Essential US Navy Petroleum Supplies

Essential US Navy Petroleum Supplies

A recent article in USNI’s Proceedings Magazine, featured the lack of availability of petroleum products from the United States west coast.

It highlighted that the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, and most refineries were along the Gulf coast, far removed from the western Pacific where any conflict with China would take place.

It also highlighted that the West coast depended on foreign oil, or oil from Alaska due to the lack of infrastructure, i.e., pipelines, to transport oil from the Gulf coast to the western states.

Our Navy requires F-76, JP-5 and JP-8 fuels to power our ships, aircraft and ground troops. For the most part, these fuels will not be available from the West coast, except for what might have been in short term storage when hostilities broke out.

These fuels will have to be brought to the fleet by oilers, where the fuels are transferred to combat ships and aircraft carriers during underway replenishment (UNREP).

Requiring these ships to sail from the Gulf coast, and transit the Panama Canal, adds nearly two weeks to the supply chain, round trip, with the added risk that Panama may not permit these ships to transit the canal.

The recent PowerForUSA article, Harm Caused by Net Zero Carbon Policy, highlighted how the US armed forces will be weakened by any policies to eliminate fossil fuels.

The USNI article reinforces the importance of fossil fuels and their availability.

UNREP is dangerous and requires excellent seamanship. The basics of UNREP have not changed greatly over the past seventy years.

These next pictures show UNREP in progress, first in the 1950s, and then more recently.

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Note that the ships sail close to each other, frequently with the supply ship or oiler in the center, with receiving ships on both the port and starboard sides.

Today, helicopters are also used to move dry goods, but transferring oil and jet fuel requires connecting the ships with hoses.

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Pictures 1 & 2 by D. Dears. Pictures 3 & 4 courtesy of the US Navy.

Fossil fuels are essential for the US armed forces to win any war that may occur in the future.

Net zero carbon policies will make it impossible to win.

The left is promoting disastrous policies for our country.

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5 Replies to “Essential US Navy Petroleum Supplies”

  1. Very timely and tracks with yesterday’s WSJ piece on page AS-17, “If War Comes. Will the US Navy Be Prepared?”  This all began in the Obama Administration causing the Navy to take their eye off of the war fighting mission and making climate change a high priority. As we now see personnel have become risk adverse, diverted their attention to diversity, and down played actual training by defaulting to the use of computer disk lessons.  China is confronting us in all corners of the world and we need to focus on the mission. We can not let  Taiwan go the way of Hong Kong. 

    • Thanks. Excellent observations. I read all too many articles about the Navy’s lack of war fighting capabilities and lax command structure. When I see the chairman of the Joint Chiefs woke testimony to Congress I’m very worried that we lack the fighting will we need to win. There are many members of the armed forces who are well prepared, but it’s the top leadership, O7 and above, that concerns me.

  2. Pingback: Weekly Climate and Energy Roundup #463 – Watts Up With That?

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