The Port of Corpus Christi Authority is working with United States Army Corps of Engineers on the Channel Deepening Project to evaluate the feasibility of deepening the Corpus Christi Ship Channel from the Gulf of Mexico to Harbor Island up to -80 feet. The project under study is designed to allow for safer and more efficient transfer of the rapidly growing volumes of crude oil being exported.

Pipelines from Eagle Ford and Permian Basins are being constructed that run to the Port of Corpus Christi, including Harbor Island. Crude oil terminals are being planned at Harbor Island, using the federally-authorized -54-foot deep channel. However, the -54-foot deep channel limits the ability to fully load VLCCs. This translates to additional vessel trips, costs, man hours, operational risk and air emissions.

In order to fulfill our mission and support of national priorities, this project will help the Port of Corpus Christi in keeping pace with the global marketplace.

Driving Factors At-A-Glance:

  • Use of the 54-foot deep channel currently underway limits the ability to fully load VLCCs, decreasing efficiency and requiring reverse lightering of these vessels.
  • More capacity means fewer trips, lower costs, less operational risk and lower air emissions
  • It will bolster national energy security through the growth of U.S. crude exports, and protect national economic interests by decreasing the national trade deficit.
  • We’re able to move crude oil resulting from the large growth in the Permian Basin and Eagle Ford Shale, helping the U.S. become the top oil-producing nation in the world.
As part of the feasibility study, and in accordance with National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), this evaluation will be documented in an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).