Silence is the virtue of fools. -Sir Francis Bacon
Question #90328 posted on 09/11/2017 12:14 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Where does the gasoline in Utah gas stations come from?

I recall in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, gas prices in Utah spiked even though, according to people I heard talking about it, none of the gasoline in Utah was sourced from the Gulf.

Gas prices in Utah currently don't appear to be responding to Hurricane Harvey, but it is still early days. (I have family members who are closer to the area whose gas prices have already shifted drastically in response--one sister northeast of Dallas saw prices jump 30 cents in one day, family in mid-atlantic states are seeing similar.)

This paper (http://files.geology.utah.gov/online/c/c-113.pdf page 19) from a Utah state website shows that crude oil coming into Utah refineries is sourced from Utah, and pipelines from Colorado, Wyoming and Canada. But that isn't necessarily where Sinclair (or Chevron, or whatever else...) gas stations are bringing gasoline in from is it?

-Fill 'er Up

A:

Dear Aziraphale,

I am fairly confident Utah gets its gas from Idaho. However, I wasn't able to find any sources to back that statement up, so yeah, take it with a grain heaping portion of salt. Readers who know better, please leave a correction.

~Anathema

posted on 09/11/2017 3:32 p.m.
Sinclair [https://www.sinclairoil.com/about], which claims to be "the largest refiner in the greater Rocky Mountain region," says that their two large Wyoming refineries mostly process crude from Wyoming, North Dakota, and Canada. They also specify that they have wells across the Williston Basin, which is a longtime reliable petroleum source.

By contrast, Chevron's major US refineries are in Mississippi and California, with a smaller refinery in Salt Lake City. Other oil companies will have other specific details and locations, but Utah has five refineries in total. [https://trustlands.utah.gov/business-groups/oil-gas/learn-about-utah-oil-and-gas/] 72% of crude processed in the state is imported from places like Canada and Wyoming.

To sum up, there are several oil refineries in Utah, and several large oil-producing regions in the country, but I don't know where Utah gasoline comes from (or where Utah-refined oil products end up being distributed). For all I know, it comes from Idaho.