Following the cyberattack that disrupted the operation of the largest oil pipeline in the United States, refineries have booked at least five oil tankers to store gasoline on the US coast of the Gulf of Mexico.
The attack on the Colonial pipeline network, which supplies half of the fuel consumed on the East Coast, has forced refineries on the Gulf of Mexico coast to reduce their operations due to lack of storage space.
The rented tankers have a capacity for about 350 thousand tons of fuel. Two of them were reserved for up to a month.
Colonial closed its 8,850 km pipeline network, which transports fuels such as gasoline, diesel and jet fuel, to protect its systems. It has only put a few smaller lines back into operation.
In the wake of the outage, operators also booked several tankers to ship gasoline and diesel from Europe to the east coast of the United States.
The French Total and the commercial companies Vitol and Trafigura each reserved 90 thousand tons of tankers to transport diesel on the transatlantic route.
Finally, several refineries on the Gulf of Mexico coast that depend on Colonial for their shipments have reduced their production. Total and Motiva Enterprises cut production at their refineries in Port Arthur, Texas, and Citgo Petroleum cut production at its plant in Lake Charls, Louisiana.
The current market for tankers is essentially in the hands of the shipowners and their decisions on how to develop their fleets in the future, raises an article by McQuilling Partner that, to reach that consensus, analyzed different scenarios of supply of tankers with the market of the VLCCs for reference.