Caltex Refinery

Solid Waste Management at a Refinery: Caltex Refinery, Lytton, Qld


Courtesy of Caltex Refinery

 The Caltex Refinery in Lytton, Brisbane has implemented substantial changes in its solid waste management system since commissioning of the refinery in 1965. A number of new initiatives have been introduced within the solid waste management program and the integrated environmental management system. These initiatives were based on the cleaner production elements and in particular 'at source' wastes reduction and recycling of waste products. This program resulted in a considerable reduction of waste generation and substantial savings in waste handling and disposal costs.


Construction and commissioning of Ampol Refinery ( now Caltex Refinery ) was completed in 1965. It is an integrated refinery with two crude processing units, fluid catalytic cracking, HF alkylation, polymerisation and catalytic reforming. The refinery has an advanced waste water treatment system which includes segregated oily, contaminated water and storm water systems, and secondary biological treatment plant.
The Existing Process

Solid waste management in the refinery’s early days was comparable with the petroleum industry standards at the time. However, these standards and the refinery waste management practices along with them, have undergone substantial changes over the last three decades. These changes occurred due to a variety of reasons namely company policies, economic conditions, regulatory and licensing requirements, health, safety and changing public attitudes. This case study aims to present a detailed description of improvements in the refinery’s solid waste management over the last decade and some of the results achieved.
A number of solid wastes from various sources are generated in the refinery manufacturing process. The majority of these wastes are of a hazardous nature due to contamination with hydrocarbons and other contaminants. These wastes have been categorised and tested and, for most of them, Material Safety Data Sheets have been developed. Table 1 characterises major wastes generated at the present time.

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