March 18, 2011 – (Reuters) - The following is a roundup of the effect on the energy and commodities sector of the devastating earthquake and tsunami that struck the northeast coast of Japan.
- White smoke or steam rises from three reactors, Nos. 2, 3 and 4, at the quake-damaged Fukushimi Daiichi nuclear plant in northeastern Japan.
- Japanese Safety Agency aims to restore electricity to reactors No. 3 and 4 by Sunday.
- Power blackouts can be avoided in the Tokyo area if demand stays at the current level, the trade ministry said.
- Tokyo Electric Power <9501.T> says radioactivity levels at the earthquake-crippled Daiichi nuclear facility are declining.
- TEPCO declares force majeure on some coal vessel deliveries due to outages at its coal-fired plants.
- TEPCO has announced rolling blackouts after its power generation was cut.
- Japanese utility Tohoku Electric <9506.T> declares force majeure on its near-term thermal coal shipments due to port damage.
- TEPCO 350-MW No.2 unit at the Ohi power station in Tokyo plant remains closed.
- JX Nippon Oil & Energy Corp, an oil refining unit of JX Holdings <5020.T>, boosts oil product output at two refineries in western Japan by 30,000 barrels per day in the wake of a supply shortage in the east of the country.
- The government has asked 13 refineries in operation in West Japan to boost their running ratio to help ease the supply shortage.
- JX Holdings <5020.T> is in talks with South Korea and China on oil products imports to help Japan meet its energy needs.
- AOC Holdings <5017.T> says its refiner Fuji Oil Co has increased runs at the two fluid catalytic cracking units at its 140,000 bpd Sodegaura refinery after briefly reducing operations after the earthquake.
- Three Japan-bound naphtha shipping fixtures from the Middle East, totaling 205,000 metric tons, fails to be completed due to the shutdown of several Japanese crackers.
- Valero Energy <VLO.N> said it is ready to supply refined products, such as gasoline and diesel, from its U.S. West Coast refineries to Japan.
- JX Holdings says the refinery of subsidiary Kashima Oil Co remains shut.
- JX Holdings declares force majeure on its refined product supplies as its stocks are depleted and distributions disrupted. The company is working to boost output at its refineries that are still operating and diverting products to domestic use instead of exports to meet a supply shortfall.
- Maruzen Petrochemical Co Ltd shuts its sole naphtha cracker in Chiba, east of Tokyo, with capacity to produce 480,000 metric tons per year of ethylene.
- Kyokuto Petroleum has restarted its 175,000 barrels per day (bpd) Chiba refinery.
- JX Holdings shuts its 404,000 metric tons per year Kawasaki naphtha cracker near Tokyo.
- Japan's Exxon Mobil <XOM.N> group refiner TonenGeneral Sekiyu KK <5012.T> prepares to restart its 335,000 barrels per day Kawasaki plant, near Tokyo.
- Mitsubishi Chemical <4188.T> halts two naphtha crackers at its Kashima plant after a power outage.
- China's term shipments for refined copper from Japan may stay normal in March and April, though May and June remain a question mark after a massive quake forced some Japanese copper producers to stop production
- Toho Zinc Co <5707.T> stops operations at its 139,200 metric tons per year Annaka zinc smelter and Onahama plant, which is used to treat zinc for smelting.
- Japanese steel mills divert metallurgical coal cargoes due to plant outages. Possible destinations for the coal include South Korea and China.
- Production at JFE Steel Corp's 10-million-tonne per year Higashi Nihon plant is still halted due to power outages. JFE Steel <5411.T> is the world's No. 5 steelmaker. Fourth-ranked Nippon Steel has suspended operations at one small plant.
- Sumitomo Metal Industries Ltd <5405.T>, Japan's No. 3 steelmaker, says production at its main Kashima plant in Ibaraki prefecture remains suspended.
- Sumitomo Metal's main Kashima plant has a fire in a gas holder, which has been extinguished but the company says it does not know yet when the plant will resume operations. Sumitomo Metal has a total capacity of 14 million metric tons a year and the Kashima plant produces 8.3 million metric tons.
- Nippon Steel's small Kamaishi plant, which had produced 60,000 metric tons a month of downstream steel products, remains shut. The company has resumed operations at a small seamless steel plant in Tokyo after briefly shutting it on Monday due to rolling power outages.
- Two piers at the medium-sized Onahama seaport in Fukushima prefecture are now available for 30,000 metric ton vessels.
- Two smaller seaports further up the coast, Miyako in Iwate prefecture and Hachinohe in Aomori prefecture, will restore functions by the end of Thursday.
- Japan's Sendai Gas says it will likely take more than a month to restart its Shinminato liquefied natural gas facility. All the remaining LNG terminals in Japan are in operation.
- Three Japan-bound naphtha shipping fixtures from the Middle East, totaling 205,000 metric tons, fail to be completed after last week's quake forced the shutdown of several crackers.
- The northeast coast ports of Hachinohe, Sendai, Ishinomaki and Onahama are so severely damaged that they are not expected to return to normal operations for months.
- Hachinohe handles a wide variety of goods, including fuel products to the local fishing fleet and U.S. military installations in Japan and South Korea. Other ports handle goods ranging from coal and rubber to LNG and machinery.
- The large container and oil port of Kashima is also closed, but officials expect four out 11 berths to resume operations in two weeks.
- Other damaged ports include Hitachinaka, Hitachi, Soma, Shiogama, Kesennuma, Ofunato, Kamashi and Miyako. The ports handle products ranging from sugar and non-ferrous metals to cars and wood products.
- Japan's top crude oil and LNG port Chiba resumes some operations with only one terminal, operated by Cosmo Oil, currently shut.
- The quake has damaged or destroyed three dry bulk vessels operated by Nippon Yusen Kaisha <9101.T>, one from Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha <9107.T> and one from Mitsui O.S.K. Lines <9104.T>.
(Compiled by Randy Fabi in Singapore; Editing by Himani Sarkar)