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This NOAA satellite image taken Monday, August 27, 2012 at 01:45 PM EDT shows a swirl of clouds in the Gulf of Mexico associated with Tropical Storm Isaac as it moves toward the central Gulf Coast. The official NHC forecast continues to strengthen the storm into a hurricane before landfall Tuesday evening near New Orleans. Low lying areas of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama have been evacuated, and the region is preparing for damaging wind, rain, and storm surge. A line of clouds stretching from Texas through the Northeast is associated with a cold front that is providing some rain in the Northeast. (AP PHOTO/WEATHER UNDERGROUND)

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U.S: 78 pct. of Gulf oil production shut by storm

The U.S. government says 78 percent of the oil production in the Gulf of Mexico has been halted in preparation for Tropical Storm Isaac.

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