Scana Industrier ASA has through its subsidiary Scana Subsea, been awarded contract to deliver machined riser forgings to an undisclosed client.
The riser systems are intended for North Sea and Australia operations.
The initial contract value is 27 MSEK (USD 4.09 million). The contract contains additional optional work as machining, welding, assembly and testing, which may increase the total contract value higher.
The projects are planned to start immediately and deliveries will commence in 3rd quarter 2013. The contract will also involve Scana Steel Björneborg, Scana Steel Söderfors and Scana Machining, in addition to Scana Subsea fronting the contract.
Cal Dive International, Inc. announced that it has recently commenced a two-year charter of the DP saturation diving vessel Kestrel to a major contractor in Mexico to perform repair and maintenance work for Pemex.
The charter started in mid-October and has a fixed term of two years with an additional one-year option. The charter is expected to result in EBITDA of approximately $10 million per year during the two-year charter term. The vessel is expected to generate approximately break-even EBITDA in 2012.
In addition, Cal Dive has been awarded three saturation diving contracts in Australia. Two of the projects will utilize one of Cal Dive’s portable saturation diving systems while the third contract will be performed from a third party vessel utilizing a built in saturation diving system. These three contracts are expected to generate total revenue of approximately $20 million during 2013 and the first project is expected to commence in the first quarter 2013.
Quinn Hébert, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cal Dive, stated, “We are pleased to announce the saturation diving contracts in Australia and the charter of the Kestrel in Mexico. Both awards demonstrate the continued execution of our strategy to geographically diversify outside the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. The charter of the Kestrel is also consistent with our strategy to commit certain assets to long-term contracts that improve visibility. The charter is of additional significance due to the EBITDA improvement it will generate in 2013.”
Cal Dive International, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a marine contractor that provides an integrated offshore construction solution to its customers, including manned diving, pipelay and pipe burial, platform installation and platform salvage services to the offshore oil and natural gas industry on the Gulf of Mexico OCS, Northeastern U.S., Latin America, Southeast Asia, China, Australia, the Middle East, West Africa and the Mediterranean, with a diversified fleet of surface and saturation diving support vessels and construction barges.
This week the SubseaIQ team added 1 new projects and updated 11 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.
Jun 29, 2012 – ShawCor announced that its pipecoating division, Bredero Shaw, has received a contract to provide pipeline coatings and related products and services for the flowlines and tie-in spools for the Ichthys LNG project. The contract involves coating approximately 148 km of 6-inch to 18-inch diameter pipe that will be protected with three-layer polypropylene anticorrosion coating and Thermotite multi-layer polypropylene insulation. Work will commence during the second quarter of 2013. The company will execute the work at Bredero Shaw’s facilities in Kabil, Indonesia and Kuantan, Malaysia.
Project Details: Ichthys
Jun 29, 2012 – Shell awarded Technip a subsea installation contract for the Prelude FLNG facility, which is moored in a water depth of 787 feet (240 meters), about 124 miles (200 kilometers) off the northwest coast of Australia. The contract covers the project management, fabrication, transport and installation by reeling of 12 inch flowlines and the fabrication of pipeline end terminals, flowline appurtenances and rigid spools. It also includes the transportation and installation of the subsea equipment including manifolds, umbilical termination assemblies, rigid spooks and flying leads. Shell said it expects the Prelude FLNG project to be ready in 2017. Once operational, the Prelude FLNG facility will produce at least 5.3 million tones per annum (mtpa) of liquids.
Project Details: Prelude
Europe – North Sea
Jul 5, 2012 – FMC has been awarded a contract for subsea production systems (SPS)for the Gullfaks South field, with options to cover Statoil’s subsea tie-back demand in the fast-track portfolio for 2014 and 2015. Estimated contract value is close to $199 million (NOK 1.2 billion), in addition to possible extensions worth $663 million (NOK 4 billion. Equipment to be supplied includes wellheads, x-mas trees, template structures, manifold and control systems.
Project Details: Greater Gullfaks Area
Jul 2, 2012 – Drilling results confirm Statoil’s earlier expectations that its King Lear prospect would be a high-impact well. Exploration well 2/4-21 drilled by the Maersk Gallant (350′ ILC) in production licences 146 and 333, has proven a 48-meter gas/condensate column in the main bore 2/4-21 and an additional 70-meter gas/condensate column in the side-track 2/4-21A. Statoil estimates the total volumes in King Lear to be between 70 and 200 million barrels of recoverable oil equivalent.
Project Details: King Lear
Jun 29, 2012 – Faroe Petroleum will plug and abandon the Clapton exploratory well 2/8-18S on Production License 440S in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea. The well found hydrocarbons in chalks of the Shetland Group and also encountered reservoir rocks, but the reservoir properties were poorer than expected. Reaching a vertical depth of 8,593 feet (2,619 meters) by the Maersk Guardian (350??? ILC) jackup, the well is a dry hole.
Project Details: Clapton
N. America – US GOM
Jul 2, 2012 – Anadarko Petroleum has signed a definitive agreement with an undisclosed party to enter into a joint-venture capital carry arrangement for Anadarko’s ownership in the Gulf of Mexico Lucius development project. Under the terms of the agreement, Anadarko will be carried for $556 million, which is estimated to represent 100 percent of its expected capital obligation through the anticipated date of first production at Lucius. In exchange, Anadarko will convey a 7.2-percent working interest in the Lucius development and will continue as operator with a 27.8-percent working interest.
Project Details: Lucius
S. America – Other & Carib.
Jul 3, 2012 – BPZ Energy has announced that an extension to their gas flaring permit has been granted by the Peruvian Ministry of Energy and Mines. The permit will cover flaring operations at the Company’s Albacora field through December 28, 2012. Gas is flared off when sufficient amounts of gas aren’t being reinjected or sold. At this time, the reinjection equipment at Albacore is sitting idle while the environmental permit to allow for reinjection is finalized.
Project Details: Albacora
Asia – Caspian
Jul 2, 2012 – Total, on behalf of the Socar/Total/GDF Suez partnership, has submitted a notice of commerciality to the Government of Azerbaijan for the Absheron discovery. This step is an important milestone in the frame work of the Agreement on Exploration, Development and Production Sharing for the Absheron offshore block in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea signed in 2009.
Project Details: Absheron
Africa – West
Jun 29, 2012 – Saipem has signed a new E&C offshore contract in West Africa for the development of the southern part of the Mafumeira field within Block 0. The contract has been awarded by CABGOC (Cabinda Gulf Oil Company Ltd), wholly owned by Chevron. The Mafumeira Sul EPCI 3 scope of work is for the engineering, procurement and pre-fabrication activities for subsequent offshore modifications and tie-in activities on the existing Mafumeira Norte platform and the future Mafumeira Sul production platforms. Mafumeira Sul EPCI 4 comprises the engineering, procurement, fabrication and installation of an onshore pipeline portion connecting the field to the oil storage and export facilities in the Malongo Terminal. The marine activities will be carried out in different time frames between the fourth quarter of 2013 and the second quarter of 2015.
Project Details: Mafumeira
Jun 29, 2012 – Allied Energy reported that it plans to drill a development well on the Oyo field in 4Q 2012. The new well, Oyo No. 7, is being designed to test the prospective resource potential of the deeper Miocene reservoir in the field, but also to increase production in the Pliocene reservoir. With these dual objectives, the No. 7 well is expected to both significantly increase oil production from the currently producing reservoir and de-risk much of the unrisked resource potential in the field.
Project Details: Oyo
Adira Granted Extension for Samuel License
Jul 3, 2012 – Adira Energy Ltd. announced today that Israel’s Ministry of Energy and Water Resources has granted an extension of the dates for the execution of a drilling contract and the spudding of the first well on the Samuel offshore license. The contract execution date has been extended from July 1 to October 31, 2012 with a requirement that the first well be spud by April 30, 2013. Adira has indicated that the environmental study for Samuel will be submitted by the July 10 deadline.
Jul 2, 2012 – ATP Oil & Gas has successfully drilled its Shimshon exploration well in the Levant Basin of offshore Israel encountering more than 62 feet (19 meters) of natural gas pay in the Bet Guvrin sands. The Shimshon well is in a water depth of 3,622 feet and was drilled to a subsea depth of 14,445 feet by the Ensco 5006 semisub.
Project Details: Shimshon
- Recap: Worldwide Field Development News (Jun 22 – Jun 28, 2012) (mb50.wordpress.com)
- UAE: Drydocks World Initiates Prelude FLNG Project with Turret Steel Cutting (worldmaritimenews.com)
- Statoil Charters Light Well Intervention Vessels to Increase Recovery (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Enhanced recovery through subsea compression at Gullfaks (mb50.wordpress.com)
TOTAL E&P Australia (Total) has signed up to use AGR’s Riserless Mud Recovery (RMR®) system. The contract is for two exploration wells to be drilled over the next year in the Browse Basin off North West Australia.
Bernt Eikemo, AGR’s Vice President of the Enhanced Drilling Solutions (EDS) division (Asia Pacific), said: “AGR is delighted to be part of Total’s drilling team during the forthcoming exploration campaign. We hope that this is the start of a long, successful relationship with Total E&P Australia.”
He added: “Our previous experiences with several operators in the Browse Basin and the North West Shelf have shown that unconsolidated sand formations become much more benign when drilled with RMR® using a proper mud system.”
RMR® has been used by Total on several other projects internationally but this is the first time that the operator has used the system in Australia.
The main reason for using RMR® on these wells is to be able to drill through the unconsolidated sands of the Grebe Formation. It is renowned for stuck-pipe problems when drilling riserless using seawater and sweeps.
RMR® (system example attached) enables the use of weighted, engineered mud in the top-hole section. All mud and cuttings are returned to the rig with no discharge to the seabed. The top-hole section can be drilled more safely, quickly and with less impact on the environment.
RMR®, together with its sister technology the Cutting Transportation System (CTS™), has been deployed on more than 500 wells worldwide to date.
The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) has authorized a $2.95 billion direct loan to support U.S. exports to the Australia Pacific liquefied natural gas (LNG) project.
The transaction is Ex-Im’s second-largest single-project financing in history and is also the Bank’s first LNG project in Australia.
The project on Curtis Island in south-central Queensland will produce natural gas from coal-seam wells and will have total capacity of nine million metric tons per year. China Petroleum and Chemical Corp. (Sinopec) and Kansai Electric Power Co. Inc. of Japan will purchase most of the LNG produced. China Ex-Im Bank and commercial lenders are also providing debt financing for the project.
Ex-Im’s financing is expected to support an estimated 11,000 American jobs. Principal U.S. exporters are ConocoPhillips Co. and Bechtel International, both of Houston, Texas. Additional exporters and suppliers include numerous small businesses in Texas, Colorado, Nevada, California, Oregon and Oklahoma.
“Our authorization paves the way for U.S. companies to export equipment and services to this major LNG project and, in so doing, to maintain thousands of American jobs across the country,” said Ex-Im Bank Chairman and President Fred P. Hochberg. “This financing also demonstrates how the United States and China can work together for our mutual benefit to foster trade and develop critically needed energy resources.”
The transaction, approved by Ex-Im’s board of directors on May 3, was announced following Chairman Hochberg’s trip to China, where he participated in the fourth round of the Strategic and Economic Development Dialogue (S&ED) with Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner and other officials. The S&ED was held in Beijing on May 3-4.
Bechtel official Jay C. Farrar, who manages the company’s office in Washington, D.C., cited the importance of Ex-Im’s financing for U.S. exporters to large international projects. “Since 1992, Ex-Im Bank has been instrumental in the successful awarding and completion of projects involving Bechtel that have supported thousands of jobs for highly skilled employees at our company. The Bank’s financing also has helped to maintain thousands of additional jobs related to the supply chain for these projects,” Farrar said.
The Australia Pacific LNG project will involve development of coal-seam natural-gas fields, two gas transmission lines to a collection hub, a natural gas liquefaction plant and an adjacent marine shipping export terminal on Curtis Island near the city of Gladstone.
- Why America’s Missing Out on the Billion-Dollar Global LNG Game (mb50.wordpress.com)
- UK: Shell Tables USD 1.56 bln Bid for Cove (mb50.wordpress.com)
- USA: Sumitomo, Tokyo Gas in Cove Point LNG Talks with Dominion (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Will the US Become the World’s Largest Exporter of LNG? (mb50.wordpress.com)
- USA: Jordan Cove Submits Non-FTA LNG Export Application (mb50.wordpress.com)
The Atwood Osprey, owned by the international drilling contractor Atwood Oceanics, started its first three year drilling services contract with Chevron on May 27, 2011 for operations offshore Australia inclusive of the Greater Gorgon field development project. With this contract extension, the Atwood Osprey is now committed through May 2017.
The operating day rate for the initial three year period remains unchanged. The operating day rate at the start of the extension period is estimated to be approximately $470,000, exclusive of the total cost escalation adjustments which occur during the initial term and will be additive to the operating day rate during the extension period. The contract provisions during the extension period provide for continued annual cost escalation adjustments, enhanced rig equipment maintenance and repair time allowances, and other adjustments to the initial contract’s terms and conditions.
- Atwood Beacon to Drill Offshore Israel (mb50.wordpress.com)
- USA: Statoil Extends Maersk Developer Contract for GoM Work (mb50.wordpress.com)
- USA: Anadarko Contracts ENSCO 8506 Semi (mb50.wordpress.com)
The fast-growing Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) market is creating serious wealth around the world.
So who is profiting the most right now – and who will profit most in the coming years?
In short, it’s Australia.
The country is already the #4 exporter of LNG in the world. Seven new plants are in various stages of planning and development – That translates to roughly $200 billion in capital investment… and an enormous number of jobs.
Now let’s look at the U.S. in the context of LNG.
America as you probably know produces massive amounts of natural gas. Yet is exports a surprisingly small amount of the resource abroad.
Both countries are close to markets – Australia is closer to Asia, which imports vast quantities of LNG, but the U.S. is also relatively close to these markets and closer to Europe, which holds some major LNG consumers, like Spain and France. Both also have robust natural gas production.
And yet Australia is light years ahead of America in sending LNG overseas… specifically by roughly 800 billion cubic feet (bcf) per year.
Here’s a brief primer on LNG before we review that gap…
LNG is created by cooling natural gas to minus 256 degrees Fahrenheit, which transforms the gas into a liquid. This liquid has about 1/600th the volume of natural gas, making its transport over long distances much simpler —and much more economic.
While turning a gas into a liquid may seem to be the stuff of science fiction, it has its roots in the 19th century when Carl Von Linde, an engineer in Munich, built the first practical compressor refrigeration machine. The first LNG plant was built roughly a century ago in West Virginia.
Of course, large-scale users of natural gas prefer to deal with the regular kind–not liquid and frozen. Since gas is easier to move and doesn’t need to be refrigerated, companies had to then develop ways to reverse the process. So you have to liquefy the gas to move it, and then “re-gasify” the natural gas to use it. That’s a lot of work and means large infrastructure investments are required.
The gas is converted to liquid at liquefaction plants (LNG export terminals.) It is then transported in special ships that use auto-refrigeration. These LNG ocean tankers actually use a small amount of the LNG – 3%-4% during an average voyage—to power the ships. These tankers can carry around 135,000 cubic meters of liquid natural gas, which works out to about 3 billion cubic feet of warm natural gas.
So here’s how much gas that translates to:
23 ships a day that could feed ALL the US demand for natural gas. There are now roughly 375 ships in service worldwide.
The ships then go to an LNG import, or regasification, terminal where the LNG is converted back to a gaseous state and then either stored in tanks or sent through pipelines.
The Asian market is a major destination for LNG exporters. Japan is by far the world’s largest importer of LNG, bringing in nearly 71 million tons (8.52 bcf/d)—or almost 31 percent of all global LNG imports, according to Unit Economics.
South Korea is #2 at 34.5 million tons (4.14 bcf/d), or roughly 15 percent of global imports. Taiwan (11.3 million tons/1.36 bcf/d) and China (9.7 million tons/1.16 bcf/d) also account for a significant portion of LNG imports.
Asia isn’t the only major LNG import market, though. Europe brings in large amounts as well. Spain is the third largest importer of LNG with 27.3 million tons (3.28 bcf/d) coming in during 2010. The United Kingdom and France are also major importers, bringing in 13.4 million tons (1.60 bcf/d) and 10.2 million tons (1.22 bcf/d) in 2010, respectively.
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the U.K. received 55 percent of its LNG exports from Qatar in 2009. That same year significant quantities of the hydrocarbon entered the U.K. from Trindad and Tobago (a surprisingly robust LNG exporter with 15.4 million tons (1.85 bcf/d) sent abroad in 2010), Algeria, Egypt and Australia.
Now here’s a closer look at the LNG industry in Australia… (and what the U.S. could learn by it)
Australia only trails Qatar, Indonesia and Malaysia in LNG exports. In 2010, Australia sent 872 billion cubic feet (about 19 million tons) abroad, which was a substantial improvement over the 714 BCF exported in 2009, says the EIA.
That’s just over 8% of the world’s LNG exports. By comparison, Qatar does 25% of all LNG exports. Unit Economics states that Australia could contend with the Middle Eastern country for top spot as early as 2016.
Not surprisingly, most of Australia’s LNG exports go to the Top 4 importing countries—all in the Far East. Japan gets about 70% of Australia’s LNG exports, China gets 21%, South Korea 5% and Taiwan 4%.
There are only two LNG liquefaction plants in Australia right now, but seven additional export facilities are under construction, and four more are planned. Unit Economics reports that if all of these facilities come on line and produce their projected capacities, Australia will send a staggering 95.7 million tons (11.5 bcf/d) of natural gas abroad per year, versus the 19 million tons (2.28 bcf/d) it is exporting now—a five-fold increase!
The capital investments—and the jobs created by it—are enormous. The Australian major Santos Ltd., along with Petroliam Nasional Bhd., are planning on shelling out $45 billion to create three LNG export facilities that would be able to convert 20.8 million tons of coal seam gas into LNG each year, reports the Wall Street Journal.
“LNG is simply in high demand. and it’s not just the consequence of Fukushima,” Jon Skule Storheill, chief executive officer of Awilco LNG, told Reuters, referencing the nuclear disaster in Japan that has prompted the country to rely more heavily on LNG. “There’s Korea, there’s Taiwan, this market is just strong. Gas is clean, it’s available and it’s cheap.”
America, on the other hand, has only two export terminals.
The terminal in Kenai, Alaska, which was built in the 1960s, was idled in November of last year. (At the time, ConocoPhillips’ spokeswoman Natalie Lowman told The Associated Press the plant will be in preservation mode until spring 2012, at which time the company will re-examine the facility.)
The other is Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass LNG Terminal, near the border of Texas and Louisiana. This station has 4 billion cubic feet per day of capacity.
Overall, the US exported 0.2 bcf/d of LNG in 2011, according to the EIA—a total of 71.5 bcf.
Australia almost does that in just one month. The U.S. sends most of its LNG exports to Brazil, China, Japan and South Korea.
How the U.S. Could Fit into the Global LNG Game
The LNG market is growing, and its future looks bright.
Some industry analysts predict demand for LNG globally will increase 40% in the five-year period from 2010 to 2015. This would make the annual market for LNG roughly 300 million tons.
The U.S. has the fifth-highest amount of natural gas reserves in the world, with the EIA putting the number at 273 trillion cubic feet. By comparison Australia has the 12th-highest natural gas reserves, with “only” 110 trillion cubic feet. But, as stated above, Australia was able to ship more than 12 times as much LNG overseas in 2010 than the U.S.
The largest obstacle the U.S. faces in the LNG market is its lack of export/liquefaction terminals. With the Kenai facility going idle, the Sabine Pass terminal is the only facility in America even close to being able to regularly send LNG overseas. And even that could still be a few years away.
Now what about building LNG liquefaction plants? Unit Economics says it can cost $3 billion for each million tons of annual capacity for the entire liquefaction supply chain, which includes production, pipelines, the port and the facility itself.
The Wall Street Journal reports there are seven additional projects seeking approval from the Department of Energy to ship LNG to most foreign nations. If all of these projects gain approval they could handle about 25 percent of U.S. gas production. However, the news source reports that approval for all of the facilities is unlikely.
An additional hurdle to the LNG market in the U.S. is political opposition to sending the energy source overseas. The American Chemistry Council has warned the U.S. government that it “should not undermine the availability of domestic natural gas,” but is not necessarily against exporting the substance.
The Sierra Club is concerned that exporting more natural gas will cause companies to increase their fracking operations. While there has been little to no evidence that fracking itself harms the environment, a groundswell of opposition to the practice has emerged, making investing in greater production difficult for the industry.
Still, for all the hurdles in exporting LNG, the U.S. also many opportunities.
In mid-March Japanese officials planned to meet with a delegation headed by Deputy Energy Secretary Daniel Poneman to reportedly request LNG exports to Japan. This appears to be a major step, as Japan had previously shied away from American LNG due to uncertainty over whether Washington would allow it to be exported.
As mentioned, Japan’s thirst for LNG is insatiable, and it will only grow stronger as the country scales back on its use of nuclear power following last year’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. (Before the disaster, nuclear power accounted for about 30 percent of Japan’s energy production. That’s a large hole Japan will need to fill.)
Other markets that could be exploited by the U.S. are the U.K., France and Spain, all three of which are among the largest importers of LNG in the world. While Australia does send some LNG to these European countries, most of the U.S. competition will come from African countries like Nigeria and Algeria, as well as Qatar.
Another positive sign for U.S. LNG exports is that they appear to have the support of Energy Secretary Steven Chu, who has stated that sending the hydrocarbon overseas would allow America to cut into its trade deficit.
“Exporting natural gas means wealth comes into the United States,” he said, reports The Wall Street Journal.
There is much work to be done in the U.S. LNG industry to help it catch Australia—but the economics are powerful if it can. The gears appear to be moving in the right direction, as both international markets are opening up, domestic production increases and LNG liquefaction facilities gain approval and come on line.
By. Keith Schaefer and the Oil & Gas Investments Bulletin Research Team
- Will the US Become the World’s Largest Exporter of LNG? (mb50.wordpress.com)
- USA: ETE Units File with FERC for Proposed Lake Charles Liquefaction Project (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Japan: Osaka Gas Eyes U.S. LNG (mb50.wordpress.com)
- USA: Jordan Cove Submits Non-FTA LNG Export Application (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Macquarie Vies To Sell U.S. LNG To India (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Exxon, Conoco and BP Plan Alaska LNG Exports (mb50.wordpress.com)
- USA: Sempra Wins DOE Approval for Cameron LNG Export (mb50.wordpress.com)
- USA: Golden Pass LNG Plans Re-Exports (mb50.wordpress.com)