History

From its humble beginnings in 1999, IPL has continued to grow strongly, benefiting from a wealth of experience and superior customer service and dedication. Since we began our journey as an independent laboratory, we have tripled our staff, more than quadrupled our revenue and we are embracing the new growth opportunities that arise from the sheer success of our core business.

Key Milestones:

• 1999: New Zealand Refining Company, now trading as Refining NZ, and BP Oil NZ joined forces and established Independent Petroleum Laboratory Limited (IPL). IPL was 75% owned by Refining NZ and 25% by BP Oil NZ. In 2017, RNZ purchased BP Oils NZ's shares of IPL.  Therefore, IPL is now fully owned by RNZ.

2001: Chevron closed its Auckland laboratory and started using IPL as their main testing provider.

2002: Shell and Mobil closed their respective laboratories located in Wellington and started using IPL as their fuels testing provider. With these lab closures, IPL became the only fuels testing laboratory in New Zealand.

2005: IPL started developing its Biofuels testing expertise. After 3 years of research and development supported by the Ministry of Economic Development (MED), IPL developed full specification testing capability. See our Biofuels page for more details.

2006: Through Refining NZ’s Future Fuels upgrade project, aimed at reducing benzene and sulphur, IPL brought in new capabilities to meet the changing needs of customers and industry. 

2007-2009: With the major oil companies gradually moving out of the South West Pacific Islands, IPL has progressively acquired contracts and is now supplying expertise and technologies to the whole South West Pacific.

2009: To enable IPL to grow their range of services and expertise they looked at what they can do to better serve their clients. This was achieved with the acquisition of various new leading edge technology and instrumentation.

2012: The Continuous Catalyst Regeneration (CCR) project is approved by Refining NZ 's board of directors. As more crude oil volume will be processed and new processing units come on-line, IPL will continue to grow their core business and will work with Refining NZ to develop a new range of testing.

 2013: IPL began its Laboratory Management contract at Kupe in Taranaki. 

 2014: IPL opened a second laboratory in New Plymouth (Taranaki). The second lab delivers a range of testing specific to the local Oil and Gas industry.

Latest News

Testing for Performance Specification of Asphalt Binders (M1-A)

The NZTA M1-A specification sets out the performance characteristics to be met by the binders used for asphalt manufacture, which will replace the previous NZTA M1 specification. IPL has worked with NZTA, Suppliers and customers to gain a good understanding of this new specification and has expanded its Bitumen testing capability to meet the suppliers and customers new M1-A testing requirements.
 Read More

Sustainable Coastlines: Valuable Workshop for IPL's Community Team

Just about every week the media have a storyline on the issues surrounding single use plastic. This is of particular interest for IPL’s Community Team and we thought we’d get the experts of Sustainable Coastlines to come into our workplace and put our team through their workshop. 
 Read More

2018 WITT Taranaki Science and Technology Fair

Another year full of successful project entries for the WITT Taranaki Science and Technology Fair. Our lovely Pam Chung attended the event and also helped judge the projects on display. Pam was truly amazed by the level of detail and the precision of the scientific processes followed by some of the participants. “I thought the kids did a great job at noting down and presenting evidence of their work at each step of their investigation”. It was great to hear back from Pam about how impressed she was by the thoroughness of some of our scientists in making. Read More