The Port of Corpus Christi recently set three new tonnage records, including the highest volume in a single month. September tonnage was 12.2 million tons, a 27% gain over the previous record set in March of 2018. Two other tonnage records broken included the highest quarter ever at 32.1 million tons, an 18% gain over the previous high set in the third quarter of 2018, and tonnage for the first nine months of a year at 84.6 million tons, a 5% increase over the previous record also set in 2018.
Increases in crude oil exports resulting from new pipeline services drove exports up 25% from the previous quarterly highs, and 7% gains over the 2018 nine-month record. EPIC Midstream began initial service of its Y-Grade pipeline moving Permian Basin crude oil to Corpus Christi, as did Plains All-American’s Cactus II line, both introducing service in August of this year. The Phillips 66 Gray Oak Pipeline is expected to come online later this year as well. All three lines will add an estimated 2.5 million barrels per day of incremental pipeline capacity from the Permian Basin to Corpus Christi.
“These numbers continue to tell the story of the United States’ emergence as a stable, preferred supplier of energy to the global markets,” said Sean Strawbridge, Chief Executive Officer for the Port of Corpus Christi. “Increasing global demand for both crude oil and natural gas from the U.S. continues to drive our growth and investment in the much-needed improved coastal infrastructure. We will have the deepest draft ship channel in the entire U.S. Gulf Coast by the first quarter of 2020, thereby making the Port of Corpus Christi gateway arguably the most competitive on the entire coast.”
The Port of Corpus Christi’s $410 million Channel Improvement Project is fully underway with Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company, and more than half of the necessary funds have been appropriated for the work from both the federal government and the Port Authority. The Port is working closely with federal officials and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to ensure the remainder of the project is fully funded and can proceed on schedule with the next three phases.
“The Port of Corpus Christi has lived up to its title as the Energy Port of Americas™, and the ongoing and planned improvements to our infrastructure will only further cement its place on that mantle,” said Charles W. Zahn Jr., Port of Corpus Christi Commission Chairman. “We look forward to doing our part to ensure American energy powers a brighter tomorrow for our nation and the world.”
Sea News, October 16