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78 percent of Gulf oil production shut by storm

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Oil barrels

(AP Image)

(AP) – The U.S. government says 78 percent of the oil production in the Gulf of Mexico has been halted in preparation for Tropical Storm Isaac.

The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement reports about 1 million barrels per day of oil production has been stopped as companies have evacuated 346 offshore oil and gas production platforms. That’s 17 percent of daily U.S. oil production and 6 percent of consumption.

The agency says 2 billion cubic feet of natural gas production is also affected. That’s about 3 percent of daily U.S. production and consumption.

Production is expected to quickly resume after the storm passes. The price of U.S. benchmark crude oil fell 68 cents to $95.47 per barrel. Natural gas fell 5 cents to $2.65 per 1,000 cubic feet.

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