Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement photo

API, allies say blowout preventer rule should recognize safety gains

The petroleum industry, anticipating the release of new regulations on offshore drilling safety, called for federal restraint and issued a report saying offshore oil and gas drilling is safer than ever because of self-imposed safety practices.

The Center for Offshore Safety, launched by the industry in the aftermath of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, issued its first annual report, finding that members suffered no fatalities or loss of well control at deepwater sites in 2013 and that members were keeping on track with maintenance, inspections and safety audits.


Big oil deposit near London airport, but will be hard to tap

LONDON (AP) — A British energy company says there is oil, and lots of it, near London's Gatwick Airport. The question is how much of it can be pumped from the ground.

UK Oil & Gas Investments PLC says analysis of a new well in the Weald Basin indicates there may be as much as 158 million barrels of oil per square mile in the region. That suggests the entire basin may hold as much as 100 billion barrels of oil, more than 10 times earlier estimates. By comparison, Britain has pumped about 42 billion barrels of oil from the North Sea over the past 40 years.


Apache selling Australian subsidiary for $2.1 billion

HOUSTON (AP) — Apache Corp. says it is selling its Australian oil exploration and production subsidiary for $2.1 billion in cash.

The Houston-based company said Wednesday that a consortium of private equity funds managed by Macquarie Capital Group Ltd. and Brookfield Asset Management Inc. agreed to buy Apache Energy Ltd.


ConocoPhillips to spend more on shale drilling


ConocoPhillips is leaving its capital spending at the $11.5 billion mark through 2017 but will shift a lot of it toward cheaper shale drilling, which will increase its production levels, FuelFix reports.


Security deals protecting Eni interests in Libya

The Wall Street Journal

Despite the continuing conflict that has destroyed some of Libya’s oilfields and sent companies like Marathon Oil, Total and Repsol packing, Italy’s Eni SpA has protected its operations by cutting deals with militias and tribes, sources have told The Wall Street Journal.


Shell seeks order to remove protesters from Arctic drill rig

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Attorneys for Royal Dutch Shell PLC on Tuesday sued in federal court to remove six Greenpeace activists who boarded a vessel carrying an oil-drilling rig leased by Shell across the Pacific.

The six on Monday used inflatable boats launched from the Greenpeace ship Esperanza to climb aboard the Blue Marlin, a heavy-lift ship carrying a Transocean Ltd. semi-submersible drilling unit, the Polar Pioneer.


Greenpeace activists board Arctic offshore drill ship

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A Greenpeace spokesman says six activists have boarded a drilling vessel that was crossing the Pacific Ocean on its way to drill on Shell leases in the Arctic Ocean.

Spokesman Travis Nichols says the activists used climbing gear to scale the Polar Pioneer 750 miles northwest of Hawaii. The Polar Pioneer is owned by Transocean Ltd.


Flaring limits move N.D. to order 5 drillers to cut back

The Bismarck Tribune

Five companies that had been flaring more gas than allowed under new North Dakota restrictions have been ordered by state regulators to cut production on certain wells, The Bismarck Tribune reports.


US oil and natural gas rig count drops by 20 to 1,028

HOUSTON (AP) — Oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. says the number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. declined by 20 this week to 1,028 amid slumping oil prices.

Houston-based Baker Hughes said Thursday 802 rigs were seeking oil and 222 exploring for natural gas. Four were listed as miscellaneous. A year ago, 1,818 rigs were active.


Exxon CEO talks Arctic oil drilling, risks, lessons

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Arctic is the next great frontier for oil and gas — and one of the most environmentally fragile places on earth.

An Energy Department advisory council study adopted last week said the U.S. should start exploring for oil and gas in the Arctic soon in order to feed future demand, and that the industry is ready to safely exploit the Arctic's huge reserves, despite recent mishaps.


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