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  • 29 Dec 2014 Remember the 80s

    Shell rolls back the years – and petrol prices – in Canada to commemorate the 1984 launch of the Scotford refinery.

Scotford Manufacturing Centre

In 1984, Shell opened the Scotford Refinery and Chemicals plant (styrene). As one of North America’s most modern and efficient refineries, the Scotford Refinery was the first to exclusively process synthetic crude oil from Alberta’s oil sands. The Refinery produces 100,000 barrels per day of products such as diesel, gasoline, jet fuel and propane. Benzene, a product from the refining process, is sent to Scotford Chemicals for use in the production of styrene monomer – a chemical needed to make many products that people use daily. In 2000, a glycols plant was also opened at Scotford.

Scotford Manufacturing’s mission is to produce superior products and meet customer needs while practicing and recognising our responsibilities to protect health, safety and the environment.

More than 450 full-time staff and 200 long-term contractors are employed at Scotford Manufacturing.

The feedstock for the Refinery comes from the adjacent Scotford Upgrader, which upgrades bitumen from Shell Albian Sands and converts it to synthetic crude.


Scotford 24-hour security line: (780) 992-3600 

Capacity: 100,000 barrels of synthetic crude oil daily



Shell Canada refines only low sulphur gasoline, which contains approximately five parts-per-million sulphur content. To ensure that only Shell stations and customers receive Shell nitrogen-enriched gasoline, Shell injects its additive packages at the truck loading facility, instead of at the refinery.


Shell Scotford refines only ultra low sulphur diesel, which contains less than 10 parts-per-million sulphur content. Shell supplies different grades and types of diesel fuel to Shell-branded as well as other retail, cardlock and bulk agents across Canada. Diesel fuel is commonly used for commercial road transportation, public transportation, industrial applications, and farming.

Aviation Turbine Fuel (Jet Fuel)

More information on Shell Aviation products or aviation site locations.


Propane is used for residential and commercial heating, automotive propane and industrial fuel applications. Shell markets propane to retail, wholesale and industrial consumers.


Butane is primarily used for seasonal gasoline blending and is stored under pressure at the refinery. A portion is sold as industrial feedstock for other industries.


Benzene is a clear liquid formed by natural processes and human activities. Benzene is a natural part of crude oil and most benzene is extracted during the refining process. The benzene is then sent to Scotford Chemicals where it is used to produce Styrene Monomer.


  • ISO 14001:2001
  • EnviroVista Leader (Alberta government certification since 2005)


  • Monoethylene glycol (MEG):  450Kt/yr
  • Styrene monomer:  450Kt/yr


Styrene Monomer

Styrene monomer is sold to customers in North America for the manufacture of a variety of commercial and consumer products such as food containers, home insulation, safety helmets and car interiors.

Monoethylene Glycol

Monoethylene glycol is primarily sold to customers in North America for use in making products such as plastic drinking bottles and antifreeze.


  • Chemicals is accredited by the Canadian Association for Laboratory Accreditation (CALA) to ISO/IEC 17025 for specific tests listed in the scope of accreditation approved by CALA.
  • ISO 14001
  • ISO 9001-2000 certification achieved for styrene monomer, ethylene glycols and hydrocarbon feedstocks
  • Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series 18001
  • Responsible Care® verified

While the most significant opportunities we bring to local communities are those directly related to our operations, it is part of our integral values to invest in the general well-being of the community.

Scotford works closely with the community to identify and support local initiatives and programs. Just some of the recent community initiatives we support include:

  • Strathcona County Bookmobile
  • Fort Saskatchewan Community Hospital Foundation
  • Tree Canada (Tree Plantings in Sherwood Park & Fort Saskatchewan)
  • Light Up Heartland Hall (Strathcona County)
  • Shell Theatre at the Dow Centennial Centre (Fort Saskatchewan)

Shell recognizes the many volunteer hours Scotford employees donate to the community each year through the Community Service Fund program. Hundreds of not for profit organizations and associations benefit from this program, receiving a grant of up to $1,000 where Shell employees regular volunteer. 

Furthermore, Shell encourages employee participation through the United Way Day of Caring program by providing paid time off to employees who volunteer. 

To learn more about what we’re doing in the community, check out the latest issue of our Community Connections newsletter:

Community Connections newsletter Q2 2015

Responsible Care verified
  • First opened in 1984, the Scotford Refinery is the last grassroots refinery built in North America and one of the most energy efficient refineries in the world.
  • Scotford’s $170-million diesel hydrotreater came on line in March 2006, making it the first unit in western Canada to meet the new federal Ultra Low Sulphur Diesel regulations.
  • In 2011, the Refinery started sending off-gasses to the nearby Aux Sable plant for processing. As a result, valuable products such as hydrogen and ethane are recovered. This new process resulted in a reduction of about 125,000 tonnes of CO2 annually – that’s equal to taking 25,000 cars off the road!
  • Scotford Chemicals is a Responsible Care verified facility. Its ethic and principles compel companies to innovate for safer and more environmentally friendly products and processes, and to work cooperatively to identify and eliminate harm throughout the entire life cycle of their products.

Emergency response and safety are important parts of operations at each Shell facility. Our goals are no harm to people, to protect the environment and to minimize pollution. To achieve our goals, we have a systematic approach to emergency response and safety designed to protect our employees and the community.

Emergency Contacts

Scotford 24-hour security line: (780) 992-3600 

Call (780) 992-3666 to report an emergency at Scotford.

Our Approach

Shell Scotford has extensive safety devices in place to eliminate, reduce or control the potential hazards surrounding a large upgrading and petrochemical operation. The facilities have a sequence of built-in safeguards or barriers designed to prevent an incident from occurring. However, in the event of an incident, we also have an effective emergency response plan in place to help us to manage all risks and protect the community and our employees.

Shell Scotford has extensive resources in place to respond quickly to any emergencies. Shell Scotford’s Emergency Response Team is extensively trained and can be quickly mobilized to respond to an incident, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. In addition,  Shell also has access to a strong national network of experts that can be called upon to assist.

Mutual Aid

Scotford is an active member of Northeast Regional Community Awareness and Emergency Response (NR CAER). This organization brings together local and municipal response groups to assist each other in situations that are beyond the capabilities of an individual member company or municipality.

If neighbors notice any unusual activity around our operations, such as loud moises or alarms, prolonged or increased flaring, smoke or fire, smells, or increased taffic levels, they can call the NR CAER UPDATEline (1-866-653-9959) to hear updates about Shell and other operations in the region.


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The Scotford Upgrader takes diluted bitumen from Shell Albian Sands north of Fort McMurray and, using a hydrogen-addition process, upgrades it to a light sweet crude oil.

Scotford employment

Together, the Scotford Refinery and Upgrader employ about 750 full-time and contract employees.

For information on Shell’s new graduate recruitment program, please visit our Campus Recruiting pages.

For more information on employment opportunities at Shell’s Scotford Refinery and with Shell across Canada, see our Jobs & Careers page.