Newalta to Double Rerefinery


Canadian rerefiner Newalta Corp. is undertaking an expansion of its plant in North Vancouver, British Columbia, which will enable it to process 75 million liters a year of used oil into API Group II base stocks. The company also is preparing to rebrand its entire portfolio of products for the lubricants industry.

“We’re doing the up-front preliminary engineering work now, and the North Vancouver plant will have double its current base oil capacity by 2014,” Alain Portelance, products sales and marketing manager of the Calgary-headquartered industrial waste recycling company, told Lube Report last week.

The plant’s capacity today is about 400 daily barrels of Group II base oil, produced in three viscosity grades: 100N, 150N and 450N. These same grades will be produced post-expansion, Portelance added.

Originally built in 1983 by Mohawk Canada Ltd., the North Vancouver facility was the world’s first commercial-scale rerefinery to use vacuum distillation and hydrotreating to recover base oil from used lubricating oil, according to the company website.

The enlarged plant will continue to rely on its current processes, Portelance said. “It’s been very good to us, and we want to ensure that we continue to produce high-quality stuff — just a lot more of it.”

Key issues for rerefiners, he pointed out, can be sourcing used oil and maintaining consistency from batch to batch. “If the used oil collected is not reliable from a supply and quality standpoint, there can be differences with each batch of base oil.” Because Newalta has a well-established used oil collection network, feedstock variability is not a problem for the North Vancouver rerefinery, he added.

Newalta acquired Mohawk Lubricants, the rerefinery and its used oil collection network in 2002. The North Vancouver site also blends, packages and markets finished lubricants, including API licensed engine oils and other automotive and industrial lubricants. Sales of bulk and packaged lubricants are said to be approximately 4 million liters a year. So far, these products have not trumpeted their recycled content – but that too will change in the coming year.

“Clearly there’s demand for more rerefined and Group II base oils,” Portelance said. “And now the launch of Valvoline’s NextGen engine oil has validated the concept of recycled motor oil for consumers. So we expect to launch our own brand of recycled motor oils, too, during 2012.”

The company’s portfolio of recycled industrial products is being rebranded as well, under the Truform label, “and next we will do the same for our recycled base oils and finished lubricants,” Portelance said.

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