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Archive for the ‘oil and gas exploration’ Category

Gulf Sunken Rig: No Major Spill Yet—Reports

Posted by feww on April 24, 2010

The sunken drilling rig and damaged well in the Gulf of Mexico not leaking for now: The U.S. Coast Guard

The initial oil spill from Deepwater Horizon is about 200 barrels (8,400 gallons/31,800 liters), which is regarded as a “minor spill,” according to the said Coast Guard

The slick was estimated at about 13 kilometers long (8 miles) and 3.5 kilometers (2 miles) wide and  at the last flyover by the Coast Guard, a US Coast Guard spokesman said.

“As of right now, the spill is not growing,” He added.

On  Thursday an unmanned submarine inspected the area, but found no leaks of from the sunken drilling rig and no crude oil flowing from the damaged well, a Transocean representative said.

This situation, of course, could change because oil wells gushing at a rate of 8,000 barrels per day don’t heal automatically after a fire. [According to an unconfirmed report, the oil well was capped on Friday. Even if true, there’s no guarantee that the seal would hold.]

The oil rig had a supply of 700,000 gallons (2,650,000 liters) of diesel on board, stored for its huge electricity generators, but the authorities don’t know whether the fuel was consumed by the fire or sank with the oil rig.

The slick poses a threat to the Louisiana coastline, depending on the wind pattern


A boat using booms and dispersant chemicals on Friday tries to contain oil slick where the bleeding-edge Deepwater Horizon rig once floated. [The slick, a  mix of crude oil and fuel, was estimated at about 13 kilometers long (8 miles) and 3.5 kilometers (2 miles) wide on Friday. A day earlier, however, officials had said the slick was 5  miles by 1 mile.] Photo credit:  AP. Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice for details.

Statement of Transocean Ltd. CEO Steven L. Newman Following U.S. Coast Guard Announcement

ZUG, SWITZERLAND, Apr 23, 2010 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) –Following the suspension of U.S. Coast Guard search-and-rescue efforts to find 11 missing persons in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, Steven L. Newman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Transocean Ltd. (NYSE: RIG) (SIX: RIGN), on the ground in New Orleans, expressed his deepest sympathies on behalf of the company to the family members of those lost. The nine Transocean personnel and two employees of a third-party company have been missing since Tuesday, April 20, 2010, when a fire and explosion occurred onboard the semisubmersible drilling rig Deepwater Horizon, which sank on Thursday.

“As the nation and everyone in the Transocean family mourns the tragic loss of these people, our deepest sympathies are with their families and friends today,” said Mr. Newman. “Transocean is doing everything we can to meet their needs during this difficult time, and our family response team members are in close contact to provide all necessary support. I would once again like to express our gratitude to the U.S. Coast Guard, BP and everyone involved for their exhaustive search and rescue efforts, despite this very sad outcome.”

For more information about Transocean, please visit our website at http://www.deepwater.com.    SOURCE: Transocean Ltd.

What People Said?

Democratic Sens. Robert Menendez and Frank Lautenberg: “Big Oil has perpetuated a dangerous myth that coastline drilling is a completely safe endeavor, but accidents like this are a sober reminder just how far that is from the truth,” said  in a statement.

Louisiana State University environmental sciences professor Ed Overton speaking to the Associated Press. “It’s going to be a … mess for a while … I’m not crying doomsday or saying the sky is falling, but that is the potential.”

Sen. Bill Nelson (D) of Florida: “As a part of the effort to expand drilling, the oil industry as recently as Tuesday was pressing the government agency responsible for leasing offshore lands to quickly proceed with a study of the effects of surveying for oil off the Atlantic coast. That came just hours before the Tuesday night explosion.”

The White House told Washington Post that President B.O. won’t reconsider the offshore oil and gas drilling proposal despite the Deepwater Horizon disaster.

Some 858 fires and explosions have occurred in the Gulf of Mexico since 2001, resulting in 69 offshore deaths and 1,349 injuries, the federal Minerals Management Service said.

The Deepwater Horizon disaster comes just days after the Obama administration proposed opening up large blocks of the Gulf for deepwater oil and gas exploration.

The explosion occurred just two weeks after a coal mine explosion in Montcoal, West Virginia killed 29 miners.

These disasters beg the question, what will the administration do next year to meet with the unreasonable, unsustainable rise in energy demands to feed the terminally ill economic system of exponential growth.

While it is certain that the unsustainable system must and will collapse, it’s unclear which few of our ecosystems and how much of their services might survive.

Our world could have survived and thrived on about 8 percent of current energy consumption.

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Posted in gas and oil drilling, Gulf of Mexico oil Spill, oil and gas exploration | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Britain and Argentina Headed Toward Another War?

Posted by feww on February 22, 2010

It’s about oil, again!

Another War in Falklands Could Flare Before Natural Gas Does

The Falklands War, which followed Argentina’s “re-occupation” of  the Falklands in 1982, claimed the lives of 649 Argentine and 255 British soldiers.

Argentina considered the action as the “re-occupation of its own territory,” where as the British government saw it as an “invasion” of a “British dependent territory” and dispatched its naval force to retake the islands.

The limited war fought between the two countries resulted from the centuries-old dispute over the sovereignty of the Falkland Islands, as well as South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, which were initially occupied by France in 1764.

The islands lie in the South Atlantic, about 400 miles east of Argentina and some 8,000 miles away from Britain.

Geographically, Argentina has a legitimate claim to the sovereignty of Falkland Islands—proximity.

Cancun Summit 2010

Leaders of 32 Latin American and Caribbean countries unanimously backed Argentina’s claim to the Falkland Islands at a 2010 Cancun summit in Mexico, said a report .

In their  statement, the 32 leaders reaffirmed “backing for Argentina’s legitimate rights in its sovereignty dispute with the United Kingdom relating to the ‘Malvinas Question,'” and condemned the oil drilling operations.

The Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva called on the UN to debate Argentina’s sovereignty claim to the islands.

“What is the geographic, the political or economic explanation for England [Britain] to be in Las Malvinas?” Lula asked.

“Could it be because England is a permanent member of the UN’s Security Council where they can do everything and the others nothing?”

The Undesired

Desire Petroleum, a UK energy company, probably owned by one or more of the multinationals, is about to begin drilling for oil in the territorial waters of the Falkland Islands, in the South Atlantic Ocean, despite strong objections from Argentina.


The semi-submersible Giant oil rig Ocean Guardian, built 24 years ago, traveled 62 days  from Invergordon on the Cromarty Firth to the Falklands. Source: Desire Petroleum.  “Desire Petroleum estimates potential oil reserves exceeding 3.5 billion barrels and more than nine trillion cubic feet of gas. … In 1998 six wells were drilled to the north of the islands that revealed the presence of a rich organic source rock that could hold up to 60 billion barrels of oil.”

The oil fields near Falklands are said to hold an estimated total of 60 billion barrels; however, Desire Petroleum, has said “the amount which could be exploited commercially would probably be a fraction of that.” BBC UK reported.  [The rest of it would be released in the ocean to keep an oil-rich marine environment.]

Desire Oil has towed a platform to a drilling site about 100km (62 miles) north of the Falklands. Drilling was scheduled to  start at 06:00UTC today.

Argentina, which has long claimed the islands, known locally as las Malvinas, filed a claim with the United Nations “for a vast expanse of ocean, based on research into the extent of the continental shelf, stretching to the Antarctic and including the island chains governed by the UK, ” BBC reported.

Based on the claim, Argentina says drilling by the UK company violates its sovereignty and has since imposed shipping restrictions around the Falklands, and has threatened to take “adequate measures” to stop “British oil exploration in contested waters around the islands.”

Argentine government has asked its neighbors to also impose shipping restrictions in the area, and  is further seeking support from Latin American countries.

According to desire oil, Argentina is about to start its own exploration off the west west coast of the islands.


Map of the region with exploration areas marked. Source: UN/ BBC UK.

Comments made by various parties:

President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela: Britain is acting irrationally and it’s high time it realized the “time for empires was over.”

Argentinian Govt:  No war this time, but Britain must negotiate sovereignty.

UN: He who has nukes calls the tunes.

Desire Petroleum [having towed the giant rig, the Ocean Guardian,about 13,000 km (6,950 NM) from the Cromarty Firth, Scotland] : “Desire is an oil company and it’s exploring for oil and not getting involved in what Argentina is saying about going to the UN. The rig is sitting firmly inside UK waters.” Even if the commercially viable quantities of oil were to be found in the are, it would many years before any oil would be recovered. The Company spokesman added.

Falklands Legislative Assembly [“The Licensor”]:  We have “every right” to do “legitimate business.”

UK Foreign Secretary David Miliband:  British oil exploration in the Falklands is “completely in accordance with international law.” [British government may be occupied by Israel-first interests, but Britain is not like Israel.]

UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown:  UK government has “made all the preparations that are necessary to make sure the Falkland islanders are properly protected.” [We have nukes; Argies don’t.]

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Posted in Desire Petroleum, energy war, Malvinas, offshore oil, oil and gas exploration | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »