Oh, isn't this just dandy!...nobody wants to go back to the Arctic now!

Thanks a lot for FUCKING IT ALL UP like you did last year there Shell…just dandy!

[B]U.S. Interior Sees No Urgency Among Arctic Offshore Drillers for 2014[/B]

September 04, 2013

Oil companies appear in no hurry to return in 2014 to the ice-choked federal waters off Alaska where Royal Dutch Shell’s exploration efforts foundered last year, the new head of the U.S. Interior Department said on Tuesday.

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, who took up the post in April, said that in meetings with the industry on her first official visit to Alaska she heard no sense of “urgency.”

“I have not heard from any companies an urgency to go forward until they’re ready and they are confident they can do it in a safe and responsible way,” she said in a news conference.

Shell, which has spent about $5 billion to date on its Arctic offshore program, including $2.1 billion paid for leases in the Chukchi Sea in 2008, in February announced a “pause” in those efforts after struggling with various equipment problems.

The grounding of its Kulluk drillship in a storm prompted a Department of Interior review and the launch of Arctic-specific standards for all drillers in federal waters of the Beaufort, the Chukchi and in areas of transit to and from drill sites.

The baseline Arctic standards should be ready by the end of the year, Jewell said. “That would give companies an opportunity to determine whether they want to do anything next summer.”

She added that she believes the industry remains keen on prospects in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas, despite competition for investment from cheaper shale-oil projects in the Lower 48 states.

Shell has not yet settled on its Alaska plans for next year, company spokesman Curtis Smith said on Tuesday.

“Future exploration plans for offshore Alaska will depend on a number of factors, including the readiness of our rigs and our confidence that lessons learned from our 2012 drilling program have been fully incorporated,” Smith said in an email.

ConocoPhillips, the other company with a detailed exploration plan for U.S. Arctic waters, in April dropped its plan to drill in the Chukchi in 2014 and was reevaluating its program. It has not yet made any decisions about future offshore Arctic development, said spokeswoman Natalie Lowman.

Other companies with offshore Arctic leases include Statoil , Eni and Repsol, but they have not filed any formal exploration plans with federal regulators.

While there was no drilling this summer in the offshore Arctic, there has been some industry activity there, including marine surveys in the Chukchi by Shell.

By Yereth Rosen © Reuters 2013.

How much all that equipment costing you every day? Nice blue boat sittin there in Everett. Betchya wished you had Chouest build something different for you now? Maybe sometime you could be using in the GoM perhaps?

How bout those two rigs? Not hearing anything from you or Noble about all the fancy work and money your pumping into them out in the Far East. I’d have thought you’d want the whole world to know that Shell is sparing no expense at all to have the best possible rigs on the planet to work in that pristine environment?

What utter BOOBS and POLTROONS Shell is!

surely they’re preparing stuff and have something up their (long) sleeves.

They may just be waiting for those ‘baseline Arctic standards’ at the end of the year. And they see how creative they can be with them …

Maybe a drill ship/rig BUILT, not patched/tweaked (dare I sat duct taped together?), to be ready for cold weather and incidental deck icing or early drift ice?

maybe this could ‘boost’ a few things. Still a few years ahead of us though …

[B]U.S. govt gauges interest in new Chukchi Sea offshore oil leasing[/B]

By Yereth Rosen
ANCHORAGE, Alaska, Sept 26 | Thu Sep 26, 2013 8:07pm EDT

(Reuters) - The U.S. government on Thursday started to formally gauge energy companies’ interest in future oil and gas leasing in the Chukchi Sea near Alaska, site of a trouble-plagued 2012 exploration season for Royal Dutch Shell Plc.

The “Call for Information and Nominations” issued by the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is the first step in a potential Chukchi Sea lease sale under consideration for 2016, officials said.

The Chukchi, off Alaska’s northwest coast, is believed to be oil-rich, but its remote location and harsh Arctic Ocean conditions have challenged would-be developers.

The last Chukchi lease sale, held in 2008 by the Minerals Management Service, BOEM’s predecessor, drew a record $2.66 billion in bids, $2.1 billion of that from Shell.

Shell did preliminary drilling on one Chukchi well in 2012. After experiencing equipment failures and accidents, it declined to drill again this year. The company has announced no decision about returning to complete that well or drill others in 2014.

Shell’s well was only the sixth ever drilled in the Chukchi.

The call to industry on Thursday asks for nominations of specific blocks within the Chukchi that might be promising for new leasing, in order to focus on targeted regions that would avoid environmentally sensitive areas, BOEM said.

“Any future leasing in the Chukchi Sea must be focused on areas that can be developed safely and responsible while also protecting sensitive habitats and places that are important to Alaska Native hunters and fishermen,” BOEM Director Tommy Beaudreau said in a statement.

Environmentalists said it was a mistake even to consider new leasing in the Chukchi after Shell’s experiences, which included a grounded drillship, air-pollution violations and failure to secure needed oil-spill equipment.

“Shell’s long list of setbacks and failures during its 2012 Arctic drilling campaign, combined with the reality that there is no effective way to clean up an oil spill in Arctic conditions or infrastructure in the region to support an adequately safe drilling or cleanup effort, provides overwhelming evidence that the oil and gas industry is not prepared to operate in the Arctic Ocean,” said Cindy Shogan, executive director of the Alaska Wilderness League.

Other companies have active leases in the Chukchi, including ConocoPhillips and Statoil. Conoco planned to drill at least one well in 2014, but then announced this year an indefinite postponement.

The proposed 2016 Chukchi lease sale is one of three in a five-year BOEM leasing plan for Alaska’s outer continental shelf. Other lease sales are eyed for Cook Inlet in south-central Alaska and the Beaufort Sea off the northern coast.

Shell also did preliminary drilling in 2012 on a Beaufort exploration well. In the Beaufort, seven leases held by a variety of companies are due to expire this year, and 20 are due to expire in 2015, said John Callahan, a BOEM spokesman in Anchorage.

The Chukchi is believed to hold over 15 billion barrels of recoverable oil and the Beaufort is believed to hold over 8 billion barrels, according to federal estimates.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/27/alaska-offshore-idUSL2N0HM2KY20130927

Maybe they are biding their time for a friendlier administration that might not be so harassing and meddling.

shells waiting for their engineers to be old enough to shave