We value our connection with the Lima community and want to correct some inaccuracies in recent media and social media about our company and staffing plans for our maintenance turnaround this fall at what is now Cenovus Lima Refinery.
Cenovus is a Canadian integrated energy company committed to developing and processing oil and natural gas resources in a safe and responsible manner. Following Cenovus’s combination earlier this year with Husky Energy, the Lima Refinery became a core Cenovus asset and an important part of our long-term integrated energy strategy. The refinery has been operating in Lima for 135 years, and we respect the generations of families who have supported us over this tremendous history. We are proud to be a top regional employer, providing jobs for 450 people, about half of whom are union-represented. And, together with our employees, we make $600,000 in community investments annually.
Concerns have been expressed about the contracts awarded for our fall turnaround, so I would like to put some important facts on the record:
The turnaround contracts were awarded last year, before Cenovus and Husky combined, and following a competitive process. This work is specialized and is typically largely done by people from outside the area, regardless of who receives the contract.
Cenovus and Lima Refinery have productive relationships with union-represented workforces, including our permanent operations and maintenance workforce and our embedded refinery maintenance contractor, which uses workers represented by the Lima Building Trades. Our Superior Refinery rebuild in Wisconsin is also being done predominately with building trades contractors.
Our area has about 3,000 craftspeople in total, but only a portion of those people are qualified to do refinery turnaround work. Many of those craftspeople work for our maintenance contractor in the refinery every day, helping us maintain safe and reliable operations, and they will continue doing other regular repair and service maintenance work on the half of the refinery not shut down for the turnaround.
We understand the local trades are disappointed they were not awarded this particular contract, but as I said, they will continue to work through the fall. We have met with their leadership monthly and offered support to enhance their chance of success on subsequent bids, and we hope to continue a constructive relationship.
Above all, we want you to know Cenovus is committed to being a responsible long-term owner, operator, employer and member of the Lima community. This includes our partnership with United Way of Greater Lima, where we are already the largest contributor, and continuing our other community and nonprofit investments. We hope this gives you a better sense of who we are.
Claudio Ingaramo joined the Lima Refinery team in 2013 and has served as vice president, U.S. Refining and Lima Refinery general manager since November 2018. His opinion does not necessarily represent the views of The Lima News or its owner, AIM Media.