Shell initiates Beaufort Sea oil exploration

Offshore staff

(US) - Shell is planning to begin its Beaufort Sea oil exploration this summer, an Alaska state official says.

The initial work will involve excavating "well cellars" from below the sea floor.

The cellars, also known as glory holes, protect well equipment such as blowout preventers, from ice scouring, says Bill Hutmacher, industry preparedness manager for the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

Although the actual permitting will be handled by the US Minerals Management Service, which has jurisdiction over the Shell leases in federal waters, the state will be making a determination about whether Shell's exploration and spill-cleanup plans meet state laws and regulations, Hutmacher says.

Shell plans to start excavations in August and work only during open-water seasons -- before the ice comes in, he says.

The company has acquired one drill rig, the Kulluk, but Shell officials told him they will need a second drilling vessel as backup, Hutmacher says.

The Kulluk has been mothballed since 1993 and now sits in a remote bay along Canada's Northwest Territories, says Cam Toohey, a Shell spokesman in Anchorage.

Shell bought the rig late last year from Seatankers Management Co., based in Cyprus.

Shell plans to refurbish the rig where it sits and then move it into the Beaufort Sea off the Alaska coast to drill on the company's leases, Toohey says.

Exploration drilling is planned to start in July 2007.

03/17/06

Related Articles

Subsea 7 wins installation contract in US GoM

Dec 17, 2014

Subsea 7 SA has won a contract from Hess Corp. for installation work in support of the Stampede Project in deepwater US Gulf of Mexico.

Aqualis Offshore signs MSA with Atwood Oceanics

Dec 16, 2014

Aqualis Offshore has signed a master service agreement with offshore driller Atwood Oceanics.

SKF and Vantage combine to improve drillship fleet

Dec 16, 2014

SKF USA Inc. and Vantage Drilling Inc. have combined resources to improve the reliability of the Vantage Titanium Explorer and Platinum Explorer drillships.

Technip closes sale of diving assets in Gulf of Mexico

Dec 16, 2014

Technip has completed the sale of its diving assets in the US Gulf of Mexico to Ranger Offshore Inc.

Blue Ocean sets deepwater subsea intervention record

Dec 15, 2014 Blue Ocean Technologies has set another record for deepwater subsea interventions. Blue Ocean’s Interchangeable riserless intervention system (IRIS) recently intervened on a deepwater production we...

Trending News

Husky Energy begins oil production at South White Rose extension

Jun 29, 2015

Husky Energy has commenced production from the South White Rose project in the Jeanne d’Arc basin offshore Newfoundland and Labrador.

ONGC hires gas hydrate offshore research vessel

Jun 29, 2015

The Oil and Natural Gas Commission of India has contracted the research vessel Chikyu from Japan Drilling Co. Ltd. to explore offshore India in the Krishna-Godavari and Mahanadi areas for gas hydrates.

First steel cut for Johan Sverdrup jacket, template

Jun 29, 2015

Construction work has started on facilities for the Statoil-operated Johan Sverdrup project in the central Norwegian North Sea.

TGS set to acquire Polarcus 3D, 2D seismic datasets

Jun 29, 2015

TGS has a letter of intent to acquire Polarcus’ entire multi-client library, with the exception of Australia, for $27.5 million.

Offshore US rig count increases

Jun 29, 2015

The US offshore rig count by Baker Hughes Inc. shows an increase of one rig over the prior week. 

  Offshore
Digital Magazine
Look Inside
Cover
Current Issue

Oil & Gas Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>