Arctic energy ambitions are becoming more and more unattainable

[QUOTE=Jemplayer;153172]Ther are five boats in Fourchon getting ready to go north. Three Harvey and two Chouest boats. Infact the Chouest boats look like they are ready to head out any minute. The Nanuk’s deck is full of spools of 3 in wire and the Ross has a deck full of anchors and rigging equipment. All are getting a full day rate just waiting for the word to go.[/QUOTE]

Do you know which HGIM boats are going??

Hear my words…ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY, NO FUCKING WAY IN HELL that Shell is going to go back to the Chukchi Sea this year, next year or the year after that!

[B]Shell Cuts $15 Billion From Budget as Profit Misses Expectations

By Bloomberg On January 29, 2015

By Tara Patel

(Bloomberg) — Royal Dutch Shell Plc will cut $15 billion of spending over the next three years as the crash in oil prices saw fourth-quarter profit miss expectations.

Shell, the first of the world’s largest oil companies to report earnings following the slump in crude to a five-year low, will review spending on about 40 projects worldwide, Chief Executive Officer Ben van Beurden said in an interview.

“We see pressure on our investment program,” van Beurden said on Bloomberg TV. “It’s game of being prudent but at the same time not overreacting.”

Profit excluding one-time items and inventory changes was $3.3 billion in the quarter, up from $2.9 billion a year earlier, Shell said today in a statement. That missed the $4.1 billion average of 13 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Shell shares dropped as much as 4.4 percent in London and traded at 2,070.5 pence at 8:11 a.m.

The global industry is scurrying to respond as oil below $50 a barrel guts cash flows. Statoil ASA, Tullow Oil Plc and Premier Oil Plc have delayed projects or cut exploration spending. BP Plc has frozen wages and Chevron Corp. delayed its 2015 drilling budget. By cutting spending, companies aim to protect returns to investors.

Shell, based in The Hague, will pay a quarterly dividend of 47 cents a share, the same as the previous three months. It will pay the same in the first quarter.

The payout is an “iconic item at Shell, I will do everything to protect it,” the CEO said in the television interview.

More Cuts

In addition to the $15 billion of cuts in planned spending over three years, Shell warned there could be more to come should crude prices remain relatively low.

“Shell has options to further reduce spending but we are not over-reacting to current low oil prices,” it said. The drop in oil prices has put investment levels “under severe pressure in the near term.”

While declining to speculate about where crude prices are headed, he warned that canceling or delaying too many projects could risk putting in jeopardy supply over the longer term.

Shell’s like-for-like capital spending will be lower than last year, according to today’s statement. That number, which doesn’t include acquisitions, was $35 billion last year and $38 billion in 2013.

Fourth-quarter oil and natural-gas production fell 1 percent to 3.213 million barrels of oil a day due to loss of a license in Abu Dhabi and security issues in Nigeria.

Qatar Plant

Shell accelerated asset sales and cut spending even before the slump in oil prices. The Anglo-Dutch company axed a $6.5 billion petrochemicals plant in Qatar this month and said it’s selling a stake in an oil-producing project offshore Brazil amid declining output and higher costs to extract the crude.

Average Brent crude prices in the quarter fell 30 percent from a year before to $77 a barrel. This month the benchmark extended its decline, touching $45.19 a barrel on Jan. 15.

A year ago, when oil prices were above $100, Van Beurden pledged to make “hard choices” on new projects, sell $15 billion in assets over 2014-2015 and slow investment growth.

More than 30,000 dismissals have been announced across the oil industry as companies shrink budgets, according to a tally by Bloomberg News. Exploration and production spending will fall by more than $116 billion, or 17 percent, on weaker oil revenues, according to an estimate from Cowen & Co.

Of the 36 analysts that cover Shell, 20 recommend buying the stock, 14 have hold ratings and two advise selling.

The company will hold a web-cast on the fourth-quarter earnings at 2 p.m. London time.

[QUOTE=bcoogan23;153188]Do you know which HGIM boats are going??[/QUOTE]

The Sisuaq, Harvey Spirit, and Harvey Explorer were the ones used in 2012. You can put money on them as the ones that will be used.

I was told sisauq, champion, supporter, and explorer. That’s why the champion and supporter just went through a dry docking. That’s not from management or anything though.

[QUOTE=rshrew;153121]All systems are go from what I hear still there is supposed to be a MODU so maybe Aiviq will tow that[/QUOTE]

The “Polar Pioneer” project is still running full steam ahead.

well the Russians for as much as I loathe Putin and his cohorts, can certainly see reality…

[B]Rosneft Pulls the Plug on 2015 Arctic Drilling Plans[/B]

January 30, 2015

Denis Pinchuk and Katya Golubkova

MOSCOW, Jan 30 (Reuters) – Russian state-controlled oil company Rosneft will not be able to resume drilling in the Kara Sea this year after Western sanctions halted its cooperation with ExxonMobil in a major setback for Moscow’s energy ambitions, two company sources said.

The delay will be a blow to Rosneft, which was spearheading President Vladimir Putin’s goal to increase output and secure Russia’s energy dominance by exploring the Arctic, where Moscow is believed to have one of the world’s largest oil resources.

In September, Rosneft announced it had found oil in the Kara Sea after drilling with Exxon at the

Universitetskaya-1 well, the most northerly in the world. Oil resources in the Kara Sea are estimated to be comparable to those of Saudi Arabia.

The company was due to restart drilling this year but Exxon was forced to stop cooperation after the West imposed sanctions on Russia over its actions in the Ukraine crisis.

“There will be no drilling in 2015. There is no platform and it is too late to get one. The project was initially created for Exxon’s platform,” a Rosneft source said.

The second source confirmed this.

Asked for comment, Rosneft said: “In 2015, Rosneft will ensure implementation of its license obligations related to geological exploration in the Kara Sea.”

Usually licenses give companies a certain period of time to complete work. Rosneft did not give the timeframe offered by the license.

The second Rosneft source said the company planned to resume drilling in 2016 but that commercial production would now be pushed back to beyond 2020.

“Usually, it takes 8-10 years from the first well to the first oil on the offshore but here you have such a difficult situation,” the source said.

Russia is the world’s top oil producing nation and output hit a post-Soviet high of an average 10.58 million barrels per day (bpd) last year.

But the country needs to explore new areas such as the Arctic or for shale oil because its resources in Western Siberia, Russia’s main oil producing region, are depleting.


Rosneft was using the West Alpha platform, owned by Seadrill subsidiary North Atlantic Drilling, in the Kara Sea.

The rig returned to Norway in mid-October after completing the well in the Kara Sea in late September. The rig is on contract with Exxon until July 2016.

Due to severe weather conditions, drilling in the Kara Sea can only be conducted during a couple of months a year. The Universitetskaya-1 well is Russia’s second offshore Arctic project after Prirazlomnoye operated by Gazprom Neft.

The first source said roughly a year and a half was needed to adjust the Kara Sea project for a new platform so in order to start drilling in July-August next year, Rosneft would need to start looking for a platform now.

“We expect to decide on the platform by April-May and will launch the tender soon. The choice is obvious — there are a lot of platforms in the East, in China or South Korea, maybe from North Atlantic Drilling, maybe from Lukoil in the Baltics,” he said.

“There are a lot of platforms and this is not a problem even if it is not an ice-proof — it can always be upgraded … After oil prices have fallen it is two-times cheaper to lease platforms and supply vessels.”

Western sanctions prevent Western firms from helping certain Russian companies, including Rosneft, to explore in the Arctic, in deep water or for shale oil, among other restrictions.

Valery Nesterov, an analyst with Sberbank CIB, said the main challenge would not be to find a proper platform but to address the safety of operations in an area where Russia lacks expertise.

[QUOTE=ChiefRob;153204]The “Polar Pioneer” project is still running full steam ahead.[/QUOTE]

Curious whether the rig will have the honor to got in the new giant Vigorous drydock. Should be big enough for sure.

Don't think it will fit in that dock isn't wide enough only 187'.

[QUOTE=Drill Bill;153382]Curious whether the rig will have the honor to got in the new giant Vigorous drydock. Should be big enough for sure.[/QUOTE]

ain’t nobody gonna drill for SHIT this year in the arctic!

[QUOTE=rshrew;153398]Don’t think it will fit in that dock isn’t wide enough only 187’.[/QUOTE]

correct, indeed, apologies. Should’ve quickly checked the correct Vigorous drydock dimensions first:

(I knew the entire width was over 200 ft and that’s why I thought it could deal with the Pioneer. But that one is about 290 ft wide so apparently not so it will be another Seattle location)

She’s in Singapore now along with the Disco so I would gather they will be headed here to Seattle or somewhere soon as soon as the berthing boondoggle is settled.

Disco sailed to Malaysia a couple weeks ago.

[QUOTE=Kingrobby;153516]Disco sailed to Malaysia a couple weeks ago.[/QUOTE]

doesn’t look like they’re headed to Seattle…very telling!

[QUOTE=c.captain;153518]doesn’t look like they’re headed to Seattle…very telling![/QUOTE]

Oh well, looks like all preps & logistics can go ahead now on the West coast. Polar Pioneer can start its engines.

[B]Port of Seattle quietly signs homeport lease for Shell’s Arctic drilling fleet[/B]

Seattle PI - Joel Connelly - February 11, 2015

The Port of Seattle has quietly inked a two-year lease under which Shell Oil will use Terminal 5 on the Seattle waterfront as the base for its efforts to drill in Arctic waters of Alaska’s Chukchi Sea.

With rapid authorization, negotiation and signing of the lease — reminiscent of how decisions on the waterfront used to be greased — the port has secured a $13.17 million deal and forestalled efforts by the region’s environmental groups to stop it.

The lease, covering 50 acres of Terminal 5, is with Foss Maritime, which offers an array of supply and tug escort services. A Foss tug towed Shell’s drilling ship, the Noble Explorer, away from a beach in Dutch Harbor, Alaska, in July 2012 after the ship slipped its moorings.

The lease was signed Monday. On Tuesday, in the first significant show of opposition, Fuse Washington announced that more than 1,000 members of its organization had signed a letter questioning the Shell home port deal. Fuse is the state’s largest progressive organization.

The letter, addressed to Port of Seattle commissioners, said in part:

“Because the Port is a publicly owned entity, the people of Seattle deserve an opportunity to weigh in on this proposed use of the terminal. The people of King County, and the planet, deserve better than a deal hashed out in the backrooms.”

The environmental community passionately opposes drilling in the Chukchi Sea, a remote body of water off northwest Alaska that is more than 1,000 miles from the nearest Coast Guard base.

They argue that Arctic waters cannot be safely drilled, and that a spill would endanger a major polar bear population as well as North America’s largest walrus population. Gray whales, which migrate past the Washington Coast each spring, feed in the Chukchi Sea in summer and fall.

“This year we are planning on drilling in Alaska,” Simon Henry, chief financial officer at Royal Dutch Shell, told a stockholder briefing two weeks ago.

The oil giant expects to spend $1 billion on its Arctic plans this year. Shell can afford it. Profits for 2014 totaled $19.04 billion, even as oil prices were dropping.

“Even if we don’t drill this summer it will be approaching $1 billion because of the commitment to keep the fleet of ships in place,” Henry said.

The U.S. Department of the Interior has estimated that the Chukchi Sea holds 15.4 billion barrels of recoverable oil, worth $750 billion at today’s prices.

Shell had a disastrous experience in 2012 when it tried to drill in the Chukchi.

The Noble Discoverer broke loose and nearly ran aground. Later in the year, a U.S. Coast Guard inspection turned up multiple safety and record-keeping violations. Shell’s contractor, Noble Energy, pleaded guilty to felonies and paid $12.2 million in fines and community service projects.

Shell started to drill a exploratory well in the Chukchi Sea, only to be turned back by pack ice.

Its conical drilling ship, the Kulluk, was being towed to the “lower 48″ in December 2012 — in the teeth of Gulf of Alaska storms — when it broke loose from its tow lines. The ship ran aground near Kodiak, and had to be taken to China and taken apart.

With the stakes high, and having already invested $2.8 billion in leases, Shell is pressing on.

Depending on your attitude, the Port of Seattle may have negotiated a lucrative deal: $13.7 million will help retrofit Terminal 5 into a deep-water port. Seattle Port Commissioner Bill Bryant has estimated the deal will mean 200 family-wage jobs.

Or the Port of Seattle can be viewed as enabling an intensely risky enterprise, at a corner of the Earth too sensitive and dangerous to be sacrificed to the carbon economy.

“Washington is a national leader in the fight to protect our environment and stop global warming: We shouldn’t be rolling out the welcome mat for one of the most irresponsible oil companies in the world,” said Aaron Ostrom, executive director at Fuse Washington.

The port’s lease was made known Wednesday in a letter from its CEO Theodore Fick to lawyer Patti Goldman of Earthjustice, an environmental law firm.

The Port of Seattle has long been a major staging area for big resource developments in Alaska. The Jones Act (named for Washington Sen. Wesley Jones) requires that all cargoes shipped between U.S. ports be carried on U.S. flag ships built in America.

In the 1970s, the port lined up with Alaskan oil, timber and mining interests that bitterly fought the Alaska Lands Act, which set aside 103 million acres of the 49th state as national parks, monuments, wildlife refuges, wilderness and wild and scenic rivers.

The port is self-consciously green these days — particularly in management of the Seattle waterfront — but the Shell/Foss deal is strongly reminiscent of old times.

[QUOTE=c.captain;153518]doesn’t look like they’re headed to Seattle…very telling![/QUOTE]

I thought you were the champion of the American merchant mariner, why are you pulling so hard for Shell to fail?

They’ve fucked up at every single turn and done just about nothing right so far, but for the sake of jobs for a bunch of people, including your favorite Foss, why don’t we try hoping they turn things around and everything goes smoothly.

Not that I’ve ever been accused of being the most optimistic person, but christ…

I hope that Shell drills safely and successfully in the Arctic this year, and finds a lot of oil for future development. However, If Shell, Noble, and Chouest screw up again, Arctic drilling will be banned for at least 50 years. There is a lot riding on this for the people of Alaska and the nation… No more screw ups!

Shell needs to see to it that the skills and experience of Alaskans and the folks in the Pacific Northwest are put to good use, and that they have the opportunity to work and profit from this Arctic drilling campaign. Otherwise Shell, Noble, Harvey, and Chouest should just stay in the Gulf of Mexico where they have adequate experience.

[QUOTE=50thState;154269]I thought you were the champion of the American merchant mariner, why are you pulling so hard for Shell to fail?

They’ve fucked up at every single turn and done just about nothing right so far, but for the sake of jobs for a bunch of people, including your favorite Foss, why don’t we try hoping they turn things around and everything goes smoothly.

Not that I’ve ever been accused of being the most optimistic person, but christ…[/QUOTE]

I am saying that they aren’t going back not because I don’t want to see the effort, but because the price of oil is so low at the moment and all the majors including Shell MUST CUT COSTS ANYWHERE THEY CAN and the Arctic is not a must drill at the moment…that energy ain’t going anywhere and if Shell gets an extension on their leases in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas, then Shell would be stoopid to drop another billion this season which they don’t need to spend.

You can quote me here now but I say that is Shell gets the extensions, they ain’t drilling this summer in Alaska.

Last I heard Shell didn’t even have the permits to drill this year. if they get the permits, I think they will drill.

usually when I bet against c.captian, i end up being wrong, but I’m willing to risk it this time.

Everyone around here is getting geared up for it. Crowley took the garbage cans off the stacks of the guardsman last week and the corbin Foss is enroute to seattle.

mmm, all in all ‘only’ eight vessels to be based in Seattle:

Definitely not the whole Shell Arctic fleet, probably just the key ones for the rigs.