Seagreen Wind Energy Ltd has requested a scoping opinion from Marine Scotland Licensing Operations Team, on behalf of Scottish Ministers, for the proposed 1.05GW Seagreen Phase 1 wind farm project. This scoping request, submitted mid-May, was accompanied by a scoping report which identifies the potentially significant impacts associated with the proposed development during construction, operation and decommissioning.The scoping report details the proposed scope for the environmental impact assessment(EIA) and eventual production of an environmental statement (ES) to accompany consents applications for the development.The scoping report also identifies key design changes associated with the proposed development over the previous consent applications and considers the implications of these changes in terms of environmental impacts.Through submitting the scoping request, Seagreen is seeking to use of the advances in wind turbine technology and design since the original consent application was submitted.The prospective development would be located within the same area as that considered in the 2012 EIA for the Seagreen Alpha and Seagreen Bravo sites.The Scoping Report also marks the beginning of consultation with stakeholders and consultees to commence discussion of the survey methodologies to inform the EIA.Seagreen Wind Energy Limited, a joint venture partnership between SSE and Fluor, was awarded by The Crown Estate the exclusive development rights for the Firth of Forth Zone of the UK’s Round 3 offshore wind farm development programme.The zone is located approximately 25km east of Fife and covers an area of 2,852km2.The project is being developed in two phases, with the 1.05GW Phase 1 in the northern area of the zone being developed first, followed by the 1.4GW Phase 2 in the south eastern area.In October 2014, following submission of an Environmental Statement and further consultation with the relevant statutory bodies to complete the Habitats Regulations Assessment process, Seagreen Wind Energy Ltd received consent for Phase 1 of the development from Scottish Ministers for two offshore wind farms, Seagreen Alpha and Seagreen Bravo. These projects each have a capacity of 525MW.
USACE photo by Patrick BloodgoodThe U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District, has just announced more details about recently awarded beach renourishment project in Ocean City, Maryland.The $12.7 million renourishment scheme, to be conducted by Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company (GLDD), will involve the placement of roughly 900,000 cubic yards of sand on the beach at Ocean City to restore the engineered beach berm to its full design elevation.Work on the beach is expected to begin sometime after the Labor Day holiday, said USACE.The beach berm, which is the wide, flat beach in front of the boardwalk and dunes, is an engineered beach that is an element of the overall coastal storm risk management project at Ocean City.“Most people may not realize it, but the beach at Ocean City enjoyed by so many visitors is actually an engineered beach that is designed to be part of a system to reduce coastal storm damages,” said Project Manager Justin Callahan. “This renourishment is an important part of the long-term commitment to maintaining this coastal storm risk management project and we’re delighted to be able to begin work later this year.”The coastal storm risk management project at Ocean City consists primarily of the 8-plus mile-long wide, flat beach berm constructed to 7 feet above mean high tide, backstopped by a concrete-capped steel sheet pile bulkhead along the boardwalk and a vegetated sand dune north of the boardwalk to the Maryland-Delaware state line.Renourishment of the beach is part of the long-term construction schedule of the coastal storm risk management project. It is generally carried out every four years, but will begin ahead of schedule this year to repair the impacts to the project from the January 2016 storm often referred to as Winter Storm Jonas.[mappress mapid=”24277″]
Houston-based Vaalco Energy has begun workover operations to restore production to two wells currently shut-in on the Avouma platform offshore Gabon.Vaalco said on Tuesday that the workover operations on the platform began on May 17, 2018.The company added that the work on the platform entailed replacing electric submersible pumps (ESPs) on the Avouma 2-H and South Tchibala 1-HB wells.The ESP on the Avouma 2-H well failed in November 2017 and the well was temporarily shut-in. Vaalco also experienced an ESP failure in a different well on the same platform, South Tchibala 1-HB, on December 24, 2017, resulting in that well also being temporarily shut-in.According to Vaalco, net production of approximately 750 net barrels of oil per day (bopd) may be restored if both workovers are successful.Cary Bounds, Vaalco CEO, said: “[…] our workover operations to restore production from two shut-in wells on the Avouma platform have commenced. We are hopeful that modifications to the design of the downhole ESP equipment, improvements in the installation procedures and upgrades to the surface control systems on the platform will result in improved operational reliability.“With the additional 750 net bopd of production that these wells could bring back online if the workover operations are successful, coupled with higher Brent pricing, we will continue to enhance our ability to generate cash in 2018.”Vaalco also said that its subsidiary paid off the outstanding balance on its amended term loan agreement with the International Finance Corporation (IFC).On March 31, 2018, debt, net of deferred financing costs, totaled $7 million. The total payoff amount for the principal and accrued interest since March 31 was approximately $7.2 million.Vaalco now has no debt on the balance sheet for the first time since June 30, 2014. The company said that it saved over $0.3 million in interest over the next year.“We are realizing significant cash flow generation due to the strong improvement in Brent oil prices with no hedges currently in place. This is allowing us to eliminate all of our outstanding debt and strengthen our balance sheet. We are improving our financial position in anticipation of a development drilling campaign on our offshore Gabon asset in 2019,” Bounds said.
EnergyQuest said that Queensland’s gas flowed west at a net rate of 2.8 PJ, continuing the trend in June.CSG production increased slightly, the review shows. Production from fields operated by the LNG producers was 111 PJ in June, up from 106 PJ in May.Total LNG pipeline flows were 97 PJ in June compared with 98 PJ in May.Queensland short-term domestic gas prices in June were well above those in May. Southern short-term domestic gas prices in June were also above May levels. Gas flows and CSG production up Australian liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports rose 18.5 percent to 59.7 million tonnes in 2017-18, according to a report by the energy consultancy, EnergyQuest.The largest contributor to the jump in exports were the shipments from Chevron’s Gorgon and Wheatstone LNG projects.Gorgon LNG’s exports rose by 6.9 million tons to 12.7 mt while the Wheatstone LNG project contributed 2.1 mt, as both facilities are moving towards full production capacity of 15.6 mtpa and 8.9 mtpa from Gorgon and Wheatstone, respectively.Shipments to China were also a significant contributor as China accounted for 34 percent of Australian LNG deliveries rising by 6.5 mtpa, the consultancy said.The largest importer of Australian LNG volumes remains Japan with 46 percent, as deliveries increased by 2.1 mt in the year. Deliveries to South Korea also increased and comprised 11 percent of deliveries, coming from both east and west coast projects.EnergyQuest estimates LNG export revenue was $30.8 billion in 2017-18, up 38 percent on the previous year due to both higher export volumes and higher prices, reflecting higher oil prices to which LNG prices are indexed.Asian spot LNG prices have risen during June and the Platts JKM reached US$11.60/MMBtu in mid-June (for July deliveries) before dropping to $10.37/MMBtu (for August deliveries) late in the month.Deliveries from the LNG projects on the West coast shipped 3.8 million tons in June, compared to 3.2 mt in May, while East coast projects shipped 1.63 mt in June compared to 1.57 mt in May.
The environment plan for 3D Oil Limited’s Sauropod 3D marine seismic survey in Commonwealth waters of the Roebuck Basin, within exploration permit WA-527-P off Australia, is now open for public comment, according to Australia’s offshore regulator, NOPSEMA. 3D Oil submitted the plan to NOPSEMA on July 16, 2019. The purpose of the Sauropod 3D marine seismic survey is to collect high quality geophysical data about rock formations and structures beneath the seabed and assess potential for new oil and gas discoveries.The acquisition area comprises the area within which 3D seismic acquisition will be undertaken and covers approximately 3,500 km2. The acquisition area is surrounded by a larger operational area (approximately 6,000 km2), for the purpose of line turns, run-ins, run-outs, seismic testing and support activities.The operational area at its closest is approximately 120 km north of Eighty Mile Beach and 230 km west of Broome. The seismic survey will be undertaken in water depths between approximately 95 m to 172 m.The survey will involve a single seismic survey vessel towing a seismic source array with a total volume of 3,090 cubic inches (in3), at a water depth of approximately 5 – 10 m. The seismic source will use compressed air to emit regular pulses of sound that reflect off the seabed and underlying rock formations. The reflected sound wave will be received by up to 12 hydrophone streamers.Each streamer will be up to 7,000 m in length, spaced 75 m apart and towed at a depth of approximately 15 m. During the survey, the seismic survey vessel will travel at a speed of approximately 4.5 knots, discharging the seismic source approximately every 5 seconds.The survey vessel will typically acquire seismic data along a series of adjacent and parallel lines in a “racetrack” pattern. When the vessel completes the line, it will turn again to follow another line offset approximately 450 m from the first. This pattern is repeated until the required coverage is completed.The Sauropod 3D MSS will take a maximum of 60 days to acquire, and will be undertaken within the acquisition window of January to April 2020, or January to April 2021. The precise timing of the survey is subject to vessel availability, weather conditions and other operational considerations, and will take into account the seasonality of environmental sensitivities, where practicable.Spotted a typo? Have something more to add to the story? Maybe a nice photo? Contact our editorial team via email. Also, if you’re interested in showcasing your company, product or technology on Offshore Energy Today, please contact us via our advertising form where you can also see our media kit.
The Norwegian oil company Aker BP has posted a net loss for the third quarter, and a below expected production due to delays in the Valhall field well stimulation program.The Valhall field; Image source: Aker BPAker BP reported revenues of $723 million for the quarter down from $966 million a year ago, and also down from 785 million in q2 2019, citing lower oil and gas prices, partly mitigated by an increase in sold volumes.The company’s net loss for the quarter was $43 million, down from a $63 million profit in Q2 2019, and a drop compared to a net profit of $116 million in the third quarter of 2018.Explaining the net loss, Aker BP said: “Profit before taxes amounted to USD 143 million. Taxes amounted to USD 186 million for the third quarter, representing an effective tax rate of 130 percent.The tax rate was negatively impacted by the impairment of technical goodwill, which is not tax-deductible, in addition to currency movements during the quarter. This resulted in a net loss for the third quarter of 2019 of USD 43 million, compared to a net profit of USD 62 million in the previous quarter.”The company’s net production in the third quarter was 146.1 (127.3) thousand barrels of oil equivalents per day (“mboepd”). Net sold volume was 143.3 (140.7) mboepd.The production volumes, while higher than in the second quarter, were below Aker BP’s plan. The reason for this lays in delays in the stimulation program at the Valhall field in the Norwegian North Sea following the planned maintenance shutdown in June.The average realized liquids price was $62.0 (2Q $69.3) per barrel, while the realized price for natural gas averaged $0.16 (Q2 0.16) per standard cubic meter (“scm”).“Stimulation operations have been performed at the southern flank and the field center in order to bring new wells on stream. A second stimulation vessel was contracted in order to mitigate delays in the stimulation program. Slot recovery commenced on the field center in preparation for drilling operations and development of the lower Hod formation,” Aker BP said.Looking ahead the company forecast full-year 2019 production would be circa 155 mboepd, around the low end of the previously communicated range of 155-160 mboepd mainly due to the delays in the stimulation of new wells at Valhall.Further down the road, production is expected to be boosted significantly as the giant Johan Sverdrup field was brought on stream early October, and Valhall Flank West remains on track for first oil later this year.Offshore Energy Today StaffSpotted a typo? Have something more to add to the story? Maybe a nice photo? Contact our editorial team via email.Also, if you’re interested in showcasing your company, product or technology on Offshore Energy Today, please contact us via our advertising form where you can also see our media kit.
The UK remains the world’s biggest offshore wind market with 9.7GW of total installed capacity. Germany retains its second place with a total of 7.5GW of operational capacity. China, currently in third place, has 4.9GW of installed offshore wind power. Global offshore wind installations reached 27,213MW by the end of 2019, according to Global Offshore Wind Report 2019 by World Forum Offshore Wind (WFO). South Korea and France Emerge as Floating Wind Hot Spots Gunnar Herzig, Managing Director, WFO, said: “WFO’s new global offshore wind figures clearly illustrate two major trends: Firstly, China’s rapid growth will make it the world’s largest offshore wind market during the 2020s. Secondly, floating offshore wind is gaining serious traction. While the last decade was its demonstration phase, the 2020s will bring the commercial breakthrough for floating offshore wind.” 5,194MW of offshore wind capacity went into operation during the last year, making 2019 a new record year in terms of new global offshore wind installations with a 24% growth as compared to 2018, WFO said. The disruption in the German offshore wind market caused by regulatory framework changes is reflected in the comparatively low capacity currently under construction of only 220MW, WFO said. The Netherlands is the second-largest market for offshore wind projects under construction with 1.5GW. China and the Netherlands Leading Offshore Construction Charge Worldwide, 16 new offshore wind farms went into operation during 2019 in China, UK, Germany, Denmark, Belgium, and Taiwan. 146 offshore wind farms are now up and running around the globe. Floating offshore wind is also making significant progress. Announcements for two large-scale floating projects in South Korea brought the total floating offshore wind development pipeline to around 1GW. Looking at offshore wind farms under construction, China clearly leads the way, WFO said, with a total capacity of 3.7GW currently under construction. With four floating offshore wind projects under development in the Atlantic Ocean as well as the Mediterranean Sea, France is the front runner in this new market, WFO said.
The multi-sector industry coalition SEA-LNG released a new study analyzing the availability and costs of Liquefied Bio Methane (LBM) and Liquefied Synthetic Methane (LSM) and the potential to contribute to future decarbonization for the shipping industry. The biomass resources from which LBM can be produced are globally available. The availability of LSM will be dependent on the future build-out of renewable electricity capacity and therefore relies on investment within this space. This will also be a key driver within the development of other synthetic fuels reliant on renewable electricity, such as green hydrogen and ammonia. The study concludes that both could become available in sufficient quantities to make a contribution towards future decarbonization for the shipping industry and that the costs need not be significantly higher than those of other low- and zero-carbon fuels. “In combination, the studies we have commissioned definitely proves that, through LBM and LSM, LNG offers a clear pathway to net zero-carbon emissions from shipping while also future-proofing ship owners’ investments,” Keller said. “The shipping industry faces unprecedented challenges if it is to meet the IMO’s decarbonization targets,” commented Peter Keller, chairman, SEA-LNG. Further, the growing LNG-fueled fleet could use LBM or LSM without requiring major modifications, and the existing supply infrastructure will remain fit for bunkering purposes with either fuel. The production costs of LBM and LSM could be broadly comparable to other renewable fuels like green hydrogen and ammonia. Analysis of the global sustainable biomass resource shows that biomethane from energy crops, agricultural residues, forestry products and residues could significantly exceed the global total energy demand of the maritime sector. The sustainable potential for LBM could be substantially higher in 2050 compared to 2030, even when excluding aquatic biomass, which has the potential to play a dominant role in the long term. Dagmar Nelissen (CE Delft), said, “Based on an extensive review of the global availability of biomass, and the maturity of technologies to produce biomethane and synthetic methane, we conclude that, in principle, sufficient amounts could be produced to fuel the shipping sector. However, other sectors are also likely to demand methane, and there needs to be significant investments in production capacity.” The study explores the potential availability and cost of LBM and LSM produced from renewable electricity with the aim of providing industry-leading, timely, and proven analysis to support the growing case for LBM and LSM in driving forward LNG as a decarbonization solution towards 2030, 2050, and beyond, SEA-LNG said. Compared to those fuels, LBM and LSM have the advantage that they can be transported, stored and bunkered, utilizing existing and technically matured LNG infrastructure. The study was conducted by independent research and consultancy organization CE Delft and commissioned by SEA-LNG. He further noted that by investing in LNG-fuelled vessels now, ship owners can realize immediate GHG benefits – up to 21 percent on a Well-to-Wake basis and 28 percent, Tank-to-Wake, including the impact of methane emissions. These LNG-based assets can use non-fossil fuel methane such as LBM and LSM with little to no modifications. As LBM and LSM become available at scale, the carbon-free future will become reality. The findings are that both LBM and LSM are scalable solutions for the maritime sector, with estimated sustainable global supplies potentially exceeding the demands of shipping in the future, and likely to be commercially competitive relative to other low- and zero-carbon fuels. Image courtesy of MAN
MercatorNet 13 November 2014For decades, popular media has excelled in reporting the harms of tobacco use, and generated significant positive peer pressure to break and/or avoid the habit among adults and youth alike. As a result, Big Tobacco has been almost irredeemably demonized. Popular media’s treatment of marijuana, in contrast, is often characterized by sloppy reporting, and increasingly appears to have pot fast-tracked for canonization as the panacea to all medical, economic and social ills.Twenty-three states and the District of Columbia currently have laws legalizing marijuana in some form. Midterm referenda earlier this month resulted in the legalization of recreational marijuana use in Washington DC, Oregon and Alaska, which joined the states of Washington and Colorado. This has been hailed by proponents of repealing the federal ban as a triumph in the march against the failed draconian policy of prohibition.Curiously, a few days later, the sleepy little town of Westminster, Massachusetts received kudos in the media for potentially becoming the first municipality in America to ban the sale of all tobacco products. Exactly why is this “Prohibition” being championed as “progressive” rather than disparaged as “draconian?” According to the article it is because this prohibition will prevent tobacco from impairing and/or shortening the lives of 5.6 million children. While I applaud this focus on children’s well-being, I sorely wish children’s health were the focus of a battle against an enemy with far more dire consequences to children than tobacco : Big Marijuana.Even medical marijuana alone, which remains scientifically problematic as explained in a previous MercatorNet article, increases the availability of pot among adolescents. A 2014 survey of Colorado teens in substance abuse treatment centers found that 74 percent obtained their pot from a medical marijuana patient. A recent multi-state study, involving thousands of high school seniors, found that 10 percent of non-users would try marijuana if it were legal in their state. Among those seniors in the study who already used marijuana, 18 percent said they would smoke more if it were legal. Already, by 2011, more kids were smoking marijuana than were smoking cigarettes. It seems kids, like their parents and many American adults, view marijuana as less harmful than tobacco. This is a myth with potentially grave consequences.http://www.mercatornet.com/articles/view/a_win_for_big_marijuana_is_a_major_loss_for_children
OneNews 3 January 2015Jennifer Lopez broke down while admitting she felt like she was “going to die” when her marriage to Marc Anthony broke up.The 45-year-old singer – who was married to the singer/songwriter for 10 years until their divorce last year – insists she tried her very best to make their relationship work but it wasn’t to be and she experienced more pain than she ever had before when the former couple went through a divorce.Speaking on HBO documentary ‘Jennifer Lopez: Dance Again’, the emotional star said: “I remember being on the set and being in my dressing room and not feeling like I could get up in the morning and there’s just no pain like that. There’s no pain or failure like going through a divorce.“That hope, that dream, that fairytale, with that first time that dream gets blown to pieces, you feel like you’re going to die.“You feel like you failed. You feel like no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t make it work.”Jennifer admitted her and 46-year-old Marc’s divorce was particularly agonising because she knew their children, six-year-old twins Max and Emme, would be devastated.http://tvnz.co.nz/entertainment-news/jennifer-lopez-there-s-no-pain-failure-like-divorce-6214035