Although Hurricane Ida shut down 96% of oil production and 94% of natural gas in the federally administered areas of the Gulf of Mexico, government officials don't believe the storm will cause any widespread energy shortages.
''The refinery and offshore platform shut-ins are not anticipated to cause any immediate supply issues,'' the U.S. Department of Energy said in an update on the storm Monday. ''For the week ending on Aug. 20, Gulf Coast stocks of gasoline and distillate were 3% and 5% above the seasonal five-year average. Gulf Coast stocks of crude oil were essentially in line with the five-year average in the Gulf Coast.''
Hurricane Ida smashed into the Gulf Coast as a Category 4 storm, making landfall near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, around 1 p.m. Sunday.
The heavy rain, wind and storm surge tore roofs from buildings, brought down trees, and flooded neighborhoods, cutting off power to 1 million in Louisiana alone, according to the Department of Energy.
Several pipelines and at least nine refineries in the state, as well as the ports of New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Gramercy and Morgan City, were closed as a precaution before the storm hit and are expected to reopen as soon as conditions allow.
The refineries account for 13% of U.S. refining capacity, according to the department.
While officials don't anticipate a wide-scale shortage from the storm, there may be some localized retail disruptions in the storm's impact area.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in Monday's briefing that the White House is monitoring the oil and natural gas situation in the Gulf after the storm.
Hurricane-related fuel shortages are ''something we are monitoring closely,'' Psaki said Monday. ''We have not seen, to date, that as an issue.''
She said the federal government has a range of tools it can use, including waivers from the Environmental Protection Agency to maintain the level of transportation fuel available in the wake of natural disasters such as Ida.
''GasBuddyGuy'' Patrick De Haan posted on Twitter that the price of gasoline likely will rise by 5 to 10 cents per gallon.
''Keeping in mind the storm hasn't cleared the area and storm assessments could change this, I still feel pretty confident in these figures,'' he said on Sunday in his post on Twitter. ''Again, Hurricane Ida isn't likely to lead to drastic price increases, but some increases are likely over the next [approximately] two weeks.''
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