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Alaska earthquake could threaten over 500,000 b/d of ANS crude oil shipments

London — A 7.9 magnitude earthquake early Tuesday in the Gulf of Alaska has prompted a tsunami warning issued for the coast, which could threaten shipments of Alaska North Slope crude from the Port of Valdez.

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According to the Alaska Earthquake Center, the quake occurred 166 miles southeast of Kodiak.

The Port of Valdez is the southern terminus of the trans-Alaska oil pipeline, through with 548,293 b/d of crude was transported in December, according to the Alyeska Pipeline service company.

Neither the Port of Valdez or Alyeska Pipeline could not be reached for comment.

ANS crude is consumed largely by US West Coast refiners, and at times has been exported to Asia.

The closure of the Port of Valdez or the trans-Alaska pipeline for an extended period would push USWC refiners to seek alternative waterborne exports.

-- Jeff Mower, jeff.mower@spglobal.com
-- Edited by Jonathan Dart, newsdesk@spglobal.com