Energy companies worked to restore pipeline service and electricity after Tropical Storm Nicholas passed through on Sept. 14, allowing them to return to repairing the significant damage caused by Hurricane Ida two weeks ago.
Nicholas, downgraded to a tropical depression late Sept. 14, caused rain, flooding and power outages in Texas and Louisiana, where some refineries remained offline in the wake of Hurricane Ida. The earlier storm shuttered most U.S. Gulf offshore oil and gas production.
Colonial Pipeline, the largest U.S. fuel line, resumed partial operations Sept. 14 after Nicholas passed, and the company said it would restore service on its distillate line as quickly as possible.
Royal Dutch Shell halted production at its Perdido offshore oil platform due to heavy winds caused by Nicholas, and U.S. LNG producer Freeport LNG said processing at its Texas coast facility was halted, likely due to a power outage.
Nicholas caused widespread power outages as it crossed over the Houston metropolitan area, but utilities restored power for over 400,000 customers during the day on Sept. 14.
The storm surge along the coasts of northeastern Texas and Louisiana was expected to diminish by early Sept. 15, according to the National Hurricane Center.
More than 39% of the U.S. Gulf of Mexico’s production of crude and natural gas remained shut on Sept. 14, offshore drilling regulator Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement said, following Hurricane Ida's passage through Louisiana.
About 720,000 bbl/d of crude production and 1.075 Bcf/d of gas were offline, while 39 production platforms continued to be evacuated.
Major oil refineries in Louisiana were working to restart after Hurricane Ida, including Valero Energy Corp.’s refineries in St. Charles and Meraux and PBF Energy’s refinery in Chalmette.
Around 160 km (100 miles) of the gas pipeline, which will supply Russian gas to Germany and other European countries, remains to be laid, the consortium behind the project said earlier on Dec. 23.
Kuwait and Saudi Arabia signed on Dec. 24 an agreement and a memorandum of understanding on dividing the Neutral Zone, which contains jointly-operated oilfields, between the two countries, Kuwait's state-run news agency (KUNA) said.
A federal judge ruled late Tuesday that the Interior Department violated federal law by failing to take into account the climate impact of its oil and gas leasing in Wyoming.