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BP Whiting Refinery pumped $190 million into vendors last year

BP's Whiting Refinery is shown in operation in 2011. The refinery pumped $190 million into vendors last year and supported 11,300 jobs.

The BP Whiting Refinery on Northwest Indiana's lakeshore paid out $190 million to 525 vendors and supported more than 11,300 jobs last year.

The energy giant's 2018 U.S. Economic Impact Report estimates that the company invested more than $100 billion in the United States between 2005 and 2017, and that the company employs 14,000 workers and supports 125,000 total jobs nationwide.

In 2017, BP estimates it contributed $85 billion into the U.S. economy while producing 712,000 barrels of oil a day. The London-based energy company, one of the largest employers along the Northwest Indiana lakefront, spent more than $14 billion with 9,000 vendors across the United States.

BP estimates it sold 13.6 billion gallons of gasoline in the United States last year.

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The BP Whiting Refinery produced 10 million gallons of gasoline, 3.5 million gallons of diesel, and 1.7 million gallons of jet fuel each day. The largest refinery in the Midwest — a cornerstone of Northwest Indiana's economy for 129 years — refines enough fuel to supply more than 7 million cars a day and makes about 5 percent of the asphalt used in the United States.

"The Whiting Refinery is committed to helping build a safer, stronger, more sustainable BP,” BP Whiting Refinery Manager Don Porter said. “Technology is a big part of that, and we’re proud of the ways in which we’ve harnessed innovation to enhance our operations and increase our competitiveness.”

The 430,000 barrel-per-day refinery recently completed a $180 flare gas recovery project that cuts down on the flaring that's long streaked over the lakefront. It has also built a $235 million wastewater treatment unit and is in the process of building a $300 million naphtha hydrotreating unit to reduce sulphur emissions to comply with federal environmental rules.

BP employs more than 1,700 workers in Indiana, pays $3.8 million in property taxes and contributes $3.9 million a year to community causes, according to the 2018 U.S. Economic Impact Report.

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.