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    Conoco to invest $146 million in Oklahoma to produce low-sulfur gasoline.

    OKLAHOMA CITY -- Conoco Inc. will spend $146 million to upgrade the company's Ponca City, Okla., refinery to manufacture gasoline that meets the low-sulfur gasoline standards required by the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Tier 2 rules.

    Beginning Jan. 1, 2004, the amount of sulfur in gasoline sold in the U.S. must be reduced, reaching no more than 30 parts per million (ppm) of sulfur in 2005.

    "The Ponca City refinery upgrade is the first step in our long-term strategy for producing low-sulfur gasoline at all four of Conoco's U.S. refineries," said Jim Nokes, executive vice president of refining, marketing, supply and transportation. "The project is consistent with our objective to optimize low-sulfur gasoline investments, to maintain a robust motor fuels business within the U.S. and to provide our customers with cleaner-burning, low sulfur gasoline."

    Conoco, set to be acquired by Phillips Tosco Corp., operates approximately 300 convenience stores nationwide.

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