(Recasts, adds refineries normal, LOOP details, major
HOUSTON Nov 9 Gulf of Mexico oil and natural
gas companies shut offshore production on Monday, and a major
gas hub was closed as Tropical Storm Ida churned toward
landfall between the states of Mississippi and Florida.
Refineries have not curtailed operations due to the storm,
which weakened on Tuesday from a category 2 hurricane.
The Independence natural gas hub -- the largest gas
processing facility in the Gulf -- was shut down by the storm,
Enterprise Partners LP (EPD.N) said. [ID:nN09254274]
The company also said the Viosca Knoll and West Delta 68
platforms had been shut in. (For a list of operations shut over
the weekend, click [ID:nN09212389]
The giant Louisiana Offshore Oil Port suspended tanker
offloadings over the weekend. The LOOP continued to receive oil
via pipeline from the Thunder Horse and Mars platforms while
shipping oil to refineries through underground pipes. (For
a graphic on the Hurricane Ida's projected path, click:
The Gulf is the source of 25 percent of U.S. domestically
produced oil and 15 percent of natural gas. About 40 percent of
U.S. refining capacity is located on the Gulf Coast.
The storm threat helped push up oil prices by more than
$1.70 to over $79 a barrel in early U.S. trading.
Ship traffic along the Mississippi River between New
Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico was also shut down, the U.S.
Coast Guard said. [ID:nN09219613]
BP (BP.L), Marathon (MRO.N) and Chevron (CVX.N) said on
Sunday they had shut in some production, while several other
companies said they were evacuating some personnel but had not
Chevron said the Blind Faith, Tahiti and Petronius
platforms in the Gulf were shut ahead of the storm.
Transocean Ltd (RIG.N) said a semsubmersible drilling rig
was evacuated and shut down by the storm.
Shell (RDSa.L) some of its Gulf output was curtailed by
Refineries along the U.S. Gulf Coast, including Chalmette,
Motiva's Norco refinery, and Chevron's Pascagoula, were
watching the storm but operating normally. They had taken
preliminary steps to ready for possible high winds.
(Reporting by Bruce Nichols, Kristen Hays and Erwin Seba in
Houston, Janet McGurty in Toronto, Joshua Schneyer, Edward
McAllister and Matthew Robinson in New York; Editing by David