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September/October

Suzanne Browne, ENSCO: There’s no substitute for the drilling contracting business

In a way, Suzanne Browne, a senior account manager with ENSCO Offshore, grew up around the oil industry. She was raised in Tulsa, Okla., when it was still a big oilfield town. And her mother worked for Gulf Oil (now Chevron) for more than 30 years in the downstream segment. Her mother’s successful career left a good impression of the industry on Ms Browne, but going into college at the University of Oklahoma in the late 1980s, she recalled having no specific intentions of becoming a second-generation oilfield worker. In fact, she said she ended up picking economics as her major because it provided a variety of different career options. “It seemed like it would open up a lot of ...

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People, Companies & Products

John Rynd appointed CEO, president of Hercules Offshore Hercules Offshore has appointed John T Rynd as the company’s chief executive officer and president, succeeding Randall D Stilley, who has resigned as CEO, president and a director. Mr Rynd also has been appointed as a director. He has served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of the company since July 2007. He joined the company in September 2005, serving as senior vice president of Hercules Offshore and president of Hercules Drilling Company. Previously, Mr Rynd spent 15 years at Noble Drilling Services and worked on offshore drilling rigs for Rowan Companies for 10 years. Schlumberger acquires depth imaging technology provider Schlumberger has acquired Staag Imaging, a Houston-based provider of ...

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NOV expands Technical College with Houston facility

As of Q2 2008, National Oilwell Varco (NOV) was reporting a $10.8 billion backlog in capital equipment orders for its rig technology segment. Considering that more than 170 offshore drilling rigs are under construction worldwide, that backlog may not seem like such a surprising number. Still, it undoubtedly demonstrates the level of demand manufacturers and suppliers are facing. So how can they meet this demand in a timely and efficient way? For NOV, the answer appears to lie in training, which will be critical not only to the company itself but also to its customers. “The industry must push hard on training. As the new deepwater rigs come out, the demand for service people and experience will only increase,” NOV ...

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D&C Tech Digest

First injection of water achieved in Shell’s Ursa/Princess Waterflood project in GOM Shell announced it has achieved another milestone in the Ursa/Princess Waterflood project. First injection of water occurred on 3 July 2008 and is planned to continue for the next 30 years. With a listed volume enhancement capacity of 30,000 bbl/day of oil equivalent, the waterflood is expected to extend the life of the field by 10 years. “The Ursa/Princess Waterflood project represents a significant investment by Shell and the other interest owners in one of the most prolific areas in the Gulf of Mexico — the Ursa-Mars basin. Ursa-Princess has produced nearly 400 million bbl of oil equivalent to date, and we believe potential exists for continued development ...

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D&C News

Angola Block 31 developments get green light Sonangol E.P. has authorized BP and its co-venturers to develop a series of deepwater oil discoveries in offshore Angola’s Block 31. The program is based on a standardized development concept intended to reduce cycle time, optimize capital and maximize operating efficiency through standardized design, fabrication and commissioning. The first project in the program will comprise the Plutão, Saturno, Vênus and Marte (PSVM) fields, which lie in the northeast sector of Block 31, in a water depth of approximately 2,000 m, some 400 km northwest of Luanda. Construction work is expected to start during 2008, with first oil planned in 2011 and building to a plateau of about 150,000 bbl/day by 2012. BP and ...

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Money no object’ if faster, better wells the result

By Mike Killalea, editor & publisher “Money is no object” – for technology to deliver wells efficiently, say operators hungry for practical, groundbreaking tools for well construction. “If it’s something that will deliver wells and deliver them fast, (funding and development) will happen,” declared an operator to whom, clearly, new and effective technology is near and dear to the heart. Field trials for new tools have been a struggle to achieve, service firms say. But with today’s pressure to produce, word is that some operators will lend wells for testing new equipment. “If you want to try something in a few wells, come on,” said Morris Keene, director-drilling engineering for Occidental Oil & Gas Central Drilling Group (Oxy), and Chairman ...

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News Cuttings

North Sea Chapter donates to UK charities The Oil Chaplaincy Trust and the Anthony Nolan Trust have been selected as charities that will receive funds collected at the North Sea Chapter (NSC) Annual Safety Awards. A total of £4,660 was raised through personal and company donations and with the chapter’s pledge to match all funds raised. NSC chairman Steve Rae of Seawell led a cheque presentation at UK Oil and Gas Chaplaincy offices. Ex-officio NSC vice chairman Roger Hodgson of KCA DEUTAG and John Davies of Odfjell Drilling were also present. The Rev Andrew Jolly of the Oil Chaplaincy Trust expressed his thanks to the IADC and all those who contributed at the awards dinner for their continuing support. IFECM ...

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Wirelines

EPA may draft national cbm regulations The US Environmental Protection Agency indicated it’s on the path to formulating national regulations for coalbed methane (CBM) operations under the Clean Water Act. IPAA and five other major national trade associations, including IADC, joined by 38 state producer trade groups, have vigorously protested this initiative as unwarranted, and reiterated opposition in an 8 August comment to the docket. Industry cited the fact that EPA has not demonstrated that there is an environmental problem warranting national regulations. Moreover, the long-established National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) provides a reliable and tested framework, structured to delegate the permitting process to state regulatory agencies. IADC group, Indonesian tax reps meet An IADC delegation, led by Lane ...

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IADC operations push forward with focus on improving drilling efficiency worldwide

It’s been another exciting and challenging year as IADC strives to fulfill the needs of an intensely demanding and always-evolving industry. In government affairs, for example, we continue to provide critical input on the EU’s Working Time Directive and critical court appeals that will impact day-to-day drilling operations. Our accreditation & certification department is further expanding its portfolio of services as the wider industry works to ensure the competency of our workers. Regulatory issues – such as the emerging biofouling challenge in Australia – have been closely monitored so that members won’t be caught short by unfair or unreasonable rules. We’re also pushing ahead with vital initiatives such as Career Connection, the Environmental Policy Advisory Panel and the newly set-up ...

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American reality TV show doesn’t come close to portraying the reality of industry’s rigs

By Joe Leimkuhler, Shell E&P If you have not seen the TV series “Black Gold” (broadcast on the TruTV channel on American television), you may have heard about it. Based on online reviews and trailers, the show appears to have attracted quite a following:  Variety: “It’s undeniably entertaining.” Dallas Morning News: “… You’ve got a show that’s at once an amalgam of every good-ol’-boy cliché and utterly authentic.” To the average person unfamiliar with a well-run drilling operation, the show is captivating and interesting. However, it is also wrong on so many levels. In the view of the American Association of Drilling Engineers (AADE), this show is a disgrace to our industry. “Black Gold” does not represent the efficient, safe ...

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