UPI Energy Watch

Sept. 17, 2008 at 6:59 PM
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BP shuts down gas production

A gas leak in British Petroleum's Central Azeri platform in the Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli field in Azerbaijan caused an evacuation of personnel and a temporary shutdown of production there, BP said. The field is operated by BP Azerbaijan.

"The gas was detected by the detectors installed on the platform. The personnel of the platform were evacuated for security reasons," a BP representative told Trend News agency.

The Central Azeri platform connects the oil and gas that is produced in the field to the pipelines that transport it out to other terminals.

Azeri light oil is produced from the Central Azeri platform and the Chirag-Guneshli field and is exported through the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline, but BP did not say whether the gas leak had disrupted other production in the fields.

BP Azerbaijan will hold a public discussion on the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment of the Chirag-Guneshli field in Baku, the Azeri capital, on Sept. 23. The field's interests are held by several companies including 34.1 percent by BP, 10.2 percent by Chevron, 10 percent by SOCAR, 10 percent by Inpex, 8.6 percent by Statoil, 8 percent by ExxonMobil, 6.8 percent by TPAO, 5.6 percent by Devon, 3.9 percent by Itochu and 2.7 percent by Hess.

India's ONGC finds uranium in oil wells.

State-run Oil and Natural Gas Corp. told the Economic Times of India that it found trace amounts of uranium in several of its 9,500 oil and gas wells.

"We have dug about 9,500 wells so far and have found traces of uranium in some of the wells. We are studying the logs of these wells, and it has shown progress," ONGC Chairman and Managing Director R.S. Sharma told the Economic Times.

Sharma said ONGC is excited about its new finds, and the potential recoverable reserves are significant. The company made the announcement at its regular meeting.

Even if crude oil prices continue to fall, Sharma said, with its new finds ONGC will be able to stay competitive in the global market.

Australia's BHP Billiton pledges funds to Angostura gas project.

BHP Billiton announced it has completed a $400 million supply contract with the Natural Gas Co. of Trinidad and Tobago to expand the Greater Angostura gas project off the coast of Trinidad, The Australian reported.

NGC will purchase the gas from the second phase of the project, which is expected to become operational during the second half of 2011.

BHP Billiton will build and install a new platform to export gas from near its already existing platform in the area. The new platform will have a capacity of 280 million cubic feet per day.

"Today's announcement of the development of this second phase will help to grow the base business for BHP Billiton in Trinidad and Tobago," said Vincent Pereira, BHP Billiton president of Trinidad and Tobago.

BHP Billiton holds a 45 percent interest in the Angostura field and is operator of the joint venture with Total.

The Greater Angostura field is about 25 miles off the east coast of Trinidad and has been in production since January 2005.


Closing oil prices, Sept. 17, 3 p.m. London

Brent crude oil: $89.94

West Texas Intermediate crude oil: $92.92


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