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Cork Harbour Tanker Focus: Faroese-Flagged Fure Fladen at Whitegate Oil Refinery

27th June 2017
The Faroese-flagged Fure Fladen is a oil/chemical tanker that berthed today at Whitegate Oil Refinery having arrived from the Firth of Clyde as seen above at anchorage off Ardrossan. The strategic plant in lower Cork Harbour is Ireland's only oil refinery. The Faroese-flagged Fure Fladen is a oil/chemical tanker that berthed today at Whitegate Oil Refinery having arrived from the Firth of Clyde as seen above at anchorage off Ardrossan. The strategic plant in lower Cork Harbour is Ireland's only oil refinery. Photo: JEHAN ASHMORE

#WhitegateOil – As the Whitegate Oil Refinery in Cork Harbour is the only such strategic facility in the State, Afloat took an opportunity to highlight a tanker berthed at the terminal today, writes Jehan Ashmore.

According to the Port of Cork, one of the berths at the terminal’s jetty is occupied by the Faroese-flagged Fure Fladen. The 18,000dwt tonnes oil/chemical tanker had sailed overnight from an anchorage on Firth of Clyde, Scotland.

In Autumn 2016 a Canadian firm, Irving Oil decided to buy Whitegate from US owners Phillipps 66, and this has ensured security of supply to the market.

Speaking at the official launch by new owners Irving Oil as reported in The Irish Times, the Minister for the Environment Denis Naughten said the Whitegate facility was “crucially important for Ireland”

“It is crucially important from the point of view that this is the only oil refinery on the island of Ireland. It is much easier to access crude oil than processed oils – petrol and diesel. So it is important from a security point of view that we have an oil refinery on the island. It is not just an Irish issue. It is a European issue as well.

The future of the refinery employing 160 had been in doubt, given the 15-year operating licence ran out during last summer.

Acquisition by Irving Oil had allayed local concerns as the company announced it would be operating the plant with its existing full workforce.

The 144m long Fure Fladen is scheduled to depart tomorrow. A next port of call is Eastham where the Mersey meets the lochs entrance to the Manchester Ship Canal. 

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