A Town and a Company

In 1916, the New Orleans Refining Company purchased 366 acres of sugar cane field from the Goodhope Plantation to establish a marine petroleum supply terminal. In 1920, the New Orleans Refining Company began refining oil and thus the name of the town – Norco. The Shell Petroleum Corporation, a forerunner of Shell Oil Company, acquired the Norco Refinery in 1929. The chemical plant was added in 1955.

In 1998, a merger with Texaco and Saudi Aramco made the refining and chemical business officially separate; Shell Norco Refining Company became a division of Motiva Enterprises.  In 2002, Texaco exited the merger and Motiva Enterprises became a 50/50 joint venture between Shell and Saudi Aramco. In 2004, the West Site Chemical Operations leased to Resolutions Performance (Hexion). The lease with Hexion ended and W.R. Grace is currently leasing a portion of the site. Following the Motiva joint venture separation, in May 2017, Shell assumed full ownership of the Norco Refinery.

Approximately 1200 employees staff the Shell Norco Manufacturing Complex.  The workforce includes:  Process Operators, Machinists, Instrument Mechanics, Electricians, Insulators, Pipefitters, Welders, Equipment Operators, Chemists, Engineers, Drafting, Financial, Environmental/Safety, Technology, Inspectors, Security, Administration, Training, Procurement, Human Resources and Communications professionals. In addition, there is a daily average of 1000+ contractors onsite to support the businesses.

$500 M Pipeline Expansion

The $500 million Maurepas Pipeline System construction project began in the fourth quarter of 2015 and is expected to be completed in 2017. This pipeline will connect the Norco and Convent refineries in Louisiana to create the Louisiana Refining System. With an integrated crude capacity of over 500,000 barrels per day, the Louisiana Refining System will rank in the top five of North American refineries in terms of total capacity.

The Maurepas Pipeline System, includes a 35-mile and a 34-mile intermediates pipeline enabling an exchange of feedstocks from Convent to Norco, and a 34-mile crude pipeline connecting a terminal in St. James Parish to the Norco refinery. Construction of this pipeline is projected to create up to 500 temporary jobs. Economic benefits of the pipeline construction and refinery integration – direct, indirect and induced – are expected to be more than$1.6 billion. The direct, indirect and induced state and local tax benefits are expected to be in the range of $34.6 million.

NMC is creating a world-scale integrated refining system. This project opens the door for additional growth, development and future opportunities. That is good not only for business, but for all of Louisiana.


Crude: 250,000 barrels (10.1 million gallons) processed daily

Gasoline: 170,000 barrels (7.1 million gallons) produced daily total regular and premium grades

Jet-A aviation fuel: 46,000 barrels (1.9 million gallons) produced daily

Low sulfur diesel: 95,000 barrels (3.8 million gallons) produced daily

Anode grade coke: 1,000 tons produced daily 


Ethylene – 3.33 billion lbs/year

Propylene – 1.44 billion lbs/year

Butadiene – 0.35 billion lbs/year

Aromatic feedstocks – 0.84 million lbs/year

How we transport it

Norco products are transported via ships, pipelines, barges, trucks and railcars.

Dock facilities

The Norco Manufacturing Complex has four docks located on the Mississippi River.

Norco Site Facts