Few limits offshore, Shell says

Shell says it's working well in post-gulf spill culture.
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |   July 21, 2014 at 8:45 AM
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LONDON, July 21 (UPI) -- Oil companies have yet to reach the point that technology is limiting access to offshore reserves, a Shell official in charge of deep American waters said.

Shell announced a discovery in the Rydberg area of the Norphlet play in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico last week. The company said it's still assessing the data from the exploratory well in the area but expects it to hold about 100 million barrels of oil equivalent.

John Hollowell, Shell's vice president in charge of deep waters in the Americas, told The Daily Telegraph in London there were few limitations to how deep or how far offshore oil companies can drill.

"How far you can go is really technology based," he said in an interview published Sunday. "When we can't overcome the technical barriers, that will be the end, but we have yet to reach that stage."

The company said it's working according to the terms of the new safety culture that emerged in the wake of the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Marvin Odum, Shell's director of upstream activity in the Americas, told the newspaper the incident was a "devastating time" for the energy industry.

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