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CNOOC reports leak in South China Sea

BEIJING, Dec. 20 (UPI) -- China National Offshore Oil Corporation said it was notified of a leak from a subsea gas pipeline and has closed production in the South China Sea.

CNOOC Ltd. said one of its subsidiaries was notified by maritime authorities of leakage at its Zhuhai terminal in the South China Sea.

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The company said net production was down about 160 million cubic feet of natural gas per day because of the incident. The cause of the leak, the company said, is under investigation.

"The company will actively study and come up with solutions to repair the pipeline, in order to resume the operation of the Zhuhai terminal as soon as possible," CNOOC said in a statement.

The company didn't indicate when production would resume from the platform.

The Zhuhai terminal is under what CNOOC described as an accelerated depressurization process. There were no injuries or immediate environmental damage reported by the company, which said "the situation is under control."

It didn't say whether significant amounts of hydrocarbons had leaked into the sea. Maritime authorities sent out navigation warnings and notifications to nearby residents who might be affected by the spill.

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