Regina Co-Op Refinery to cut production

In response to global market conditions, the Co-op Refinery in Regina has reduced production by nearly 25 percent.

Global conditions force 25% reduction

Due to current global conditions, the Co-Op Refinery Complex will cut production by up to 30,000 barrels per day. (CBC)

In response to global market conditions, the Co-op Refinery in Regina has reduced production by nearly 25 percent.

The refinery, which has been producing up to 120,000 barrels per day over the last three months, will cut back to 90,000 barrels a day.

CRC says the reduction is in response to low oil prices and reduced demand for gasoline due to the pandemic.

"While we're turning down the refinery's daily production, we want customers to know that we have planned for this." said Gil Le Dressay, Vice-President of Refinery Operations in a news release.

"Over the past few months, we have taken steps to maximize the utilization of our storage capacity and supply chain network throughout Western Canada. This will ensure the market has the product in place to meet demand." 

Le Dressay said the refinery will reassess and increase production accordingly, however their current projections for transportation fuels are indicating a further reduction in production may be required.

The refinery normally goes through a slow down period in April when the refinery's equipment is taken off stream for safety maintenance and upgrades. The majority of that work will now be put off until 2021.

"While we typically reduce production in April for turnaround, we see this specific reduction plan lasting longer. It could conceivably be months before we return to our typical production levels," said Le Dressay. 

Locked out since early December, refinery workers will vote on what the company says is its "final offer" (Ethan Williams/CBC)

The refinery has been operating with replacement workers for the past several months. CRC locked out its employees on December 5.

The union had accepted recommendations submitted by a provincially appointed mediator in March, but the Co-op didn't agree to those terms.

Instead the company presented what it called its "final offer" to locked out workers.

Unifor Local 594 members have begun the voting process on the deal.

Mail-in voting was supposed to close on April 17 but that deadline has been extended to April 24.

Unifor's bargaining committee recommended members vote to reject it.

The union said the company's offer tables a number of concessions that go far beyond the compromise of the mediators' deal.