Chapter 2. Locked in Lima: An Oil Refinery at Risk Creates a New Future

In 1991, on Jim Schaefer’s first day in a new assignment as commercial manager for BP’s Midwest and Gulf Coast refining, wholesale, and crude oil system, his boss paid him a visit. Dropping a thick folder full of studies on Schaefer’s desk, Michael Press, senior vice president for U.S. downstream operations, remarked, “Headquarters has looked at every option for reversing the twenty-year decline in profits from the Ohio refineries. Every single study shows that further decline is inevitable. That may be true, but I want you to take one more look at the situation before a decision is made to shut one of these refineries. You’re the most entrepreneurial person I know in BP; ...

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