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Retail U.S. gasoline prices surge as Harvey keeps refiners shut

Staff Writer |
Retail U.S. gasoline prices hit two-year highs and global shipping routes were scrambled as the nation's largest refiners remained shut on Friday, even as Storm Harvey lost strength.

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Major fuel pipelines feeding the U.S. Northeast and Midwest were either closed or severely curtailed, prompting shortages in some areas and dramatic spikes in wholesale prices.

The nation's largest refiner, Motiva's Port Arthur facility, which can handle 600,000 barrels of crude daily, will be shut for at least two weeks, according to sources familiar with plant operations.

Other plants in the Beaumont/Port Arthur area are expected to face similar challenges restarting as waters continued to rise, even as flooding receded in Houston, some 85 miles (137 km) west.

In Corpus Christi, where Harvey first made landfall, refiners Citgo Petroleum Corp, Flint Hills Resources and Valero Energy Corp were moving to restart their plants, along with the nearby Valero Three Rivers refinery, according to sources.


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