The Jean Gaulin Refinery, which began operations in 1971, is a strategic energy infrastructure in Quebec and in North America as a whole. It is the largest refinery in Quebec and the second largest in Canada in terms of capacity and it handles crude oil from overseas, the Gulf of Mexico and North America, which is shipped by pipelines and tankers to its deep-water port that operates year round on the St. Lawrence River. Close to 480 permanent employees and more than 200 contract employees work at the refinery.
The refinery's reliable and efficient facilities have a production capacity of 265,000 barrels a day. Its configuration is suited to mainly handle crude oil (acid, light and shale crude), and major consumer products (gas, diesel, jet fuel, propane and heating oil). The refinery has a storage capacity of 8.7 million barrels of crude, and intermediate and refined products. It can also store liquefied petroleum gas.
The refinery has been upgraded numerous times since 1971. From 2000 to 2020, Valero will have invested more than $1.9 billion in projects at the Lévis refinery to achieve various objectives such as increasing its performance, preserving the mechanical integrity of its facilities, diversifying its supply sources, optimizing its employees' working environment and improving its environmental record.
Substantial amounts have also been invested to harmonize the refinery's activities with the community. A greenbelt was developed, and a $5-million enhancement project was implemented. Refer to the environment section for further details.