The U.S. Gulf Coast was hit by Tropical Storm Cristobal yesterday, causing offshore oil production to shut down by almost 24%, equating to more than 430,000 barrels per day. According to the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), this was a 140,000 barrel per day improvement compared to June 9th. Occidental Petroleum, BP, and Shell were some of the companies who evacuated employees ahead of the storm. There were a total of 188 platforms and rigs evacuated by those operators. Since the last update, 61 of the 643 platforms had still been evacuated in the Gulf of Mexico. Cristobal battered southern Mexico and shut down ports over the past week, before moving through the Gulf of Mexico and depositing heavy rainfall from Louisiana to Florida.
The Gulf of Mexico accounted for nearly 2 million barrels per day, which is about 17 percent of U.S. oil production before the coronavirus pandemic affected global demand and oil prices. The BSEE estimates production to be closer to 1.85 million barrels per day before the hurricane. As of now, S&P Global Platts Analytics data estimates a fall of 1.62 million barrels per day.
Currently, remnants of Cristobal are spreading thunderstorms over the U.S. Great Lakes before moving into Canada. As Cristobal continues, BSEE will provide updates daily at 1:00 pm CDT. According to BSEE officials yesterday, “Facilities will be inspected after the storm passes, and undamaged facilities will be brought back online immediately.”