Baker Institute: Drilling in gulf evolves after Macondo spill

Paula Dittrick
OGJ Senior Staff Writer

HOUSTON, Feb. 11 -- Future oil and gas production from the deepwater and ultradeepwater Gulf of Mexico hinges on how US drilling policy and safety standards evolve following the April 2010 Macondo well blowout and subsequent oil spill, speakers said Feb. 11 at Rice University’s Baker Institute.

“In 2010, the US Gulf of Mexico is expected to produce a combined 1.7 million b/d of oil and 6 bcfd of natural gas, equivalent to 23% of US oil and 10% of gas output,” said J. Robinson West, PFC Energy chairman and chief executive officer.

He was among speakers at a Baker Institute day-long conference entitled “US Offshore Oil Exploration: Managing Risks to Move Forward.” Industry spokesmen, scientists, and government officials attended the conference to discuss how to improve the safety and effectiveness of offshore drilling.

“If oil and gas drilling are able to continue without constraint in the gulf, it is the young fields in ultradeep water that will make the greatest contribution to US domestic oil production and energy security,” West said.

“By 2020, over 50% of the gulf’s production is projected to come from ultradeep waters, which can produce 12.9 billion boe, or 45% of the gulf’s total projected output over the decade from 2011 to 2020,” West said of PFC Energy projections.

PFC made its forecast before the Macondo blowout so the numbers exclude reduced production rates stemming from a deepwater drilling moratorium imposed shortly after the explosion and fire to Transocean Ltd.’s Deepwater Horizon semisubmersible. BP PLC operated Macondo.

The forecast had projected 100 ultradeepwater wells to be drilled by 2020, but West said he believes that number is more likely to be 65-75 wells.

“The deepwater industry is global and will take its capital, equipment and jobs to other basins if it cannot operate in the US,” West said.

A Chevron Corp. executive attending the Rice University event believes industry and federal drilling regulators are nearing the end of the process to enable the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement to restart issuing deepwater drilling permits.

Gary Luquette, president of Chevron North America Exploration & Production, said he believes Chevron is “days away” from complying with all BOEMRE requirements issued since the Macondo blowout and oil spill (OGJ Online, Feb. 10, 2011).

The BOEMRE has waited for industry to demonstrate its well control and subsea containment capabilities before resuming deepwater drilling permits.

Michael Bromwich, BOEMRE director, said in Washington, DC, earlier this week that he expects permitting for deepwater projects to resume before midyear. Bromwich also was expected to speak at the Baker Institute event.

Contact Paula Dittrick at paulad@ogjonline.com.

Related Articles

Transco seeks FERC approval for New York Bay Expansion project

07/09/2015 Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Co. LLC (Transco), a wholly owned subsidiary of Williams Partners LP, has filed an application with the US Federal E...

House Oversight panel subpoenas Kerry for Keystone XL documents

07/09/2015 The US House Oversight and Government Reform Committee issued a subpoena to US Sec. of State John F. Kerry for reports, recommendations, letters, a...

MARKET WATCH: NYMEX crude oil prices drop for fifth consecutive trading session

07/09/2015 US light, sweet crude oil prices settled slightly lower on the New York market July 8 for the fifth consecutive trading session, and analysts attri...

Ending crude export ban would help rural US areas, House panel told

07/09/2015 Rural US communities generally have benefited from the nation’s crude oil production renaissance, and potentially could be helped more if restricti...

MOL completes Ithaca Norge acquisition

07/09/2015 MOL Group, Budapest, has completed its acquisition of Ithaca Petroleum Norge from Ithaca Energy Inc. for $60 million plus possible bonuses of up to...

Courts less deferential to regulatory agencies, GMU forum told

07/08/2015 US Supreme Court decisions in the recently completed term suggest that judicial deference to federal regulatory agencies is starting to recede, spe...

AER orders Apache Canada to address integrity of pipeline system

07/08/2015 Alberta Energy Regulator has directed Apache Canada Ltd. to address the integrity of its pipeline management system because of “failure to follow p...

API releases pipeline safety recommended practice

07/08/2015 The American Petroleum Institute released a pipeline safety recommended practice that it developed with engagement from the US Pipeline and Hazardo...

MARKET WATCH: Brent oil prices climb; NYMEX oil price holds below $53/bbl

07/08/2015 US light, sweet crude oil prices settled slightly lower on the New York market July 7 to remain under $53/bbl as Brent crude oil prices gained mode...
White Papers

2015 Global Engineering Information Management Solutions Competitive Strategy Innovation and Leadership Award

The Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Awards recognise companies in a variety of regional and global...
Sponsored by

Three Tips to Improve Safety in the Oil Field

Working oil fields will always be tough work with inherent risks. There’s no getting around that. Ther...
Sponsored by

Pipeline Integrity: Best Practices to Prevent, Detect, and Mitigate Commodity Releases

Commodity releases can have catastrophic consequences, so ensuring pipeline integrity is crucial for p...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Digital Asset Approach - Defining a new era of collaboration in capital projects and asset operations

There is constant, intensive change in the capital projects and asset life cycle management. New chall...
Sponsored by

Transforming the Oil and Gas Industry with EPPM

With budgets in the billions, timelines spanning years, and life cycles extending over decades, oil an...
Sponsored by

Asset Decommissioning in Oil & Gas: Transforming Business

Asset intensive organizations like Oil and Gas have their own industry specific challenges when it com...
Sponsored by

Squeezing the Green: How to Cut Petroleum Downstream Costs and Optimize Processing Efficiencies with Enterprise Project Portfolio Management Solutions

As the downstream petroleum industry grapples with change in every sector and at every level, includin...
Sponsored by

7 Steps to Improve Oil & Gas Asset Decommissioning

Global competition and volatile markets are creating a challenging business climate for project based ...
Sponsored by
Available Webcasts

On Demand

OGJ's Midyear Forecast 2015

Fri, Jul 10, 2015

This webcast is to be presented by OGJ Editor Bob Tippee and Senior Economic Editor Conglin Xu.  They will summarize the Midyear Forecast projections in key categories, note important changes from January’s forecasts, and examine reasons for the adjustments.

register:WEBCAST


Predictive Analytics in your digital oilfield - Optimize Production Yield and Reduce Operational Costs

Tue, Jul 7, 2015

Putting predictive analytics to work in your oilfield can help you anticipate failures, plan and schedule work in advance, eliminate emergency work and catastrophic failures, and at the same time you can optimize working capital and improve resource utilization.  When you apply analytic capabilities to critical production assets it is possible to reduce non-productive time and increase your yield.

Learn how IBM's analytics capabilities can be applied to critical production assets with the goal of reducing non-productive time, increasing yield and reducing operations costs.

register:WEBCAST


Cognitive Solutions for Upstream Oil and Gas

Fri, Jun 12, 2015

The oil & gas sector is under pressure on all sides. Reserves are limited and it’s becoming increasingly expensive to find and extract new resources. Margins are already being squeezed in an industry where one wrong decision can cost millions. Analyzing data used in energy exploration can save millions of dollars as we develop ways to predict where and how to extract the world’s massive energy reserves.

This session with IBM Subject Matter Experts will discuss how IBM Cognitive Solutions contribute to the oil and gas industry using predictive analytics and cognitive computing, as well as real time streaming for exploration and drilling.

register:WEBCAST


The Alternative Fuel Movement: Four Need-to-Know Excise Tax Complexities

Thu, Jun 4, 2015

Discussion on how to approach, and ultimately embrace, the alternative fuel market by pulling back the veil on excise tax complexities. Taxes may be an aggravating part of daily operations, but their accuracy is crucial in your path towards business success.

register:WEBCAST


Emerson Micro Motion Videos

Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected