Total’s Board of Directors Pays Homage to Christophe De Margerie and Organizes the Group’s New Governance

totalTotal-Christophe-de-Margerie-2013-Low-Res-websiteThe Board of Directors met on Wednesday and paid homage to Chairman and CEO Christophe de Margerie, who died tragically in an airplane accident in Moscow on the night of October 20-21, 2014.

After joining the Group in 1974, Christophe de Margerie was appointed to the Executive Committee in 1999, then named CEO of Total on February 14, 2007, and Chairman and CEO on May 21, 2010. He dedicated his brilliant career to the development of the Group, enabling its glowing success in the oil and gas sector and more recently in solar energy. The exceptional human and professional qualities that Christophe de Margerie exhibited during his time at Total were largely responsible for the success of the Group.

Following the recommendations of the Governance & Ethics Committee which met today, the Board of Directors made two unanimous decisions:

It named Thierry Desmarest Chairman of the Board of Directors. Mr. Desmarest is currently a member of the Board and Honorary Chairman of the Board.

It named Patrick Pouyanné Chief Executive Officer and President of the Executive Committee. Until today, he was President of Refining & Chemicals and a member of the Executive Committee. After holding several important executive positions in the Upstream segment in France and internationally over the past fourteen years, Patrick Pouyanné successfully managed the transformation of the Refining & Chemicals segment.

Thierry Desmarest's role as Chairman of the Board of Directors will conclude at the end of 2015 in accordance with the age limits stipulated in the Group's bylaws. The positions of Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer will then be recombined.

Following the designation by the Central Works Council of a Board member to represent employee shareholders, which is scheduled for November 4, 2014, the Group's Board of Directors will consist of fourteen members, including one employee shareholder representative.

Total-desmarestThierry Desmarest

About Thierry Desmarest
A graduate of the École Polytechnique and an Engineer of the French Corps des Mines, Mr. Desmarest served as Director of Mines and Geology in New Caledonia, then as technical advisor at the Offices of the Minister of Industry and the Minister of Economy. He joined TOTAL in 1981, where he held various management positions, then served as President of Exploration & Production until 1995. He served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Total from May 1995 until February 2007, and then as Chairman of the Board of Total until May 21, 2010. He was appointed Honorary Chairman and remains a director of Total and Chairman of the Total Foundation.
Director of TOTAL S.A. since 1995. 
Last renewal: May 17, 2013 until 2016.
Chairman of the Governance & Ethics Committee, member of the
Compensation Committee and the Strategic Committee. 
The Honorary Chairman performs representation missions of the Group at a high level in accordance with the decision of the Board of Directors on May 21, 2010.

 

Total-pouyannePatrick Pouyanné

About Patrick Pouyanné
A graduate of École Polytechnique and an Engineer of the French Corps des Mines. From 1989 to 1996, he held various positions in the French Industry Ministry and in ministerial offices, including Environment and Industry Technical Advisor to the Prime Minister from 1993 to 1995 and Chief of Staff to the Information Technology and Space Minister from 1995 to 1996. He joined Total in January 1997, as Chief Administrative Officer of Total E&P Angola and became Group Representative in Qatar and CEO of Total E&P Qatar in 1999.
In August 2002, he was named Senior Vice President, Finance, Economics and Information Systems in Exploration & Production. In January 2006, he became Senior Vice President, Strategy, Business Development and R&D in Exploration & Production. Patrick Pouyanné has been a member of Total's Management Committee since May 2006. In March 2011, he was appointed Senior Vice President, Chemicals and Senior Vice President, Petrochemicals. In January 2012, Patrick Pouyanné was appointed President, Refining & Chemicals and member of the Executive Committee.

GDF SUEZ and BP Discover New Central North Sea Field

GDF SUEZ E&P UK Ltd and BP today announced a new exploration discovery in the UK Central North Sea. The discovery, which spans GDF SUEZ operated block 30/1f (license P1588) and BP operated block 30/1c (license P363) was flow tested at a maximum rate of 5,350 barrels of oil equivalent per day. The discovery, referred to as 'Marconi' by GDF SUEZ and 'Vorlich' by BP, is located in the Central North Sea.

CNS Marconi Vorlich mapLeft: Location map of Marconi/Vorlich CNS discovery

Ruud Zoon, Managing Director of GDF SUEZ E&P UK Ltd said: "This is an encouraging exploration discovery in a part of the Central North Sea that needs additional volumes of hydrocarbons to open up development options for several stranded discoveries. The discovery is our third successful well this year and demonstrates a continuing commitment by GDF SUEZ to an active exploration and appraisal drilling program on the UK Continental Shelf."

Trevor Garlick, Regional President of BP North Sea said: "As BP marks its 50th year in the North Sea and as the industry looks to maximize economic recovery from the basin, increasing exploration activity and finding new ways to collaborate will be critical to realizing remaining potential. This discovery is a great example of both."

The well was drilled by GDF SUEZ E&P UK Ltd as operator, with the Transocean Galaxy II jack-up rig under a joint well agreement between the two license groups.

Business and Energy Minister Matthew Hancock said: "We are determined to have set the right fiscal and regulatory regimes to make sure we can get the maximum possible economic extraction of oil and gas from the North Sea."

Transocean Galaxy II drill rigTransocean Galaxy II drill rig 2

"This discovery shows exactly what can be achieved in the North Sea if companies work together to maximize the considerable potential of remaining oil and gas reserves."

Exploration well 30/1f-13AZ encountered hydrocarbons in a Palaeocene sandstone reservoir in block 30/1c (license P363 operated by BP) and a subsequent side-track into block 30/1f (license P1588 operated by GDF SUEZ E&P UK Ltd) confirmed the westerly extension of the discovery.

Equity interests in the P1588 license are operator GDF SUEZ E&P UK Ltd (50.00%) and partners RWE DEA UK SNS Limited (27.78%) and Maersk Oil North Sea Limited (22.22%).
Equity interests in the P363 license are operator BP Operating Company Ltd (50.00%) and partner Total E&P UK Ltd (50.00%).

GDF SUEZ E&P activities in the UK
GDF SUEZ, through its subsidiary GDF SUEZ E&P UK Ltd is an increasingly significant player in oil and gas exploration and production in the UK Continental Shelf. Since entering the region in 1997, the company has built up a substantial portfolio of assets in the Central and Southern North Sea, and West of Shetland, comprising more than 50 licenses, 20 as operator*. The company entered the UK onshore market in October 2013 when it agreed to acquire a 25% share in 13 licenses located in Cheshire and the East Midlands from Dart Energy, which is operator of the licenses.

GDF SUEZ E&P UK is the operator of the Cygnus development, one of the most significant undeveloped gas fields in the North Sea and employs more than 300 staff and contractors in offices in London and Aberdeen. Cygnus is located in the Southern North Sea, 150 kilometers off the coast of Lincolnshire. It has gross 2P (proved and probable) reserves of approximately 18 billion cubic meters. First gas is targeted for late 2015.

*As awarded by DECC

BOEM to Prepare Environmental Impact Statement for Potential Cook Inlet Lease Sale

Cook Inlet RFIThe Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has announced that it will prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in support of a potential oil and gas lease sale in Cook Inlet, off Alaska's south central coast. 
The Notice of Intent to Prepare an EIS, which will be published in the Federal Register on Oct. 23, 2014, will open a public comment period extending through Monday, Dec. 8, 2014. During this time, BOEM will hold public scoping meetings and accept comments through www.regulations.gov. The Notice is available here.

The EIS analysis will focus on the potential effects of leasing, exploration, development and production of oil and natural gas in the proposed lease sale area, which BOEM identified in November 2013. That Area Identification reflected BOEM's approach of using scientific information and stakeholder feedback to proactively determine, in advance of the potential lease sale, which specific areas within a planning area offer the greatest resource potential and industry interest while reducing potential conflicts with environmental and subsistence considerations.

The area identified last November for the proposed Cook Inlet sale is closer to existing infrastructure, avoids nearly the entire area designated as critical habitat for the beluga whale and the northern sea otter, completely avoids the critical habitat for the Stellar sea lion and the North Pacific right whale, and reduces effects on national parks, preserves and wildlife refuges. It also excludes much of the subsistence-use area for the Native villages of Nanwalek and Port Graham that were identified during the last lease sale process in the area.

"We look forward to receiving thoughtful, substantial input on this EIS," said Dr. Walter Cruickshank, BOEM Acting Director. "In particular, we need to hear from residents of the communities along Cook Inlet on how the proposed leasing area is currently being used and what specific areas need extra attention. To address these issues, we will use rigorous science together with traditional knowledge and input we receive from the The Notice of Intent to Prepare an EIS is an early step in the leasing process."

The Notice does not indicate a final decision to hold a lease sale has been made. Rather, information gathered via the scoping process will help BOEM prepare the EIS, which in turn will inform a final decision on whether to hold the sale.

SCHEDULE FOR SCOPING MEETINGS
Date/Time Location
Nov. 12, 7pm Seldovia (Tribal Conference Center)
Nov. 13, noon Nanwalek (Tribal Community Center)
Nov. 13, 7pm Homer (Bidarka Inn)
Nov. 14, 7pm Soldotna (Kenai Peninsula College) 
Nov. 24, 7pm Anchorage (Loussac Library)

Currently, there are no active leases nor oil/gas exploration or development facilities in the Cook Inlet federal waters. The Department of the Interior's 2012-2017 Outer Continental Shelf Oil & Gas Leasing Program proposes one potential Cook Inlet Oil and Gas lease sale.

Shell Announces Gabon Deep-Water Gas Discovery

6 w280shellShell announced on Wednesday a frontier exploration discovery offshore Gabon, West Africa. The well Leopard-1 encountered a substantial gas column with around 200 meters net gas pay in a pre-salt reservoir.

Leopard-1 is located around 145 kilometers off the Gabonese coast, west of Gambia. It was drilled in water 2,110 meters deep to a total vertical depth of 5,063 meters. Shell and partners are planning to undertake an appraisal program to further determine the resource volumes.

"Shell has been exploring in Gabon for over 50 years. This latest deep water discovery is a testament to the innovation of our explorers in pursuing new plays, and application of our global sub-surface expertise," said Andy Brown, Shell Upstream International Director. "We are proud to be sharing this success with CNOOC Limited, our partner in the license."

Leopard-1 was drilled in license BCD10, operated by Shell (75%). Second partner in the venture is CNOOC Limited (25%).

This frontier discovery follows recent deep water exploration successes in the heartlands for Shell Exploration in the Gulf of Mexico and Malaysia.

New Oil Resources Proved in the Grane Area

Operator Statoil has together with PL169 partners proved new oil resources in the D-structure in the vicinity of the Grane field in the North Sea.

Statoil-Grane 468The Grane platform in the North Sea. (Photo: Harald Pettersen)

Well 25/8-18 S, drilled by the rig Transocean Leader, proved an oil column of 25 meters in the Heimdal Formation. The estimated volume of the discovery is in the range of 30-80 million barrels of recoverable oil.

"We are pleased with having proved new oil resources in the Grane area," says May-Liss Hauknes, Statoil vice president for exploration in the North Sea. "Near-field exploration is an important part of Statoil's exploration portfolio on the Norwegian continental shelf. It provides high-value barrels that are important for extending the production life of existing installations."


The D-structure is located on the Utsira High, just seven kilometers north of the Grane field and in the immediate proximity of the Grane F oil discovery made by Statoil in 2013. The D-structure was originally penetrated in 1992 by well 25/8-4, which encountered just one metre of oil corresponding to about six million barrels.

"Well 25/8-18 S appraised the D-structure and proved substantial additional oil volumes in an excellent sandstone reservoir. This is a result of a recent re-evaluation of the area done by the partnership. New seismic and improved subsurface mapping have given us new confidence in the D-structure and allowed to mature it towards a drilling decision," says Hauknes.

"Tie in to the nearby Grane field is one of the development solutions that will be evaluated for the discovery," according to Gro Aksnes, Statoil vice president for area development in Operations West.

Exploration well 25/8-18 S is located in PL169 in the North Sea. Statoil is operator with an interest of 57%. The partners are Petoro AS (30%) and ExxonMobil Exploration & Production Norway AS (13%).

For further details on the results of exploration well 25/8-18 S, please see the press release issued by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate >>

McDermott Awarded Second Contract for PETRONAS Bukit Tua Development in East Java

McDermott International, Inc. (NYSE:MDR) ("McDermott") announces that one of its subsidiaries was awarded a transportation, installation and pre-commissioning contract by PC Ketapang II Ltd, a subsidiary of PETRONAS, for the Bukit Tua Development Project in the Ketapang block of East Java, Indonesia. The contract will be included in McDermott's fourth quarter backlog.

McDermott Derrick Barge 30McDermott Derrick Barge 30 was key in securing this contract. The vessel has a lifting capability of 3,080 tons and can install pipe up to 60 inches in diameter. (Photo: Business Wire)

"McDermott is uniquely positioned to support the fast track nature of the Bukit Tua development that is critical to provide energy to power a key industrial area in Gresik, Indonesia," said Hugh Cuthbertson, Vice President and General Manager, Asia Pacific. "This is the second award we have received related to the Bukit Tua Development this year. We are currently fabricating the 1,212-ton BTJT-A wellhead jacket at our Batam Island fabrication facility in Indonesia, where construction work is on track and expected to complete in November 2014."

This new contract is for the transportation and installation of the BTJT-A jacket, its related topsides and subsea pipeline tie-in spools. Additionally, McDermott will undertake the pre-commissioning of the related export and infield pipelines. All offshore installation work will be carried out by the McDermott Derrick Barge 30 ("DB30").

"McDermott's innovative engineering solutions played a key role in us winning the project. The unique configuration of our DB30 enables work to be carried out in a shorter amount of time, which translates to time and cost savings and helps to improve the overall efficiency and safety of offshore operations for our client," said Cuthbertson

The offshore campaign is expected to be completed by end of the first quarter of 2015.

The Bukit Tua field is located approximately 21 miles from Madura Island and 62 miles from Surabaya, East Java, in approximately 190 feet of water.
McDermott has operated in Indonesia since the early 1970s and has an outstanding track record of delivering project excellence for the Indonesian energy industry from its regional engineering offices, Batam Island fabrication facility and fleet of installation vessels.

Construction to Begin on the “Pickets Reef”

Private/public partnership launches artificial reefing project
to save famed Louisiana trout hotspot

pickets platform1Apache Corporation, Fieldwood Energy, Coastal Conservation Association of Louisiana and the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries are starting construction of an artificial reef system at the site of the recently removed structures in Ship Shoal 26 off the Louisiana coast, known by many anglers as "the Pickets."

The cooperative effort calls for the deployment of roughly 14,000 tons of 4-inch limestone over three specially engineered artificial reefs. The reefs will be designed to protect depressions in the seafloor that were created by the flowing current, enhancing these scour holes to provide additional habitat for marine life.

"This area has served as a trout fishing haven for many years, and we are extremely pleased that we are able to preserve this angling hot spot," said Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Assistant Secretary Randy Pausina. "Speckled trout and redfish are typically associated with low- to mid-relief structures that provide a refuge from currents, where they can remain without expending energy while preying on food as it is carried across the structure. This makes this area a particularly important fisheries habitat."

Located off the coast of Terrebonne Parish, the Pickets was a big draw for speckled trout, redfish and other marine life that thrived among the offshore platform's legs, pilings and wellheads.
 
"There are many trout fishermen in this state who have fond memories of the Pickets," said David Cresson, executive director of Coastal Conservation Association of Louisiana (CCA Louisiana.) "It's unfortunate that we have to say goodbye to those structures, but we are grateful to have partners here who were committed to doing everything they could to maintain the area for future generations. The Pickets has been a special place, and this partnership is working to make sure it stays that way."

Fieldwood acquired Apache's Gulf of Mexico shelf assets in 2013, including the Pickets structures and pilings located at Ship Shoal 26. As part of the acquisition, Fieldwood entered into a decommissioning agreement with Apache and is responsible for making sure the removal work at Ship Shoal 26, which is required by the federal government, is completed. From the outset, both companies understood the significance of the iconic structures and were committed to mitigating the impact of the removals on the fishery and the recreational angling community.
Obie O'Brien, Apache's vice president of Governmental Affairs, said, "Apache has operated in South Louisiana and in the Gulf of Mexico for decades. Hundreds of our employees and former employees live, work and raise their families along the coast. We were happy to be part of this effort to preserve, protect and enhance one of the iconic fishing spots in Louisiana. We understand the need for a strong and diverse environment because we live it every day."

John Seeger, Fieldwood's vice president of Decommissioning, said, "The Pickets is an area that residents of Louisiana and Texas – including many of our employees at Fieldwood – have fished for decades. We are required by federal law to remove the structures but wanted to come up with a solution that would preserve this renowned fishing area for generations to come."

The $1.2 million project is being funded by Apache, Fieldwood, LDWF's Artificial Reef Trust Fund and CCA's Building Conservation Trust. The construction contractor, DLS Energy, and the company supplying materials, G&H Barge, are providing in-kind services and materials for the project. Continuing support of CCA Louisiana's Habitat Program is provided by the Paul Candies family.

Marker buoys will be placed at the site after construction is completed so anglers can locate the reefs.

The Pickets Reef is the 10th reef of its kind to be funded through the Louisiana Artificial Reef Trust fund in cooperation with CCA Louisiana. Overall, this is the 14th reef built by CCA Louisiana since 2004.

"This project is a great example of industry, nonprofits and government coming together to create a positive outcome for our coast," said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham. "Our thanks goes out to Apache, Fieldwood, CCA and all of our partners for working with us to find a solution to this challenging issue."

"This had the potential to be a sad ending to a storied fishing spot, but now we have a tremendous amount of hard structure going in to replace habitat that is required to be removed," said John Walther, chairman of CCA Louisiana's Habitat Committee. "This is the best outcome that could be achieved and Apache and Fieldwood should be commended. They didn't have to go the extra mile, but both companies wanted to make this right from the beginning and they certainly stepped up. We hope this can be a template for addressing marine habitat that stands to be lost due to the Idle Iron Policy."

EMAS AMC Successfully Completes US$120 Million Project Offshore West Africa with New Flagship Vessel the Lewek Constellation

• Lewek Constellation, together with Lewek Express, have successfully executed a full field installation for the VAALCO Etame Extension Project offshore Gabon           

• Total scope included installation of rigid and flexible pipelines along with the transportation and installation of two production platforms

• Contract value US$120 million, as previously announced on 7 August 2013

Lewek ConstellationEMAS AMC, the subsea services division of EMAS, a leading global offshore contractor and provider of integrated offshore solutions to the oil and gas (O&G) industry, has announced that it has recently completed a US$120 million project for VAALCO Gabon (Etame) Inc. offshore Gabon in West Africa using the new build Lewek Constellation on her inaugural installation project.

The work scope included the transportation and installation of two jackets, topsides, flare booms and living quarters for the Etame and Southeast Etame / North Tchibala ("SEENT") platforms along with the installation of a new living quarters and a gas lift package onto the FPSO Nautipa.

Earlier this year EMAS AMC also successfully installed rigid pipelines and flexibles using the Lewek Express and performed 60 days of saturation diving to complete the subsea tie-ins using two dive support vessels on VAALCO's Etame and SEENT Fields offshore Gabon.

"We are delighted to have successfully completed this workscope for VAALCO, adding to EMAS AMC's established track record of delivering successful projects safely, efficiently and on time," said Mr Lionel Lee, Ezra's Group CEO and Managing Director.

"I would like to extend my gratitude to VAALCO for offering us this inaugural opportunity for the Lewek Constellation to showcase her heavy lift capabilities, as well as allowing us to display our subsea engineering expertise with the transportation and installation of pipelines. This was an important first project for the Lewek Constellation, and I am pleased to observe that the vessel and the project team displayed excellence in execution."

Mr Craig Devenney, VAALCO Energy, Inc. Construction Manager, said, "The EMAS AMC project team worked extremely well with the VAALCO team on a very significant part of our Etame Marin expansion project - the installation of the two new production platforms on our offshore Gabon permit. The Lewek Constellation, their impressive new build vessel, performed the heavy lifts of the platform, jackets and decks supported by the Lewek Express and associated dive support vessels for the pipe lay and subsea tie-in portions of the project. The successful work by EMAS AMC sets the stage for VAALCO to commence the drilling of production wells from the new platforms beginning in the fourth quarter of 2014. We look forward to an opportunity to work with the EMAS AMC project team again."

The Lewek Constellation is now headed to the Netherlands for the installation of her multi-lay tower and ancillary equipment for pipe lay activities, after which she will proceed to the Gulf of Mexico to begin work for Noble Energy in the first quarter of 2015.

UK: Contract Awarded for £16.5 Million Holmsgarth North Jetty

Tulloch Developments to construct deep-water jetty benefiting fishing and oil industries

Lerwick Port Authority has awarded a construction contract for the latest expansion of the harbor's facilities in a project costing a total of £16.5 million and which will benefit the fishing and oil sectors.

The new jetty at Holmsgarth North will provide deeper berthing and more working area for the fishing fleet, while the outer arm of the L-shaped jetty will create a dock sheltering a planned new white fish market. The outer arm will also be suitable for berthing offshore industry vessels.

Holmsgarth-North-illustration--6768DIllustration shows the new Holmsgarth North project (center) at Lerwick Harbour, with the outer arm of the L-shaped jetty providing a sheltered dock for the site of the planned new white fish market (right) and berthing for oil vessels.

Local company, Tulloch Developments Ltd, has been appointed main contractor. Site set-up will start before Christmas and the main works in the new year, with completion in autumn, 2016. Construction is expected to employ up to 50, helping to secure employment.

The design of the jetty is by civil engineers Arch Henderson LLP and they will also project manager the construction. The jetty will extend to 800 metres, with ultimately 10 metres of water alongside.

Port Authority Chief Executive Sandra Laurenson, said: "The jetty will be a significant addition to our resources and another example of our versatile facilities. While principally benefiting the fishing industry, it will also serve the offshore sector, underlining our commitment to both.

"The latest step towards a new white fish market, Holmsgarth North will reinforce both Lerwick's future as a leading UK fishing port and the sector's key contribution to the Shetland economy."

The development is being supported by funding from Bank of Scotland. David Nicolson, SME Banking Relationship Manager commented: "These improvements to Lerwick Harbour will provide a significant boost to the Shetland economy and Bank of Scotland is delighted to be investing in such an important project.

"In addition to the 50 jobs that will be created through the construction work, the investment will also be a major boost to the local fishing industry as well as the oil and gas supply chain on the island, supporting future jobs and economic growth."

During construction of Holmsgarth North, the fishing industry will use Mair's Quay as the berthing area for net repair and working on gear. The quay, which has brought a range of benefits to the fleet, was completed last year and will be the site for the new market, due to begin construction in early 2016.

SBM Offshore Announces Thunder Hawk Tiebacks

ThunderhawkSBM Offshore announces it has signed a Production Handling Agreement (PHA) with Noble Energy to produce the Big Bend and Dantzler fields to the Thunder Hawk DeepDraft™ Semi (photo) located in 6,060 feet of water in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM).

Production fees associated with produced volumes are estimated to lead up to projected revenue of US$400 million to be delivered over the ten year primary contract period. First oil from Big Bend and Dantzler are expected in late 2015 and first quarter 2016 respectively. At these levels both fields will utilize a maximum of 85% of total daily asset capacity, and brownfield construction to upgrade the facility will be handled by Noble Energy.

The Big Bend field is 18 miles from the Thunder Hawk platform in 7,200 feet of water in Mississippi Canyon Block 698. Noble Energy operates a 54% working interest in Big Bend alongside W&T Energy VI, LLC with 20%, (a wholly owned subsidiary of W&T Offshore Inc.), Red Willow Offshore, LLC with 15.4% and Houston Energy Deepwater Ventures V, LLC with 10.6%.

The Dantzler field is 7 miles from the Thunder Hawk platform in 6,580 feet of water in Mississippi Canyon Block 782. Noble Energy operates Dantzler with a 45% working interest. Additional interest owners are entities managed by Ridgewood Energy Corporation (including ILX Holdings II LLC, a portfolio company of Riverstone Holdings, LLC) with 35% and W&T Energy VI with 20%. Big Bend and Dantzler will be developed via a dual pipe-in-pipe loop system.

The Thunder Hawk DeepDraft™ Semi, installed in July 2009, was developed as a Steel Catenary Riser (SCR) friendly floater solution. The deck and hull can be integrated quayside avoiding costly offshore lifting and system commissioning operations.

SBM CEO Bruno Chabas noted: "SBM Offshore is pleased that the Thunder Hawk platform allowed for a cost effective development solution for Noble Energy and its partners. The deepwater semi solution offers numerous advantages for subsea developments including reduced development capital, lower operating costs and an accelerated development schedule. This confirms the strategic value of the platform for deepwater Gulf of Mexico production, and we are excited to be offering valuable solutions in supporting the development of the Big Bend and Dantzler fields."

Sembcorp Marine’s Subsidiaries Secure Two Contracts Totaling S$222 Million in Value

Sembcorp Marine announces that its subsidiaries Sembmarine SLP and Jurong Shipyard Pte Ltd have secured offshore energy related contracts valued at a combined S$222 million.

Dudgeon-Wind-FarmSembmarine SLP Limited (SLP), which is 70% owned by Sembcorp Marine, has been awarded a contract to design and build the offshore substation platform for the Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm (photo). The contract has been granted by Siemens Transmission & Distribution Limited, which was awarded the contract for the Electrical System Infrastructure by the wind farm's developer Dudgeon Offshore Wind Limited, a joint venture between Norwegian Energy firms Statkraft and Statoil.

SLP will work closely with Siemens and will be responsible for the design, engineering, procurement, project management and construction of the platform's jacket substructure and topside. Siemens will provide the transformers and high voltage electrical distribution technology. The Offshore Transformer Station (OTS) will be constructed at SLP's yard in Lowestoft on the UK's Suffolk coast.

Sembmarine SLP's Managing Director Paul Thomson said: "We are delighted that Sembmarine SLP's close working relationship with Siemens has resulted in this award and we will continue to collaborate as a team with Siemens to ensure a successful outcome for the project as a whole. One of SLP's main objectives has been to apply its long experience in designing and building offshore platforms for the oil & gas industry to the offshore wind business."

"The Dudgeon platform will be a new generation OTS based on our early success with the Thanet substation previously delivered to Siemens. We look forward to making this another successful SLP project delivered safely, fully complete and on time and one of many future offshore substations that we build in Lowestoft."

Jurong Shipyard has been contracted by regular customer MODEC Offshore Production Systems (Singapore) Pte Ltd, to complete the repair and life extension, and conversion of a VLCC into a Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel as part of the TEN Development Project. This is the twenty-second FPSO conversion project which Jurong Shipyard is working on with MODEC.

When completed in 4Q2015, the TEN Development FPSO will have a capacity of production and treatment of 80,000 bpd of crude oil, 65,000 bpd of produced water, and 180 MMscfd of gas, with an onboard storage capacity of 1.7 million barrels. The facility will include for delivery 132,000 bpd of filtered, de-aerated seawater.

The TEN Development FPSO will be external turret moored in 1,000 to 1,800 meters water depth and operated by MODEC, on behalf of their client Tullow Ghana Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tullow Oil Plc. The FPSO will host multiple subsea tiebacks from three reservoirs (Tweneboa, Enyenra, Ntomme) in the Deep Water Tano block off of the coast of Ghana, West Africa.

The contracts are not expected to have any material impact on the consolidated net tangible assets per share and earnings per share of Sembcorp Marine for the year ending December 31, 2014.

Asset Guardian Solutions Software of Choice for BP’s Quad 204 Project

Asset-Guardian-Logo-Transparent-Background-Large-PNGAsset Guardian Solutions Ltd (AGSL), which specializes in protecting companies' process critical software assets, announced that its software management platform Asset Guardian has been chosen by BP to manage the process control software used to operate Quad 204.

Quad 204 is an impressive field redevelopment project located West of Shetland in the UK. The aim of the project is to construct a new Floating, Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel to replace the existing Schiehallion FPSO. It will also feature a sizeable extension of the existing subsea system, with 15 new and replacement flow lines, and 21 new and replacement risers. Coupled with 14 new wells in addition to the 52 existing ones, it is a considerable undertaking.

Enhancing performance, boosting security
BP selected the Asset Guardian toolset to enhance performance and reinforce the security of the process control software currently being installed throughout the Quad 204 Project.

In addition to using the basic Asset Guardian toolset, BP will also benefit from AGSync, which was designed especially for use in the oil and gas industry. AGSync makes it possible for data and files to be synchronized between multiple locations.

The AGSL project is comprised of three phases. The first phase involves the management of process control software during the installation and site commissioning. The second phase requires the management of process software while the modules are being transported from the construction site to their ultimate destination West of Shetland. This is followed by the final phase, which will be to complete the installation, commissioning the project in readiness for operational start-up. Each of the three phases requires a different network configuration to ensure the integrity and effective management of the process control software.

The FPSO and its subsea structures will be installed in modules and be producing in late 2016.

Frame agreement truly global
BP entered into a global frame agreement with AGSL in 2008. The agreement requires the process control software specialist to provide the Asset Guardian toolset to BP, as and when required. In addition to the Quad 204 and Clair Ridge Projects, BP uses it to operate assets in Angola, Azerbaijan, Oman, Oklahoma and Alaska.

"As a major global operator, BP has extremely demanding process control software management needs. As the company forges ahead with the critical Quad 204 field redevelopment project, now more than ever, every measure must be taken to ensure that all process control software and data associated with the project is properly managed and protected," said Peter Beales, Business Development Manager for AGSL. "Our commitment to BP and the integrity of its assets continues to drive our product solution development as we strive to provide world class software configuration management tools. We look forward to working with BP to ensure that the Quad 204 Project progresses smoothly, and operates safely and productively for many years to come."

PIRA Energy Group's Weekly Oil Market Recap for the Week Ending October 19th, 2014

piraNYC-based PIRA Energy Group believes that falling crude prices and the resulting pressure on margins seen by producers may directionally provide less headroom for regulators to add additional costs to production via new or intrusive regulations. In the U.S., large stock changes: crude build and product draw. In Japan, typhoons throttle back crude runs, imports, and tempers demand. Specifically, PIRA's analysis of the oil market fundamentals has revealed the following:


Fracking Policy Monitor
Falling crude prices and the resulting pressure on margins seen by producers may directionally provide less headroom for regulators to add additional costs to production via new or intrusive regulations. Federal regulations with potential impacts on fracking production are still expected from President Obama's Methane Strategy, though EPA has shown an inclination towards expanding voluntary efforts as well. A decision on whether and how to regulate is expected soon, with any regulations to follow by end-2016. On the state level, the ability of localities to ban fracking via zoning authority continues to be a hot issue.


Large U.S. Stock Changes: Crude Build, Product Draw
Oil prices have no near-term anchor. This past week saw the second largest weekly crude inventory build of the year which was 1.0 million barrels greater than the rather large product stock decline. Week-on-week product stocks fell as reported demand increased, product imports declined and crude runs dropped to the lowest level since Spring maintenance. The crude inventory deficit narrowed while gasoline's stock deficit increased. Distillate, kero-jet and residual fuel oil inventories are virtually identical to last year.


Japanese Typhoons Throttles Back Crude Runs, Imports, and Tempers Demand
Crude runs eased back due to turnarounds and typhoon related impacts. Crude imports eased and stocks drew slightly. Finished product stocks posted a modest build. Gasoline demand was lower despite the "Sports Day" holiday, which normally should lift demand, but the typhoon impact appears to have dominated. Gasoil demand was predictably lower, with higher yield, and stocks built modestly. Refining margins remain very soft with all the major product cracks weakening.


World LPG Export Volumes Soaring
Global seaborne trade of LPG soared to record levels in September with volumes approaching 7 million metric tons of LPG. Total Middle East exports in September were roughly 3.0 million metric tons in the high end of the range this year but not near July 2013 highs of some 3.5 million. US Exports for September were approximately 1.4 MM metric tons, nearly 50% of the total Middle East volumes. Increasing US exports are the main driver pushing global waterborne trade to record levels.


U.S. Ethanol and Biodiesel Prices Rise
After falling for six straight weeks, U.S. ethanol prices found support at the $1.46-$1.50 per gallon level and increased the week ending October 10.U.S. biodiesel assessments rose back above $3 per gallon last week, but most producers failed to cover cash manufacturing costs.


Ethanol Output and Inventories Decrease
U.S. ethanol production dropped to 885 MB/D the week ending October 10, erasing most of the gains from the preceding week and edging close to the six-month low 881 MB/D set two weeks earlier. Stocks were down 295 thousand barrels to a five-week low 18.4 million barrels.

The information above is part of PIRA Energy Group's weekly Energy Market Recap - which alerts readers to PIRA's current analysis of energy markets around the world as well as the key economic and political factors driving those markets.

DW Monday October 20, 2014: Offshore EPC - All Change!

douglas-westwoodSingapore has traditionally been regarded as the clear leader in the construction of jack-up rigs, accounting for 55% of global deliveries between 2000 & 2010. However, in the past five years this position has faced increasing challenge from Chinese yards willing to offer highly attractive financing in order to secure market share – China currently accounts for 47% of the orderbook compared to Singapore's 33%. With this trend expected to continue, Singaporean yards have been aggressively pursuing higher value EPC markets signalled by Keppel's "CAN DO" drillship project, which when completed will be arguably the most technically advanced asset of its kind. Both Keppel and Sembcorp have also made major investment in their FLNG capability.

We do not expect Singapore to completely retreat from the Jack-up market. However, this focus on frontier EPC segments is both a clear reaction to the inevitable rise of China (in what was considered "their" business) and a warning shot to South Korean dominance in both drillships and FLNG. The South Korean big three of Samsung, Hyundai & DSME have all struggled in recent years with balancing their traditional efficiency in light of a tighter price environment (see the earlier DW Monday on Capex Compression) and a shift away from heavy construction seems likely as suggested by SHI's recently announced merger with Samsung Engineering.

The offshore EPC landscape is undoubtedly going through some regional realignment.

www.douglas-westwood.com

Saudi Assets Lead World’s Upstream Developments for Recoverable Oil Reserves, says GlobalData

GlobalDatalogoThe Khurais and Manifa projects in Saudi Arabia have the most recoverable reserves among the world's top 100 upstream developments, with approximately 19.4 billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe) and 13.7 billion boe, respectively, according to research and consulting firm GlobalData.

The company's latest report* states that these assets boast substantial recoverable crude oil reserves, with Khurais having 18.2 billion barrels (bbl) and Manifa holding 13.5 billion bbl. The projects also have recoverable natural gas reserves of 6.8 trillion cubic feet (tcf) and 1.4 tcf, respectively.

Robert Stevens, GlobalData's Lead Upstream Analyst covering the Middle East and North Africa, says that despite these impressive reserves, Saudi Aramco, which owns both fields, has encountered a number of difficulties during their development.

Stevens explains: "The Khurais project has the distinction of being one of the largest oil development projects in the world. The most recent activity saw 12 drilling rigs running simultaneously between 2006 and 2009, creating about 300 wells, with production beginning in June 2009.

"A major challenge for operations in the Khurais field is to increase the recovery rate of crude, but given the field's vast size, even a 1% increase in recovery rate would result in millions of additional barrels. Security is also a problem for Khurais, despite the sustained efforts of the Saudi Arabian government and Saudi Aramco."

A different set of issues faced the Manifa field, where most drilling activities and the construction of the central processing facility for crude oil production were undertaken on the coast.

Stevens comments: "Saudi Aramco and the contractors of the Manifa field confronted numerous environmental and economic obstacles during the development of the field.

"Environmental issues in the Arabian Gulf include earthquakes, which the contractors had to ensure the structures could withstand during construction."

Top 100 Global Upstream Developments Overview – Major Project Developments and Key Challenges

SGB 2000 Gyrocompass from Teledyne TSS Certified for IMO Vessel Carriage

Teledyne-TSSThe SGB 2000 gyrocompass manufactured by Teledyne TSS has been certified by Det Norske Veritas as meeting the standard required for use aboard IMO (International Maritime Organization) registered ships. This means that ship owners can now use a compass from one of the most respected brand names in bridge equipment and benefit from the latest gyro technology and advances in design. The certification confirms that the SGB 2000 meets all of the performance standards required by the IMO and enables flag states to authorize its use on any ship required to carry one.

The SGB 2000 is a high performance solid state gyrocompass that meets the needs of customers requiring a cost-effective source of primary heading data. It incorporates maintenance free ring laser gyros and accelerometers which have a MTBF (Mean Time Between Failure) in excess of 300,000 hours. With no moving parts and no requirement for regular maintenance the SGB 2000 offers the owners of every type of ship a real cost saving alternative to mechanical gyrocompasses. By using high grade inertial sensing elements with their exceptionally high MTBF the designers of the SGB2000 have created a rugged, high performance gyrocompass that sets new standards for the industry.

The extremely accurate and stable headings are provided by the gyro which has a dynamic accuracy <0.25° RMS secant latitude that can be maintained during turns of up to 200 degrees per second. With a fast settling time and low power consumption the SGB 2000 is suitable for use on fast survey craft operating in rough, confined waters or for integration within the bridge of the largest ocean-going vessels.

Integration is aided by the SGB 2000's flexible interface which allows easy connectivity to existing ships' systems. Teledyne TSS also produces a comprehensive range of repeaters designed to complement the SGB 2000. The gyro is also available in a subsea housing which enables the unit to be used in a variety of configurations at depths down to 3,000 meters from where it can support a wide range of subsea activities.

The S G Brown brand name became part of the Teledyne TSS Ltd product range following the company's acquisition in 1998. The adoption of S G Brown personnel, expertise and technology now enables Teledyne TSS to assume the mantle of a company that has been manufacturing gyrocompasses for commercial and naval ships since 1911. It has grown into one of the most respected names in the industry and the need for commercial shipping to carry type-approved gyrocompasses has maintained a demand for high quality products.

Teledyne TSS has responded to this by pursuing a sustained program of product development that has been combined with a realistic pricing policy. The certification of the SGB 2000 to IMO standards is the latest development in this on-going evolution. A key part of that progress has been the company's move away from the original S G Brown factory in Watford to spacious modern facilities in nearby Croxley Green. This has resulted in a dramatic increase in gyrocompass output which makes the long lead times once faced by customers a thing of the past. Improved product design and just-in-time manufacturing techniques now mean that customers can acquire a Teledyne TSS gyrocompass on the same day if necessary. In addition to its range of surface and subsea gyro-compasses, Teledyne TSS also manufactures high integrity products for the marine and offshore oil and gas markets. These include motion sensors, inertial navigation systems and pipe and cable detection and survey systems.

Valeport Launches the Smallest and Most Accurate SVP

Production is now underway on Valeport's latest innovation - the new UV-SVP - a small and compact direct reading package aimed primarily at AUV and ROV users, which delivers high accuracy data to compliment survey work.

ValeportUV-SVP 

Valeport's UV-SVP (Underwater Vehicle – Sound Velocity Profiler) is based on the company's miniSVS and offers a form factor designed for underwater vehicles where space is at a premium.

Measuring sound velocity, temperature and pressure, the UV-SVP uses Valeport's class leading time of flight sound speed sensor, a PRT temperature sensor and a 0.01% accuracy pressure transducer in a compact package weighing just 750g in air. The lightweight titanium housing gives a depth rating to 3000m as standard. A wide range (9-30v DC) isolated power supply and RS232 communications complete the package.

Valeport, the UK's leading manufacturer of oceanographic and hydrographic instrumentation, designed and manufactured the UV-SVP at their state of the art facilities based in the UK.

Developed in response to a specific customer requirement, the UV-SVP has already been adopted by Bluefin Robotics for integration into the Bluefin 9 AUV. With a reputation for supplying the world's most accurate sound velocity sensors, Valeport believes there will be strong demand for their small, lightweight and accurate UV-SVP as the AUV market sector continues to grow rapidly.

Kevin Edwards, Valeport sales and marketing manager commented:

"The UV-SVP draws upon our existing technology and expertise. Initial feedback we've received to the new gauge has been very positive. Recent industry research indicates the AUV market is rapidly growing across all sectors and we believe this poses significant opportunities for space-efficient and accurate sensor instrumentation."

With an established reputation for high quality, reliable and innovative instrumentation, the UV-SVP, - like all Valeport products - ,benefits from an industry-leading three-year warranty.

Valeport also offers a unique 12-month warranty on all their serviced products as well as a dedicated calibration and service facility.

ExxonMobil Employees Raise More Than $2.4 Million for Charities in Northern Virginia

exxon-mobil-logo1ExxonMobil and its employees and retirees in Northern Virginia raised more than $2.4 million for charitable organizations and local charities in the Northern Virginia area during the 2014 Employees' Favorite Charities campaign.

Employees and retirees contributed to nearly 600 charities that provide a wide range of local health and human services to residents in Fairfax, Northern Virginia and the Washington, D.C. capital region.

"ExxonMobil has a long history of supporting community groups and educational organizations in Northern Virginia through financial contributions and thousands of hours volunteered by employees and retirees," said Alan Kelly, president, ExxonMobil Fuels, Lubricants & Specialties Marketing Company. "The campaign is powered by the generosity of our employees and retirees as a way to give back where we live and work."

Since 2002, ExxonMobil and its employees and retirees in Fairfax have provided more than $29.6 million and 410,664 volunteer hours in support of nearly 6,250 charitable organizations in the area.

Noble Energy Announces Election of David L. Stover as President & Chief Executive Officer

Company Also Announces Additional Executive Leadership Changes

NBLLOGONoble Energy, Inc(NYSE: NBL) announced that the Board of Directors has elected David L. Stover as President and Chief Executive Officer, succeeding Charles D. Davidson as CEO. Mr. Stover's election is consistent with the management succession plan disclosed in April of this year when it was announced that Mr. Davidson would be retiring on May 1, 2015. Mr. Stover has previously been serving as the Company's President and Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Davidson will continue to serve as the Company's Chairman until the 2015 Annual Meeting at which time he will be leaving the Board of Directors. The Board also announced that it intends to elect Mr. Stover as Chairman of the Board immediately following the 2015 Annual Meeting.

The Company also announced that Susan M. Cunningham has been elected Executive Vice President responsible for Noble Energy's global Exploration, New Ventures, Frontier, Environmental, Health, Safety, Regulatory and Business Innovation activities. In addition, Gary W. Willingham has been elected Executive Vice President responsible for Noble Energy's global Production, Drilling, Major Projects and Supply Chain activities. Both Ms. Cunningham and Mr. Willingham will report directly to Mr. Stover.