You've frequently heard me speak of the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port (LOOP), a significant piece of the oil industry. Today, we'll look at another major piece of not only the oil industry and transportation industry, but the entire United States and Canadian economies.

The Port of Long Beach, California not only boasts crude oil as one of the top imports of the port, but also exports a significant amount of petroleum coke (heavy oils), refined petroleum, and other products. This port is vital to keeping West Coast gasoline prices under control (if you could ever say they are under control) and to keep supply available to motorists West of the Rockies.

According to the Port of Long Beach, 30,000 people call the Port their employer. The port provides jobs to 1 in 8 people in Long Beach.

Major oil companies also have large terminals or storage tanks at the Port. BP North America has capacity to store nearly 2 million barrels of crude oil or petroleum products. Shell has capacity of nearly 300,000 barrels, while Petro-Diamond has capacity of 590,000 barrels.

BP also operates huge pipelines at the Port, one 42" pipeline, and one 24" pipeline. Without the infrastructure available at the Port, supply storage would become a problem and prices would be higher. At its site, BP also has four 16" pipelines to offload crude carriers and other products. The BP terminal's size is nearly 25 acres.

At the Petro-Diamond terminal, capacity to offload is 12,000 barrels per hour. The terminal has the ability to load as many as 150 tanker trucks in a 24-hour period.

Shell uses a 24" pipeline to connect its infrastructure to the Port with the capacity of 32,000 barrels per hour.

During a normal year, the Port pumps and offloads hundreds of millions of barrels of crude oil and other petroleum products. Its clear those in Southern California rely on the port for much of their oil consumption.