Ida's damage to oil output among worst in 16 years

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Nine days after Hurricane Ida slammed the Gulf of Mexico with 150 mile-per-hour gusts, oil producers are still struggling to restart operations. About four-fifths of the region’s offshore production remains shut. Nearly 80 production platforms are unoccupied. .. making the storm among the costliest for oil production since 2005.

Those shutdowns are expected to continue for weeks. Already, nearly 18 million barrels of oil have been lost to the market, and analysts fear that could rise to 30 million this year. Still, that’s far less than the 162 million barrels lost in a three-month period in 2005 after back-to-back Hurricanes Katrina and Rita struck the region, according to consultancy Facts Global Energy.

The Gulf’s offshore wells produce roughly a sixth of U.S. crude oil output.

The slow progress in restoring production drove oil prices higher Wednesday. U.S. crude futures have risen more than 10% since August 29.

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