Storm Nicholas triggers power outages across US Gulf Coast
Tropical Storm Nicholas knocked power out at parts of the US Gulf coast September 13 as the energy sector works to recover from Hurricane Ida in August.
Parts of Texas and Louisiana are without power after Nicholas briefly reached hurricane status. Nicholas is expected to linger over the Louisiana coast before weakening to a tropical depression later in the week.
“Nicholas is expected to produce additional rainfall of 5 to 10 inches from the upper Texas coastal area into central to southern Louisiana, far southern Mississippi and far southern Alabama, with isolated storm totals of 20 inches across central to southern Louisiana,” the US National Hurricane Center forecast for September 14 read.
Flooding, meanwhile, is expected near Sabine Pass in Louisiana, home to Cheniere Energy’s LNG export facility of the same name. Louisiana’s governor declared a state of emergency September 12 in preparation for Nicholas.
The US energy sector, meanwhile, continues its slow recovery from Hurricane Ida, which made landfall August 29 in Louisiana as a category 4 storm. The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement showed 43.6% of total crude oil production and 51.6% of total natural gas production in the US territorial waters of the Gulf of Mexico remains offline due to Ida.
The US division of Shell reported September 13 that many of its assets in the region were up and running, though it was still assessing damage to its West Delta-143 offshore facility.
“We are working to understand the full extent of the damage and the degree to which production in the Gulf of Mexico will be impacted,” the company said.
A storm headed west toward the Caribbean Islands and Florida has a 30% chance of forming a cyclone within the next 48 hours. Another storm is brewing off the coast of western Africa.