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US Forest Service eyes drilling approval for Ruby Mountains

The US Forest Service is considering a proposal to allow oil and gas exploration in Nevada’s Ruby Mountains. The proposal would open more than 50,000 acres to drilling, with caveats that operators could not disturb the surface of the mountain range. The Forest Service’s proposal is detailed in a draft environmental assessment, which was obtained by the Center for Biological Diversity, an environmental group opposed to drilling. If the plan is adopted, drilling companies will be able to place rigs on adjacent BLM property and utilize directional drilling techniques to access any reserves under the mountains. The 75-mile long stretch of land being considered runs down the mountain range’s western slope, right through the middle of the Pine Valley play ...

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US rig count continues to rise

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The US total rig count hit 941 this week, a seven-rig increase from one week ago, according to the Baker Hughes weekly rig count. Of these, 758 rigs are drilling for oil and 183 are gas rigs. Last year at this time, there were only 421 total rigs in the US – 397 onshore, 21 offshore and three in inland waters.

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Mediterranean Maritime Hub introduces rig pit stop concept in Malta

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Malta-based Mediterranean Maritime Hub (MMH) has launched a concept called “Rig Pit Stop” that aims to allow companies to cut costs without cutting capability. “The ‘Pit Stop’ principle is that a rig can come in and offload, for example, a BOP whole and bring on a new BOP that’s sitting there,” Steve Colville, MMH CEO and former CEO/President of IADC, said. “The old one is refurbished once the rig has left, so the rig does not have to wait while the equipment is refurbished. We think it’s possible to reduce yard costs by at least 15%.”

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D&C News

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BSEE to launch pilot risk-based inspection program for offshore facilities The US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) is launching a pilot risk-based inspection program that will use a systematic approach, relying on both a quantitative model and qualitative performance and risk-related data. “By focusing on facilities based upon their risk factors, BSEE can more efficiently and effectively manage limited inspection and audit resources,” BSEE Director Brian Salerno said. “Risk factors include design, operating and environmental characteristics of the facility, which may correlate to a greater likelihood of experiencing an incident. However, it does not mean that the facility has a bad safety record or is a poor safety performer, only that certain risk factors are present that must ...

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