Vital Signs

September 1, 2008 By    

A consortium of oil pipeline and storage companies plans to invest $1.8 billion to build the United States’ second deepwater oil import terminal in Texas, the companies announced Aug. 18.

The terminal would be only the second facility in the United States capable of handling the largest oil tankers, known in the industry as Very Large Crude Carriers.

Enterprise Products Partners LP, Teppco Partners LP and privately held Oiltanking will each take a one-third stake in the project, to be called the Texas Offshore Port System (TOPS).

The project will be able to deliver up to 1.8 million barrels per day of oil to refineries along the Texas Gulf Coast. The port would also include storage for 5.1 million barrels of oil.

“With refining capacity along the upper Texas coast continuing to expand, TOPS offers a comprehensive solution for ensuring reliable access to supplies of crude oil,” said Michael A. Creel, president and CEO of Enterprise.

Tankers would dock with a floating buoy located in the Gulf of Mexico, 36 miles from Freeport, Texas. A new 85-mile pipeline system would connect the buoy with storage facilities in Texas City and Port Arthur, Texas.

Exxon Mobil Corp. and the Motiva refining joint venture between Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Saudi Aramco signed up to take 725,000 bpd of import capacity at the new terminal, the partners said.

The United States is expected to become increasingly reliant on oil imported on VLCCs, as both domestic and nearby foreign sources of oil, such as Mexico and Venezuela, are declining.

Currently only the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port is capable of handling VLCCs. Importers seeking to bring oil cargoes to Texas ports, such as Houston and Port Arthur, must offload their cargoes onto smaller vessels, increasing costs and the risk of spills.

Energy Transfer Partners

Jim Hamilton has been promoted to vice president of Central Operations for Energy Transfer Partners’ Propane Division, Heritage Propane. Hamilton joined Heritage Propane in January 1995. He began his career as district manager of the Jacksonville, Fla., district. In November 1995, he was promoted to vice president and regional manager of Region 9 in South Florida. In October 1997, he transferred to Tennessee and formed Region 14 where he most recently served as vice president and regional manager (Region 14) of 16 locations in Tennessee and two in Mississippi.?Hamilton’s career in the propane industry spans 23 years of operations experience, starting in 1985 with Cal Gas. He also held management positions with Suburban Propane and Star Gas.

 Hamilton
Hamilton

Oklahoma Safety Equipment Co. Inc.

Mathieu Hawksworth has been appointed regional sales manager at Oklahoma Safety Equipment Co. Inc. (Oseco). Hawksworth will be handling the Great Lakes region as well as Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, West Virginia and Kentucky, assisting customers and manufacturing representatives with technical information and support. He will work closely with end users to help them select, install and use Oseco’s rupture disks, rupture panels and pressure-relief accessories.

Conventions, trade shows & meetings

Propane Resources surveyed 441 companies about their plans to attend state and national conventions in 2009 – 70 companies responded. Here’s what they had to say:

Outcomes:

Sixty percent of responding retailers plan to attend a major convention or meeting in 2009. A majority of those with plans to attend events next year will participate in the Southeast Convention (36 percent) and/or their state association meeting (30 percent). Results also show that the cost of travel and the time commitment required pose the greatest risk to retailers’ plans to attend conventions. Increased costs and time required to travel make meetings harder to fit into budgets and schedules. Very few respondents reported that their reason for not attending conventions as no longer finding them beneficial or that they lacked in content.



Conferences are a great way to network and learn about new and updated ways to operate your propane company. They also keep retailers current on important industry information and regulations on the state and national level within the propane industry.

In The Know is presented as a partnership between LP Gas Magazine and Propane Resources.

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