Most likely if you talked to your coworkers today gathered around the coffee pot, someone talked about Hurricane Harvey and Globull Warming. It’s a big fat lie, propagated by the gay stream media as part of their socialist Climate Change narrative. Here are the facts:
- Harvey was not that impressive. Supposedly a Cat 4 storm, it was likely a Cat 3. NOAA bumped it up most likely off a radar reading. To put it plainly, Texas experienced Cat 3 winds, and wind damage was minor. This is a big tell on the strength of the storm.
- Storm surge was minor. This is another tell.
- The Gulf of Mexico has normal temperatures. In fact Texas has experienced a relatively (by Texas standards) mild summer. It’s a typical Texas summer.
- The damage has come from flooding, and this is the part you need to understand.
- Park a hurricane, half over water, half over land, and leave it relatively stationary for 5 freaking days. Yes, the rainfall will be immense.
- Bottom line Harvey is the result of a blocking weather pattern that has kept it in the Houston area for 5 days. It has nothing to do with Globull Warming, it was a weather set up.
Now the impacts. I contacted someone in Houston and as far as he can tell the damage is concentrated around Buffalo Bayou. The rest of Houston is fine. He believes they’ll take the week off and downtown Houston will “restart” next week. He also thinks the refineries will restart soon. Though this is not to downplay the residential damage to homes along Buffalo Bayou — insurance companies are going to have to get out the check book in a big way.
As far as impacts on refining, he believes the area of concern is the Neches River corridor, east of Houston which stretches from Port Arthur up to Beaumont. This is also the greatest concentration of refining in the USA, though Houston is the second largest. He has no intel about any flood damage to those refineries but they are getting clobbered with rain.
Colonial pipeline is down, until you get over to Lake Charles and NOLA. The cause is the pipeline booster stations. Therefore there is reduced refined products heading all the way up to New York. Biggest impact will probably be Atlanta since it is land locked. This will be relieved next week as Houston refineries restart. There may be some longer impacts due to the Neches River corridor.
All in all the fuel disruption will not be catastrophic. You’ll see elevated fuel prices for a few weeks as the market allocates barrels away from India and Europe. Also, we still have high levels of refined products in storage. One concern is jet fuel, as some airports are connected to Colonial for “just-in-time” deliveries. Since Colonial still has supply from Lake Charles, NOLA, and Pasquagula, they can prioritize pipeline space to jet fuel. Shortages of gasoline and diesel can be alleviated by water born barrels.
At this point the economic impact will be short lived.