ExxonMobil announced last week that a $230.5 million, three-year modernization initiative at its aging north Baton Rouge refinery has been completed.
The initiative, called the Baton Rouge Refinery Integrated Competitiveness suite of projects, seeks to advance the site’s overall competitiveness, improve its processing capabilities and increase its flexibility for meeting energy market demand. New technology has been installed to reduce the refinery’s VOC emissions by 10 percent, and new mooring systems have been implemented at its Mississippi River dock to enable the loading of larger cargoes for export.
The BRRIC projects required over 600 workers on-site during peak construction, and all of the refinery’s existing engineer, operator and technician jobs have been preserved. Seventeen North Baton Rouge Industrial Training Initiative graduates have been hired as full-time employees.
According to ExxonMobil, $9.9 million in sales taxes were generated during construction and direct property tax revenue is expected to reach $51.3 million over the 40-year life of the projects. Some $17.5 million was spent with diverse and small businesses in making the projects a reality, primarily in north Baton Rouge.
The projects were first announced in June of 2021 and were made possible by a $20 million, 10-year property tax abatement from the state.