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BP restarts large US refiner of oil sands crude after unplanned shutdown

CALGARY — BP says it has restarted operations at a major unit of a U.S. refinery that processes oil sands crude from Alberta.

The forced shut down of the 240,000-barrel-a-day crude distillation unit in Whiting, Ind., on Aug. 8 caused gasoline prices to spike across western Canada.

The closure also led to a wider discount on Canadian heavy crude, which dropped to more than US$20 below the North American benchmark price.

BP says the Whiting restart is increasing the refinery's fuel production as it ramps up output over time.

The refinery restart comes a day after oil closed at a fresh six year low of US$38.24 a barrel for the West Texas Intermediate benchmark crude after dropping $2.21 on the day.

Analysts say many oil sands operations are producing at a loss at these prices.

The Canadian Press

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