DEVELOPING a new product or improving an existing one is always an exciting project. That's as true for those of us in the magazine business as it is for the people in the industries we serve.
With the September Modern Bulk Transporter, we are launching a new section (pages 58 to 69) devoted to storage terminals, loading racks, and related operations. Called Storage & Terminaling, the free-standing section will be published four times a year: January, April, July, and September.
We believe the new section will have broad appeal because virtually every tank truck fleet interfaces with loading racks and storage terminals at some point in everyday operations. In addition, our growing readership now includes larger numbers of companies that operate their own storage and loading facilities.
For instance, many of the fuel oil and propane distributors and petroleum marketers that are targeted in our September issue have their own bulk plants. Chemical distributors and chemical manufacturers have storage and loading capabilities. We'll be paying a lot more attention to all of those facilities in the future.
The future looks bright for independent storage terminal operations. A recent Wall Street Journal article pointed out that as major petroleum and chemical companies go through restructuring and mergers, all sorts of service activities are being spun off. For instance, Williams Companies recently acquired 12 oil-storage terminals from BP Amoco. Storage terminal and loading rack operations face many of the same regulatory burdens that apply to the tank truck industry, and that burden seems certain to increase in coming years.
For instance, the Department of Transportation's Research and Special Programs Administration is exploring the need for new regulations relating to loading, unloading, and storage of hazardous materials.
These are the sort of issues that will be addressed in our new Storage & Terminaling section. In addition, storage terminals and loading racks will be profiled much like we do tank truck fleets. Relevant meetings and industry events will be covered.
September articles include a report on a new state-of-the-art vapor recovery system at the Koch Industries petroleum terminal in San Antonio, Texas. The Independent Liquid Terminals Association annual meeting is covered in depth. Among the sessions reported: A Chevron Products report on two loading rack incidents that were caused by static electricity, design considerations aimed at preventing leaks in petroleum loading hardware, and the risks associated with storage tank corrosion.
This is definitely a work in progress. We welcome comments and suggestions from any and all of our readers.