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TAPS - Trans Alaska Pipeline System
Want some facts? This pipeline is 800 miles long, going from Prudhoe Bay to Valdez, the northernmost ice free port in Alaska. It crosses 3 mountain ranges & more than 500 rivers and streams. The diameter is 48 inches, some of it is elevated above ground, some is buried. In permafrost areas where heat from the oil might cause the ground to thaw it's also insulated as well as elevated. Construction began in 1975 & was completed in 1977 - the cost to build was over $8 billion and it was the largest privately funded construction project in the world at that time. The Valdez Marine Terminal has 14 active above ground crude oil storage tanks. An average of 3-5 oil tankers depart from the terminal each week. Since the first tanker left in 1977 (the ARCO Juneau) more than 15,000 tankers have been filled. Pretty amazing stuff!
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