Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) has granted Mobil Refining Australia Ltd (Mobil) permission to handle excess butane in alternative ways to allow it to continue to produce fuel at its Altona refinery.
The company requested an exemption to its existing licence conditions due to a supply chain issue, which means it will have an excess of butane at its site.
From 5 November 2020 until 14 January 2021 the community may notice an increase in flaring from the refinery, which is necessary for safety reasons at the Altona plant.
Other excess butane will be added to the company’s petrol production and the company will slow production of butane to reduce the amount it has on site.
Mobil was unable to find an alternative site for processing or storage of the excess butane.
EPA will continue to regulate the refinery and can assure the local community that emissions are still within human health guidelines.
EPA also requires the company to provide a flaring management plan on its website (to be available from 1 November via the link below), which must discuss how evening and night-time flaring will be minimised for the duration of the exemption.