re·​fin·​ery | \ ri-ˈfī-nə-rē How to pronounce refinery (audio) , -ˈfīn-rē \
plural refineries

Definition of refinery

: a building and equipment for refining or processing something (such as oil or sugar)

Examples of refinery in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Industrial companies that depend on access to the harbor are concentrated in Curtis Bay, such as a chemical plant, oil refinery, trash landfill and medical waste incinerator. Lilly Price, Baltimore Sun, 15 June 2022 Within as little as two years, the Duna oil refinery, the country’s biggest, could be set up to run entirely on non-Russian oil, the MOL Group now says. Drew Hinshaw, WSJ, 20 May 2022 For Germany, Europe’s largest economy, the toughest decision will be what to do about the refinery in Schwedt, which is majority-owned by Rosneft, the Russian national oil company, and holds smaller stakes in two other refineries in Germany. New York Times, 3 May 2022 Oil tankers offload product to the refinery, which brings petroleum coke back down and loads it onto tankers; and vehicles shipped from overseas are offloaded at the port. Jessica Flores, San Francisco Chronicle, 10 Apr. 2022 Ted Goldberg wrote about the strike at Chevron’s Richmond refinery, which has seen 500 steelworkers walk off the job in a dispute over safety and pay, fueled partly by the Bay Area’s high cost of living. Sammy Rothstaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 24 Mar. 2022 The attacks led to a temporary dip in production at one refinery, which was struck twice, but that drop was set to be balanced out by reserves, according to an unnamed Energy Ministry official quoted by state media. Washington Post, 21 Mar. 2022 The refinery, which was inaugurated by Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, is located in the lakeside town of Entebbe, about 44 kilometers (27 miles) from the capital, Kampala. Rodney Muhumuza, ajc, 18 Mar. 2022 First, crude oil is either imported into the U.S. or produced domestically and moved to a refinery, where it is made into gasoline and other petroleum products. Bailey Schulz, USA TODAY, 11 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'refinery.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of refinery

circa 1741, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for refinery

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The first known use of refinery was circa 1741

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Dictionary Entries Near refinery

refiners' sirup



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Last Updated

29 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Refinery.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for refinery


re·​fin·​ery | \ ri-ˈfī-nə-rē How to pronounce refinery (audio) \
plural refineries

Kids Definition of refinery

: a building and equipment where something (as oil or metal) is made pure and ready for use

More from Merriam-Webster on refinery

Nglish: Translation of refinery for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of refinery for Arabic Speakers


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