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BOEMRE Calls for Public Input on Proposed 2012-2017 Gulf of Mexico Lease Sales

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Information to be Used to Prioritize Areas, Avoid Potential Conflicts NEW ORLEANS – The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) today announced it is seeking information and nominations from all interested parties regarding proposed oil and gas lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico Western and Central Planning Areas for the 2012-2017 Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Oil and Natural Gas Leasing Program. BOEMRE will analyze information received in response to this Call for Information and Nominations (Call), which will primarily identify and evaluate areas with potential for oil and gas development, as well as determine possible environmental effects and potential conflicts in the Call area.  This is in addition to the information collected through the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review process. Comments will be used to develop lease terms and conditions to ensure safe offshore operations. Comments will also be used to assess potential conflicts between offshore oil and gas exploration and development operations and state coastal management programs, and to develop proposed actions and alternatives in the NEPA review process.    “This early planning and consultation step, in addition to the NEPA-related reviews we are conducting, will ensure that all interests and concerns are communicated to us and are appropriately considered in decisions regarding the leasing process


Western GOM Lease Sale Attracts Bids of $337 Million

The Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced that its Western Gulf of Mexico Oil and Gas Lease Sale 218, held today in New Orleans, attracted $337,688,341 in high bids and included 20 companies submitting 241 bids on 191 tracts comprising over a million acres offshore Texas.   The sum of all bids received totaled $712,725,998. This announcement is consistent with steps President Obama announced in May 2011 to expand domestic oil and gas production


Editor's Note

Despite seemingly best efforts by world leaders, it appears that the wild gyrations ,which are the hallmark of the oil industry, will never truly be tamed. For proof, simply check out the Offshore Market report on page 32, which touts the “lingering $30+” barrel of oil. Between the writing of that piece and this one (about a week), OPEC leaders had met, decided to boost production seven percent and sent oil prices screaming down below the $25 level


MMS Study of Loop Current in Eastern GOM

A study released by the Minerals Management Service examines the circulation in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico (GOM) and sheds new light on the behavior of the Loop Current (LC) and Loop Current Eddies (LCEs), the relation between the upper- and lower-layer currents, and the variability of water mass characteristics in deepwater. When the LC and the LCE are present in the Gulf near oil and gas activities, operators may have to curtail or amend their operations due to the strength of the current


Gulf of Mexico Oil Production on the Rise

Photo: Nabors

Because of the long timelines associated with Gulf of Mexico (GOM) projects, the recent downturn in oil prices is expected to have minimal direct impact on GOM crude oil production through 2016. EIA projects GOM production to reach 1.52 million barrels per day (bbl/d) in 2015 and 1.61 million bbl/d in 2016, or about 16% and 17% of total U.S. crude oil production in those two years, respectively.   The forecasted production growth is driven both by new projects and the redevelopment and


Ocean Installer in BP frame deal

Photo: Ocean Installer

 Ocean Installer has been awarded a Regional Framework Agreement with BP for subsea work in the Gulf of Mexico region.   The agreement covers subsea fabrication, transportation and installation of offshore facilities, as well as hook up and commissioning, and is valid for three years.  Specific work scopes will be carried out under individual call-off contracts, and accordingly no firm work is currently committed under the agreement.  


OSI Signs Agreement for Shuttle Tanker

Ocean Shipholdings, Inc. (OSI) has signed an agreement with ConocoPhillips and Samsung Heavy Industries. This agreement grants OSI the rights to the GoMAX 550 shuttle tanker design for transporting crude oil from the deep-water Gulf of Mexico directly to U.S. refineries. The diesel-electric powered, dynamically positioned 80,000 dwt double-hulled tanker design will have a capacity of 550,000 barrels of oil which can be loaded from various floating systems including Floating Production Storage


Rig Count Continues to Climb

According to a June 21 report from DailyMarkets.com, in its weekly release, Houston-based oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. reported a rise in the U.S. rig count, reflecting intensified drilling activity in Texas. This was partly offset by the growing oil spill in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico and the ensuing drilling ban in the region that reduced activity. Rigs operating in the state of Texas climbed to their highest level in 16 months


BOEMRE Approves 15th Deepwater Well

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For those of you keeping track, today the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) approved a drilling permit for the fifteenth deepwater well to comply with rigorous new safety standards implemented in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon explosion and resulting oil spill. This includes satisfying the requirement to demonstrate the capacity to contain a subsea blowout. The approved permit is for BHP Billiton Petroleum (GOM) Inc


Volvo Penta Adds Western Branch Diesel

Western Branch Diesel Photo Volvo Penta

  Volvo Penta of the Americas today announced the appointment of Western Branch Diesel as an authorized marine Power Center. The company will be responsible for sales and service of Volvo Penta marine engines in Virginia, West Virginia and Ohio.   Founded in 1946, Western Branch Diesel is headquartered in Portsmouth, Va., just a few miles from Volvo Penta’s headquarters in Chesapeake, Va. The company has facilities in 10 locations in five states, with more than 280 employees


Asia Dry Bulk-Capesize Rates Should Remain Flat

Western Australia-China rates hit near 17-year low; owners explore laying-up ships. Freight rates for capesize bulk carriers on key Asian routes should remain flat next week as the Lunar New Year holiday in China will curtail chartering activity, shipbrokers said on Thursday.


FUGRO Wins BHP Pyrenees Contract

Photo: FUGRO

Fugro has been awarded a contract by BHP Billiton Petroleum Pty Ltd for the Pyrenees Phase 3 Installation Project.   The Pyrenees development is located offshore Western Australia, in approximately 200 metres water depth, 45 kilometres northwest of Exmouth


Bangladesh, Thailand Plans Direct Coastal Shipping

 Thailand and Bangladeshi Prime Ministers. Photo: Govt Press Release

 Bangladesh and Thailand are planning to launch direct coastal shipping, connecting the Chittagong Port in the Bay of Bengal with the Ranong Port in the East of the Andaman coast in south-western Thailand.   Bangladesh Ambassador to Thailand Saida Muna Tasneem said: “Both


Proposed Changes to Long Island Sound Dredged Material Sites

Image: EPA

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to amend its 2005 rule that designated the Central and Western Long Island Sound Dredged Material Disposal Sites. The proposed amendments will help meet the goal of reducing or eliminating dredged material disposal in open waters of the


Upgraded Al Mirfa Port Opened

Photo: Abu Dhabi Ports

Under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Ruler's Representative in the Western Region, H.E. Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of State and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Ports, officially inaugurated Al Mirfa Port in the Western Region of Abu Dhabi


Abu Dhabi Opens Upgraded AI Mirfa Port

Under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Rulers Representative in the Western Region, H.E. Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of State and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Ports, officially inaugurated Al Mir

   Abu Dhabi Ports – the master developer, operator and manager of ports and Khalifa Industrial Zone in the Emirate, recently completed extensive redevelopment work at Al Mirfa Port, upgrading its infrastructure and facilities to better serve the community.  


Container Shipping Lines Returning to Iran Tread Cautiously

Photo courtesy of MSC

The world's second biggest container shipping line, MSC, has become the latest firm to resume direct services to Iran, although trade remains cautious as Western sanctions are still in place and regional tensions escalate.   The deal reached over Tehran's nuclear programme in exchange for


US Nuclear Submarine Visits Japanese Port

USS City of Corpus Christi (SSN 705) Photo by  US Navy

 Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS City of Corpus Christi (SSN 705)  has docked at Yokosuka port in Japan as part of its Asia-Pacific region itinerary, the US Navy announced in a news release.   City of Corpus Christi has conducted a multitude of missions and maintains


New Orleans Port Tops 1M Passengers Again

Cruise ships at the Port of New Orleans Julia and Erato Street cruise terminals, located steps from the historic French Quarter Photo Port NOLA

  Port of New Orleans cruise terminals handled more than 1-million passengers in 2015, totaling 1,023,700, up 1 percent compared to 2014. The total marks the fifth consecutive record year and with new and larger ships on tap for 2016, Port officials expect another robust cruise season.


USCG Begins Icebreaking in Western Great Lakes

Cutter Mackinaw (USCG file photo)

U.S. Coast Guard Sector Sault Ste Marie on Wednesday commenced Operation Taconite, an icebreaking mission launched in response to expanded ice growth in the commercial ports of western Lake Superior, Green Bay and the lower St. Marys River.   


Chariot Starts Namibia Seismic Work

Operations in Nimibia Courtesy Chariot Oil & Gas

 Chariot Oil & Gas Limited, the Atlantic margins focused oil and gas exploration company, today announces that in conjunction with its partners AziNam (20%), NAMCOR (10%) and Ignitus (5%), it has commenced a 3D seismic acquisition survey of approximately 2


Norwegian Cruise to Expand in Europe

Photo: Norwegian Cruise Line

 The Miami-based cruise operator Norwegian Cruise Line has announced its ground-breaking summer 2017 deployment for Europe with for the first time in company history five ships sailing in European waters as well as regular cruises out of Hamburg


CMA CGM Steps Up Iran Presence

File Image: the CMA CGM Ben Franklin

France's CMA CGM, the world's third-largest container shipping group, will expand its presence in Iran after signing a landmark deal on Thursday with the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL). Many Western businesses are seeking to invest in Iran, a nation of 80 million people


Weather Shutters Australia's Port Hedland

Australia's Port Hedland was officially closed earlier on Friday following warnings from the weather bureau that a tropical cyclone was developing off the northern coast, Pilbara Ports Authority said in a statement. Port Hedland, which handles about a fifth of the world's seaborne iron ore trade


This Day In Naval History - February 2

David G. Farragut (Photo: Library of Congress)

1848 - The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo ends the Mexican-American War and establishes the boundaries between the two republics. 1862 - Capt. David G. Farragut, commander of his flagship, the screw sloop of war Hartford, departs Hampton Roads for Ship Island, Miss






 
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