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Valero and Darling Ingredients announce $1.1 billion plant upgrade

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A major renewable diesel plant in Norco, Louisiana is to expand capacity to 675 million gallons per year. This will include a facility to produce 50 to 60 million gallons of renewable naphtha.

The Diamond Green Diesel Plant is a joint venture between a Valero subsidiary and Darling Ingredients. The boards of directors of both companies have agreed to the expansion of the renewable diesel facility.

"We are pleased both Boards approved the new investment and plan to commence construction immediately”, stated Randall C. Stuewe, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Darling Ingredients. 

“Our joint venture with Valero exemplifies the combined strength and skills of the largest global independent refiner with the largest low carbon feedstock supplier in the world,"

In a statement, it’s noted that low-carbon mandates in Europe and North America are projected to continue. This, in turn, is expected to drive ‘strong demand and premium pricing for renewable diesel’. According to Darling Ingredients, the upgrade will add incremental low carbon credit opportunities to the Diamond Green Diesel operation.

The new expansion will add a second, independent parallel plant adjacent to the existing facility as well as the new renewable naphtha finishing facility. In total, it will boost capacity at the site by 400 million gallons.

“We’re pleased to be taking this next step in our partnership with Darling Ingredients,” said Joe Gorder, Valero chairman, president and chief executive officer.

“This growth project fits nicely within our current capital allocation framework and is expected to deliver high returns for investors without changing our capital profile.”

The entire project, which also include improved logistics capabilities, is estimated to cost $1.1 billion (approximately €959 million).