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U.S. energy firms tally damages from Hurricane Sally, begin restarts

September 18/2020

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Storm-tossed U.S. offshore energy producers and exporters began clearing debris from Hurricane Sally and booting up idle Gulf of Mexico operations after hunkering down for five days, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The storm toppled trees, flooded streets and left almost 500,000 homes and businesses in Alabama and Florida without power. Sally became a tropical depression on Thursday, leaving widespread flooding along its path with up to a foot (30 cm) of rain falling in parts of Florida and Georgia.

Crews returned to at least 30 offshore oil and gas platforms. Chevron Corp began restaffing its Blind Faith and Petronius platforms in the Gulf of Mexico, following Murphy Oil Corp.'s restart. Bristow Group, which transports oil workers from a Galliano, Louisiana, heliport, resumed crew-change flights to facilities in the west and central Gulf of Mexico.

"We are making flights offshore and experiencing a slight increase in outbound passengers," said heliport manager Lani Moneyhon. The Louisiana Offshore Oil Port, a deepwater oil port that handles supertankers, reopened its marine terminal after suspending operations over the weekend.

Sally had shut 508,000 barrels per day (bpd) of oil production and 805 million cubic feet of natural gas, more than a quarter of U.S. Gulf of Mexico output, and halted petrochemical exports all along the Gulf Coast. About 1.1 MMbpd of U.S. refining capacity were offline on Wednesday, according to the U.S. Energy Department, including two plants under repair since Hurricane Laura and another halted by weak demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Crude weakened early Thursday with U.S. futures down a fraction and trading below USD40 a barrel. Gasoline futures inched higher in early trading, continuing gains this week. On Thursday morning, Sally was a tropical depression drenching an area from eastern Alabama to central Georgia with torrential rain. It was located about 50 miles (80 km) southeast of Montgomery, Alabama, and packed sustained winds of 30 miles per hour (45 km/h), according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center.

Sally is forecast to degenerate into a remnant low by Thursday night, according to the hurricane center. Phillips 66, which shut its 255,600-bpd Alliance, Louisiana, oil refinery ahead of the storm, said it was advancing planned maintenance at the facility and would keep processing halted.

Royal Dutch Shell's Mobile, Alabama, chemical plant and refinery reported no serious damage from an initial survey, the company said. Chevron said its Pascagoula, Mississippi, oil refinery operated normally through the storm.

Shell will also keep the crude distillation unit, alkylation unit and reformer shut for at least a week at its 227,400-bpd Norco, Louisiana, refinery for short-term maintenance work, according to sources. The units were shut due to the threat from Sally.

Ethylene and propylene are feedstocks for producing PE and polypropylene (PP).

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's overall PE production totalled 1,712,400 tonnes in the first seven months of 2020, up by 58% year on year. Linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) accounted for the greatest increase in the output. At the same time, overall PP production in Russia increased in January-July 2020 by 24% year on year to 1,063,700 tonne. ZapSibNeftekhim accounted for the main increase in the output.


mrcplast.com
Author:Anna Larionova
Tags:petroleum products, PP, PE, ethylene, propylene, petrochemistry.
Category:General News
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