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Tens of Billions of Dollars to Rebuild Gulf Coast
But Also Huge Hit to Household Pocketbooks...Property Damage that Insurance Won't Completely Cover, Lost Wages...Long, Long, Arduous Recovery Ahead


Houston is the fourth largest city in the U.S. According to the most recent Dept. of Commerce numbers.

Houston is the fourth largest city in the U.S. According to the most recent Dept. of Commerce numbers, Houston had a GDP (gross domestic product) of $503 billion in 2015, which is larger than some countries, e.g., Poland, Thailand and Nigeria.

GDP is a tidy number to express overall domestic production, but the personal finances of all the area homeowners who have to deal with flooded homes is not going to be expressed in GDP numbers, but will be painfully felt in the pocketbook. The pain and suffering of Houstonites is foremost in people's mind across the country.

Meanwhile, the energy sector's focus is on petroleum refining and natural gas capacities. Over 45% of total U.S. petroleum-refining capacity is located along the Gulf Coast, as well as 51% of total U.S. natural gas processing plant capacity. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration the Gulf of Mexico federal offshore oil production accounts for 17% of total U.S. crude oil production, and federal offshore natural gas production in the Gulf accounts for 5% of total U.S. dry production.

As of January 2016, the 29 petroleum refineries in Texas had a capacity of over 5.4 million barrels of crude oil per day and accounted for 30% of total U.S. refining capacity. Louisiana, with 18 operating petroleum refineries, is second only to Texas in total and operating refinery capacity.

It's estimated that Hurricane Harvey has temporarily lowered U.S. refining capacity by 15%. The U.S. exports a million barrels of oil a day, and imports about a quarter less oil than it did a decade ago.

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January 24, 2019, 1:33 am PST

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