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Displaced MMS Reports 8.29 Bcf/d Shut in Off Gulf Coast

An estimated 8.29 Bcf/d of natural was reported to have been shut in when Hurricane Katrina roared across the production facilities off the Louisiana and Mississippi coasts late Sunday and early Monday, according to report issued by Interior Department's Minerals Management Service (MMS) offices in Washington, DC and its temporary office in Houston.

The 8.29 Bcf shut-in figure represented 82.99% of the daily natural gas production in the Gulf of Mexico, which historically has been at about 10 Bcf/d, the agency reported.

Cumulatively the MMS, which closed down its New Orleans office and moved to Houston in advance of Katrina, estimated that 15.447 Bcf of natural gas has been shut in since Friday. This is equivalent to 0.423% of the annual gas production in the Gulf, which it put at 3.65 Tcf.

The MMS said its survey was based on reports from 57 energy companies as of 11:30 a.m. (CDT). The agency said 615 oil and gas platforms were reported to have been evacuated leading up to the hurricane, while 96 rigs were evacuated. The evacuations represented 75% of the 819 manned platforms in the Gulf, and 72% of the 137 mobile rigs operating in the Gulf.

Likewise, the MMS reported that 1.3 million barrels of oil per day (b/d) were shut in, or 92% of the 1.5 million b/d daily oil production in the Gulf of Mexico waters.

The cumulative oil production shut in since Friday was 3.1 million barrels, which represents 0.572% of the annual oil production of 547.5 million barrels in the Gulf of Mexico.

The MMS said its next oil and gas production shut-in report will be issued Tuesday at 1 p.m. (CDT). The agency evacuated its MMS office in New Orleans over the weekend and opened for business Monday in Houston.

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