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«Study to Assess Widespread Electricity System Outage Risks on Gasoline and Diesel Supply and Distribution Systems in Upstate New York Section Work ...»

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Study to Assess Widespread

Electricity System Outage

Risks on Gasoline and Diesel

Supply and Distribution

Systems in Upstate New York

Section Work Order No: 3 under Agreement 30186

January 2014

Submitted to:

New York State Energy Research & Development

Authority (NYSERDA)

17 Columbia Circle

Albany, New York 12203

Submitted by:

ICF International

9300 Lee Highway


Virginia 22031

Warranties and Representations.

Notice This report was prepared by ICF International in the course of performing work contracted for and sponsored by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). The opinions expressed in this report do not necessarily reflect those of NYSERDA or the State of New York, and reference to any specific product, service, process, or method does not constitute an implied or expressed recommendation or endorsement of it.

Further, the NYSERDA and the State of New York make no warranties or representations, expressed or implied, as to the fitness for particular purpose or merchantability of any product, apparatus, or service, or the usefulness, completeness, or accuracy of any processes, methods, or other information contained, described, disclosed, or referred to in this report. NYSERDA, the State of New York, and the contractor make no representation that the use of any product, apparatus, process, method, or other information will not infringe privately owned rights and will assume no liability for any loss, injury, or damage resulting from, or occurring in connection with, the use of information contained, described, disclosed, or referred to in this report.

Abstract This report was authorized in response to the impacts of recent storms such as Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Irene, and Tropical storm Lee. It examines the petroleum supply pathways of the Upstate regions of New York, including the Hudson Valley Region (supplied by marine) and the Central and Western portions of the State (supplied primarily by pipelines). This study also assesses the frequency and duration of power outage events affecting Upstate New York, and the impact of past events on the region’s fuel supply and distribution systems. Finally, this study examines the existing storm-hardening and resiliency measures at Upstate petroleum supply terminals and identifies the relative benefits of expanding these measures to strengthen the Upstate supply chain.

Keywords Transportation Fuels, Petroleum Terminals, Hardening, Resiliency, Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Irene, Power Outages, Upstate New York, Gasoline, Diesel


Table of Contents

Table of Figures

Table of Tables

Executive Summary


Analysis of Upstate Fuel Supply Pathways

Hudson Valley Region

Hudson River



Central & Western Region

Buckeye Pipeline System

Sunoco Logistics Pipeline System

United Refinery



Analysis of Power Outage Events

Electric Service Reliability

Average Outages from Major Storms

Average Outages from Major Storm Outages by Utility

Widespread Power Outage Events

August 2003 Northeast Blackout

North Country Ice storm

Hurricane Irene

Tropical Storm Lee

–  –  –


Analysis of Hardening and Resiliency Measurses

Pre-Storm Activities

Flood Protection Measures

Backup Generation

Backup Generation by Load Capability




Figure 1. Upstate New York Regions of Analysis and Petroleum Supply Infrastructure

Figure 2. Frequency of Storm-Related Outage Events by Upstate Utility (2008-2012)

Figure 3. Duration of Storm-Related Outage Events by Upstate Utility in hours (2008-2012)

Figure 4. New York Customers Restored from August 2003 Blackout by Utility

Figure 5. NYS Investor-Owned Utility Customers without Power Following Hurricane Irene

Figure 6. Percentage of Upstate Terminals Conducting Pre-Storm Activities

Figure 7. NYS Terminals that Have or Obtain Backup Generators, Upstate vs.


Figure 8. Upstate Terminals that Have or Obtain Backup Generators by Region

Figure 9. Terminals with Backup Generators Capable of Powering Throughput Operations by Region

–  –  –

Table 1. Hudson Valley Region Terminals

A Table 2. Hudson Valley Region Terminal Storage Capacity by Product (Barrels)

Table 3. Central & Western Region Terminals

Table 4. Investor-Owned Electric Utilities Serving Upstate New York

Table 5. Reliability Measures for Upstate Utilities Excluding Interruptions Caused by Major Storms (2008-2012)

Table 6. Storm-Related Reliability Measures for Upstate Utilities (2008-2012)

Table 7. Peak Upstate Customer Outages Caused by 2003 Blackout by Utility

Table 8. Peak Upstate Customer Outages Caused by Hurricane Irene by Utility

Table 9. Peak Upstate Customer Outages Caused by Superstorm Sandy by Utility

–  –  –

Upstate New York petroleum markets are less at risk to widespread power outage events than Downstate markets.

In addition to primary supply sources, Upstate NY petroleum markets have several alternative fuel supply sources allowing for a measure of diversification. Upstate markets also tend to hold higher inventories than their Downstate counterparts and Upstate supply systems have a greater ability to make up lost volumes after a disruption event has ended. Furthermore, Upstate markets do not experience major power outage events with a high frequency or duration, and recent outage events have had limited (and manageable) impacts on the Upstate petroleum supply chain and end-use consumers. Few Upstate petroleum terminals have implemented additional hardening or resiliency measures above which are already in place – such as elevating critical equipment or installing backup generators – to ensure continuity of operations during major storm events. This is because the recent major storm events have not significantly impacted these terminals. While future storms and widespread power outage events could hypothetically cause greater disruptions to Upstate supply and distribution systems, these systems have largely withstood historic worst case scenarios without experiencing major supply impacts. Key

findings from this study are summarized below:

1. Supply pathways to Upstate New York petroleum markets have limited diversity but supply security is enhanced by higher storage inventories at Upstate terminals (than Downstate) and the ability of supply systems to ramp up deliveries after a disruption to make up for lost volumes. Terminals in the Hudson Valley Region of Upstate New York are dependent on marine deliveries from the New York Harbor area via the Hudson River for essentially all of their supply of gasoline and diesel. The Central & Western Region of Upstate New York receives supply along more pathways, but is heavily dependent on the Buckeye Pipeline system. Although neither region could fully compensate for lost supplies along these primary pathways, terminals in Upstate New York typically hold higher inventories than Downstate terminals, and can consequently withstand longer supply disruptions before running out of fuel. For instance, Upstate terminals supplied by pipeline hold more than 10 days of supply on average compared with 2-3 days of supply for terminals with less storage capacity in the Downstate area. Furthermore, Upstate fuel pathways tend to have some spare capacity, thus making it possible for operators to ramp up throughput to make up for lost volumes after a supply disruption (or in preparation for a disruption). The Buckeye Pipeline to Upstate New York, for instance, typically runs at 75 to 80 percent of capacity and is shut for 3 to 4 days per month due to low demand, so an outage could be managed by higher pipeline throughputs after power was restored.

2. Widespread power outage events in Upstate markets are relatively rare, short-lived, and have historically had limited impacts on Upstate supply facilities. Over the past five years, Upstate power customers, have on average experienced one major storm-related power outage every two years with an average duration of 14 hours – not long enough to cause a significant disruption to most fuel supply systems due to availability of storage at multiple levels of the fuel supply chain. Five widespread power outage events – the 1998 North Country Ice Storm, the August 2003 Northeast Blackout, Hurricane Irene, Tropical Storm Lee, and Superstorm Sandy – appear to have had limited direct power outage impacts on petroleum supply infrastructure located in Upstate New York. Although, storm-related damage and power outages to key supply facilities in the New York Harbor area have had a significant impact on fuel supply to Upstate markets, these problems would not have been alleviated by greater hardening or resiliency measures at Upstate New York facilities.

NYSERDA Upstate Supply Study | Executive Summary v

3. Few Upstate petroleum terminals have put in place additional hardening and resiliency measures because they have not historically experienced significant storm-related disruptions. While terminals representing 40 percent of fuel throughput surveyed by NYSERDA in the Hudson Valley Region reported having backup generators capable of powering throughput operations, terminals representing only 6 percent throughput in the Central & Western Region reported having operational backup. This divergence is due to higher frequency of severe storms and power outage events in the Hudson Valley Region, particularly in the Newburgh area, which is in close proximity to Downstate New York. Companies operating terminals in the Upstate area noted they had the ability to rapidly deploy backup generators in the event of a long-term outage.

While the Upstate petroleum markets have not experienced severe weather or widespread power outage events as frequently as Downstate, there always remains potential for more significant outages than have occurred historically. The North Country Ice Storm of 1998 had a crippling impact on the northern upstate markets from Watertown to Massena and into the Adirondacks and Canada. The impact on gasoline and heating oil supply was significant, but was focused on a small, geographically dispersed population. Should a similar storm impact the Buffalo to Albany areas, the extent of power outages and impact on petroleum markets could be significantly disrupted with more extended recovery times. Offsetting these impacts would be the ability of terminals located outside the impact area to supplement fuel supplies.

ICF International recommends that NYSERDA consider working with terminals in the Upstate markets to encourage that appropriate backup generation capability is in place or could be made available in a worst-case scenario, and that weather contingency plans are in place to assure access to petroleum delivery trucks. While it does not appear critical that a broad service station backup generator program is required (similar to the program in place Downstate), it would be prudent to encourage a limited number of service stations on key arteries in metropolitan areas and some rural stations in county seats or population centers to either obtain generators or pre-wire for quick access in the event of severe outages.

NYSERDA Upstate Supply Study | Executive Summary vi


NYSERDA and New York State have implemented a number of initiatives stemming from the impacts of recent storms such as Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Irene, and Tropical storm Lee. These storms primarily impacted the Downstate portion of the State (New York City and Long Island) with storm surge, power outages and waterway blockages severely affecting the fuel supply chain. The purpose of this study is to examine the petroleum supply pathways of the Upstate regions of New York, including the Hudson Valley Region (supplied by marine) and the Central and Western portions of the State (supplied primarily by pipelines). This study will also examine the frequency and duration of power outage events affecting Upstate New York, and the impact of past events on the region’s fuel supply and distribution systems. Finally, this study will examine the existing storm-hardening and resiliency measures at Upstate petroleum supply terminals and assess the relative benefits of expanding these measures to strengthen the Upstate supply chain.

Upstate Supply Study | Introduction 1


New York State (NYS) does not have any petroleum refineries and, as a result, the State relies entirely on the movement of petroleum products (e.g., motor gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, etc.) produced in other markets.

Petroleum products are transported to Upstate New York terminals from regional production and import hubs by pipeline, marine vessel, and – to a lesser extent – by rail and truck. Products move from Upstate receipt terminals to end-users (retail gas stations, power plants and individual homes and businesses) by tanker truck. This section identifies the major infrastructure supporting the supply and distribution of petroleum fuels to consumer markets throughout NYS, with an emphasis on the Upstate market.

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