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Tropical Storm Colin: U.S. Gulf of Mexico oil producers don’t expect storm impact

Tropical Storm Colin to hit Florida Monday

Tropical Storm Colin

Tropical Storm Colin is expected to miss production platforms  and refining and natural gas hubs located in the Gulf of Mexico. Image courtesy The Weather Channel.  

HOUSTON, June 5 (Reuters) – Gulf of Mexico offshore oil producer Shell Oil Co said on Sunday Tropical Storm Colin was forecast to miss the company’s production platforms before striking Florida on Monday.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center forecasts Colin, which became a tropical storm on Sunday afternoon, will strike the Gulf Coast of Florida on Monday night.

“Based on the current forecast there is no impact expected for our offshore assets, but we will continue to monitor and will make decisions accordingly,” said Ray Fisher, spokesman for Shell Oil, the U.S. unit of Royal Dutch Shell Plc.

Oil and natural gas producers in the Gulf will shut in production and evacuate workers when tropical cyclones threaten to churn production areas, primarily off the coasts of Louisiana and Texas.

Chevron Corp said it was monitoring Colin’s path. Exxon Mobil Corp is also monitoring the storm’s progress.

The Gulf of Mexico is home to 17 percent of U.S. crude output and 5 percent of dry natural gas output daily, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Both of these amounts have decreased as onshore oil and gas production ramped up in big shale plays.

More than 45 percent of the nation’s refining capacity is located along the U.S. Gulf Coast, which also is home to 51 percent of total U.S. natural gas processing capability.

Colin is not forecast to strike Gulf Coast refining and natural gas processing hubs.

(Reporting by Erwin Seba; Editing by Richard Pullin)

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