. Energy News .

North Sea oil leak reduced to two barrels a day: Shell
by Staff Writers
London (AFP) Aug 16, 2011

Shell said Tuesday that two barrels of oil per day were still spilling into the North Sea from its Gannet Alpha platform through a second leak, despite having brought most of it under control.

"The primary leak in the flow line is pretty much dead," said Glen Cayley, technical director of the Anglo-Dutch oil giant's exploration and production activities in Europe, six days after the leak was first identified.

"There is a small secondary leak created by that which is the small flow of two barrels a day, which is proving a little difficult to get to and isolate."

The oil leakage is equivalent to about 318 litres per day. One barrel of oil comprises just under 159 litres.

A Shell spokeswoman insisted this was not a new leak, saying that although the oil's initial path to the sea was stopped on Thursday, it had found a new outlet.

"We believe now that the flow is coming from a relief valve adjacent to the original leak and from the same source. Once we've confirmed this we will then develop a series of mitigation options to stop this leak," she said.

About 216 tonnes (1,300 barrels) of oil has leaked from the Gannet Alpha platform, 112 miles (180 kilometres) east of Aberdeen on the Scottish coast, Shell revealed on Monday -- making it the biggest in British waters in a decade.

Cayley said the oil on the sea surface had been "much reduced" due to harsh weather conditions, which had broken up a slick that at one point was 30 kilometres in length to two barrels.

There was no question of it hitting the shore, Cayley added.

"The leak that we've stemmed was in the flow line, so job number one was to close in the wells and isolate the reservoir, which of course is the large volume from the leak," Cayley said.

"We're confident that it's under control.

"The residual small leak is in an awkward position to get to. This is complex sub-sea infrastructure, and really getting into it amongst quite dense marine growth is proving a challenge."

He added: "Shell deeply regret this spill. We work very hard and invest heavily to ensure this doesn't happen and when it does we respond swiftly and decisively as we've done here."

He rejected criticism by environmental groups that the company took too long to make the spill public, saying that the authorities were informed as soon as Shell became aware of it last Wednesday.

Per Fischer, from campaign group Friends of the Earth Scotland, said: "It beggars belief that we are still being drip-fed information and that Shell's initially 'insignificant' leak is still causing problems."

The leak has spilled more oil than the total amount spilled in any year in British waters in the past 10 years, according to figures from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC).

The leaking oil is light crude oil with a low wax content, and there is also some hydraulic fluid present, according to Shell.

The Gannet Alpha platform continues to operate.

Related Links
Powering The World in the 21st Century at Energy-Daily.com

Get Our Free Newsletters Via Email
Buy Advertising Editorial Enquiries

China says it will sue US oil giant for spill
Beijing (AFP) Aug 16, 2011 - China's maritime authority said Tuesday it will sue the American company behind a massive oil spill off its northeast coast for "damage to the environment".

US oil giant ConocoPhillips has said 2,100 barrels of oil leaked from the platform it operates with a Chinese partner in Bohai Bay.

The State Oceanic Administration website said it planned to sue ConocoPhillips after the spill reportedly polluted beaches and killed marine life in the area.

"In June 2011, ConocoPhillips (China)'s development of the Penglai 19-3 oilfield caused a spill that caused damage to the environment," the SOA's North China Sea branch said.

"The SOA will, on behalf of the country, file lawsuits against companies responsible for the leaks."

The SOA made no mention of the China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC), the Chinese state-owned company that is a majority partner in the Bohai drilling operation.

"The amount in damages has yet to be determined," SOA spokeswoman Shen Jiaohong told AFP, dismissing a report that said it would demand 100 million yuan ($15.6 million).

Earlier reports indicated that the maximum fine for maritime pollution under China's current law is 200,000 yuan ($31,000).

Both companies have apologised for the spill, and ConocoPhillips said last week it hoped to clean up the oil by the end of August.

No one at ConocoPhillips (China) was immediately available for comment.

Local fishermen have blamed the spill for the loss of much of their seasonal harvest, while environmental groups signed an open letter to ConocoPhillips calling for faster and more transparent clean-up efforts.

. Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Kuwait, Iraq hold talks over controversial port
Kuwait City (AFP) Aug 16, 2011
An Iraqi technical delegation has held talks in Kuwait over a seaport Baghdad claims would strangle its narrow shipping lanes in the Gulf, the Kuwaiti foreign ministry said on Tuesday. The Kuwaiti side presented illustrations and studies on Mubarak Al-Kabir port and its impact on shipping in Khour Abdullah waterway, said an official quoted by the KUNA news agency. Khour Abdullah is a nar ... read more

Berlin considers Austrian power supply ahead of winter

Iraq power plans short-circuit

Boeing And Siemens Form Strategic Alliance for DOD Energy Modernization

Iraq PM moves to fire minister over power deals

China's appetite for oil imports increases

Oil higher in Asian trade

China coal mine blast kills 10: official

China lawyer sues oil giants over spill: report

ACS Group sells Spain wind farm portfolio

Offshore wind power in the North Sea offer huge potential but enormous challenges

Scotland offshore wind farm ready to go

US fund Blackstone plans two big German wind farms

World's biggest solar boat docks in Hong Kong

Zerbst PV Park opens

MIT researchers reveal improved energy storage

CIS cluster tool project for thin film PV

Status of nuclear power 2010

First full post-disaster reactor restart in Japan

Japan to set up new nuclear watchdog

Germany's EON hit by historic quarterly loss, plans job cuts

Metabolism in reverse: Making biofuels at full-throttle pace

To avoid carbon debt CRP beats fields of corn and soybeans

Report: Algae as fuel presents problems

High Energy Output From Algae-Based Fuel No Silver Bullet

Toys for Tiangong

Why Tiangong is not a Station Hub

China to launch experimental satellite in coming days

Spotlight Time for Tiangong

Malnutrition ravaging Somali refugees in Ethiopia

Border town a break for drought-fleeing Somalis

UCI studies find different reasons for global methane riddle

Species affected by climate change: to shift or not to shift?

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2011 - Space Media Network. AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement