Petroleum Refining

Searching for refinement? We are one of the most experienced energy consulting firms handling the technical and economic issues associated with petroleum refineries. Our work ranges from feasibility studies to litigation support and testimony. We have analyzed and recommended the optimum feedstock slates for individual refineries, compared competing process technologies, made recommendations for improving margins, and undertaken market studies.

We often use our understanding of engineering principles and current economic conditions to assist petroleum refiners in understanding the fair market value of their industrial assets.

We’re also able to leverage our PRISM™ refining industry modeling system, with its refinery simulator and detailed historical data on nearly all major refineries, to provide our clients a competitive edge in their economic analysis.

Case Studies

Post-Hurricane Damages Compound Hot Work Risks

April 19, 2024

In this personal injury case, a refinery heater damaged beyond repair during a hurricane was being dismantled when sparks from the cutting tool ignited oil spilling from the heater tubes. We were asked to identify the cause and responsibilities for the incident, which required our review of regulations, industry standards, and company/contractor safe work practices. Baker & O’Brien presented our opinions in an expert report and provided deposition testimony supporting the dispute resolution.

Allocating Environmental Remediation Costs for an Old Refinery Site

January 29, 2024

A comprehensive environmental site remediation was required for a refinery storage facility and pipeline corridor, but there was an ongoing dispute about which parties were responsible for the clean-up cost. Baker & O’Brien was engaged to review the approaches to allocating the total remediation costs among several potentially liable parties and conduct cost modeling and allocation analyses. Our consultant prepared an expert report and provided deposition testimony.

Hurricane Leads to Flood of Claims

April 19, 2023

Class action lawsuits against a petrochemical plant and a petroleum refinery alleged that hurricane flooding was exacerbated by ongoing project work and poor coordination between the two integrated facilities. Baker & O’Brien reviewed project plans and execution records to evaluate project management compared to industry best practice, and assessed the working relationship and level of coordination between the facilities. Our expert report provided opinions on project governance and the degree of coordination between the facilities, including the effectiveness of the site’s emergency response plan.