About Shell Scotford

The Shell Scotford Complex, located 40 kilometres northeast of Edmonton Alberta, consists of a bitumen upgrader, oil refinery, chemicals plant and a carbon capture and storage (CCS) facility. It is one of North America’s most efficient, modern and integrated hydrocarbon processing sites, converting oil sands bitumen into finished, marketable products.

Shell opened the refinery and styrene plant at Scotford in 1984. A mono-ethylene glycol plant was added in 2000. The Shell-operated Scotford Upgrader opened in 2003 and it was expanded in 2011. The Shell-operated Quest CCS facility was added to capture CO2 from the three hydrogen manufacturing units within the upgrader in 2015.

The upgrader and Quest CCS facility are a part of the Athabasca Oil Sands Project (AOSP). The respective ownership interests of AOSP assets in aggregate, directly and indirectly, are 70% Canadian Natural Resources Limited and an affiliate, 20% Chevron Canada Limited and 10% Shell Canada Limited through certain subsidiaries. 

Contact Us

24-Hour phone number: +1 780.992.3600

Mailing address: Corporate Relations, Shell Scotford, PO Bag 23, Fort Saskatchewan AB T8L 3T2

Media inquiries: Submit an inquiry here.


Shell Scotford uses a hydrogen-addition process to upgrade bitumen from oil sands mines north of Fort McMurray. The resulting product is a light synthetic crude oil as well as other medium- to heavy-crude products. Much of the crude produced at the upgrader is used by the adjacent Shell Scotford Refinery. The Upgrader also features a cogeneration plant to support its operations.

  • Capacity

    320,000 barrels of oil equivalent daily of diluted bitumen

  • Certifications

    ISO 14001

  • Products

    Synthetic Crude Oil

Upgrading Technology

The upgrading process used at the Scotford Upgrader is called hydrogen-addition or hydro-conversion. This process adds hydrogen to the bitumen, breaking up the large hydrocarbon molecules to create synthetic crude oil. Adding hydrogen rather than removing “coke” (through a process called coking) means there is no carbon by-product. It also yields a slight volume gain.


The Shell Scotford Refinery processes synthetic crude oil from the Shell Scotford Upgrader into products such as gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, propane and butane. These products are then shipped by pipeline and rail cars to distribution terminals, where they are marketed across Western Canada. The Shell Scotford Refinery also produces benzene that is used by the Shell Scotford Chemical Plant.

  • Capacity

    114,000 barrels of synthetic crude oil daily

  • Certifications

    ISO 14001



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 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.

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.

Energy Efficiency

Scotford is the leading refinery in Canada in energy efficiency, using 25% less energy than the average Canadian refinery according to the Solomon Energy Efficiency Index (EII)TM of participants in Solomon’s Biennial Worldwide Fuels Refinery Performance Analysis.


The Shell Scotford Chemicals Plant uses byproducts from the adjacent Shell Scotford Refinery to help manufacture styrene monomer and ethylene glycol. The plant has two units – the styrene plant and the glycol plant. The Shell Scotford Chemical Plant products are shipped by pipeline, rail cars and truck to be marketed and sold across North America.

  • Capacity

    Glycol: 450Kt/year
    Styrene: 450Kt/year

  • Certifications

    ISO 14001
    ISO 9001: 2015 certification achieved for Scotford Chemicals Management System.
    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.


Styrene Monomer

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

Ethylene Glycol

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

Responsible Care

Shell Scotford Chemicals Plant is Responsible Care verified.

https://canadianchemistry.ca/responsible-care/ is a global, chemical industry performance initiative that helps member companies continuously improve in the critical areas of health, safety, security, product stewardship, environmental protection and social responsibility.

It is an ethics and principle-based approach to the safe and environmentally sound management of chemicals. The approach started in Canada and has spread to 50 countries around the world. For Canadian member companies, Responsible Care is administered by the https://canadianchemistry.ca/

All members of Responsible Care are required to successfully complete re-verification every three years. The Responsible Care verification is conducted under strict protocols. These protocols ensure that the principles and codes of practices are not only in place, but are practised and continuously improved.


Emergency response, safety and the environment are important parts of operations at Shell Scotford. Our goals are no harm to people and to protect the environment.

Shell Scotford process units and equipment are designed, built, operated and maintained to be clean, safe and acceptable to the community. Shell continues to invest in new technology, implement better operating procedures, and strengthen its training programs to improve environmental performance.

The upgrader, refinery, chemicals plant and carbon capture and storage facility work diligently to ensure that the environmental footprint of Shell Scotford is minimized.

Learn more about our Health, Security, Safety, the Environment & Social Performance Commitment and Policy on our Shell Global site.

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 neighbours notice any unusual activity around our operations, such as loud noises or alarms, prolonged or increased flaring, smoke or fire, smells, or increased traffic levels, they can call the NR CAER UPDATE line (1.866.653.9959) to hear updates about Shell Scotford and other operations in the region.


Shell Scotford has operated in northern Strathcona County near Fort Saskatchewan for more than 40 years. It is recognized as one of the area’s largest employers and a valued neighbour to the local communities.

Shell Scotford creates ongoing opportunities – formal and informal – for community members to learn more about our operations, ask questions and share any concerns.

Shell also contributes to the general well-being of the communities near our operations through community investment and volunteerism.

Our recognition

Shell Scotford is a proud member of our community. We are grateful for your support. As such, we are always excited when our efforts are recognized. Awards, such as the following, have been proudly accepted by our team in the recent past:

  • Friends of Education Award (Elk Island Public Schools) – 2022
  • Industry Excellence (Fort Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce) – 2017
  • Business of the Year (Sherwood Park Chamber of Commerce) – 2016
  • Community Service & Involvement (Sherwood Park Chamber of Commerce) – 2017
  • Industry Excellence (Fort Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce) – 2015
  • Quantum Leap Award (United Way Alberta Capital Region) – 2014
  • Mayor’s Award – Best Overall Entry (K-Days Parade) – 2014
  • Environmental Protection & Occupational Safety (Sherwood Park Chamber of Commerce) – 201C

Social investment

At this time, the Shell Scotford social investment application is available by invitation only.

Eligible Areas: Fort Saskatchewan, Strathcona County, Sherwood Park, Bruderheim, Josephburg, Thorhild County and Edmonton.

Social investment themes

Respecting Nature

  • Environmental stewardship and protection of bio-diversity

Powering Lives

  • Community skill development and mental health programs

Achieving Net-Zero

  • Low-carbon programs and technology

Ineligible projects:

Shell’s social investment program does not fund the following:

  • Individuals or individual pursuits
  • Golf tournaments, hockey tournaments, tennis, fishing or other sporting tournaments
  • Sports – professional, recreational or minor sports teams
  • For-profit organizations
  • Trips, tours, and travel expenses
  • Third party fundraiser or fundraising events 
  • Conferences, forums, trade shows, conventions, seminars (unless industry-related)
  • Religious causes that do not serve the general public on a non-denominational basis
  • Advertising, film, video, television and book productions 
  • Private foundations
  • Fraternal and labour organizations/service clubs
  • Private (fee-based) elementary or secondary schools
  • Political parties or lobby groups
  • Projects where benefits occur outside Canada (see below for other funding options)