Lukoil’s Volgograd refinery hit by second drone attack this year

By Thomson Reuters May 13, 2024 | 7:10 AM

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian oil giant Lukoil’s Volgograd refinery was partly shut down after being hit by a drone attack on Sunday, two sources familiar with the matter said, the second such attack this year on the largest refinery in southern Russia.

The attack caused a fire at the 300,000 barrel-per-day refinery but it was put out quickly and there were no casualties, the head of the Volgograd region Andrei Bocharov said.

Ukraine has been firing drones at Russian oil facilities during its war with Russia and a drone attack on the Volgograd facility in February was by Ukraine, a source in Kyiv told Reuters at the time.

The CDU-1 unit, the plant’s biggest unit, was damaged by Sunday’s attack, causing an emergency shutdown and was still offline on Monday, sources familiar with the matter said.

Lukoil declined to comment on the fire.

The CDU-1 unit has a capacity of 18,590 metric tons per day, or annual production of 6.5 million metric tons of oil, and accounts for 43% of the refinery’s capacity and 49% of the actual refinery processing in the first quarter of 2024.

The refinery’s second biggest unit, CDU-6, which can produce 14,570 metric tons per day or 34% of the refinery’s capacity, was also scheduled to stop for repairs from April 26-June 1 although it was not clear if the maintenance was on schedule.

If both CDU-1 and CDU-6 are both offline, three quarters of the refinery’s processing may currently be idle.

After the drone attack on the Volgograd refinery at the beginning of February, which caused a fire at the CDU-5 unit which has capacity of 9,100 metric tons per day, the repair work was completed in 18 days, sources said.

In 2023 the Volgograd refinery processed 13.508 million metric tons of oil, or 4.9% of the total refining volume at Russian refineries.

The plant produced 1.991 million metric tons of motor gasoline, which amounted to 4.6% of the total production of motor gasoline in the Russian Federation, 6.761 million metric tons of diesel fuel, or 7.8% of production in the Russian Federation, 0.888 million metric tons of jet fuel (8.4%) and 0.606 million metric tons of fuel oil (1.5%).

(Reporting by Reuters; Editing by Susan Fenton)