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Shell to Close Capline Crude Pipeline as Gustav Nears (Update1)

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Shell to Close Capline Crude Pipeline as Gustav Nears (Update1) 

By Christian Schmollinger and Nesa Subrahmaniyan

Sept. 1 (Bloomberg) — Royal Dutch Shell Plc plans to close its Capline crude oil pipeline system today because of dwindling supplies from fields shut as Hurricane Gustav approaches, the company said in a statement.

Capline runs 650 miles from St. James, Louisiana, to Patoka, Illinois, and has the capacity to transport 1.2 million barrels of oil a day. Shell’s Houma, Louisiana-to-Houston oil pipeline has already ceased operations. Other onshore pipelines and tank farms have closed, the company said.

Gustav, a Category 3 hurricane, was about 220 miles (360 kilometers) southeast of New Orleans, Louisiana, packing winds of 115 miles an hour, the National Hurricane Center said. It may reach Louisiana as early as midday with a force “not very different” from its current strength, the center said in an advisory issued 10 p.m. Miami time yesterday.

Shell said its refined products delivery systems in the Houston area continue to transport gasoline, diesel and aviation fuel.

“As part of our planning, we have prepared systems that are closing to enable a timely restart following the storm,” Shell said.

To contact the reporters on this story: Christian Schmollinger in Singapore at [email protected]Nesa Subrahmaniyan in Singapore at[email protected].

Last Updated: September 1, 2008 02:13 EDT

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