Royal Dutch Shell said on 14 March that it planned to reduce carbon emissions from its oil and gas operations and product sales by 2–3% during the 2016–2021 period, the first time the company has issued carbon footprint targets. Royal Dutch Shell is changing its tune on carbon, saying it will tie executive pay to shorter-term reductions in emissions. Chief Executive Officer Ben van Beurden has the same message for activists seeking to bind Royal Dutch Shell to deep emissions cuts and investors concerned about the merits of shifting away from oil and gas: Trust me. Royal Dutch Shell outlined a scenario in which, by 2070, we would be using far less of the company’s own product—oil—as cars become electric, a massive carbon storage industry develops, and transportation begins a shift toward a reliance on hydrogen as an energy carrier. A carbon capture and storage (CCS) white knight has appeared on the horizon, and it is potentially a game changer.
Ahead of the release of the Trump administration's changes to Obama-era rules governing offshore oil platforms, Michael Bromwich said he is worried. "I don't think they are in the public's interest," he said. The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement announced updated Oil and Gas Production Safety Systems regulations. The revisions reduce unnecessary regulatory burdens while ensuring that operations remain safe and environmentally responsible. The US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement’s SafeOCS program has released its 2017 annual report on Blowout Prevention System Safety, noting 18 of 25 operators associated with rig operations in the Gulf of Mexico reported 1,129 equipment component failure events.
The Gulf Research Program of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine has announced a new collaboration to support a pilot effort to convert an existing ocean mooring owned by Shell into the first long-term deep ocean observatory in the Gulf of Mexico. An oil spill that has been quietly leaking millions of barrels into the Gulf of Mexico has gone unplugged for so long that it now verges on becoming one of the worst offshore disasters in US history. Improved understanding of the coupled natural/human coastal system will help promote resilience of coastal communities and ecosystems under rapidly changing environmental conditions, says a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Offshore oil and natural gas drilling in the eastern part of the Gulf of Mexico would likely be incompatible with military training and testing, the Pentagon is warning lawmakers. Platform that once tested the limits of deep water will play new role closer to Louisiana coast.
Mexico Awards Its First Deepwater Blocks; What Comes Next? Mexico’s long awaited deepwater auction saw 8 out of 10 blocks awarded but there remains plenty of work to be done before activity ramps up, including finalizing regulatory rules, upgrading ports, and optimizing the bid rules for future auctions. Mexico’s second oil and gas lease auction has been deemed a success after three out of five shallow-water blocks were awarded in September. The awarded areas contain an estimated 236 million bbl of oil and 190 Bcf of gas. In June, Mexico’s national oil company Pemex announced its largest discoveries of oil and gas in 5 years.
After the 2010 subsea blowout of the Macondo well that resulted in 11 deaths and the worst oil spill in US history, early kick detection technology found itself at the top of the wish list for regulators and offshore companies seeking to avoid similar accidents. The offshore industry has taken another step toward opening up new deepwater frontiers to exploration with Maersk Drilling ordering the first 20,000-psi blowout preventer (BOP) made by GE Oil and Gas. Many problems that result in BOP downtime could be prevented if only drilling contractors knew which parts of the subsea system to replace and when. BOP monitoring systems have been developed to increase reliability by enabling preventive maintenance.
A strong reason for removing old platforms from the Gulf of Mexico, rather than trying to squeeze more years of marginal production out of them, is hurricanes. A destructive run of three hurricanes has been a catalyst for a flurry of innovations in decommissioning shallow-water wells in the US Gulf of Mexico.
Shell and SBM Offshore won recognition for their Gulf of Mexico Stones field development. The OTC Distinguished Achievement Award will be presented during a luncheon on 1 May at the Offshore Technology Conference in Houston. The author discussed the awards at the recent Offshore Technology Conference. OTC recognized three figures who have contributed to facilities engineering: Dendy Sloan, Jim Brill, and Ken Arnold. They were recognized with the Distinguished Achievement Awards for their technical and leadership contributions to the industry.
When the underlying cause of flow-related issues on offshore projects is unknown, an expert said an investigation of fluid flow behavior based on an understanding of the first principles of flow assurance is necessary. This paper focuses on a numerical-modeling analysis of the acid-gas-injection (AGI) scenario in carbonate HP/HT reservoirs, and presents the way in which AGI impacts asphaltene-precipitation behavior. A presentation from the 2016 Gulf of Mexico Deepwater Technical Symposium examines a testing strategy to determine the effectiveness of paraffin inhibitors.
At the 2016 Gulf of Mexico Deepwater Technical Symposium in New Orleans, a presentation discussed the application of sensors and analytics in pipeline integrity management systems. An experimental study was conducted by use of a 6-in.-inner-diameter Use of unmanned aerial vehicles to monitor pipeline networks for theft and other issues is discussed. Bypass pigging has advantages over conventional approaches. Its application to multi-phase flow with high wax content crude is discussed.
The report was written by a steering committee of SMEs with industry input from an SPE summit as well as members from SPE online communities. It is based on discussions and conclusions from the summit and is intended to provide guidance on an industry-wide safety management data sharing program. IoT has become a popular phrase in various industries. For upstream oil and gas operators, an IoT infrastructure may present an opportunity improve quality control on their projects, potentially reducing costs and increasing production. The SPE Board of Directors has realigned the Production & Operations and Projects, Facilities & Construction technical disciplines under one Technical Director. How do mooring systems reduce risks of hurricane damage to mobile offshore drilling units?