By ERIC FREEDMAN
Capital News Service
LANSING — Three small retailers in Southwest Detroit have lost their federal lawsuit that blames an oil refinery for killing their businesses and creating environmental hazards. U.S. District Judge Patrick Duggan found no legal basis for claims against the refinery operator, Marathon Petroleum Co. At the center of the conflict is the impact on the Oakwood Heights neighborhood of Marathon’s Detroit Heavy Oil Upgrade Project that began operations in November 2012. The affected area is south of Fort Street, the River Rouge, South Dix Street and Schaefer Highway near Interstate-75. The refinery is the only one in Michigan and has about 525 employees.