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Energy Tomorrow Blog

Record Refinery Performance Lends Confidence for Hurricane Season

hurricane preparedness  refinery capacity  consumers  fuel supply 

Dean Foreman

Dean Foreman
Posted August 16, 2018

As we head into what historically is the heart of the annual hurricane season, America’s refiners have never been in a stronger position to deliver the fuels we all need – which is good news for consumers.

According to API’s Monthly Statistical Report (MSR), the refining industry in June eclipsed 18 million barrels per day (b/d) of liquid fuels processed in distillation units and has remained on track for its strongest year on record.

Indeed, the U.S. Energy Information Administration forecasts that refinery runs will average 16.9 million b/d this year and 17 million b/d in 2019 – both of which would be records, surpassing the 2017 annual average of 16.6 million b/d.

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Fuel Costs and the Driving Season

crude oil prices  gasoline prices  supply  consumers 

Dean Foreman

Dean Foreman
Posted April 2, 2018

The summer driving season is arriving, so it’s a good time to take stock of recent market dynamics that have raised per-barrel costs for crude oil and consequently gasoline and diesel fuel.

Nationwide, the American Automobile Association (AAA) reports that average prices currently are $2.64 per gallon for gasoline (up from $2.54 a month ago) and $2.95 per gallon for diesel fuel (unchanged from last month). While there is nothing particularly special about these figures from an economic perspective, consumers take notice when fuel prices are on the rise. Let’s look at the factors that have affected pump prices in recent years.

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Hurricane Update: Refinery Restarts, Fuel Supplies Rise

hurricane response  gasoline supply  refineries  florida  texas 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 18, 2017

Much of the energy-related news from hurricane-recovery areas of Texas and Florida continues to be encouraging. Shell said it was restarting its Deer Park refinery in the Houston area that was shut down three weeks ago with the approach of Hurricane Harvey. ExxonMobil said it could start most of the production units at its Beaumont, Texas, refinery later this week. In Florida, Gov. Rick Scott said pre-Hurricane Irma preparations and a concentrated focus on refueling the state’s communities have shown progress.

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Hurricane Update: Florida’s Fuel Receiving Ports Reopening

hurricane response  florida  fuel supply  infrastructure 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 14, 2017

While the recovery in Florida – as well as the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast – will continue over weeks and months, developments indicate the state’s fuel supply remains a top priority and is being served with the help of industry and state and local officials. This is encouraging, given Irma’s Sunday landfall. The historic resiliency of our energy supply system is a part of that – the ability and flexibility of markets to adjust and help areas where fuel product needs are acute.

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Hurricane Update: Storage Tank Safety, Improved Fuel Outlook

hurricane response  florida  texas  storage tanks  fuel supply 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 12, 2017

Florida has no refineries, but it hosts a number of tanks for storing product and terminals, all of which will need assessing – as has been ongoing in Texas following Hurricane Harvey. We’ll see what is discovered. What we know is that API standards for the large, above-ground tanks used to store crude oil and fuels, like the ones we visited for this post a couple years ago, are designed to help prevent potential spills.

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Hurricane Update: Three things you need to know about claims of fuel price gouging

florida  gasoline demand  gasoline supply  hurricane-harvey  hurricane-irma  hurricane response  refineries  retail price 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 8, 2017

With Hurricane Irma threatening Florida, here are three things you need to know related to claims of fuel price gouging:

1. Industry Does Not Condone Price Gouging
2. Gasoline Stations are largely owned by mom-and-pop retailers
3. Supply and Demand Influences Prices

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Hurricane Update: Focusing on Fuel Supplies Before Irma Arrives

hurricane response  florida  fuel supply  consumers  hurricane-harvey  hurricane-irma 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 7, 2017

As the Texas-Louisiana region continues its recovery from Hurricane Harvey, energy companies are making preparations for Hurricane Irma, which the National Hurricane Center projects could make landfall in Florida on Sunday. The big issue in Florida is consumer access to fuel. Companies are working with state and federal officials to meet needs.

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Harvey Update: Price Impacts and the Need for Patience, Consideration

hurricane response  consumers  gasoline supply  refineries  hurricane-harvey  oil supply 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 6, 2017

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports on rising gasoline prices in the wake of Hurricane Harvey and notes that the storm’s impact on prices is similar to the big hurricanes of 2005, Katrina and Rita. … EIA’s report underscores a number of points we’ve been making about the oil supply chain, of which the Texas-Louisiana region is part – especially the section of that chain that shows the path of refined products from refineries to retail outlets – and the need for patience as processes come back online.

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Harvey Update: Supply, Demand and Gasoline Markets

hurricane response  hurricane-harvey  gasoline supply  consumers  refineries 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 5, 2017

Before then-Hurricane Harvey first made landfall, we discussed how mega-weather events historically have impacted the regional/national oil supply chain and supply levels in the marketplace. The uncertain path of Hurricane Irma will drive continued conversation about storm effects on refineries and other energy infrastructure and the potential for market impacts around the country. That’s the context for some basics about the fuel marketplace and the processes that bring finished consumer products from refineries to retail outlets.

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The Facts About Natural Gas Storage

natural gas supply  safety standards  affordable energy  us energy 

Marty Durbin

Marty Durbin
Posted February 5, 2016

Our industry’s continuing commitment to safety is underscored in a new federal advisory bulletin on underground natural gas storage facilities that urges field operators to implement industry best practices developed by API and other organizations. The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA):

Operators must adhere to applicable State regulations for the permitting, drilling, completion, and operation of storage wells. In developing, implementing, and updating their safety and integrity programs, we encourage underground gas storage facility operators to … voluntarily implement American Petroleum Institute (API) Recommended Practices (RP) … and Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC) standards entitled “Natural Gas Storage in Salt Caverns – A Guide for State Regulators” (IOGCC Guide), as applicable. … API has an accredited process to develop recommended practices and standards that involves industry, manufacturers, engineering firms, construction contractors, the public, academia, and government.

API worked with other trade associations and  PHMSA to develop two recommended practices (RPs) last year – one focused on safe practices for designing, storing and operating natural gas in depleted oil and gas reservoirs, and another detailing how to safely design, store and operate natural gas in salt caverns. Both RPs discuss proper construction methods, materials and maintenance practices to ensure safe operations.

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