Gulf Oil Disruption and Government Ineptitude
Report from Gulf about oil production disruption, transportation woes, and a situation on the brink. Government botching at nearly every turn.
by Paul Noel
First some basic info I have learned from news reports. The Shell Refinery at Pascagoula Ms is nearly destroyed. This one alone would kick the US into crisis mode. It is unlikely to operate for some time. The damage includes destruction of cooling towers and many other things. We were nearly at crisis mode before the storm.
Next a careful observation of the location near my house (Wall Triana Highway) which is the major North South feeder between Madison Alabama and the freight coming and going to Tennessee shows that there are no commercial trucks operating on the road. This road usually sees about 50,000 vehicles a day. The only traffic is local cars.
Gasoline supplies locally are nearly out with some buying restrictions and most stations if they have gasoline only have one grade.
The recovery effort to the south is essentially halted for lack of gasoline and diesel fuel. The farmers were scheduled to begin the cotton harvest this week which is a major demand of fuel supplies. A typical farmer will burn thousands of gallons of fuel during the harvest. Harvest is on a natural clock. It cannot be held. This is a very substantial part of our food supply at risk here. Cotton seed is food. Cotton fiber is clothing etc. The seed is 50% of the crop.
Reports that Shell and Exxon's 2 biggest in production platforms of the Western Gulf of Mexico, Mars and Brutis are not operating. These alone represent loss of something close to a quarter of a million barrels of oil a day. They are heavily damaged. These platforms may be observed in pre-storm photos here; http://ndbc.noaa.gov/station_page.php?station=42362 Brutis
http://ndbc.noaa.gov/station_page.php?station=42363 Mars The disaster has begun!
Don't look to the military to have any reserves, they are out of fuel as well. They had no base reserves of any quantity. I was at Fort Rucker Alabama this May. The base had 100,000 gals of jet fuel storage and they had to keep a fleet of tankers running all day just to keep that store up. Deliveries of 60,000 gal per day or more were made. This just to keep the choppers running. This base trains many of our pilots for the Global War on Terror. Rest assured they may be on rescue missions but the military training is going to be halted if it hasn't already.
Redstone Arsenal PX was out of gasoline this weekend. These awful accounting types in our government stripped us of any reserves leaving us subject to this problem.
Here is how it runs, You see about 4 days more and the inventory in the grocery stores etc will be running out. (For those reading such posts who cannot think, this is a current condition forecast and could be changed if things are dealt with properly) Currently the gasoline we are being shipped is reserves from the refinery stocks pre-storm. These will run out in about 4 days. Then we see a complete shut down and serious civil and other disruption. Most of the people where I live are pretty decent folk and I expect them to pull together but this is most serious. If no food comes to the stores and the plants stop shipping one sees loss of jobs and loss of life.
With us in this trouble, we can see very shortly that the market for foreign goods to our area shuts down. With most of the exports to the USA coming through this area, the people of the rest of the world see losses in their market and jobs down in the order of 40% or so. This is catastrophic. We assemble a large part of the Autos made in the USA in Alabama. Mercedes, Honda, Hundai, KIA, Toyota, and others stand to see their market in North America dead with our troubles.
I realize that we cannot make gasoline without our facilities operating. Even the Strategic Petroleum Reserve is of little value without this. This has to be a number one military and governmental priority to get these operating NOW.
In the future we can look back and then we can deal with the conditions that set this up. Make no mistake we worked for years to set up this problem. It was the work of our tax system and our bureaucracy for decades that set us up for this.
One can see the bureaucracy in action right now. One needs only look as far as New Orleans and see the dying there is mostly the product of the failure of our bureaucracy. Supplies didn't run. Civilians were turned away from helping, and all sorts of failures. The list is endless. Frankly we could help in Africa more effectively than we have been doing here at home. In Mississippi for the past 3 days a team of doctors with emergency field hospital set up have been awaiting permission to get to work. The have MRI, X-Ray and fully set up hospital ready for action. It is the bureaucracy in action here. In Pine Bluff, Ar, (This is my family here) My Aunt and her daughter set up to bake 1500 cup cakes for the arriving 19 busses of refugees. A local citizen brought a super big barbeque grill to cook food and they were turned away because of bureaucracy telling them the food must be prepared in a "Health Department Approved Kitchen."
Make no mistake this is the very essence of the Department of Homeland Security operating here. Their logic is nobody moves without their permission. Citizens can die but that means nothing. Kids can starve and that means nothing unless these leaches who have sucked down $3,000,000,000,000 dollars in the past 4 years get absolute control. We probably have had die 10,000 people due not to a hurricane but due to these leaches who are sucking out our people's lives.
All that was needed for a speedy evacuation in New Orleans was to provide minimal support and direction for coordination to citizens and call for the bass boats and swamp boats of the people. They could have had a situation similar to Dunkirk and cleared the town in a day or two.
As to alternative energy. Those who work with or even are researching it should not have any difficulty understanding what I am describing. Such persons have generally born the burnt of such hostile behavior for years.
I can report that some limited helpers and supplies have made it into Bass Memorial Academy (SDA) in Ms. The damaged buildings with roofs off there are serving as the local community recovery center. This is after the first efforts to help were turned back for at least 2 days. The very decent and peaceful Mississippi citizens are reaching the limit of life without adequate support in many areas and shortly we will be having some of them die if more aid is not brought in. At the present time aid convoys must have adequate gasoline to support operations and make the return trip to enter the damaged areas. With what is going on in the area generally this means very little can happen. This is severely limiting personnel and supplies.
For those who may not understand, I live in Harvest, Alabama which is about 370 miles north of the Gulf of Mexico in North Western, Madison, County. (Just east of I-65 near Tennessee) We were delivered a substantial blow by the remains of the hurricane. I was without power for 3 days. Many trees were downed and much minor damage including some roofs were removed here. Generally we have recovered locally. Now we are suffering the after effects that are more substantial. Most of the damage is to the south south west. The local people here are aggressively involved in recovery efforts further south. Refugees are housed locally in quantity.
Madison County is a very modern and high tech center where people care a lot for each other. They pitch in and work hard to help those in trouble. In 1989 we had a Tornado that destroyed over 3000 units of housing, destroyed 1400 cars in the worlds largest traffic disaster to that date. The storm killed 43 people and injured thousands. It destroyed one of the hospitals locally. We had every hurt person dealt with in just about 2 hours and every person was housed in private locations inside of that night. In 1973 we had suffered a Tornado strike set in the area that destroyed over 10,000 homes in north Alabama and killed over 100 people. The limitations we had in handling that disaster made us get very strong and able.
city to help. When you hear me saying that the citizens are stopped and such, I know very well what needs to be done to help in emergency. The situation is out of hand.
The generosity of the people in this region and their willingness to dig in hard and handle this mess is not limited. We are more than able if permitted and supported with minimal governmental cooperation to do the job. I have absolute confidence of in the people of this region to dig themselves out, dust themselves off and get on with their lives. We are a very tough people. We may die though if we are strangled by this governmental mismanagement. Frankly already thousands have died from this.
After this is all over we need to have a "War Crimes" trial for the
people whose CRIMINAL NEGLIGENCE lead to the death of thousands. This needs to
be founded after the legal processes that we used to try the Nazi and Japanese
war criminals after WW-II. It deserves nothing less and anything less is to
assure that this happens again.
Page posted by SDA
September 6, 2005