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Thousands more steel jobs could be at risk, government warns

26/10/2015

Thousands more steel jobs could be lost if action is not taken to tackle the threats facing the industry’s “vulnerable” supply chain, the Government is being warned. The International Steel Trade Association (Ista) said scores of medium sized firms were at risk if the crisis gripping the industry escalates. Thousands of job losses have been announced in recent weeks by Tata Steel and SSI in Redcar, Scunthorpe and Scotland, with cheap imports and high energy costs being blamed.

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Transocean reaches $20million settlement deal with Alabama over Deepwater Horizon

26/10/2015

Transocean has reached an agreement with the state of Alabama for a $20million settlement following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster. The decision was announced earlier this month by Governor Robert Bentley who said the region had suffered “tremendous” losses since the spill five years ago. He said the agreement with Transocean was a “positive” step forward as the state continued to recover.

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Housing starts to fall in Canada on oil and supply, CMHC says

26/10/2015

Canadian housing starts will decline in the next two years on a weaker economy and with builders seeking to avoid oversupply, the federal housing agency said. The pace of work on new homes will fall to 178,150 units in 2016 from 186,900 this year, Canada Mortgage & Housing Corp. said Monday from Ottawa, and again to 173,650 units in 2017.

Training & Technology

Wind power project aims to help oil companies cut emissions and costs

26/10/2015

Floating wind turbine technology is well placed to help oil and gas operators reduce the cost of recovery from reservoirs using water injection, according to an industry expert. A new joint industry project - Win Win - being led by DNV GL, has brought together oil majors including ExxonMobil, ENI, Statoil, Nexen and VNG to share knowledge and pursue water injection in subsea reservoirs delivered by wind-power rather than traditional gas turbines. The technology is seen as being cost-efficient, able to reduce an oil platform's carbon footprint and offers opportunities for one turbine to be used on multiple wells.

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Nigerian governor election vote declared invalid in southern oil hub

26/10/2015

A Nigerian court declared the election of a governor in one of the country’s oil hubs as invalid due to irregularities. A fresh vote has been called for within three months in the Rivers State region as concern is raised it could lead to tension. It comes after former militants in the southern region said they might resume a fight for a greater share of oil revenues if President Muhammadu Buhari ends an amnesty due to expire in December.

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Offshore wind schemes could be built without subsidies in 10 years

26/10/2015

Offshore wind schemes could be built without subsidies in a decade with clear support from the UK Government, the head of Europe’s biggest renewables company has said. The most recent awards of clean power subsidies saw guaranteed payments for offshore wind of £114 to £120 for each megawatt hour of electricity generated, more than double the wholesale electricity price and much more expensive than onshore wind farms.

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Consumers urged to switch to cheaper energy suppliers

26/10/2015

Campaigners are calling on householders to help elderly friends and relatives find cheaper energy deals after finding that almost nine in 10 bill payers did not switch in the last year. The new figure from Ofgem, based on data from household meters, found that 88% of energy customers have not switched in the last year despite widespread advice that doing so can save hundreds of pounds. A separate poll for Big Energy Saving Week, a joint campaign with Energy Saving Trust, Department of Energy and Climate Change and Citizens Advice, found 45% of people did not believe they could save money by switching and 75% of people who did thought it would be £100 or less.

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Osborne defends close ties with China

24/10/2015

George Osborne has defended the UK’s desire to have close ties with China, despite the controversies over human rights and steel dumping that have been raised during the state visit.

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Expert says fracking could harm Aberdeen’s oil and gas ‘capital’ status

23/10/2015

Fracking could have a detrimental impact on the North-east oil and gas industry, an Aberdeen academic has warned. The onshore fracking process has led to huge public protests over the potential environmental impact of blasting gas from shale rock using water and sand, including a major demonstration at Barton Moss in Greater Manchester. Professor of petroleum accounting at Robert Gordon University, Alex Russell, has said fracking could have a hugely detrimental impact on Aberdeen’s position as Europe’s oil and gas capital.

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Hotels flag despite Offshore Europe

A busy Offshore Europe event delivered “staggering” occupancy levels for Aberdeen hotels, but failed to reverse an ongoing decline due to the oil price crash, new figures show. In what is the first report on the Granite city’s hotel trade for the key month of September 2015, LJ Research found that room occupancy fell 12.8% despite reaching 99% capacity halfway through oil week. The report also found that hotel room yields in the month were down 13.8% on September 2013 – the last time Aberdeen hosted the biennial oil and gas event.

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Family urge PM to save oil worker from Saudi penalty

23/10/2015

The grandchildren of a British man who reportedly faces 350 lashes for breaking the law in Saudi Arabia have appealed directly to David Cameron as “his only hope”. Karl Andree, who has battled cancer and suffers from asthma, was arrested in Jeddah in August last year for breaching the country’s strict anti-alcohol laws after he was caught with home-made wine. The 74 year old has served his time in jail but is still locked up as Saudi officials wait to carry out the lashings, according to his son Simon Andree.

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Petrobras ends offshore helicopter tender

22/10/2015

Petrobras has cancelled an ongoing tender for heavy and medium helicopters used in its offshore operations. Era Group said Aeroleo Taxi Aero, its Brazilian joint venture, had received notification after Petrobras has carried out a review of its aviation needs. It was concluded no additional contract was needed amid the challenges of the current marketplace.

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US Senator calls for climate change probe against ExxonMobil

22/10/2015

A US Senator has called on the Department of Justice to investigate an alleged fraud by ExxonMobil over what it knew and told the public and shareholders about the cause of climate change. Senator Bernie Sanders has written to Attorney General Loretta Lynch to ask for a probe into what he alleges as a “potential instance of corporate fraud” by the oil giant. In his letter the politician refers to reports from an investigation by Inside Climate News, which says that scientists from the company conducted extensive research on climate change as early as the 1970s.

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Nigeria to split long-delayed petroleum bill to speed passage

22/10/2015

Nigeria’s government plans to split an oil- industry bill stuck in parliament for seven years and resubmit it to lawmakers after it held up reforms and deterred investment in Africa’s largest crude producer, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo said. Breaking up the Petroleum Industry Bill, or PIB, into smaller laws focused on fiscal and regulatory measures in Nigeria’s energy industry would make it easier to pass through parliament, he said. The bill, first presented to parliament in 2008, will be resent to lawmakers in the first quarter of 2016.