SUPERIOR, Wis. (AP) — Husky Energy says it will invest more than $400 million to rebuild its oil refinery in Superior, Wisconsin, and continue its use of a highly toxic chemical that raised fears in the community of 27,000 after an explosion at the refinery last April.
The blast injured 36 people and required the evacuation of much of Superior due in large part to the presence of hydrogen fluoride, which can be hazardous to human health. The tank containing the chemical was not damaged by the explosion.
Company officials told Wisconsin Public Radio on Wednesday that they explored using alternatives to hydrogen fluoride, but that the chemical is fundamental to making gasoline.
Opponents say there are safer ways to produce high-octane gasoline.
The refinery expects to resume some operations in late 2020.
Photo provided by Husky Energy’s Twitter account.