Texas’ ‘Energy City’ Still Reeling from Hurricane Harvey

Credit: UWM/SSEC/CIMSS, William Straka III

Port Arthur, Texas, a crucial hub of the worldwide energy industry, is struggling to recover from the effects of Hurricane Harvey.

The city of 55,000, also known as Energy City, is responsible for 6.3% of American oil refining through several refineries.

According to bloomberg.com, even though problems persist, the Motiva Enterprises refinery, owned by Saudi Arabian Oil Co., and other Port Arthur facilities, run by Valero Energy Corp. and Total SA, had the resources to return to near-normal relatively quickly.

Soon after Harvey hit, Energy Secretary Rick Perry announced the release of 1 million barrels of crude oil from the federal Strategic Petroleum Reserve in response to refinery outages caused by the storm. With close to half the country’s oil refineries located on the Gulf Coast, the DOE move was intended to help offset fuel shortages in the hurricane’s aftermath

Just before the storm ravaged the gulf coast of Texas, four oil refineries shut down. Combined, around 870,000 barrels per day of refinery output was halted.

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