Three Crowns Golf Club resides in the Platte River Commons, formerly known as the Amoco refinery. The refinery was first operated by Midwest Refining Company in 1913, to process petroleum from the Salt Creek Field, located about forty-five miles north of Casper.
In 1923, the Salt Creek Field peaked at 100,000 barrels per day. Standard Oil of Indiana took controlling interest and invested $10 million to expand it.
In 1941, refining was modified to supply the military with fuel oil, toluene for explosives and aviation fuel.
In 1953, the refinery began making commercial aviation fuel and increased the octane of motor gasoline. Standard Oil’s Refinery was said to be the largest plant in the world for volume of gasoline produced (615,000 gallons per month). At the height of production, 48,000 barrels of oil were processed, and the refinery employed approximately 750 people.
In 1973, Standard Oil Refinery changed its name to Amoco Refinery.
The former Amoco Refinery, located on the western side of Casper, was the lifeblood of the community’s economy for over 60 years, since its beginnings in the early 1900’s. It provided thousands of well-paying jobs and refined petroleum products to Casper and the nation. Amoco employees participated in local affairs and were a vibrant, active part of the local citizenry. However, consistent with practices in the early days, waste generated at the refinery was either buried or allowed to discharge directly into the North Platte River or into the groundwater below. Unfortunately, these early practices have now left the need to clean up the site.
The refinery process area occupied approximately 340 acres, which was supported by a tank farm, to the north, of approximately 700 acres.
Beginning in 1981, prior to the time of the refinery shutdown, Amoco began to implement a plan to clean up the site and prevent the underground flow of contamination. It did so by installing several groundwater recovery wells and accompanying pumps.
Around 120 recovery wells have been installed within the golf course and along the barrier wall. These wells pump groundwater out at a rate of 700 gallons per minute. The oil and other chemicals are then separated through a series of filtering wetlands, which serve as water hazards on the golf course.