World’s Biggest Tank Farm: World Record in Cushing, Oklahoma
The city of Cushing in Oklahoma, United States, is a central hub within the United States and worldwide oil industry. It connects major pipelines within the United States and is the location where the oil futures contracts end up being delivered; the crude oil tanks around Cushing have approximately 91 million barrels of storage capacity, which is the world record for the World’s Biggest Tank Farm, according to the WORLD RECORD ACADEMY.
“The city of Cushing in Oklahoma is a central hub within the United States and worldwide oil industry. It connects major pipelines within the United States and is the location where the oil futures contracts end up being delivered.
“Cushing is a “vital transshipment point with many intersecting pipelines, storage facilities and easy access to refiners and suppliers.” Crude oil flows “inbound to Cushing from all directions and outbound through dozens of pipelines.” In 2005, crude oil and refined products in the US were almost always transported by interconnected pipeline systems. In Oklahoma, eight private companies operated almost all the pipelines and frequently operated oil terminals and refineries: Enbridge; Enterprise Products; Explorer Pipeline; Jayhawk; Magellan Midstream Partners; Plains All American Pipeline; Sunoco; and Valero Energy.
“The crude oil tanks around Cushing have approximately 91 million barrels of storage capacity. On October 28, 2016, tanks held a total of 58.5 million barrels of oil, though it has dropped in 2018.”
“Though the refineries from its boom years earlier in the century are gone, the town of Cushing, northeast of Oklahoma City, is a major storage site for crude oil and gas that comes and goes by pipeline. Cushing also became famous as a trading benchmark for the industry, when, in 1983, the New York Mercantile Exchange selected the price that a 42-gallon barrel of West Texas,” The Center For Land Use Interpretation says.
“Intermediate crude is trading for at Cushing, as an amount reflecting the general price of oil in the global marketplace. Cushing developed as a holding point between supply, coming principally from Texas, and demand, the markets of the north and northeast, like Chicago, to which it is connected by transcontinental pipeline.
“Cushing would be the southern terminus for the Keystone Pipeline from Alberta, should it be built. Several companies operate tank farms south of town, including Magellan, Enbridge, and PXP, with a total capacity of more than 30 million barrels in around 300 above-ground tanks.”
“Today Tank World News journeys to Cushing, Oklahoma, a small town of no more than 8000 people nicknamed the “Pipeline Crossroads of the World” which hosts the world’s largest tank farm,” the Tank World says.
“An oil town since 1912 when the first wildcatters struck oil, it quickly developed major infrastructure and once its own stocks dwindled it shifted to storage aided by a large number of pipes already in place and its central position in the heart of America. Recent figures from Bloomberg Business Week state the total crude stocks (including stock in farms and pipeline fill) to be in excess of 80 million barrels, with a working volume of 65 millions barrels and an increase of 14 million barrels from September 2011.
“Cushing Oklahoma, is the home of 13 oil storage companies including Enbridge, Magellan, Enterprise and more. Currently, there are 13 pipelines bringing crude oil into Cushing with an estimated total capacity of 1.7 million bpd. Whilst going the other way, out of Cushing there are 12 pipelines running in all directions with a capacity of 1.5 million bpd.”
“Cushing is strategically located to pull in barrels from top U.S. shale fields and Canada, while its hundreds of tanks are tied to pipelines that supply U.S. mid-continent and southern refineries and funnel oil to Gulf Coast export ports,” the Reuters says.
“Tank storage of below 20 million barrels, or between 10% and 20% of Cushing’s over 98 million barrels of capacity, is considered close to operational low, say traders. Below those levels the oil is difficult to remove. Water and sediments often settle at the base of storage tanks, making the crude oil at the bottom unable to meet quality standards for refiners or exporters.
“Some tanks have outlets at the bottom that can be used to empty oil and sludge completely, while others do not and therefore the oil at the base cannot be removed completely. At lower levels, it becomes more expensive for companies to get the remaining crude out of the tanks. Roofs of storage tanks also float on the oil, preventing vapors from building up or escaping into the atmosphere. When the legs of these roofs touch the base, it creates a gap between the oil and the roof, causing combustible vapors to form.”
“North American crude oil is pouring into Cushing, where dozens of steel storage tanks fan out from the outskirts of town, tank farms that march on for miles and connect to every major oil patch in North America through an maze of pipelines. Cushing’s nickname is “The Pipeline Crossroads of the World,” the CNBC says.
“It’s one of the largest crude oil storage hubs on Earth, and in the U.S. arguably the most important. Delivery for West Texas Intermediate crude is taken here, priced for Nymex contracts and stored before it’s shipped to refineries.
“However long that process takes, in the meantime, just outside the geographical limits of the tiny town of Cushing, some $2.5 billion worth of black gold is sitting in tanks, awaiting delivery and drawing the attention of the entire industry.”
“This vibrant hub has 90 million barrels of storage capacity where commercial companies are active participants in the market. The storage capacity has grown dramatically over the past few years and now accounts for 13% of total U.S. oil storage,” the CME Group says.
“Cushing’s inbound and outbound pipeline capacity is well over 6.5 million barrels daily. It is interconnected to multiple pipelines, each capable of transporting hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil daily.
“Significant investments in infrastructure, along with increased U.S. oil production, and the repeal of the oil export ban have strengthened the role of WTI as the leading global benchmark. As U.S. oil production continues to increase, Cushing will play an even greater role in the global petroleum landscape.”
“Cushing is known as the “Pipeline Crossroads of the World” for crude oil, with approximately 100 million barrels of storage in the tank farms in the area. The city plays a critical role in the energy sector due to its expansive storage operations and as a significant physical market price reference or benchmark,” the Oklahoma Department of Commerce says.
“The Cushing Economic Development Foundation, Inc. and the City of Cushing announced that Southern Rock Energy Partners, LLC (SREP) has selected Cushing as the site for the company’s next-generation, full conversion crude refinery. The project is expected to have $5.56 billion in capital investment and supply more than 420 full-time employees for operations.
“The project will result in SREP developing a 250,000-BPD next-generation, full conversion crude refinery which will reduce and eliminate 95% of greenhouse gas emissions while producing approximately 91.25 million barrels or 3.8325 billion gallons annually of cleaner transportation fuels including gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel from crudes sourced domestically from the Anadarko, Permian, Denver and Julesburg, and Bakken Basins. The project will be constructed over a 36-month period beginning in 2024 with commercial operations beginning in 2027. Total economic impact for the first decade of operations of the facility to the Cushing area and the state of Oklahoma is estimated to be more than $18 billion.”
“The first oil well in the Cushing area was drilled in 1896, but it was not until 1912 that the Cushing field was discovered in earnest. This field was unique in that it produced a high-quality crude oil that was in great demand by refineries across the country. The oil was also relatively easy to transport, as it was located near several major rail lines,” the 1600 KUSH says.
“One of the most important events in the history of the Cushing oil fields occurred in 1929, when the world’s first oil futures contract was traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange. This contract, which was for the delivery of oil from the Cushing storage tanks, set the standard for oil pricing worldwide and made Cushing a key player in the global oil market.
“Today, the Cushing oil fields continue to play an important role in the American oil industry. The town remains a major hub for oil storage and transportation, with millions of barrels of oil passing through the area every day. While the production levels of the Cushing fields have declined in recent years, they remain a crucial source of oil for the United States and the world.”
“Cushing (Meskwaki: Koshineki, Iowa-Oto: Amína P^óp^oye Chína, meaning: “Soft-seat town”) is a city in Payne County, Oklahoma, United States. The population was 7,826 at the time of the 2010 census, a decline of 6.5% since 8,371 in 2000. Cushing was established after the Land Run of 1891 by William “Billy Rae” Little. It was named for Marshall Cushing, private secretary to U.S. Postmaster General John Wanamaker.
“A 1912 oil boom led to the city’s development as a refining center, with over 50 refineries operating in Cushing over its history. Today, Cushing is a major trading hub for crude oil and a price settlement point for West Texas Intermediate on the New York Mercantile Exchange and is known as the “Pipeline Crossroads of the World.”
“Cushing is a major crude oil hub within the United States and worldwide oil industry. It is a “vital transshipment point with many intersecting pipelines, storage facilities and easy access to refiners and suppliers.” Crude oil flows “inbound to Cushing from all directions and outbound through dozens of pipelines.” Crude oil tank farms around Cushing have over 90 million barrels of storage capacity.”
World Record Academy, November 6, 2023