That loss of refining capacity has hurt drivers at the pump, and it has worried Delta executives who need to keep the jet fuel flowing.
However, even if Delta makes money from the refinery, airfares are unlikely to drop as a direct result. Route-by-route competition is the main factor in setting airfares.
Delta Air Lines Inc., which is based in Atlanta, said it expects the deal to close by the end of June, with jet fuel production beginning during the third quarter. Changes to expand jet fuel production should be done by the end of the third quarter. Delta said it expects the refinery to pay for itself by the end of the first year of operation.
The state of Pennsylvania is kicking in an expected $30 million in job-creation assistance. The money represents an "opportunity" grant contingent on Monroe Energy investing at least $350 million at the site, including the cost to buy it, and maintaining at least 402 full-time workers there for at least five years, according to Steve Kratz, a spokesman for the state's Department of Community and Economic Development.
Airline is making infrastructure changes to increase refined production and boost jet and diesel production to 40 percent of the refinery's total output in 2014.