Libya: Update on Ras Lanuf and Sidra

Published in Discoveries. ∼ Updated Jun 30, 2020

We’ve been following the progress in Libya’s oil exports, storage and production over the past 40 or so days, and posted them initially on our Twitter megathread. That research is now continuing on this site, and the current updates are as follows.

The oil that is pumped out of the ground further inland is sent over by pipeline to oil storage terminals and refineries along the Mediterranean coastline up north. We can see daily changes in the floating rooftop tanks at the storage farm in Sidra. The animation below is a 24 hour comparison between July 23rd and July 24th, 2018. The tank farm has been attacked over the past few years since the fall of the old regime led by Muammar Gaddafi. Our research shows that there are 3.3 million barrels of operational storage space of the original 6.5 million.

If we look at Ras Lanuf’s storage terminal just 27 air kilometers away, there are no visible changes at the storage farm which was attacked in mid-June, but not at the shore refinery  (220,000 barrel per day capacity) nearby, either. However, a tanker named AEGEAN VISION  departed on July 17th with 930,000 barrels for Singapore via the Suez Canal. Our conclusion in the case of Ras Lanuf is that the tanker was loaded directly from the oilfield; and not from either storage sites (tank farm and refinery). The photo below is based on a 48h change in inventory between July 21st and July 23rd, but nothing’s appeared to have changed as there are no red markings to indicate it.

Since July 17th, we have counted approximately 2.5 million barrels departing from Sidra and 930,000 barrels from Ras Lanuf.

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