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$34M oil re-refining plant planned in W.Pa.

| Friday, Nov. 2, 2007

The first re-refining plant for used automotive and other oils east of the Mississippi River is being planned on a 20-acre, former steel mill site in Monaca, Beaver County.

Five partners who make up Global Re-Refining Ltd. have been planning the $34 million facility for several years from an office in Charleroi, Washington County. Beaver County Commissioners Joe Spanik, Dan Donatella and Charles A. Camp said they'll announce details of the project with the company's officials today at the county courthouse.

Attorney Raymond Roberts, representing the minority-owned company, said negotiations are ongoing to acquire the site, once part of an LTV Steel plant, from developer C.J. Betters.

Global hopes to start construction within a few months, after securing financing plus environmental and other approvals. The plant's first phase could open in a year, creating 35 to 40 jobs paying around $20 an hour.

"Oil does not wear out. It gets dirty," Roberts said Thursday, and the facility initially will remove impurities, metal fragments and dirt from used automotive oils and industrial lubricants, and produce vacuum gas oil, an industrial fuel. Later phases of the project would expand production into diesel and other fuels and lubricants.

Materials removed from the oil during the process would go into asphalt blends, he said, so the plant will create virtually no waste. "This takes a very valuable resource that would be lost, and returns it to the economy as new products," he said.

Carl H. Greene, the president and founder, has 25 years of petrochemical industry experience, Roberts said. Global is working with Pennsylvania officials to secure permits and has applied for state money.

Roberts said the Global plant will be the third re-refining facility of its type nationwide; others operate in California and the Chicago area. The company is close to finalizing partnerships with entities that will supply used oil and purchase the re-refined products, he said.

The Monaca site is accessible by river barge and rail as well as by truck, so it could serve businesses in a wide area, he said.

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