Creating a crude terminal at Harbor Island will accommodate the need to create more export capacity for Texas crude while ensuring full oversight of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality—including 100% control of air emissions—and the safety and security of protected harbor conditions. Locating the facility at Harbor Island rather than at a location further inside Corpus Christi Bay or the Inner Harbor of the Ship Channel reduces the impacts, such as vessel congestion and resource consumption, associated with longer vessel trips. The proximity of Harbor Island to the Gulf of Mexico will also translate to a significant competitive advantage that will attract liquid bulk customers.
The construction and operation of the crude terminal will create jobs and yield direct economic benefit to the local community and the region. The tenant’s improvements (e.g. oil storage tanks) on Port-owned property inside the city limits will be subject to city and school district ad valorem taxes.
If/when the terminal can accommodate fully laden VLCCs, the demand for reverse lightering—offshore transfers from ship to ship to top off partially filled vessels—will be reduced, thus potentially reducing total vessel traffic and associated fuel consumption, emissions, and safety risks.
Further, conducting the proposed operations in safe harbor allows the use of additional controls to reduce potential for spills, such as booming off the vessel while transfer operations are occurring and staging appropriate equipment onshore to reduce response times.