In 2017, LOOP conducted minor modifications to its Marine Terminal to allow for the delivery of domestic crude oil to foreign destinations from the Clovelly Hub located in Galliano, LA. In February of 2018, LOOP loaded its first VLCC, the M/V Shaden, destined for the Global Petroleum Marketplace.
The LOOP Marine Terminal stands in 110 feet (33.5 m) of water some 20 miles (32 km) from land in the Gulf of Mexico. LOOP is the only U.S. Port capable of fully loading a VLCC, which helps optimize America’s energy supply chain by enabling inbound vessels delivering foreign crude oil to leave LOOP with domestic crude oil, rather than returning empty. LOOP’s vessel loading solution is scalable based on market demand and is environmentally friendly, as it required no new piping to begin operations.
U.S. crude oil loaded onto a waiting tanker originates at one of LOOP’s eight (8) subterranean crude oil storage caverns located in Clovelly, LA. LOOP’s 60 million barrels (9.54 million m3
) of cavern storage capacity is the largest private storage facility in the nation, and it represents a unique barrel staging concept to support vessel loading activities.
Once the tanker is moored at a single point mooring (SPM) buoy and Hi-tech flexible hoses are attached to the ship’s manifold, crude oil can begin being loaded into the vessel. LOOP can fully load a VLCC in as little as 2.5 days. LOOP has the capability to fully or partially load vessels ranging in size from an Aframax to ULCCs.