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Oil & Gas

Oil majors’ $60 billion cuts don’t go far enough as crude slides

13/08/2015

The $60 billion of oil-industry spending cuts this year won’t be enough as crude languishes near a six-year low. The world’s biggest producers will need to trim investments by a further $26 billion to meet sacrosanct dividend payments, according to Jefferies Group LLC. Capital spending will have to fall 10 percent next year, Banco Santander SA says. Oil companies are bracing for “lower for longer” prices as a global supply glut persists, dragging crude to the lowest close since March 2009 in New York on Tuesday. Royal Dutch Shell Plc, which has reduced spending 20 percent this year, has “more levers to pull” should the market weaken further, according to Chief Executive Officer Ben Van Beurden.

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Video: Explosion hits Chinese port leaving at least 17 dead

13/08/2015

Huge explosions in an industrial area have sent up massive fireballs that killed at least 17 people and injured hundreds in the Chinese port city of Tianjin. China’s state broadcaster CCTV said 32 people among the 300-400 taken to hospital were in a critical condition. The Beijing News newspaper said on its website that nine firefighters were among the dead. The blasts, originating at a warehouse for hazardous material, blew doors off buildings in the area and shattered windows up to several miles away.

Health & Safety

Statoil hit with improvement notice over ignition risk on platform

12/08/2015

Statoil has been given a deadline by the Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA) in Norway over a number of non-conformities and improvement points on the Heidmal gas processing platform in the North Sea. The list also includes the risk of ignition from the platform. The company has until August 24th to report on improvements it has made since the routine audit took place in June.

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Islamic State group in Egypt alleged to have killed Croatian oil worker

12/08/2015

It is the first such killing of a foreign captive in Egypt since the extremists set up a branch here. The killing of the 30-year-old oil and gas sector surveyor likely will rattle companies with expatriate workers in Egypt and cast a cloud over President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi’s attempts to boost international investment to revive the economy, battered by years of turmoil. The still image, shared by IS sympathisers on social media, appeared to show the body of Tomislav Salopek, a married, father of two, wearing a beige jumpsuit looking like the one he had worn in a previous video. A black flag used by IS and a knife were planted in the sand next to him.

Oil & Gas

BP’s Indiana refinery outage ripples through US oil market

12/08/2015

For want of a refinery unit in Indiana, oil is tumbling in Oklahoma and Alberta while gasoline in the Midwest is soaring. Leaking tubes on a piece of equipment forced BP Plc to shut the largest crude unit at its refinery near Chicago over the weekend, according to a person familiar with operations there. It could be down for at least a month. The shutdown of the most important unit in the biggest plant in the Midwest has disrupted markets throughout the region. It puts extra oil onto an already-oversupplied market and cuts the supply of gasoline to the Midwest in the middle of peak summer demand. That’s helped push heavy Canadian crude to trade at the lowest level in a year and propelled wholesale gasoline in Chicago to the highest level since 2013.

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Drop in oil and gas prices leads to hotel revenue fall

12/08/2015

Low oil and gas prices steered Aberdeen hotels to double-digit percentage falls in both occupancy and revenue for the second month on the trot, a new report says. And there is uncertainty as to whether hotel prices will be ratcheted up for next month’s Offshore Europe conference, a common practice in the Granite City. Aberdeen hotel rooms generated £52.45 a night on average in May, down an alarming 30% year-on-year, according to accountancy network BDO’s survey of three and four star establishments. Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness all experienced strong increases in revenue, though the Scottish capital was the only location to enjoy a rise in occupancy.

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Oil major BP gives glimpse of incredible Shah Deniz platforms

12/08/2015

Oil major BP has shown a wireframe glimpse of the Shah Deniz 2 platforms in Azerbaijan. The image was revealed after it was announced the offshore natural gas field project would receive a package of $1billion from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD and the Black Sea and Trade and Development Bank (BSTDB).

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Australia to reduce carbon emissions by more than a quarter by 2030

11/08/2015

Australia is expected to announce plans to reduce its carbon emissions by at least 26% of 2005 levels by 2030. The move could see the country trail ahead of other regions. Australia is the world’s largest exporter of coal and iron ore and is one of the largest carbon emitters on a per capita basis due to its reliance on coal-fired power plants.

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Kenya Power Signs Geothermal, Hydropower Deals for 76 Megawatts

11/08/2015

Kenya Power & Lighting Ltd., the East African nation’s sole electricity distributor, will sign two purchase agreements for 76 megawatts of geothermal energy and hydropower. The utility will buy 70 megawatts from Akiira Geothermal Ltd., a project developer, and Marine Power Generation Ltd., its development partner, it said. The distributor will also purchase 6 megawatts from Kleen Energy, a local hydropower producer.

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Ceona chairman to stand down

11/08/2015

The chairman of Ceona’s board has stepped down with immediate effect due to ill-health. The SURF contractor said John Smith had played a pivotal role in overseeing the growth of Ceona since its inception three years ago. Smith has worked in the oil and gas industry for more than 30 years and helped lead the process which formed Subsea 7.

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Workers take legal action after Mexico rig collapse

11/08/2015

Workers who were injured when a rig collapsed earlier this year have sued the rig manufacturer. The move follows an incident in the Bay of Campeche in the Gulf of Mexico in May in which a worker was killed. The 26 employees have taken legal action against Friede & Goldman and its affiliates Friede & Goldman LLC, FG Engineering Ltd and FG Engineering Ltd and FKA Friede & Goldman Ltd.

Oil & Gas

Shell ends ties with lobby group over climate change stance

10/08/2015

Oil giant Shell is said to have ended its ties with the market lobby group the American Legislature Exchange Council (ALEC). The company said the move was as a result of their climate change stance being “inconsistent” with their own. A spokesman said:"While we engage with a number of organisations on selected, and often complex, energy topics, we don't always agree on every position adopted by these organisations.

Health & Safety

US pipeline shut-in after fire

07/08/2015

A natural gas liquids pipeline has been shut after it went on fire in Colorado. Williams Companies said the incident occurred after the six-inch wide pipeline was struck by a third-party conduction excavation. No one was injured following the fire which was being monitored by the fire department.

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Tributes paid to much-loved offshore boss

06/08/2015

An offshore industry boss who thought he had picked up a bug while working in north Africa was diagnosed with one of the world’s rarest cancers. Tom Bruce – who was taken ill after a business trip to Egypt – lost his brave battle with the disease with his family at his bedside. And last night the 43-year-old oil and gas operations manager with Aberdeen-based Rowan Drilling was described as an “amazing professional” who never stopped fighting. Following his diagnosis with pseudomyxoma peritonei (PMP).he had “one good year” when he managed to work full time despite his illness. But in January his condition began to deteriorate and he started chemotherapy. The dad-of-two, who lived in Stonehaven, died at Roxburghe House in Aberdeen. His heartbroken wife Patricia described him as her best friend, a loving father and a “proud Torry loon”. Mrs Bruce said: “He was the best person I have ever met in my life. He was an amazing professional. “He was humble and I think that is why he got where he got. I am so proud. As a husband he always, always looked after us, always thinking about the future, always preparing for the future. “The plan was one day being in a hot country, retired, it didn’t happen unfortunately. He was my best friend, we always had so much to talk about.”

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Finnish companies back nuclear plant as funding deadline looms

05/08/2015

Finnish companies signed up to help fund a nuclear plant in the far north as a government deadline loomed to line up financing. State-controlled utility Fortum Oyj, stainless steel maker Outokumpu Oyj and real estate developer SRV Oyj on Wednesday announced plans to either buys stakes in the Fennovoima Oy project or increase their current holdings. Finnish investors had been deserting the project, approved more than five years ago, in droves as electricity prices declined and the country’s economy contracted. The last minute commitments from some local powerhouses may allow the government to fulfill its publicly stated goal of having 60 percent ownership for the new reactor from within the European Union and European Free Trade Association.

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