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Obama bans all Arctic drilling

General discussions of the systemic, societal and civilisational effects of depletion.

Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Fri 17 Mar 2017, 14:46:32

pstarr - It would appear the Norwegians see matters different then you. From last month:

"Explorers look set to drill a record number of wells in Norway’s Arctic waters this year, undeterred by oil prices apparently stuck below US$60 a barrel. After making a discovery of as much as 100 million barrels of oil in the Barents Sea, Lundin Petroleum AB said on Monday that it wants to squeeze two more exploration wells into its program this year, even if it means hiring an additional rig. That could push the total number of wells in the area to 16, two more than the record in 2014. The Norwegian Barents may contain as much as half the country’s unexplored resources, according to the NPD. Yet with crude still trading at half the highs it reached in 2014, the record drilling campaign sounds counter-intuitive'.

What you have to remember that while the absolute costs seem huge all that matters is the cost per bbl. And in such areas the reserve sizes are so much bigger then in areas with cheaper drilling that companies will be drawn to them.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby Tanada » Fri 17 Mar 2017, 14:48:28

ROCKMAN wrote:Easy to be in favor of doing anything if you don't actually have to do it yourself. LOL


That ranks right up there with
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Politicians rarely pass laws they themselves are forced to comply with. They are a 'special class' who live under 'special rules', don't take my word for it just look at how they act :twisted:
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby pstarr » Fri 17 Mar 2017, 15:11:18

RM. 100 million barrels. Shell walked away from 20 billion barrels.

Anyway calling The Norwegian Sea 'arctic' waters is kind of stretching things a bit. Don't they grow bananas there? And lutfisk.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Fri 17 Mar 2017, 15:22:47

pstarr wrote:RM. 100 million barrels. Shell walked away from 20 billion barrels.

Anyway calling The Norwegian Sea 'arctic' waters is kind of stretching things a bit. Don't they grow bananas there? And lutfisk.


Lutefisk isn't grown. It is a "delicacy" produced by soaking dried fish in old women's urine, until putrefaction is complete and results in something that splits the difference between soap and gelatin.

Green uncured olives and lutefisk are two things that if you taste them just once, you will NEVER FORGET or be tempted to sample them ever again.

I don't know about bananas, but sometimes in California, one can buy bell peppers in a rainbow of colors, which are imported from Norway and Iceland. They use greenhouses heated by geothermal hot springs, and take advantage of the constant daylight to produce a crop in record short growing periods.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby pstarr » Fri 17 Mar 2017, 16:39:40

KaiserJeep wrote:
pstarr wrote:RM. 100 million barrels. Shell walked away from 20 billion barrels.

Anyway calling The Norwegian Sea 'arctic' waters is kind of stretching things a bit. Don't they grow bananas there? And lutfisk.


Lutefisk isn't grown. It is a "delicacy" produced by soaking dried fish in old women's urine, until putrefaction is complete and results in something that splits the difference between soap and gelatin.
gelatin? I think of it as expectorant. Or gizim
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Fri 17 Mar 2017, 19:20:05

Starman - "Anyway calling The Norwegian Sea 'arctic' waters is kind of stretching things a bit." You do understand that the Arctic Circle line on the map is imaginary, right? It's not an actual barrier. LOL. The Arctic Ocean, from a physical standpoint, extends from the North Pole to the shoreline of every country that borders the Arctic. Geologically, which counts more, the entire region is the Arctic Basin. The rocks don't give a sh*t about those lines on a map anymore then the Rockman does. LOL.

And Shell did not walk away from 20 billion bbls...they walked away from a very expense opportunity to find 20 billion bbls of oil. And opportunity to discover he billions of bbls of oil Devon was hoping to find in the last Deep Water Brazil well I worked with them. A $154 MILLION well that didn't find 1 bbl of oil.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby wildbourgman » Sun 19 Mar 2017, 14:55:31

Shell spent billions for the right to drill and then went cheap with some sort of clown show once they started the operation. Lobbyist now that they can afford, but a drilling operations management and state of the art drilling rigs when everyone is watching not so much. In other parts of the world Shell would have never allowed things to get away from them as those operations seemed to do.

Although, I hear that since the BG purchase they are cutting some other operations much further than is prudent. We'll see!
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Sun 19 Mar 2017, 18:39:50

Wildman - Not sure how surprised you were by Shell's poor performance but I was truly shocked. I wonder if the fact that the top dog (an explorationist) was replaced by a refinery/financial guy. You've probably heard it before: death by bean counter. LOL
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby wildbourgman » Mon 20 Mar 2017, 10:32:08

My attitude was that if anyone could do it right in Alaska it would be Shell, yes I was truly shocked.

Now with the way Shell is operating now, it's not pretty.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Tue 18 Apr 2017, 12:44:38

This looks like a good spot to update that big oil spill from that producing BP well on the North Slope that was reported under PO News a while ago. Looks like another example of hyping via headlines of an insignificant event. But it worked: Rockman gave one of his typical long winded tech explanations of the various ways a well can experience a catastrophic failure. Not as if BP hasn't done so massively in the past.

Turns out it sounds like it was a pinhole leak or a failed gasket on a pipe connection:

A BP well located on Alaska’s North Slope is no longer leaking crude oil or natural gas, a company spokeswoman said Monday. The crude spray was discovered Friday morning, and capped early Sunday. A second leak at the well that was emitting gas at a reduced rate was closed off overnight on Sunday, according to spokeswoman Dawn Patience in an email on Monday.

The volume of the North Slope leak hasn’t been determined and the cause of the release is unknown, the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation has said. There have been no injuries and no reports of harm to wildlife. The nearest local community, Nuiqsut, located about 50 miles west, has been notified. Based on aerial pictures, the release appeared to be contained to the gravel pad surrounding the well head and never reached the surrounding tundra, BP said in an earlier statement. The well has been shut in since Friday.

{IOW the well was shut in within hours of the leak beginning. Need to see pictures to see if enough oil hit the ground to puddle. That can be sucked up. But the standard way of getting the oil out of the rocks/soil is to spray oil eating bacteria on the ground. But given the low temps that might not be very effective and they might have to dig the soil up and "cook" the oil out of it.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby hvacman » Tue 18 Apr 2017, 14:51:49

If a BP truck mechanic changed the oil on a corporate pickup and didn't get the drain pan plug screwed in tight and it dripped out a half-a-quart while parked at a well site, it would make headline news.

Oil spill at well site discovered!
hazmat crew summoned!
oil-absorption rings deployed!
Wildlife rescue on stand-by!

Details at 11
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Tue 25 Apr 2017, 11:31:28

As mentioned before neither President Obama's lack of support for Arctic oil development nor President Trump's support has little effect on what happens in the region. The US has little control over the vast majority of the basin. And the countries that do have not altered their plans:

Reuters - Norway's Statoil on Monday played down concerns that drilling in the Arctic is risky, days before it kickstarts its drilling campaign in the Barents Sea, where the country believes around half of its remaining resources could be located. Despite opposition from environmentalists, the company plans to drill five wells in the Norwegian sector of the Barents Sea, including Korpfjell, which will be the world's northernmost well . Drilling of the first well will begin in May.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby Cog » Tue 25 Apr 2017, 12:12:15

I'm usually in favor of drilling everywhere, but drilling in the Arctic regions off shore gives me some pause. What happens if you have another Macondo situation occur just before the winter ice starts accumulating? You could potentially have oil flowing under the ice for the next six months and have no way to shut it off. Or is there some plan for that sort of thing that I am unaware of?
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby pstarr » Tue 25 Apr 2017, 12:32:00

Cog wrote:I'm usually in favor of drilling everywhere, but drilling in the Arctic regions off shore gives me some pause. What happens if you have another Macondo situation occur just before the winter ice starts accumulating? You could potentially have oil flowing under the ice for the next six months and have no way to shut it off. Or is there some plan for that sort of thing that I am unaware of?

The plan is to Make America Great Again, and dump the enviro's in the Barents Sea for the narwhals to frolic. Get with the program, hippie :x
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby Subjectivist » Tue 25 Apr 2017, 14:53:38

Cog wrote:I'm usually in favor of drilling everywhere, but drilling in the Arctic regions off shore gives me some pause. What happens if you have another Macondo situation occur just before the winter ice starts accumulating? You could potentially have oil flowing under the ice for the next six months and have no way to shut it off. Or is there some plan for that sort of thing that I am unaware of?


Oil is lighter than ice so it would break through. Add in the fact it is sually several degrees or more warmer than melting point and in theory you get a big open spot with thick goopey oil cooling on the surface.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby Cog » Tue 25 Apr 2017, 15:16:44

Well sounds like it would be contained within a circle of ice. I withdraw my objection and full speed ahead. Hippies not withstanding. :lol:
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Tue 25 Apr 2017, 17:01:57

Cog - "Or is there some plan for that sort of thing that I am unaware of?". The protocol for handling a blowout are fairly set regardless of where drilling occurs. The valid concern is the much less local support for dealing with every aspect: well control, BOP intervention, relief drilling, oil containment/recovery and wildlife damage mitigation.

The Macondo blowout occurred in the most prepared area on the planet to deal with such an incidence. And everyone had a ring side seat to how that was handled. IMHO they should be much more focused on the drilling, completion and testing methodology then the response to the blowout. As I've explained before the method BP used to temporarily abandon the well was the primary reason the well lost control: in 41 years the Rockman has never seen that method used on any well onshore or offshore. But a very serious and totally unforgivable failure was the rig crew not following standard monitoring procedures.

If I ran the govt side of the permitting process I would require a truly independent evaluation of the entire plan and a full time independent safety watch on board with full authority to immediately shut down operations at any point. Compared to the total cost to drill such a well the additional cost would be less then a small fraction of 1% so the expense would not be an issue.

As we have always said in drilling ops: the BOP is not the last option but the worst option.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby rockdoc123 » Wed 26 Apr 2017, 14:33:21

If I ran the govt side of the permitting process I would require a truly independent evaluation of the entire plan and a full time independent safety watch on board with full authority to immediately shut down operations at any point. Compared to the total cost to drill such a well the additional cost would be less then a small fraction of 1% so the expense would not be an issue.


There are some hazards that aren't run of the mill in this part of the world. I was involved with a Beaufort well many years ago that had a blowout right after drilling out of surface casing. It was a bad one and required full evacuation but eventually was brought under control with no appreciable environmental damage. The root cause analysis indicated the drill bit intersected a hydrate lense that wasn't detected from the Haxops analysis. One thing that has improved in the past few decades is the ability to identify shallow hydrates. Government tends not to be a very good regulator in my opinion. They land on a plan but can let the requirements go unaltered for quite a long time due to budget constraints and focus on other issues. If industry could fund its own independent regulatory body that had a mandate to continually alter requirements for both site planning, environmental audits and drilling ops I think there might be a better solution where every near miss is taken into account in updating the regulatory issues.
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby pstarr » Wed 26 Apr 2017, 14:37:02

Obama never wanted to or succeeded in banning oil drilling in the Arctic. He's a playa lol It was Shell what cut and ran. That darn company must hate America. :-x
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Re: Obama bans all Arctic drilling

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Wed 26 Apr 2017, 14:49:26

Doc - So true. Curious: would hydrates show up on sparker surveys? As you know they are required for GOM permits to avoid shallow hazards like NG. I would think in the Arctic the feds would be even more tight assed in such matters. LOL.
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