Public comment was requested on the dredging plans for Christis Harbor Island in Corpus Harbor

Public comment was requested on the dredging plans for Christis Harbor Island in Corpus Harbor

Tim Acosta Corpus Christi 15:11 CDT August 7, 2019 Corpus Christi Harbor plans a crude oil terminal in Harbor Island's Courtney Sacco Island, Corpus Christi Caller Time.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, with which the port has applied for permission for the project, issued a public announcement on August 1, seeking public opinion on the proposal. The public comment period runs until August 30.

The port wants to dredge part of the Corpus Christi canal about 80 feet from its entrance to Harbor Island to allow very large crude oil carriers to be fully loaded. These vessels are capable of carrying 2 million barrels of crude oil, but due to the current depth of 45 feet, they cannot currently be fully loaded in the canal.

"According to the alternative analyzes submitted in the port permit application, the dredging of the (Corpus Christi Authority port) for full-load VLCCs is an incentive to transport more efficient raw material in larger quantities." >

"Currently, the existing channel depth requires that current crude oil carriers, whether VLCCs or other vessels, do not leave the port completely unloaded or that VLCCs remain offshore, while smaller tankers move their cargo to larger VLCCs called reverse lights. ", the analysis continues.

This reversing lights are inefficient, as sometimes even these smaller vessels cannot be fully charged when passing through the port, the analysis says. This increases customers' costs and is also problematic because it could cause congestion in the future as more pipes enter the network to carry the Perm Basin and Eagle Ford Shale crude oil.

"These delays and congestion increase transportation costs, which in turn increase crude oil costs, with the end result that U.S. crude oil becomes less competitive on the world market," the analysis said.

The port's plans for Harbor Island have been withdrawn by Port Aransas residents and property owners who fear the planned dredging and loading of VLCCs into Harbor Island will destroy the city's fishing and tourism industry. There are also concerns that the project will cause significant damage to marine life.

The image is a planned dredging project at Corpus Christi Harbor on the island of Port Aransas Harbor, which will create a ship docking area. Contributing, Corpus Christi Harbor

The Keep Your Wildlife Movement has been started by the Port Aransas Conservancy, a group made up primarily of residents and property owners who are concerned about the port's plans for Harbor Island and other industrial projects in the area. The initiative aims to raise awareness of the environmental impacts that these projects may have on the communities in which they are located.

The Corps Communication highlighted the potential direct, indirect and cumulative impacts on San Jose Island, just north of the project site. However, it states that the proposed dredging would affect two sub - areas designated as critical habitats under the Endangered Species Act - one for pipelines and the other for sea turtles. -

The Corps Communication also stated that the proposed activity "may affect historic features", "would have a significant adverse effect on critical fish habitats or federally managed fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico" and "endangered and / or planned work may affect endangered species or their critical habitats. "

The statements were part of the initial observations, are set out in the Communication and should be further examined and coordinated with other authorities before a final decision is taken. People are also encouraged to express their concerns or support the project publicly.

On August 2, the Port Aransas Conservancy issued a statement inviting supporters to comment on the proposal, while criticizing the port's focus on the profitability of its project as an environment. They also expressed the belief that the port should focus only on the offshore crude oil system on which the port is working with Phillips 66.

During the protest on Saturday, July 20, 2019, the residents of Port Aransas are holding signs against the island plans of the ports of Corpus Christi. Tim Acosta / Caller-Times

The last offshore system was set up after the port opposed a similar project near the national coast of Padre Island in Trafigura. The Port Aransas Conservancy has said it makes more sense to unload VLCCs completely from the shipping channel at the offshore terminal, thus minimizing the impact on Port Aransas marine life and habitats.

"The ecological catastrophe associated with this project does not necessarily require or (in kind) apologize," the group said in a statement. "Take it offshore !!"

Sean Strawbridge, chief executive of Corpus Christi Harbor, has said the harbor is committed to the environmentally friendly behavior of the Harbor Island project, adding that the harbor has previously done nearly $ 10 million in maintenance work on its owned Harbor Island.

"We are confident that the development of Harbor Island will not disrupt Port Aransas' tourism industry or in any way add excessive environmental risks to the surrounding ecology," he said at the end of July.

Tim Acosta covers the stories of Corpus Christi Harbor, County and City Government for Corpus Christi callers. Consider supporting the local press by digitally subscribing to caller time.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, with which the port has applied for permission for the project, issued a public announcement on August 1, seeking public opinion on the proposal. The public comment period runs until August 30.

The port wants to dredge part of the Corpus Christi canal about 80 feet from its entrance to Harbor Island to allow very large crude oil carriers to be fully loaded. These vessels are capable of carrying 2 million barrels of crude oil, but due to the current depth of 45 feet, they cannot currently be fully loaded in the canal.

"According to the alternative analyzes submitted in the port permit application, the dredging of the (Corpus Christi Authority port) for full-load VLCCs is an incentive to transport more efficient raw material in larger quantities." >

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