Helix Energy provides FPU for BP oil spill in gulf

Paula Dittrick
OGJ Senior Staff Writer

HOUSTON, June 15 -- BP Exploration & Production Co. entered a contract with Helix Energy Solutions Group Inc. for the Helix Producer I, a floating production unit, to assist in BP's Gulf of Mexico oil spill response operations. The contract is for a minimum of 60 days.

The 528-ft Helix Producer, which has a processing capacity of 45,000 b/d, will be part of BP's containment plan to capture and process oil and gas from the runaway Macondo well and to offload oil and gas to a tanker, probably the Toisa Pisces, BP has said.

Because of the BP contract for the Helix Producer, production from Helix's Phoenix deepwater oil field will be deferred. Helix said income from the BP contract will offset the financial impact of deferred production of Phoenix field on Green Canyon Block 237.

Helix said Phoenix field is ready for production upon the FPU’s return. The field has all necessary US Coast Guard and US Minerals Management Service permits and approvals in place.

Currently, Helix has no operations affected by the US Department of Interior's deepwater drilling moratorium in the gulf. The company has no plans to drill additional oil or gas wells in 2010.

The Helix Producer joins two other service vessels owned by Helix, the Express and Q4000, in supporting BP on the Deepwater Horizon spill response. The Q4000 has been providing services to BP since May. It was used in the “top kill” operation and is expected to be used in oil containment efforts.

Helix, based in Houston, is an international offshore energy company that provides reservoir development and other field services to the energy industry. Helix has its own oil and gas properties.

Contact Paula Dittrick at paulad@ogjonline.com.

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