Click on the graphic to enlarge. Graphic: Hugh Pickens

The New York Times reported on April 29, 2016 on a study by researchers at Stanford University that provides data on reading and math test score data from across the country. The researchers are making the data files public so that anyone who is interested can obtain detailed information about American schools, communities, and student success. "We hope that researchers will use these to generate evidence about what policies and contexts are most effective at increasing educational opportunity, and that such evidence will inform educational policy and practices."

The data shows average test scores by school district for grades 3 to 8. According to the data, students in the Ponca City School District have "about average" test score with educational attainment about 0.2 years below the average expected level of achievement within the United States. For comparison students in the Bartlesville School District about about 0.9 years above the average expected level of achievement within the United States. Comparing average test scores for students in the Ponca City School District with other Oklahoma communities near Ponca City with a similar size to Ponca City yields the following results:

  • Bartlesville: 0.9 grades above average
  • Stillwater: 0.6 grades above average
  • Ponca City: 0.2 grades below average
  • Enid: 0.6 grades below average

One-unit below zero means that students in the district are one grade level behind the average; one-unit above zero means that students in the district are one grade level above the average. A one-unit change is interpreted as a grade-equivalent change, such as the difference in achievement between grades 3 and 4.[536][537]

April 28, 2016: U.S. Refiners' Years-Long Windfall from Cheap Crude Has Come to an End

Retuers reported on April 28, 2016 that U.S. refiners' years-long boom from cheap and plentiful crude ground to a halt in the first quarter as swelling oil inventories and weak demand pushed revenues to their lowest in years and punished profits. Refiners are now paying the price for ramping up production in 2015 to chase healthy crack spreads that have now led to higher inventories and weaker margins as demand slackened during the mild winter. PBF Energy Inc and CVR Energy reported quarterly losses of $66.5 million and $68 million, respectively, while Marathon Petroleum Corp eked out a $1 million profit after reporting earnings of almost $900 million a year earlier. "They were incentivized to run at higher rates and put more barrels in inventory. That's the overhang we're seeing right now," said CVR Chief Executive Jack Lipinski. Distillate and gasoline inventories in the United States have risen to near record highs and crack spreads, the difference between the prices of crude oil and refined products, hit their weakest in years forcing refiners to voluntarily lower output in the most widespread cuts since the global financial crisis.[538]

April 27, 2016: Phillips Idles Part of Wood River Refinery After Heavy Storms Knock Out Power

Reuters reported on April 27, 2016 that Phillips 66 has unexpectedly shut down a 64,000 barrel-per-day crude unit and associated vacuum distillation unit and a coker at Wood River Refinery after heavy storms knocked out power to the western portion of the plant on April 26, 2016, according to a source familiar with the plant's operations. It is still unclear when the units will be restarted, the source said.[539]

April 27, 2016: Winds Tear Off Part of Roof at Phillips 66 Research Center Campus in Bartlesville

KJRH reported on April 27, 2016 that powerful wind gusts in Bartlesville tore off part of the roof at a building on the Phillips 66 Research Center campus off Highway 60 west of Bartlesville. A spokeswoman said no one was injured there, and the damage did not affect any business operations.[540]

April 22, 2016: P