Hurricane Harvey significantly disrupted crude oil and petroleum product supply chains and increased petrol and petroleum product prices.
Analysis by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) highlights that for the week ending September 1, 2017, gross inputs to refineries in the Gulf Coast fell by 3.2 million barrels per day from the previous week. This is the largest drop since Hurricanes Gustav and Ike in 2008.
Refinery utilisation fell to 63%.
Just over half of all US refinery capacity is located in the Gulf Coast, supply petroleum products to the Gulf Coast, East Coast and Midwest as well as to international markets.
Additionally, 49% of total US working crude oil storage capacity and more than 40% of working storage capacity for both motor petrol and diesel fuel were located in the Gulf Coast region, as of March 2017.
As a result of disrupted supplies, the East Coast drew down inventories of motor petrol. Almost all of this drawdown occurred in the Lower Atlantic region, which stretches from Virginia to Florida.
Disruptions caused by the hurricane also led to higher petrol prices. The US average regular retail petrol price increased 28 cents per gallon.