Monthly Archives: September 2012
This week the SubseaIQ team added 1 new projects and updated 8 projects. You can see all the updates made over any time period via the Project Update History search. The latest offshore field develoment news and activities are listed below for your convenience.
Sep 25, 2012 – The Israeli Foreign Ministry released a report Sunday regarding new developments that concern the future of the Gaza Marine gas field. Gaza Marine is located roughly 18 miles off the coast of the Gaza Strip. BG, with a 90% interest, is the field operator and estimates reserves of around 1 Tcf. Due to Israeli-Palestinian relations, development of the field has been on hold since two appraisal wells were drilled in 2000. The recent report indicates that Israeli and PLA officials have opened a meaningful dialogue in an effort to come to an agreement on a mutually beneficial development plan.
Project Details: Gaza Marine
S. America – Other & Carib.
Sep 25, 2012 – BPZ Energy’s CX-15 platform has been delivered and anchored on location at the West Corvina field. The buoyant tower and topside arrived in Peru via heavy lift vessel September 5. At this point, the tower has been ballasted down and the topsides mated to the hull. Final weld out and hook up of facilities is being completed, after which the Petrex-28 platform rig will be brought on board and assembled. The first well is expected to spud in late October.
Project Details: Corvina
Africa – West
BW Extends FPSO Contract with CNR
Sep 26, 2012 – BW Offshore announced a contract extension with CNR International (C??te d’Ivoire) SARL for the lease and operation of the FPSO Espoir Ivoirien. The firm period of the 4 year extension will carry the contract to 2Q 2017. In addition, the option period has been adjusted and could allow CNR to lease the vessel through 2Q 2036. The total contract value (including options) is $925 million, which is up from the previous contract of $250 million.
Maersk Oil Sees More Success Offshore Angola
Sep 24, 2012 – The deep waters of Block 16, offshore Angola, continue to be good to Maersk Oil and its partners. A recent production test of the Caporolo-1 exploration well flowed a maximum of 3,000 bopd on a 36/64″ choke. Caporolo-1 was drilled to 18,070 feet into a structure adjacent to, but separate from, the nearby Chissonga discovery. Drilling was done by the Ensco 5001 (DW semisub) in 4,567 feet of water. Comments from Maersk Oil indicate that further exploration and appraisal will be needed to determine if the discovery is able to be developed.
S. America – Brazil
Anadarko Cedes Interest in Brazilian Block
Sep 27, 2012 – Anadarko announced it ceded its 30% stake in Brazilian block ES-M-661, part of the BM-ES-24 concession, to operator Petrobras who now maintains a 70% interest. The company relinquished its interest in the block 6 months ago but the transaction received the Brazilian National Petroleum Agency’s approval just recently. Petrobras announced in July that the Grana Padano well, located in ES-M-661, was a heavy oil discovery. Anadarko still maintains its interest in two other blocks in the concession.
Sep 27, 2012 – Drilling at Vanco’s Canario prospect is underway. Canario is located in block BM-S-63 and is being drilled by Transocean‘s GSF Arctic 1 (mid-water semisub). The primary target is post-salt turbiditic sands of the Middle Itajai-Acu formation and is expected to be intersected at 10,498 feet. Secondary sandstones in the Upper Jureia formation are being sought as a secondary objective. Total depth for the well is projected to be 15,748 feet. Drilling is expected to take 2 ??? 3 months, at which point the rig will mobilize to the Jandaia prospect in block BM-S-71.
Project Details: Canario
Sep 27, 2012 – Logging is currently being completed and preparations are being made to begin production testing at the Boreas-1 exploration well in Browse Basin, according to Karoon Gas Australia. To this point, interpretation of the data gathered from the well indicates the presence of net pay gas sands exhibiting good reservoir properties. The Transocean Legend (mid-water semisub) is being used to carry out the exploration drilling program which calls for a minimum of 5 wells to be drilled in the area.
Project Details: Boreas
Sep 26, 2012 – New Zealand Oil & Gas said it will drill a well at its Kakapo prospect when a suitable rig can be negotiated. Kakapo is located in Permit 51311 about 25 miles off the South Taranaki coast of New Zealand. NZOG was awarded the permit in 2009 and, based on terms, had to either relinquish the permit this week or keep it and commit to drill. As operator, NZOG has a farm-out agreement with Raisama Energy, whereby Raisama will earn a 10% stake in the permit by carrying 20% of the costs for the first well – not to exceed $3 million. A timetable for the first well is expected to be confirmed within the next 6 months.
Project Details: Kakapo
Europe – North Sea
Sep 24, 2012 – Noreco announced the start of drilling operations at the Romeo prospect in the UK North Sea. The exploration well is located in block 30/11c of license P1666. Romeo is a fault bound dip closure in a proven Upper Jurassic play. Primary risk to success is considered to be the trap geometry in the formation. Suncor, as operator of the license, has engaged the WilHunter (mid-water semisub) to provide drilling services. Downhole conditions are expected to be borderline HPHT so the well will be drilled as such.
Project Details: Romeo
- Worldwide Field Development News Sep 14 – Sep 20, 2012 (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Recap: Worldwide Field Development News Jul 27 – Aug 2, 2012 (mb50.wordpress.com)
Shipyard delivery for the first drillship is scheduled for mid-2015. The remaining three drillships are expected to be delivered from the shipyard at approximately six-month intervals thereafter. After customer acceptance, the contracts are expected to commence in 2015 and 2016, contributing an estimated revenue backlog of $7.6 billion, excluding mobilization. The aggregate capital investment for the four newbuild rigs is an estimated $3.0 billion, excluding capitalized interest.
All four drillships have advanced capabilities: each is designed to operate in water depths of up to 12,000 feet and drill wells to 40,000 feet. Featuring state-of-the-art equipment, including Transocean’s patented dual-activity drilling technology, the newbuild drillships will possess industry-leading hoisting capacity. The drillships will also have a variable deckload capacity of 23,000 metric tons and feature enhanced well completion capabilities. In addition, each newbuild rig will be outfitted with two 15,000 psi blowout preventers (BOPs), which are expected to reduce customer non-productive time between wells. The four newbuild drillships will be able to accommodate a future upgrade to a 20,000 psi BOP, when it becomes available. The rigs will also feature diesel engines configured to comply with anticipated Tier III International Maritime Organization (IMO) emissions standards.
“These contracts add 40 years of rig work to our revenue backlog, expand and upgrade our ultra-deepwater fleet, improve our fleet mix and provide an opportunity to expand our relationship with an important customer with which we have 40 years of experience in advancing the state of the art in offshore drilling technology,” said Steven L. Newman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Transocean Ltd. “We look forward to providing Shell with incremental value through the addition of these seventh-generation, ultra-deepwater drillships.”
Peter Sharpe, Shell’s Executive Vice President, Wells, said, “Shell continues to develop its deepwater operations and modernize its contracted rig fleet at fair market rates. These state-of-the-art deepwater rigs, on which we are collaborating with Transocean to design, will comply with the highest industry standards for safety, operations and environmental protection for drilling deepwater wells.”
The newbuild rigs will be constructed at the Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Co., Ltd. facility at Okpo, South Korea, where Transocean’s five Enhanced Enterprise-Class rigs were built and where the company currently has two other ultra-deepwater drillships under construction. Construction on the first drillship is expected to commence during the fourth quarter of 2013.
- Shell Gives Transocean a Huge Shot in the Arm with 40 Years of Drilling Contracts (gcaptain.com)
- Atwood Oceanics Orders Third Ultra-Deepwater Drillship (gcaptain.com)
- Time to Buy This Offshore Driller? (fool.com)
Aker Solutions has been selected to supply two production control umbilicals and three umbilical termination assemblies (UTAs) to Murphy Exploration & Production Company – USA. The products will be delivered to the Murphy operated Dalmatian field in the De Soto Canyon located in the Gulf of Mexico which is jointly owned by Murphy and Ecopetrol America Inc. Contract value is undisclosed.
Aker Solutions has been selected to supply two production control umbilicals and three umbilical termination assemblies (UTAs) to Murphy Exploration & Production Company – USA. The main control and injection umbilical will tie the host facility to Murphy’s De Soto Canyon Block 4 well for a distance of 21 miles (34 km). The second umbilical is an infield umbilical that will connect two blocks 5 miles (8 km) apart. The umbilicals will be used in water depths of approximately 6 000 feet (1 800 metres). Installation is planned for the fourth quarter of 2013.
“Aker Solutions is excited to work with Murphy on this project. We have a strong track-record in the Gulf of Mexico and look forward to executing this contract,” says Marc Quenneville, head of Aker Solutions’ umbilicals business in North America.
Engineering, project management, and manufacturing of the umbilicals will take place at Aker Solutions’ state-of-the-art umbilicals facility in Mobile, Alabama. Engineering for the subsea UTAs will take place at Aker Solutions’ Houston office while manufacturing will take place in Mobile.
Opened in 2003, Aker Solutions’ umbilical manufacturing facility in Mobile is strategically located to serve the Gulf of Mexico and global markets. The facility, with its high capacity horizontal cabler, is specially designed to meet the challenges of demanding deepwater applications.
Subsea umbilicals are deployed on the seabed to supply necessary controls and chemicals to subsea oil and gas wells, subsea manifolds and any subsea system requiring a remote control.
Over the past 15 years Aker Solutions has delivered more than 400 umbilicals to some of the world’s most challenging fields, from harsh environment to ultra-deep, high-pressure water conditions.
Eagle Ford Shale continues to positively impact Port Corpus Christi and the U.S. economy. Yesterday, Wednesday, September 26, 2012, the M/V Pennsylvania, a newly built U.S. Flag vessel destined to move products related to Eagle Ford Shale in the region, made its first port of call to Port Corpus Christi. The tanker docked at Oil Dock 1.
The M/V Pennsylvania is one of two tankers purchased by Crowley Maritime Corporation’s petroleum and chemical transportation group as part of the Jones Act, from Aker Philadelphia Shipyard ASA (Oslo: AKPS). The Pennsylvania was delivered early this month marking Crowley’s re-entry into the Jones Act tanker market after its last tanker was retired in 2011. The tankers, capable of carrying nearly 330,000 barrels of a wide variety of petroleum products and chemicals, are destined to operate in U.S. coastal trade.
“Eagle Ford Shale has made a great impact on the port’s operations. We are glad to see more U.S. Flag vessels sailing around our coasts and we are honored to welcome the M/V Pennsylvania to the port.” Said Mike Carrell, Chairman Port of Corpus Christi.
The U.S.-flagged vessel is the 13th in the Veteran Class built at Aker. This proven design provides Crowley customers with ABS-classed vessels that have been thoroughly tested and refined for performance and reliability. With a length of 183.2 m, a breadth of 32.2 m, and a depth of 18.8 m, the tankers come in at 45,800 deadweight tons with a draft of 12.2 m. Powered by the first Tier II large-bore engines, MAN-B&W 6S50MCs, the speed of the Pennsylvania and the Florida is expected to average 14.5+ knots. In addition to being double hulled with segregated ballast systems, safety features also include water and CO2 firefighting systems, as well as a foam water spray system.
Crowley has a long history of transporting petroleum products and chemicals by tanker and articulated tug barge (ATB). Until 2011, Crowley owned and operated Jones Act product tankers that safely carried petroleum products and chemicals. Crowley has also proven itself an innovator and leader in the industry through the development of an unrivaled ATB fleet, which includes some of the newest and most sophisticated ATBs in the market. As of 2013, Crowley will own and operate 17 ATBs, which include 155,000-barrel, 185,000-barrel and 330,000-barrel capacity tank vessels. Crowley has safely and reliably operated all of these Jones Act tankers and ATBs on the U.S. Gulf, East, and West coasts under voyage and time charters with leading companies in the petroleum and chemical industries.
September 26, 2012 – 3:44 pm
The agency said local authorities closed Bridge II linking the city to Piedras Negras, Mexico, to traffic in the morning citing safety concerns, which local news media said were prompted by the discovery of a “suspicious device.”
Eagle Pass is not one of the principal hubs for trade or visitors over the 2,000-mile (3,200-km) U.S. Mexico border.
It’s not widely known outside the Rio Grande Valley, but a “suspicious device” was discovered in Starr County, Texas back in August ( above photo ). It was an improvised explosive device. It was discovered on a ranch through which illegal aliens often slip into the United States.
If illegal aliens and coyotes can slip through there, so can the type of people who tend to play around with IEDs.
There’s no word yet on the nature of today’s suspicious device in Eagle Pass.
- Texas-Mexico border bridge shut over “safety concerns” (news.terra.com)
- Zetas gang threatens Mexico’s shale gas near border (appliedagrotech.net)
The gas fields extend from the booming Eagle Ford play of South Texas deep into the ranch and coal country stretching inland from this violent border city. This is Zetas country, among the most fearsome of Mexico’s criminal badlands.
U.S. and Mexican energy companies long have been besieged by the gangsters here – their workers assaulted, extorted or murdered – despite a heavy military and federal police presence. Now, with feuding Zetas factions bloodying one another and fending off outside rivals, what has been a bad situation threatens to get much worse.
Northern Mexico’s gas production has suffered for years as gangland threats or attacks have kept workers from servicing the wellheads, pipelines and drilling rigs in the Burgos Basin, the territory between the Rio Grande and the city of Monterrey, which now provides up to 20 percent of Mexico’s natural gas.
“Petroleos Mexicanos has problems with security … principally in Burgos,” Guillermo Dominguez, a senior member of the National Hydrocarbons Commission, told the Mexico City newspaper Reforma.
And now the surging Zetas bloodletting pits the gang’s top bosses – Heriberto Lazcano and Miguel Angel Treviño – against Ivan Velazquez, a former underling known as “El Taliban.” From his base in the western state of Zacatecas, Velazquez reportedly has allied with the remnants of other gangs to launch a challenge for control of Coahuila state, which holds most of the shale gas reserves.
Challenge to control
Banners recently hung by both Zetas factions have accused one another of treason and other transgressions that will be avenged with death. Fighting has rattled Nuevo Laredo, the Zetas stronghold that also is the busiest land port for U.S.-Mexico trade, killing scores this month alone.
Still more banners appeared in Nuevo Laredo Tuesday, reputedly written by beleaguered civilians, promising all the gangster factions further bloody vengeance.
“Zetas are pretty much in control, but they have been challenged,” said a U.S. official in Mexico who monitors the situation, speaking on condition of anonymity. “You have all these groups fighting one another, shifting alliances and internal fights … It’s a wilderness of mirrors.”
The Zetas’ spats with rivals already have turned Coahuila’s other large cities – Torreon in the west, Monclova in the center and Saltillo in the east – into fierce gangland battlegrounds. State officials are blaming the Sept. 17 escape of 131 prisoners from a Piedras Negras prison on the Zetas seeking to replenish their ranks for new battles.
The insecurity in Mexico’s gas fields contrasts sharply with the drilling and production frenzy seizing the ranchlands just north of the border. Oil field pickups and semi-trailer fuel tankers choke Highway 83, the once-desolate ranch-country highway that cuts northwest from Laredo though the lower reaches of the Eagle Ford.
Some 6,000 drilling permits have been issued for Eagle Ford shale in Texas, and 550 wells are producing there. By comparison, Pemex so far has drilled five exploratory shale gas wells, but hopes to drill 170 more in the next four years. The company plans to spend $200 million on exploration in the short term.
Those first exploratory wells have been drilled to the west of Nuevo Laredo and below the border at Piedras Negras, ranch and coal country that remains relatively violence free for now. But that tranquility may owe more to the now-threatened dominance of the Zetas bosses than to rule of law.
“They are in control,” said a U.S. official. “They are pretty much just doing their thing.”
At least eight Pemex and contract employees vanished in May 2010 near a gas facility near Falcon Lake, territory under the Zetas’ firm control. Last March, two men working for a Mexican company doing contract work for Houston-based Halliburton disappeared outside Piedras Negras.
Halliburton spokeswoman Tara Mullee-Agard said employees get regular security briefings, but the company declined to comment on the contractors’ disappearance.
“Many companies that were active in the areas have stopped until Pemex or the government can provide security,” said an employee of one Reynosa-based company. “In places where there have been incidents we don’t operate anymore. When darkness falls, we stop wherever we are.
- Zetas crimping gas industry in northern Mexico (mysanantonio.com)
- Banners claim an alliance has been formed against the Zetas (mysanantonio.com)
- Mexico: State Officials Killed in Nuevo Laredo (hispanicallyspeakingnews.com)
- Piedras Negras “megafuga” just the latest massive prison break (mysanantonio.com)
- 132 inmates escape from Mexican prison near U.S. border (theprovince.com)