Good article in yesterday's Journal --
WSJ (subscription): In Caspian, Big Oil Fights Ice, Lethal Fumes -- and Kazakhs.
"Under Eni, the original production start-up date had been pushed back from 2005 to the end of 2010. Earlier this year, Eni announced that the cost of the field's initial phase would be $19 billion, rather than the $10 billion it had previously flagged. Oil majors blame rising costs on a shortage of skilled engineers and project managers, soaring steel prices and expensive leases for new drilling rigs.
"Kazakhstan was unconvinced. ‘When costs increase by 5%, by 10%, that's one thing,’ Kazakh Prime Minister Karim Masimov said in an interview earlier this month. Projected costs over the 40-year life of the project, he said, had increased to $136 billion from $57 billion. ‘When they rise by two and a half times, either the planning was wrong, or the execution is wrong, or it was deliberate.’"
Offshore Shipping Online: Schlumberger acquires Geosystem.
"Schlumberger has announced the acquisition of Geosystem, a Milan-based provider of land and marine electromagnetics (EM) and seismic imaging services.... Geosystem has 55 employees and will become part of WesternGeco Electromagnetics -- which was previously known as AGO."
Offshore Shipping Online: CGGVeritas acquires 15 per cent interest in OHM.
"... CGGVeritas and OHM entered into a strategic operating alliance under which both companies will jointly develop the global market for Controlled Source Electromagnetic imaging (CSEM)...."
Houston Chronicle: Western Gulf offshore bids called 'very good'.
"With emphasis on potential finds in deep water and a continued return to shallow areas once thought depleted of recoverable natural gas, companies made high bids totaling $290 million for 282 federal offshore oil and gas leases in the western Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday."
"Based on the number of total apparent high bids submitted, BP Exploration & Production Inc. topped the list with 91 bids totaling more than $31 million. Statoil Gulf of Mexico LLC, however, placed 36 high bids totaling nearly $139 million--the highest total sum offered--and it held second place after BP for total number of apparent high bids submitted. All of these leases were in the Alaminos Canyon and Keathley Canyon areas of the gulf."
"While global oil markets are currently well supplied, volatility in U.S. financial markets is clouding the outlook for world oil demand and economic growth next year, OPEC Secretary General Abdalla Salem el-Badri said Monday."
Houston Business Journal: Geokinetics chief steps down.
"David Johnson has resigned as president and chief executive of Geokinetics Inc."
Press Release: CGGVeritas Announces Q2 2007 Results.
"CGGVeritas Chairman & CEO, Robert BRUNCK, commented, ‘I am pleased that our performance, in the industry's typically slow seasonal quarter, was inline with our expectations enabling CGGVeritas in our first six months following the merger to reach our mid year goals.’"
PR Newswire: I/O Reports Second Quarter 2007 Results.
"Input/Output, Inc. today announced second quarter 2007 net income of $7.1 million, or $0.08 per diluted share, on revenues of $165.2 million compared to net income of $14.4 million, or $0.16 per diluted share, on revenues of $141.0 million for the same period a year ago."
"Norwegian seismic surveyor TGS-Nopec posted on Thursday a drop in profits for the second quarter, missing market expectations for a rise, hit by project delays and a less favourable mix of sales."
Press Release: WesternGeco expands wide-azimuth surveys in the Gulf of Mexico.
"The final deliverables for these surveys will include the latest state-of-the-art technologies such as anisotropic multi-azimuthal tomography, wavefield extrapolation demultiple and shot domain WEM with angle gathers."
The Telegraph, Calcutta: Reliance to pump $14bn into E&P.
"The company is planning to undertake extensive seismic activities in all the major basins and could drill over 100 wells in the next three to four years."
The Age, Australia: Whale of a tail a hopeful sign.
"Two whales at Bells Beach and a young whale spotted at Logans Beach in Warrnambool are believed to be southern right whales. Department of Sustainability and Environment wildlife officer Mandy Watson said the Logans Beach sighting was a positive sign after earlier fears that whales had been deterred from the traditional calving area by seismic testing by oil companies in May and June."
Associated Press: Gunmen attack boat exploring for oil in Uganda, killing 1 worker.
"The boat, operated by Canada's Heritage Oil, was being used to conduct seismic surveys on Lake Albert, near the Congo border."
"During this attack, Mr Carl Nefdt was shot and he died."
New Vision, Uganda: Oil workers attack unacceptable.
"Though Congo's defence minister says he does not believe the attackers were soldiers of the Congolese army FARDC, facts on the ground indicate otherwise. "
"But Congo's Oil Minister Lambert Mende said the army was merely returning fire."
Houston Chronicle: Marathon makes $5.5 billion deal for Calgary-based entity.
"Marathon Oil Corp. is joining Canada's oil sands party. And while $5.5 billion may seem high for a cover charge, analysts applauded the Houston-based company's cash-and-stock acquisition of Calgary-based Western Oil Sands, which gives Marathon a foothold in the world's second-largest bounty of oil reserves, second only to Saudi Arabia."
Anchorage Daily News: Shell, Whalers Reach Drilling Deal.
"Under the agreement, Shell agrees to move only one of its drilling ships, the Frontier Discoverer, into position at the Sivulliq oil prospect initially this summer, and to halt drilling operations on Aug. 25 and move away the ship within two days. This will clear the area for the Cross Island whale hunt." ...
"The whaling captains were afraid noisy drilling operations might drive the bowheads farther offshore, increasing the danger for whaling crews forced to range farther in small boats to hunt and harpoon whales."