To create alkylate, a refinery must use HF or sulfuric acid, the only two proven processes available.
Deciding which process a company will use is determined when the unit is built. Two California refineries installed HF units which was selected because of the type of crude oil available in CA and the types of products manufactured at the Refinery. The units were later converted to include an additive that modifies the HF (MHF) to make the unit even safer to operate. The units are still in operation today and been essential to the Refinery’s success over the years.
Fifty of the 89 alkylation units in the United States are HF/MHF units.
Although there are significantly more HF/MHF units in the U.S, activists are using scare tactics to create fear in the community to generate enough concern to warrant shutting down two refineries.
However, unmodified HF has been in use since 1771, almost 250 years. And the refining industry makes up less than two percent of the use of unmodified HF worldwide. HF is used in agriculture, pharmaceuticals, refrigerants (air conditioners/refrigerator) and to create cell phone computer tablet, TV and most electronic components.
Now activists are advocating for the ban of MHF even though it has been used at the refinery with no offsite release since it was installed.
What the activist are omitting is MHF is the most modern, proven alkylation technology available. It creates less emissions, less truck traffic, is more energy efficient and it allows us to create the cleaner burning gasoline required in southern CA.