Salazar Directs Deepwater Oil & Gas Containment Exercise

BSEE
Thursday, May 24, 2012

MWCC to Deploy Capping Stack for Exercise in the Gulf.
  
As part of the Obama administration’s ongoing efforts to strengthen the oil and gas industry’s ability to respond in the event of a deepwater blowout and ensure that offshore oil and gas production can continue to expand safely and responsibly, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today charged the Marine Well Containment Company (MWCC) with conducting a live drill this summer to deploy critical pieces of state-of-the-art well control equipment in the Gulf of Mexico.

 

The exercise would demonstrate the ability of MWCC to mobilize a capping stack – a device similar to the one that stopped the flow of oil from the Deepwater Horizon’s well – in a timely fashion from its on-shore base to the deep water seabed of the Gulf.

 

This first-of-its-kind exercise will be overseen by Interior’s Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), which tests capping stacks on the surface as part of its overall responsibility to enforce the tougher offshore safety requirements implemented in response to the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill. 
 
 

“In the wake of the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill, we undertook the most aggressive and comprehensive reforms to offshore oil and gas oversight in U.S. history, including requiring the industry to have immediate access to equipment and technologies that could stop another blowout,” said Salazar. “Our safety reforms are designed to reduce the chances that a capping stack would ever be needed again, but one thing Deepwater Horizon taught us is that you must always be ready to respond to the worst case scenario. This exercise is an opportunity to deploy systems, test readiness, and train under real-time conditions.”

 

“BSEE has made great strides in developing an effective and strong regulatory framework to support the offshore oil and gas program,” BSEE Director James Watson said. “We have tested MWCC and capping stacks repeatedly, but putting them through their paces in the deep waters of the Gulf will give us added confidence that they will be ready to go if needed.”

 

MWCC is one of two consortia that provide contract access to well containment equipment to oil and gas operators in the Gulf of Mexico. This equipment is required by BSEE for drilling with subsea blowout preventers in deepwater, among other situations. The other consortium, the Helix Well Containment Group, will complete a similar deployment exercise in the future.

 

The demonstration will involve the field deployment and testing of a capping stack as part of a larger scenario that will also test an operator’s ability to obtain and schedule the deployment of the supporting systems necessary for successful containment – including debris removal equipment and oil collection devices, such as top hats. The capping stack will be lowered to the seabed by wire, a technique that offers the potential to be significantly faster than the deployment via pipe that occurred during the Deepwater Horizon response.

 

As part of the exercise, BSEE will also analyze the results from tests conducted on the sea floor. In October 2010, Secretary Salazar required that prior to receiving approval of a deepwater drilling permit, an operator must demonstrate that it has enforceable obligations that ensure that containment resources are available promptly in the event of a deepwater blowout.
 

Maritime Reporter September 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Environmental

MARAD Tests Alternative Power for Ships

The Maritime Administration (MARAD) is testing state-of-the-art, environmentally efficient technology onboard the Training Ship (TS) Kennedy.   The National

DNV GL Approvals for SAACKE Scrubbers

Classification increases planning certainty for exhaust gas scrubber operators.   The classification society DNV GL has certified the SAACKE exhaust gas scrubber

Ship Emissions: Chevron Lube Gains Key Approval

A new Chevron Marine Lubricants 100 BN cylinder oil, which is designed to offer ship owners the ability to achieve the latest emissions legislation, has received full sign off from a key engine maker.

Energy

Arctic Oil: Bourbon to Enter Arctic Market in 2016

Bourbon plans to enter the growing Arctic Offshore market in 2016 with a new Anchor Handling Tug Supply (AHTS) vessel built by the Vard shipyard. This AHTS (Anchor

Libyan Government: Ports, Oil Fields Safe

Libyan oil ports and fields are safe and under government control, the country's interior minister said on Friday after visting the eastern Brega port. "This

China to Import 335 MT of Naphtha, Wants More

China is set to import more than 335,000 tonnes of naphtha and diesel, rare moves for the world's no. 2 oil consumer given it has been self-sufficient at meeting domestic oil product demand,

Maritime Safety

St. Lawrence Seaway Workers Extend Strike Deadline

The union that represents workers on the St. Lawrence Seaway, the waterway that links the Great Lakes and the Atlantic Ocean, has extended a strike deadline to Monday at 5 p.

New Functionality in WatchMate Vision

Vesper Marine has announced updates to its WatchMate Vision and XB-8000 product lines.   Now, in addition to transmitting and receiving position, course, speed

Libyan Government: Ports, Oil Fields Safe

Libyan oil ports and fields are safe and under government control, the country's interior minister said on Friday after visting the eastern Brega port. "This

 
 
Maritime Standards Navigation Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1471 sec (7 req/sec)