The U.S. Gulf Coast is a global energy superpower — and one that is uniquely at risk due to hurricanes.
The Gulf Coast region is one of the world’s largest producers of oil and natural gas, as well as one of the largest refiners. For example:
- Regional crude oil production of over 9 million barrels per day (b/d) trails only Saudi Arabia and Russia.
- Regional refining capacity trails only China.
- Natural gas production in Texas alone outpaces every country but Russia.
Moreover, the region is a critical supplier of crude oil, refined products and natural gas — to other parts of the United States as well as to global markets. The Gulf Coast accounts for virtually all U.S. exports of crude oil, and the lion’s share of exports of refined products and natural gas (both via liquefied natural gas and pipelines).
While we hope that Mother Nature will spare human lives and property as the U.S. hurricane season peaks, the Boy Scout in me wants to “be prepared.” In that spirit, I offer a brief “cheat sheet” summarizing Gulf Coast energy data below.
This cheat sheet offers high-level data illustrating the region’s importance to the U.S. and world as a producer and exporter of oil and natural gas — and its vulnerability.
This data is clearly not exhaustive. I have focused on oil and natural gas, in large part because of the important role the region plays in exporting crude oil, refined products and natural gas to the rest of the country and internationally.
All data is from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), and much more detailed information is available there. Year-to-date data quoted here is through May 2023.
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