Marine Link
Saturday, November 18, 2017

Deepwater News

Catching a Jones Act Seaman’s 'Golden Parachute'

© wanfahmy / Adobe Stock

A challenging offshore environment produces a different but equally difficult development. Will you be ready when it comes to your fleet? Unfortunately, our industry continues to suffer due to the depressed oil prices that started in 2014. When the price of oil initially dropped, the industry’s outlook remained positive, and I remember hearing the mantra: “Stay lean for 2015.” Everyone thought that oil prices would rebound in short order and that we were only weathering a short downturn.

US to Become Oil and Gas World Leader in Long Term - IEA

© travelview / Adobe Stock

The head of the International Energy Agency Fatih Birol said on Thursday the United States would - in the long term - become the "undisputed leader of oil and gas production worldwide".   Speaking at the U.N. climate conference in Bonn, Germany, he said the agency expected oil markets to rebalance next year if oil demand remained "more or less" as robust as it is today and if OPEC and non-OPEC continued with their oil production cuts.     (Reporting by Ahmad Ghaddar; Editing by Mark Potter)

Offshore Pipeline Standard Update by DNV GL

Photo: DNV GL

The most used and recognized offshore pipeline standard in the world has been updated to reflect the latest pipeline research and developments by DNV GL, the quality assurance and risk management company, and other leading industry players. The standard, previously called DNV-OS-F101 is now renamed DNVGL-ST-F101. Around 65% of all new projects globally are designed according to the standard, first issued in 1976. The new revision reflects the conclusions of joint industry projects…

US Oil Rig Count Steady this Week -Baker Hughes

© Aneese / Adobe Stock

U.S. energy companies kept the oil rig count unchanged this week, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said on Friday, as some analysts expect a gradual decline in overall rigs in the fourth quarter and in 2018. The rig count, an early indicator of future output, held at 738 in the week to Nov. 17, still much higher than 471 rigs a year ago as energy companies boosted spending plans for 2017 as crude started recovering from a two-year price crash. The increase in drilling lasted 14 months before stalling in August…

Deal for Floating LNG Powerplant in China

As the proliferation of LNG use spreads rapidly in the maritime and energy sectors, word from China is that Wison Offshore & Marine has signed an MoU with  Shanghai Electric Power Generation Group, on a joint effrot to develop medium to large-scale floating LNG power generation barges. Wison brings a wealth of experience and integration capability in floating LNG facilities, while Shanghai Electric is a leader in core gas power equipment and EPC services for international power projects. Based on the Floating LNG Storage Regasification and Power Generation (FSRP) solution developed by Wison earlier on, both parties will join forces to build up capabilities throughout FSRP project life cycle from product development…

INS Sarvekshak in Joint Hydrographic Survey with Tanzanian Navy

INS Sarvekshak. Photo: Indian Navy

In an initiative to bolster bilateral relations with friendly foreign countries and navies in the Indian ocean region, INS Sarvekshak, a hydrographic survey ship of Southern Naval Command, arrived at Dar-es-Salaam Tanzania on 15 November 2017 for undertaking joint  Hydrographic Survey along with the Tanzanian Navy. The joint survey will be conducted with the Naval personnel of Tanzania who have been trained in India in National Institute of Hydrography, Goa. During the survey, training of Tanzanian Naval personnel will also be undertaken on advanced hydrographic equipment and practices.

Crude Tanker Shipping Market to Get Hurt in 2018

Graph:  Drewry Shipping Consultants Limited

Crude tanker freight rates are expected to decline further in 2018 following a sharp decline in 2017, according to the latest edition of the Tanker Forecaster, published by global shipping consultancy Drewry. Although tonnage supply growth in the crude tanker market is expected to be low next year after surging in 2017, this will not be enough to push tonnage utilisation rates higher as demand growth is expected to be sluggish. A slowdown in global oil demand growth and a likely decline in China’s stocking activity will keep growth in the crude oil trade moderate next year.

Offshore Oil Service Firms Dominate Energy Bankruptcies

(File photo: Ocean Rig)

Offshore oil drilling and service companies, hurt by the energy industry's shift to lower-cost shale and away from deepwater projects, are dominating the year's energy bankruptcies in North America, according to law firm Haynes and Boone. There were fewer oilfield service companies seeking protection this year than last but those that did have had larger debts. Through October, 44 oilfield services companies filed for bankruptcy in the United States and Canada owing creditors $24.8 billion, compared with 72 companies and $13.48 billion for all of 2016.

Inmarsat Launches SafetyNET II

Image taken from Inmarsat Maritime Vision Video

Inmarsat has launched a vital new service, SafetyNET II, for Maritime Safety Information Providers (MSIPs), marking a key stage in upgrading the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS), which helps to save thousands of lives at sea each year. Inmarsat’s new generation international broadcast and automatic reception service for Maritime Safety Information (MSI), enables MSIP’s to transition their communications to web-based messaging. As a web-based service, SafetyNET II introduces broadcast scheduling…

Damen Presents ‘Gone With the Wind'

Image: Damen Shipyards Group

Marco Bovio, Senior Research Hydromechanics Engineer at Damen, presented details of internal research Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) based project ‘Gone With The Wind’ (GWTW). For the past two years Damen has been conducting a review of CFD technology and its applications in the maritime industry, and GWTW has been addressing one specific aspect of this. Its purpose, to look at the capability of CFD to accurately model the aerodynamic forces that act upon vessels above the waterline, as a separate analysis to those CFD studies that focus on the interactions that occur below the surface.

BW Group, Mitsui Form FSRU Joint Venture

FSRU BW Integrity is on charter to provide LNG regasification services at Pakistan’s second LNG import terminal for 15 years (Photo: Mitsui & Co.)

A joint venture agreement between Japan’s Mitsui & Co. and Singapore’s BW Group Limited will see Mitsui purchase a 49 percent share in the floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) BW Integrity, while BW will maintain a 51 percent share. The deal is expected to close as soon following payment for the acquisition. BW Integrity is currently in Port Qasim on a 15-year charter to PGP Consortium Limited (PGPC), to provide LNG regasification services at Pakistan’s second LNG import terminal. BW will continue to provide commercial and technical management services.

GulfMark Sails Out of Bankruptcy

File photo: GulfMark Offshore

GulfMark Offshore, Inc. said it has completed its financial restructuring plan and emerged from bankruptcy protection under chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. The company’s court-approved reorganization plan went into effect November 14, 2017, and converts approximately $429.6 million of outstanding bonds into equity, and raises approximately $125 million of new equity capital. “GulfMark is now positioned as one of the best capitalized companies in the global offshore industry,” said Quintin Kneen, President and Chief Executive Officer.

Atlantic Offshore Scotland Secures Charter with Maersk Oil UK

Atlantic Offshore’s Ocean Troll  (Photo: Atlantic Offshore Scotland)

Emergency Response and Rescue Vessel (ERRV) operator Atlantic Offshore Scotland Ltd, has secured a two-year firm charter with Maersk Oil UK. The company’s ERRV Ocean Troll, will provide Emergency Response and Rescue services for Maersk Oil’s Culzean project in the central North Sea. The Charter is the first Fire Fighting Class II (Fi-Fi II) ERRV to have operated in the UK sector. The charter commenced in July 2017 and will last for a firm period of two years, with two, one-year options thereafter.

Norway's Arctic Oil Plan Violates Constitution, Lawsuit Says

© h368k742 / Adobe Stock

Norway's plan for Arctic oil exploration is unconstitutional because it violates the right to a healthy environment, a lawyer for Greenpeace and the Nature and Youth environmental group told an Oslo court on Tuesday. The case is the first of its kind in Norway and says a 2015 oil licensing round in the Arctic that gave awards to Statoil , Chevron and others violates the constitution. Norway signed the 2016 Paris accord, which aims to end the fossil fuel era this century. The country is Western Europe's largest oil producer and oil and gas are its most important exports.

Port Corpus Christi to benefit from LNG partnership with China

 ©Trong Nguyen/Adobe Stock

Port Corpus Christi officials are confident that the agreement signed between Cheniere Energy of Houston and China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) will bring increased traffic to the port, according to the San Antonio Business Journal. Officials from Cheniere accompanies President Trump on his tour to China and signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Chinese company. CNPC is the largest gas and oil supplier and producer in China and is also one of the largest providers of oilfied services.

Delfin Taps China for US FLNG, but Final Investment Decision 'Challenging'

(Image: Delfin LNG)

Delfin Midstream, developing the first floating facility to export U.S. natural gas, has sealed a preliminary 15-year sales deal with city gas distributor China Gas Holdings, Delfin founder and Chief Executive Officer Frederick Jones said. But industry veteran Jones told Reuters in an interview that Delfin is also tapping unnamed Chinese banks to fund its ambitious $8 billion as the current global supply overhang in liquefied natural gas (LNG), with bumper exports also expected from Australia and Qatar, makes Delfin’s target of a final investment decision (FID) in 2018 challenging.

Skangas, Titan LNG Sign MoU

Photo: Skangas

Skangas of Norway and Titan LNG based in The Netherlands have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The two companies will cooperate on serving marine Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) customers. For ship operators this agreement will contribute to the overall availability as well as the optimization of LNG deliveries in the wider region. Skangas of Norway and Titan LNG based in The Netherlands have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The two companies will cooperate on serving marine Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) customers.

Boskalis Expanding Subsea

DSV Constructor (Photo: Boskalis)

Royal Boskalis Westminster N.V. (Boskalis) is set to expand its market position in the area of subsea services, according to its Corporate Business Plan 2017-2019. "In a persistently challenging market there tend to be interesting opportunities for anti-cyclical investments in companies or equipment that will result in Boskalis being well-positioned when end-markets recover again," it says. In mid-August Boskalis acquired subsea survey specialist Gardline, and the group recently…

CNPC, Cheniere Pact for LNG

Photo: Cheniere Energy, Inc

China’s state-owned oil company, China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), and U.S. independent energy company Cheniere Energy have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for long-term sales and purchases of liquefied natural gas (LNG), Reuters reported. The report quoted U.S. State Department saying that the deal between the two companies was signed during president Trump’s first state visit to China. Neither companies disclosed details of the transaction. According to CNPC…

DNV GL, Chrysaor Pact for North Sea Operations

Photo: DNV GL

DNV GL has secured a combined engineering services agreement with Chrysaor Holdings Ltd. to deliver a unique range of services to the company in support of its North Sea Operations. Chrysaor recently completed the acquisition of a package of assets in the UK North Sea from Shell for a price of $3.0 billion. The transaction sees Chrysaor become the leading independent E&P company in the UK. It currently has more than 400 staff working in the UKCS. Hari Vamadevan, Regional Manager UK & West Africa…

S.Korean Refiners Look to Cash in on 2020 Mandate

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Sharrif Che'Lah)

Three refiners to spend more than $5 bln to upgrade or add units. South Korean refiners are planning to spend over $5 billion on plant upgrades in response to tighter rules on shipping fuel, boosting production of low-sulphur fuel oil as well as other high-end products. The refiners hope the investment, which comes ahead of the 2020 introduction of the new rules, will make them one of the biggest beneficiaries of the new regulations, with many competitors still waiting to commit to new spending. "Not many refiners are doing so.

Asian Floating Storage Declines as Crude Market Tightens

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Jose Gill)

Strong demand is tightening the market but rising US output could sap efforts to rebalance market. The amount of oil stored on tankers around Singapore has dropped sharply in the last months, the latest indication that OPEC-led supply cuts are successfully tightening crude markets even as U.S. exports have soared. Shipping data in Thomson Reuters Eikon shows around 15 super-tankers are currently filled with oil in waters off Singapore and western Malaysia, storing around 30 million barrels of crude.

ABS Conducts First Hellenic Technical Committee Meeting

Photo: ABS

ABS has hosted the inaugural meeting of the Hellenic Technical Committee (HTC) at its state-of-the-art Global Ship Systems Center (GSSC). “The Hellenic shipping community possesses a wealth of engineering knowledge and we are honored to assemble such a credentialed Technical Committee,” said ABS Europe Division Senior Vice President Vassilios Kroustallis. The HTC includes more than 20 key technical professionals across the maritime industry representing owners, operators and owner associations.

Chinese Shipbuilder Wins Award for Largest Heavy Lifting Vessel

Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Company has built the largest heavy lifting vessel in the world which can carry up to 12,000 tons. The vessel, which took eight years to design and build, was awarded a special prize at the 19th China International Industry Fair in Shanghai. Seen as a symbol of China's growing engineering prowess in ocean technologies, the Zhenhua 30 was previously tested in front of representatives from ABS class society, domestic and international clients and the Chinese and Korean government. In these tests, the single boom crane was able to life 7,700 tons in revolving mode and 13,200 tons when tied back. The vessel has a 12 knot transit speed and can provide accomodation for 380 people.

Trump Signs 43 Billion Dollar LNG Deal with China

Pixabay.com

On his visit to China, President Trump reaffirmed his commitment to form agreements that reduce the trade deficit with China by signing a deal to help the LNG industry in Alaska with three Chinese companies. The deal, which could be potentially worth $43 billion, involves Sinopec, the largest oil company in China, the sovereign wealth fund and one of China's largest bank. will work together to create 12,000 jobs in Alaska. The deal has the potential to reduce the US-China trade deficit  by $10 billion a year.

Oil Prices Rise on Supply Cuts, Tensions

© marrakeshh / Adobe Stock

Oil prices rose nearly 1 percent on Thursday, supported by supply cuts by major exporters as well as continuing concern about political developments in Saudi Arabia. Brent crude oil was up 59 cents or 0.9 percent to $64.08 a barrel by 11:30 a.m. (1630), still close to Tuesday's intra-day high of $64.65, which was the highest since June 2015. U.S. light crude was up 46 cents or 0.8 percent at $57.27, just shy of this week's more than two-year high of $57.69 a barrel. Saudi Arabia plans to cut its crude exports by 120…

AI to Estimate Vessel Speed and Fuel Consumption

Example of estimated vessel speed compared to main engine rpm and wind speed by using high-dimensional statistical analysis (Graphic provided by Fujitsu Laboratories Ltd.)

Mitsui O.S.K. This project is a part of MOL's initiative to assess the effectiveness of AI technology, and aims to reduce fuel consumption and vessels' environmental impact by verifying the accuracy of the technology, using Fujitsu's AI Technology to estimate vessel performance at sea. MOL provided actual voyage data collected from MOL fleet in operation to Fujitsu Laboratories, which, along with Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology, verified the data by using their jointly developed machine learning method.

Fire Shuts Shell Platform in GOM

Royal Dutch Shell Plc's Enchilada oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico has been shut and all associated production has been stopped after a fire on Wednesday, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) said.   The Coast Guard said the fire has been reduced to a small flame from a pipe on the platform, located about 112 nautical miles south of Vermilion Bay, Louisiana.   Two people were injured and the crew of 46 were evacuated to a nearby platform, the Coast Guard said, adding that there was a report of a light sheen north of the Shell platform. (Reporting by Swati Verma and Nithin Prasad in Bengaluru Editing by Marguerita Choy)  

Royal Caribbean Takes the Lead on Fuel Cell Tech

Image: ABB

As the maritime world rapidly evolves to incorporate increasingly clean and efficient power sources onboard ships at sea, the cruise industry is emerging as a clear leader in the sector, driven by the high-profile nature of its ships and the often pristine environments to which they traverse. With that, ABB announced that it will deliver the first fuel cell system to Royal Caribbean, a pilot program in which the RCL ship will be the world's first fuel cell system on a luxury cruise ship.

Shell Charters LNG Bunker Barge in US

 PRNewsfoto/Shell

Shell Trading (US) Company announced it has finalized a long-term charter agreement with Q-LNG Transport, LLC for an LNG bunker barge with the capacity to carry 4,000 cubic meters of LNG fuel. As the first of its kind to be based in the United States, the ocean-going LNG bunker barge will supply LNG to marine customers along the southern East Coast of the U.S. and support growing cruise line demand for LNG marine fuel. "This investment in LNG as a marine fuel for the US will provide the shipping industry with a fuel that helps meet tougher emissions regulations from 2020…

Vantage Gets Extension of Contract for the Emerald Driller

Emerald Driller. Photo: Vantage Drilling International

Vantage Drilling International announced that it has been notified that its drilling services contract for the Emerald Driller will be extended for two years, beginning in May 2018. Ihab Toma, the Company’s Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We are very pleased that we will continue to work with one of our esteemed clients and keep our rigs working in this challenging environment. Vantage Drilling International, a Cayman Islands exempted company, is an offshore drilling contractor…

Wärtsilä Launches Fuel-Saving Pre-Swirl Stator

EnergoFlow. Photo: Wärtsilä

EnergoFlow is a new energy saving solution that will return ship operators’ investment in less than two years, according to its developer Wärtsilä. By reducing the power losses which occur in the propeller’s slipstream with an optimised inflow, Wärtsilä’s solution improves fuel efficiency by up to 10 percent. The technology group Wärtsilä launches the newest solution in its propulsion efficiency portfolio during November. The product will be introduced at the Europort event in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, on Tuesday, November 7.

Sino-Danish Focus on Energy Efficient Ships

Photo: Danish Maritime Authority

A delegation from the Chinese Ministry of Industry is visiting Denmark as part of the cooperation between the two Administrations. A Danish-Chinese workshop on energy efficient ship design and marine equipment will be held during the three-day visit. The workshop will be attended by the Danish Maritime Authority, the Chinese Ministry of Industry and other Chinese authorities, as well as shipowners, marine equipment manufacturers, the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) and Danish Maritime.

James Fisher Subsea Excavation Completes Project in Taiwan

(Photo: James Fisher Subsea Excavation)

Global subsea excavation specialist James Fisher Subsea Excavation (JFSE), a part of James Fisher and Sons plc, said it has completed its first project in Taiwan. Experts from the mass/controlled flow excavation (M/CFE) provider deployed the shallow draft Twin R2000 tool to de-bury and retrench a cable for maintenance as part of the prominent Formosa 1 wind farm development for its client, cable lay contractor Woen Jinn Harbor (WJH). The Twin R2000’s non-contact method and ability…

Shell Trading, Harvey Gulf ink LNG Transport Contract

An artist's depiction of a Q-LNG transport vessel (CREDIT: Harvey Gulf)

Harvey Gulf International Marine’s CEO Shane Guidry announced today the formation of new marine transportation company, Quality Liquefied Natural Gas Transport, LLC (“Q-LNG”), owned 70% by Shane Guidry and 30% by Harvey Gulf. Q-LNG will own and operate assets providing marine transportation of liquefied natural gas (“LNG”), a critical component of U.S. LNG infrastructure, commencing with a long-term contract with Shell Trading (U.S.) Company (“Shell”) to deliver LNG as a fuel source to various ports in Florida and the Caribbean. Mr.

Singapore Revokes Transocean Oil's Bunker License

Photo: Transocean Oil Pte Ltd

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) has revoked the bunker supplier and bunker craft operator licences of Transocean Oil Pte Ltd, with effect from 6 November 2017. Transocean will no longer be allowed to operate as bunker supplier and bunker craft operator in the Port of Singapore. As part of MPA’s ongoing regulatory efforts to ensure the integrity of bunkering in Singapore, checks were conducted on Transocean in March and April this year. MPA’s investigations revealed…

Singapore Revokes Transocean Oil's Bunker Licence

Singapore's Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) said on Monday it had revoked Transocean Oil's bunker fuel supply licence in the Port of Singapore, effective immediately.   MPA said it had conducted checks on Transocean in March and April as part its efforts to ensure the integrity of bunkering operations at the port and found "falsifications of records and discrepancies in the stock movement logbooks on board the bunker tankers" operated by the company.   Transocean Oil, which was formed in 2003 and operates a fleet of thirteen bunkering barges, according to its website, was not immediately available to comment.   It sold a monthly average of around 200,000 tonnes of bunker fuel in 2013.   Reporting by Roslan Khasawneh  

LNG Bunkering to Grow at CAGR of 62.5% to reach USD 24.684 bln in 2023

Photo: LNG bunker

The global LNG bunkering market  is expected to witness a CAGR of 62.5%, and is projected to reach USD 24684.7 million by 2023, said a report by Energias Market Research. The key factors driving the growth of LNG bunkering market are  increase in LNG  demand in order to reduce the carbon footprint in the shipping industry stringent international emission policy, the best cost-effective alternative fuel and significant rise in government initiatives supporting LNG adoption. LNG Bunkering is the practice of providing liquefied natural gas fuel to a ship for its own consumption.

W. Africa Crude: Spot Trade Slows with Flurry of Tenders

© Anatoly Menzhiliy / Adobe Stock

Spot trade in west African crude slowed on Friday after a few Indian and Indonesian tenders were issued, though demand was seen recovering after a month in the doldrums with traders looking to do deals ahead of the year end. Demand was muted for November loading due to competing, cheaper alternative U.S. crude exports that have been going increasingly to Asia. Angola's state firm Sonangol was offering a cargo of Olombendo loading Dec. 17 and a cargo of Dalia for Dec. 19-20. Chevron sold a cargo of Agbami to a U.S. refiner.

M/V Harvey Blue-Sea Delivered

Sister ships Harvey Blue-Sea and Harvey Sub-Sea have both been delivered to owner Harvey Gulf International Marine in 2017 (Image: Harvey Gulf)

Harvey Gulf International Marine has taken delivery of M/V Harvey Blue-Sea, a new large capacity, Jones Act qualified multipurpose support vessel (MPSV) from Eastern Shipbuilding Group. With the delivery of the 340-foot Harvey Blue-Sea, which follows sister vessel M/V Harvey Sub-Sea delivered in July 2017, Harvey Gulf said it now owns and operates the two largest U.S. flag construction vessels in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. Harvey Gulf describes the new sister MPSVs as “best in class” vessels with “the technical capabilities to efficiently…

Grain Trade Boosts Brazil's Itaqui Port

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Lidian Neeleman)

Brazil's Itaqui port, the country's closest deepwater gateway to the Panama Canal, has projected a rise in 2017 shipping volumes thanks to a record grain harvest and development of a new northern farming frontier. Most of Itaqui's export cargo arrives by train instead of roads. It is the deepest public port in Brazil, and its travel time to Europe and North America is seven days shorter than from rivals in the South. Itaqui can handle minerals, grains, fertilizers, fuel and woodpulp consignments.

Solstad Farstad Sells AHTS Nor Star

Nor Star. Photo: SolstadFarstad ASA

The vessel (5.500 BHP) was built in 2005 built at Pt. Jaya Asiatic Shipyard,Batam Indonesia. Delivery of the vessel to the new owner has taken place today, Thursday 2nd November, 2017. The sale of the vessel will result in an immaterial accounting effect for 4Q 2017. Solstad Farstad is a Norwegian offshore service and supply ship shipping company that operates 50 vessels and two newbuilding CSV, including 19 construction service vessels, 22 anchor handling tug supply vessels and 9 platform supply vessels.

ClassNK Updates Ship Maintenance Checklist

Classification society ClassNK has released the latest version of Good Maintenance Onboard Ships (October, 2017), a checklist designed to be used by ship masters, crew, ship owners and other key personnel to ensure vessels are safe, well-maintained and comply with regulations. ClassNK’s Director of Survey Operations Division, Yoshinori Kozeki, said, “This easy-to-use checklist is a result of our ongoing commitment to improve the safety of life and property at sea, and the prevention of pollution of the marine environment. The latest edition of Good Maintenance Onboard Ships includes clear explanations, photo examples as well as guidance on the latest updates in the industry.

GasLog Updates on LNG Market

Photo: GasLog Partners

During the quarter and post quarter end, there has been continued momentum in the start-up of new LNG liquefaction capacity with the fourth train at Sabine Pass in the U.S. shipping its first commissioning cargoes in August 2017, said GasLog Partners. Sabine Pass has now shipped approximately 200 cargoes since start up in early 2016. Post quarter end, Chevron's Wheatstone LNG project in Australia started production with the first LNG shipment expected in the coming weeks. Dominion's Cove Point project in the U.S.

Saudis Raise December Crude Prices for Asia Exports

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Jose Gill)

Saudi Aramco has raised the December official selling price (OSP) for its Arab Light grade for Asian customers by 65 cents a barrel versus the previous month to a premium of $1.25 a barrel to the average of the Oman and Dubai benchmarks, it said on Thursday. That raises the December Arab Light OSP to the highest premium since September 2014, Reuters data showed. The price for Arab Super Light was raised by 45 cents a barrel and the OSPs for Arab Extra Light and Arab Medium rose by 65 cents, Aramco said, confirming what two sources told Reuters earlier on Thursday.

Glory Amsterdam Refloated from German Sandbar

A rescue team freed the grounded freighter "Glory Amsterdam" from a sandbar near the North Sea island of Langeoog and ruled out an oil leak, German authorities said on Thursday. Two large towing ships pulled the freighter to deep water and 16,000 tons of ballast water were pumped out of it, said Simone Starke, spokeswoman for Germany's Central Command for Maritime Emergencies. Environmental and fishery groups warned of dire consequences to the Wadden Sea, a UNESCO World Heritage site, if the ship began leaking 1,800 tonnes of heavy oil and 140 tonnes of marine diesel on board but there was no damage to the hull, authorities said. "No leaking was found during the towing process. An oil monitoring plane will accompany the barges towards Wilhelmshaven," said Starke.

Beagle Star to Use Inmarsat’s Fleet Xpress for Superyachts

Image: Inmarsat plc.

Inmarsat has launched a new and flexible Fleet Xpress plan for superyachts to address the seasonal luxury market, and through its partner e3 Systems has signed up the first superyacht Beagle Star V, a luxury sail yacht, to the plan. The award-winning Fleet Xpress service has become the fastest growing VSAT service in the 2017 commercial shipping market. With additional flexibility being a key demand for the superyacht industry, where voice and video calls, entertainment and social media can vary widely during the season…

Rosneft, NIOC Ink Cooperation Deal

Image:  Rosneft

Russian oil producer Rosneft and the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) have agreed an outline deal to work together on a number of “strategic” projects in Iran together worth up to $30 billion, Reuters reported quoting Rosneft’s head Igor Sechin as saying. The potential collaboration with Iran would further strengthen Rosneft’s position in the Middle East, the company having already secured a number of deals in the region, including the acquisition of a majority stake in Iraqi Kurdistan’s main oil pipeline.

KVH TracPhone V7-HTS System Delivers Maritime Broadband

Photo: KVH Industries, Inc

An advanced, 60 cm marine satellite antenna system designed to consistently deliver the fastest data speeds globally to the maritime market will be unveiled tomorrow by KVH Industries, Inc., at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, in Florida. The TracPhone V7-HTS achieves data download speeds of up to 10 Mbps, three times faster than current 60 cm models on the market, including KVH’s own system, and fast enough to enable the streaming of HD-quality content at sea. In addition…

KVH Launches New High-speed Maritime Network on Intelsat

Image: Intelsat

KVH Industries announced the launch of its next-generation, advanced maritime broadband network, joined by service partner, Intelsat. Slated for commercial availability next month, KVH’s high-speed overlay to its current mini-VSAT Broadbandsm service is expected to triple, and in some cases increase by a multiple of six, the data speeds for its maritime customers. At the core of its capabilities, KVH’s advanced maritime broadband network will incorporate Intelsat Epic satellite services and the award-winning IntelsatOne Flex platform…

MPA, Shell Shipping Sign MOU

The MOU was signed by Mr Nick Potter, General manager, Asia Pacific-Middle East, Shipping & Maritime and Mr Andrew Tan, Chief Executive of MPA at the Singapore Maritime Institute (SMI) Forum 2017. Photo: Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and Shell Eastern Trading (PTE) LTD (Shell) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), to cooperate in the research and development and test-bedding of projects within the maritime industry in areas of clean fuel technologies, automation and digitalisation. Under the MOU, MPA in partnership with Shell, will collaborate on the following key areas: Developing innovative solutions to reduce emissions in the port, Explore greater use of automation in the port and Support study and development of digitalisation efforts…

Euronav Reports Lowest Freight Rates since 2013

(Photo: Euronav)

Belgian tanker operator Euronav reported a sharp drop in core profit for the first nine months of the year as freight rates in the oil tanker sector continued to fall. Excess tonnage in the global tanker market has put pressure on freight rates, as a large wave of new deliveries this year has offset scrapping. "Freight rates remained under sustained pressure ... particularly in August as seasonally low levels of cargo and new tonnage entering the market combined to drive rates to lowest levels since 2013," Chief Executive Paddy Rodgers said in a statement.

DONG Energy Chooses Esvagt Castor for Hornsea One

The 'Esvagt Castor’ will work as standby vessel and man overboard rescue vessel during the building of the offshore wind farm Hornsea 1. Photo:  ESVAGT

DONG Energy has chosen Esvagt as partner in establishing the first offshore wind farm to break the 1 gigawatt barrier; the 1,200 mW offshore wind farm, Hornsea 1, off Grimsby in the UK sector of the North Sea. The 'Esvagt Castor’ will work as standby vessel and man overboard rescue vessel during the building of the offshore wind farm, which currently consists of a meteorological mast and half a dozen buoys and which, in 2020, will supply CO2 neutral power to around 850,000 homes.

Swire, Siem Sign Vessel Bareboat Charter

Siem Stingray.  Photo credit: Harald M. Valderhaug. Swire Seabed.

Swire Seabed has signed a three year bareboat charter with Siem Offshore for the LCV Siem Stingray. The vessel, which will be re-named Seabed Stingray, is an Inspection, Maintenance and Repair (IMR), Construction and Survey vessel of the VARD design. She is 120.90 metres in length with a deck space of 1350 m² and is equipped with a 250 tonne offshore crane. She will also have two heavy duty work class ROVs. The contract will see Swire Seabed operate the vessel in the IMR, Construction Support and Renewable sectors, with a particular focus on North European and West African markets.

Sojitz Buys Spanish LNG Terminal

Pic:  Sojitz Corporation

Japan's Sojitz Corporation has acquired full ownership of First State Regasificadora (FSR), subsequently changing the company’s name to Sojitz Regasificadora (SR). SR owns a 15% stake in Regasificadora del Noroeste (Reganosa), whose assets include the LNG terminal located in Mugardos, located in the northwest of Spain. This makes Sojitz Corporation (Sojitz) the first Japanese trading company to enter into the LNG terminal business in Europe. Reganosa commenced operations at the Mugardos LNG Terminal in 2007.

Diamond Offshore Shares Buoyant

As the offshore energy market continues to search for signs of recovery, latest news from Diamond Offshore points to better times ahead. On Monday, October 30, 2017 Diamond Offshore reported better-than-expected quarterly profits, in part driven by additional deals won for its deep-water drilling rigs at better rate, sending its shares up 8.3% at the time of reporting.. While Diamond Offshore CEO Marc Edwards was not prepared to call the bottom of the market, the news certainly bodes well for a global industry collectively looking for any light at the end of a nearly four year oil downturn turnnel. "The number of tenders has increased, albeit from a very low platform and customer inquiries have picked up, although also starting from a low base.

U.S. Oil Exports Boom, Pushing Infrastructure to Limits

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Carabay)

Tankers carrying record levels of crude are leaving in droves from Texas and Louisiana ports, and more growth in the fledgling U.S. oil export market may before long test the limits of infrastructure like pipelines, dock space and ship traffic. U.S. crude exports have boomed since the decades-old ban was lifted less than two years ago, with shipments recently hitting a record of 2 million barrels a day. But shippers and traders fear the rising trend is not sustainable, and if limits are hit, it could pressure the price of U.S. oil. How much crude the United States can export is a mystery.

Keeping the Task Group on Task

Photo: Royal Australian Navy

With no commercial floating petrol stations in the middle of the ocean, Royal Australian Navy ships and helicopters rely on specialised replenishment ships for all their fuel needs. Underway refuelling is called replenishment-at-sea (or RAS), which requires a number of complex manoeuvres that requires ships to maintain a steady course and speed for a number of hours. The Australian Navy has two underway replenishment ships, HMAS Ships Sirius and Success – which with the support of similar Allied vessels, keeps the Australian Navy steaming across the globe.

Spot LNG Shiping Fleet's Operating Loss US$230m in 2017

Graph: Drewry Shipping Consultants Limited

The pressure on LNG shipping spot rates will continue for another year on account of strong fleet growth. However, rates should strengthen from 2019 as fleet growth slows and trade remains strong, according to the latest edition of the LNG Forecaster report published by global shipping consultancy Drewry. Spot rates (East of Suez) for modern LNG vessels averaged $33,000pd in the nine months to September 2017, an increase of 5% compared with the same period last year. While current spot rates are enough to cover operating costs of around $15…

Astomos and Elgas to Study LPG as Shipping Fuel

Photo: Astomos Energy Corporation

Tokyo-based Astomos Energy Corporation and , Australia’s leading LPG marketer and distributor have signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MOU) for the further study of LPG as a ship bunker fuel(LPG bunkering). LPG bunkering is a possible solution to meet the International Maritime Organization (IMO) shipping fuels SOx limit of 0.5% from 2020. This MOU will enhance cooperation between Astomos and Elgas across all aspects of LPG bunkering including the sharing of information, research and development and collaboration in securing global supply sites for LPG bunkering within the Asia Pacific.

Brent Crude at 27-month High Even as U.S. Exports spike

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Jose Gill)

Saudi Crown Prince takes bullish stance on supply cut deal; U.S. crude inventories show surprise build even as crude exports hit new record four-week average. Brent crude closed at a 27-month high on Thursday as the market focused more on comments from Saudi Arabia about ending a global supply glut instead of an unexpected increase in U.S. crude inventories and high U.S. production and exports. Brent futures gained 86 cents, or 1.5 percent, to settle at $59.30 a barrel, its highest close since July 3, 2015. U.S.

Shipping Companies May Adopt LNG Faster Than Expected

File Image: Harvey Gulf's Fourchon-based LNG refueling facility. Harvey Gulf is an early adopter of LNG-as-a-fuel.

Infrastructure among top hurdles for LNG marine fuel adoption. The shipping industry may adopt liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a fuel faster than expected because of stricter environmental regulations that target carbon dioxide emission, according to an executive at maritime agency Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM). The Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) regulation enacted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in 2013 will require newly built ships to emit less carbon dioxide (CO2) and that will drive shippers to move toward LNG as a fuel when placing orders for new vessels…

Akastor, Mitsui Seek To Expand Partnership

Photo: AKOFS Offshore

Akastor ASA (AKA), an oil service investment company, announced that it is in advanced discussions with Japan-based Mitsui & Co to further expand their current partnership to include AKOFS Offshore (AKOFS). The parties have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). As per the MoU, Mitsui, together with potential partners, will invest in AKOFS by purchasing 50% of the shares in the company to form a new 50-50 joint venture. The Transaction is expected to result in an initial net cash release to Akastor of approximately USD 142 million for the shares in AKOFS…

Biggest LNG Vessel Sails to Turkey

Photo: Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd.

The world’s biggest specialized vessel to import liquefied natural gas (LNG)  is scheduled to be operational in November to contribute to Turkey's energy supply security, Bloomberg reported. The MOL FSRU Challenger, as long as the Eiffel Tower, is expected to arrive from South Korea this month and start by year-end. Last winter, a cold snap gripped the whole region, including Iran, where Turkey gets some of its gas from. That meant the nation couldn’t get hold of enough fuel to meet its booming gas demand and the grid asked private power plants to reduce fuel demand by as much as 90 percent.

US Marine Sanctuary Oil Drilling Report Sent to Trump, Not Public

(Photo: David J. Ruck/NOAA)

U.S. Commerce Department Secretary Wilbur Ross sent a report to the White House on Wednesday containing recommendations on whether to change the boundaries of 11 marine sanctuaries to allow more oil and gas drilling, but the report was not made public. Commerce reviewed sanctuaries containing 425 million acres of coral reefs, marine mammal habitats and pristine beaches, as part of an administration strategy to open new areas to oil and gas drilling. The goal was to “put the energy needs of American families and businesses first,” according to the order Trump signed in April that triggered it.

Brazil Delays Estimate for First Oil Cargo from Libra

Brazil on Wednesday pushed back its forecast for a first oil shipment from its promising offshore Libra prospect to the first quarter of next year, months after its previously projected October 2017 estimate made in May.   Hercules Tadeu F. da Silva, contract management director at Brazil's state-run Pre-Sal Petroleo SA, a company created to help guide development of Libra, declined to explain the cause of the delay. (Reporting by Simon Webb)

Newbuild Rescue Vessel Bound for Breagh Field Deployment

Celebrating the naming of Forties Sentinel are (left to right) Rory Deans, chief executive of Sentinel Marine, Ylva Tuft – the ship’s godmother – and Mervyn Williams, supply chain manager for INEOS Breagh. (Photo: Sentinel Marine)

A new multi-role emergency response and rescue vessel (ERRV) built by Aberdeen-based Sentinel Martine as part of a £110 million ($145 million) investment has been deployed to operations in the southern North Sea. Forties Sentinel was officially named at a ceremony in Great Yarmouth. Forties Sentinel has been contracted to INEOS Breagh to provide support for the firm’s production facilities in the Breagh gas field. INEOS has also chartered a second ERRV from the Sentinel Marine fleet – Sentinel Ranger – for the field.

Hess Corp Sells Offshore Equatorial Guinea Assets

Okume complex in Equatorial Guinea. Photo: Hess Corporation

Hess Corporation has entered into an agreement to sell its interests in offshore Equatorial Guinea to Kosmos Energy and Trident Energy for a total consideration of $650 million, effective January 1, 2017. “This sale is a further step in our strategy to focus our portfolio by investing in higher return assets and divesting more mature, higher cost assets,” CEO John Hess said. “Proceeds from asset sales, along with cash on our balance sheet, are expected to fund the development of our truly world class investment opportunity offshore Guyana.

UK Electronic Solutions Inks Deal with Dalby Offshore

UK Electronic Solutions, (part of the NSSLGlobal group), said it has signed a contract with Dalby Offshore to install its motion and impact monitoring system, Oceanic Dynamics, on an additional three crew transfer vessels (CTVs). This follows a successful trial of the system on board Dalby Offshore’s largest CTV, the Dalby Ouse. Dalby Offshore’s 10-strong fleet primarily supports offshore wind farms, working with companies such as VBMS, SSE Dong Energy, Siemens and RWE Statoil, to move equipment and engineering crews as required. At 26 meters long, the Dalby Ouse catamaran is not only the largest CTV in Dalby’s fleet, it also has the largest engines and waterjets of any CTV in the U.K.

GTT Wins Prelude FLNG Work

Prelude FLNG (Photo: Shell)

France's GTT has won a contract to provide membrane cargo containment system services to Shell's Prelude floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility in the Browse basin off western Australia. The contract will provide support for the engineering, inspection, maintenance as well as testing of the containment system. The Prelude FLNG facility recently arrived at its location 475 km northeast of Broome where the hook-up and commissioning phase of the project is underway. Prelude FLNG has a liquefied gas storage capacity of 326,000 m3.

WER 2018 Floating Production Systems Forecast

(File photo: © SBM Offshore)

World Energy Reports’ (WER) 2018 Forecast Report, the 21st in a series of forecasts dating from 1998, presents projection of floating production system orders over the next five years. The 102-page report provides market intelligence and insights useful to business planners and others involved in deepwater development. First we present our assessment of the underlying deepwater market conditions likely to prevail over the 2018/22 time frame. Then we provide our forecast of orders for FPSOs, FPUs, FLNGs, FSRUs and FSOs under three market scenarios.

FPSO Moored at Catcher Field

BW Catcher (Photo: BW Offshore)

Premier Oil’s Catcher project remains on pace to achieve first oil before the end of this year with the arrival and hook up of the Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel BW Catcher last week in the U.K. North Sea. BW Catcher arrived at the Catcher field on October 18, and the hook up of the Submerged Turret Production (STP) buoy mooring system was completed on October 19 with the vessel completing a rotation test around the buoy on October 20, Premier Oil said. Final pull-in of the risers and umbilicals is underway, and commissioning activities have commenced in parallel.

U.S. Midwest Refiners Boost Output

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Sharrif Che'Lah)

U.S. refineries from Ohio to Minnesota are capitalizing on access to cheap crude from Western Canada and North Dakota oilfields, helping their region break a historic dependence on fuel from the Gulf Coast while redrawing oil trade maps. Since the early 2000s, crude and fuel flows from the Gulf Coast into the U.S. heartland have been cut in half, as crude coming from Canada and North Dakota has pushed U.S. Midwest refining activity to record levels. In 2016, Midwest refining capacity rose to 3.9 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude, the highest annual volume on record.

Response to Barge Casualty continues Offshore Texas

The Response operation underway offshore Aransas Pass on Sunday afternoon. Photo: U.S. Coast Guard

The Coast Guard, Texas General Land Office, and Bouchard Transportation representatives continue to respond Sunday to an oil discharge from a barge that caught fire and was extinguished on Friday three miles off the jetties of Port Aransas, Texas. Response efforts continue to minimize impact to the environment and the maritime community, which has enabled the Coast Guard to reopen the impacted ship channels. Discharge from the barge cargo tanks appears to have stopped following the removal of 2,500 barrels of oil-water mix from the barge through lightering operations.

Shuttle Tankers - Safe, Flexible, Efficient

Photo: DNV GL

Shuttle tankers are an alternative to subsea pipelines. Typically for large water depths. For harsh weather operation the use of shuttle tankers is a necessity. DNV GL has incorporated the latest findings related to their design, operation and safety in an updated shuttle tanker paper. Shuttle tankers transport crude oil from offshore oil fields to terminals where use of subsea pipelines are not feasible. Major deployment areas include the North Sea and the Brazilian offshore fields. The global fleet has been growing steadily for decades, comprising 88 ships by the end of 2016.

BP Chairman to Retire

Carl-Henric Svanberg. Photo: BP p.l.c.

BP has announced that Carl-Henric Svanberg has informed the company’s board of directors of his intention to retire as chairman. Svanberg will chair the annual general meeting to be held in May 2018 and will remain in position until a successor is in post. Ian Davis, the BP board’s senior independent director, will now lead the process to identify and appoint BP’s next chairman. Mr Svanberg joined the BP board on 1 September 2009 and became chairman on 1 January 2010. Svanberg said: “It has been a tremendous privilege to lead the BP board over the past eight years.

Update: Texas Barge Explosion Kills One, Fire Extinguished

The U.S. Coast Guard responds to barge on fire approximately three miles from Port Aransas, Texas. (U.S. Coast Guard phot)

At least one person was killed and another was missing on Friday after an oil barge being pulled by a tug boat caught fire and exploded in the Gulf of Mexico off Texas, officials said. The barge was carrying some 133,000 barrels of crude oil to a refinery in Corpus Christi when the explosion occurred at 4:30 a.m., they said. The dead person had not yet been identified and the fire was allowed to burn itself out before being extinguished, said Rick Adams, Emergency Management Coordinator for the City of Port Aransas.

FPSOs: New Storage Tank Explosion Frequencies

The fatal explosion in the pump room on the Brazilian FPSO Cidade de São Mateus in February 2015, demonstrated the potential for major accidents on this type of unit. Although there has never been an explosion in the oil storage tanks of an FPSO, there is a potential for such an event and offshore operators should assess the risks of such events to design against them. It is therefore imperative that risk assessments of FPSOs address this type of event. For this, they need to estimate its annual likelihood of occurring.

SEA-3250-LT: Innovation in Offshore Wind Installations

The SEA-3250-LT is a dedicated low CAPEX wind turbine installation solution for the emerging U.S. offshore wind market. (Image: GustoMSC)

GustoMSC is targeting the burgeoning U.S. offshore wind energy market with an innovative jack-up design that it claims will help to reduce risk and increase efficiency when installing units offshore: the SEA-3250-LT installation jack-up. Designed to be a safe, stable and solid platform to lift these heavy, delicate components to heights of more than 426 ft (130 m) in an area where technicians are performing assembly tasks at the same time. GustoMSC plays a pioneering role in the offshore wind installation market…

ARO Drilling Commences Operations

ARO Drilling, a 50/50 joint venture between Rowan Companies plc and the Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco), commenced operations on October 17, 2017. As part of the initial startup of ARO Drilling, Rowan and Saudi Aramco contributed equal amounts of cash into the joint venture. Following these contributions, Rowan sold three of its jack-up drilling rigs to ARO Drilling, including the J.P. Bussell, which was previously idle, and Saudi Aramco sold one of its jack-up drilling rigs to ARO Drilling. Following the purchase of these drilling rigs, ARO Drilling distributed excess cash in the amount of approximately $88 million to each of Rowan and Saudi Aramco maintaining each party's 50% ownership interests in the joint venture.

Odfjell Divests Share in Singapore Tank Terminal

Odfjell Terminals B.V. has entered into an agreement with a fund managed by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets to sell its 50 percent ownership in Oiltanking Odfjell Terminal Singapore Pte Ltd for a price around $300 million. This implies an enterprise value of around $330 million for Odfjell Terminals B.V.'s share in the Singapore terminal. “This divestment is in line with our strategy to focus on the terminals where we have managerial control of the assets and to further invest in growth opportunities in our core markets, such as Houston and Rotterdam," said Frank Erkelens, CEO of Odfjell Terminals B.V. The transaction will result in a net gain for Odfjell SE of approximately $135 million (Odfjell SE's share).

Dordrecht Inland Seaport to Get LNG Bunker Station

Photo: Port of Rotterdam

The Port of Rotterdam Authority wants a new multi-fuel bunkering station for refuelling with LNG and other cleaner fuels. The anticipated location of the bunkering station is Krabbegors/Duivelseiland at Dordrecht Inland Seaport. The Port of Rotterdam Authority and PitPoint.LNG have therefore signed a declaration of intent regarding a joint investigation into the construction of such a multi-fuel bunkering station. “As operator of Europe’s largest port, the Port Authority sees…

Ocean Rig Withdraws Winding Up Petition

Photo: Ocean Rig

Ocean Rig UDW Inc., an international contractor of offshore deepwater drilling services, has announced that pursuant to an order of the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands Simon Appell of AlixPartners Services UK LLP and Eleanor Fisher of Kalo (Cayman) (formerly AlixPartners) have been discharged as joint provisional liquidators of the Company and its subsidiaries. The subsidiariesare Drill Rigs Holdings Inc. (DRH), Drillships Financing Holding Inc. (DFH), and Drillships Ocean Ventures Inc., (DOV) and together with UDW, DRH and DFH, the Scheme Companies.

Italy Breaks up Libyan Fuel Smuggling Ring

Sicilian police on Wednesday sought the arrest of nine people, including a suspected mobster, for running a Libyan fuel-smuggling ring in which at least 30 million euros ($35 million) of diesel was sold in gas stations in Italy and Europe. A Libyan, nicknamed the "boss", used small boats to steal fuel from a refinery in Zawiya, a port city west of Tripoli, a statement from the finance police said. The fuel, stolen from Libya's National Oil Corporation (NOC), was then transferred to a larger ship off the coast of Malta and brought to Italy. Police from the Sicilian city of Catania "documented in detail 30 voyages in which more than 80 million kilos of diesel fuel was imported," the statement said.

World’s First Floating Wind Farm Starts Production

The Hywind Scotland floating wind farm. (Photo: Øyvind Gravås / Woldcam - Statoil ASA)

The world's first offshore floating wind farm has started to deliver electricity to the Scottish grid, providing power to approximately 20,000 households. The 30MW Hywind Scotland wind farm, operated by Statoil in partnership with Masdar 25 kilometers offshore Peterhead in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, was officially opened today by First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon. “This marks an exciting development for renewable energy in Scotland,” First Minister Sturgeon said. “The learnings from Hywind Scotland will pave the way for new global market opportunities for floating offshore wind energy.

Wood Wins LNG Platform FEED Contract

Pic:  John Wood Group PLC

The Honghua Group Limited has awarded a $12 million front-end engineering design (FEED) contract to Wood for its liquefied natural gas (LNG) platform development in the West Delta area of the Gulf of Mexico. The main objective of the FEED is to finalize the design of the world’s first offshore platform-based natural gas liquefaction and storage facility. Wood recently completed the pre-FEED for this project. Wood’s scope of work includes the onshore gas pre-treatment plant configuration and layouts…

Transocean Wins BHP Work

Image: Transocean

Transocean announced that the ultra-deepwater drillship Deepwater Invictus was awarded a two-year contract plus three one-year priced options with a subsidiary of BHP Billiton. The backlog associated with the firm contract is approximately $106 million. The contract is expected to commence in the second quarter of 2018. “We are extremely pleased to continue working with BHP,” said President and Chief Executive Officer Jeremy Thigpen. “Since we welcomed the Invictus into our fleet in 2014…

First phase of DNV GL Led Offshore Cable and Pipeline Project completed

Photo: DNV GL

The first phase of the DNV GL’s Joint Industry Project (JIP) which focuses on the development of a new design and certification standard for equipment for pipeline and cable offshore operations has been completed. "The JIP, focussing on the development of a new design and certification standard for equipment for pipeline and cable offshore operations, aims to reduce uncertainty, cost, increase efficiency and safety throughout the lifecycle of the equipment," said a press release.

DNV GL, Taiwan Pact for Offshore Wind

Photo: DNV GL

DNV GL, the world’s largest resource of independent energy experts and certification body, has signed an agreement with leading Taiwanese stakeholders to collaborate on offshore wind testing and certification to drive the expansion and facilitate the development of offshore wind in Taiwan. The regulations for certification will be headed by the Bureau of Standards, Metrology and Inspection since it has been designated by the highest authority in Taiwan. Taiwan is one of the rising offshore wind markets in the world.

Search Suspended for Worker Missing in US Oil Platform Blast

The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended the search for a worker missing from an oil production platform in Louisiana's Lake Pontchartrain that exploded and caught fire late on Sunday. Missing is Timothy Morrison, 44, of Katy, Texas, the Coast Guard said in a statement. Seven other workers were sent to hospital with injuries in the incident. "The decision to suspend a search is never an easy one," Commander Zac Ford said in the statement. Coast Guard rescue crews battled 4 foot to 5 foot (1.2 meter to 1.5 meter) waves during the search, and a helicopter joined them at daybreak after overnight efforts failed to locate Morrison, officials said at a briefing on Monday.

Newest Outpost for US Crude Exports: India

© sedi78 / Adobe Stock

India is set to emerge as a key market for American crude exports in coming months, as refineries in that country are ramping up "test" purchases of U.S. grades to diversify their imports. U.S. exports recently set a weekly record with nearly 2 million barrels of crude a day sent overseas. But shipments to India have been rare, with just a few deliveries since the U.S. lifted its ban on crude exports in late 2015. Indian refineries are starting to increase purchases as the country seeks to secure more supply from outside the Middle East. Refiners are testing both U.S.

MOL Names Newbuilding LNG Carrier 'Energy Liberty'

MOL's LNG carrier Papua. File Photo: MOL

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) has announced that on October 16, a naming ceremony for a newbuilding LNG carrier, jointly owned by MOL and Tokyo LNG Tanker, was held at the Tsu Shipyard of Japan Marine United Corporation. Among the crowd of well-wishers on hand for the ceremony were Tokyo Gas Co., Ltd. President Michiaki Hirose, who gave the name Energy Liberty to the vessel, after which his wife cut the rope. The Energy Liberty will be the eighth LNG carrier owned and managed by Tokyo LNG Tanker. MOL will directly manage six of those vessels, including this newbuilding vessel.

Rigdon Named Interim CEO at Tidewater

Larry Rigdon

Larry T. Rigdon will serve as interim president and chief executive officer (CEO) of Tidewater Inc. while a search committee seeks a permanent successor to Jeffrey M. Platt, who has elected to retire from his role as director, president and CEO of offshore service vessels (OSV) owner and operator effective October 15, 2017. “Having successfully completed the financial restructuring of Tidewater at the end of July, which positioned the company to weather current industry conditions and achieve success in the future…

Coast Guard Responds to Oil Platform Blast

The U.S. Coast Guard is coordinating search efforts for a missing man after an explosion on an oil platform in Lake Pontchartrain near Kenner, La., Sunday evening. Coast Guard Sector New Orleans received a report from a witness at approximately 8 p.m. of an oil platform explosion. The cause of the incident is unknown. It was reported by one of the platform workers that eight people were aboard at the time of the explosion, and one person did not make it to shore. Of the seven people who made it to shore, six were taken to the hospital. The Coast Guard and partner agencies continue to search for the missing man. Following the initial report…

Waterways Council, Inc. Update

File Image only (CREDIT: WCI)

As of today (October 16, 2017), the Ohio River is now OPEN at Lock & Dam 52 (L&D 52).   The river reopened on Saturday after it had been closed for nearly a week due to rising river stages that exceeded the maximum locking stage of 20.7 feet.   Precipitation from Hurricane Nate prompted the rising river levels and closure, but L&D 52 was closed from September 6-14 due to an unscheduled maintenance outage at the 89-year-old facility. As of today, there are 58 vessels with 658 barges waiting to transit L&D 52. This backup is over roughly a 20-mile stretch of river.  

MOL's PBCF Reduces 3-5% in Fuel Consumption

New type of PBCF equipped on a ship's propeller (red circled part in the image). Photo: Mitsui O.S.K. Lines

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) announced that its jointly developed Propeller Boss Cap Fins (PBCF) received the 2017 Nikkei Global Environmental Technology Award, which is presented by Nikkei Inc. The PBCF, which is a device that improves propeller efficiency by breaking up the hub vortex generated behind the rotating propeller and offers an energy savings of around 3-5% compared to similar vessels not equipped with the PBCF, was co-developed by MOL, West Japan Fluid Engineering Laboratory Co., Ltd., and Nakashima Propeller Co., Ltd. (called Mikado Propeller Co., Ltd.

Maersk Drilling Gets Contract Extensions for Two Rigs

Photo: Maersk Drilling

Maersk Drilling has been awarded two contract extensions in the North Sea. Both rigs have recently been re-activated to the North Sea from warm stacking. The estimated duration of the two extensions is 105 days. The high efficiency jack-up Maersk Resolve has been awarded a contract extension by Wintershall Noordzee B.V. for the drilling of a third well in the ongoing drilling campaign in the North Sea. The drilling of the third well will take place in the Dutch Sector and the work scope includes drilling as well as potential testing and completion activities.

Cheniere Partners Completes Train 4 at the Sabine Pass LNG

Loading of the first commissioning cargo at the Sabine Pass LNG Terminal - February 2016. File Photo: Cheniere Energy, Inc.

Cheniere Energy Partners has announced that Substantial Completion of Train 4 of the Sabine Pass liquefaction project in Cameron Parish, Louisiana (SPL Project) was achieved on October 9, 2017. Commissioning has been completed and Cheniere Partners' EPC partner Bechtel Oil, Gas and Chemicals has turned over care, custody, and control of Train 4 to Cheniere Partners. Under a sale and purchase agreement (SPA) with GAIL (India) Limited, the date of first commercial delivery for Train 4 of the SPL Project is expected to occur in March 2018, upon which the SPA's 20-year term commences.

About 13% US Gulf Oil Output Offline Due to Hurricane Nate

About 13 percent of U.S. Gulf of Mexico oil production remains offline in the aftermath of Hurricane Nate, the U.S. Department of the Interior's Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) said on Friday.   That equals about 220,000 barrels per day in production that is offline, according to BSEE. Oil companies evacuated staff from Gulf platforms and curtailed output ahead of the storm, which hit the region last weekend.   About 7 percent of U.S. Gulf natural gas production remains offline, BSEE said. (Reporting by Rod Nickel in Houston; Editing by James Dalgleish)

New Integrated Solution for DP Reference Systems

DPS 12 & i4 (Photo: Kongsberg)

Fusing its decades of experience within the development of in-house GNSS and inertial technology, Kongsberg has created a cutting-edge integrated solution for DP reference applications. DPS i2 and DPS i4 are fully scalable DP reference solutions that improve operational efficiency and safety for high-precision applications. The new integrated solution has been in operation aboard the OSV Bourbon Arctic in Northern Norway for the past six months. DPS i2 and DPS i4 utilize Kongsberg’s motion gyro compass (MGCTM) and motion reference unit (MRUTM) technology.

Oil Rallies on Chinese Import Boost and Mideast Tensions

© prathaan / Adobe Stock

Oil prices firmed on Friday as bullish news from strong Chinese oil imports to turmoil in the Middle East put Brent on track for a nearly 3 percent weekly gain. The developments added to other signs that the market was finally rebalancing after years of excess, but analysts warned that the 2018 balance was still shaky. Brent was at $57.20 at 1335 GMT, up 95 cents. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude was at $51.44 per barrel, up 84 cents from its last settlement. The contracts were on track for weekly gains of more than 2 percent and 4 percent, respectively.

Market Snapshot: Offshore Outlook

(Source: Vessels Value)

Notwithstanding the recent surge in crude oil prices, it isn’t lost on anyone that the offshore oil exploration business is, and has been for some time, in the doldrums. In the U.S. Gulf, that pain can be seen through Chapter 11 filings and the sobering specter of vessel after vessel rolling off the shipyard ways and directly into cold iron layup. And, it doesn’t help that the shore-based shale drillers have not only found a way to drastically reduce their operating expenses, but also how to turn the valve off and on, seemingly at will, in response to market conditions.

FLNG Hilli Episeyo Departs Singapore Early

 Golar LNG Limited said today that its floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) vessel Hilli Episeyo departed Singapore for Cameroon earlier than anticipated, leaving at 10 a.m. local time on October 12.   Hilli Episeyo was scheduled to leave Singapore between October 15 and October 20, but Golar LNG said a decision was made to complete LNG bunkering in Cameroon rather than in Singapore. The voyage to Cameroon is expected to take between 32 and 40 days.    The world’s first FLNG conversion, Hilli Episeyo was converted from a 1970s-built LNG carrier by Keppel Shipyard. The vessel will go to work offshore Kribi, Cameroon for Société Nationale des Hydrocarbures and Perenco Cameroon.  

GMG Acquires Fugro’s Trenching, Cable Laying Business

(Photo: Global Marine Group)

Global Marine Group (GMG) will acquire Fugro’s trenching and cable laying business in exchange for an equity stake of around 24 percent in the combined business valued at $65 million, and a one year secured vendor loan of $ 7.5 million. Fugro said it will realize a gain on this transaction, valued at approximately $73 million. GMG is a supplier of subsea cable installation and maintenance services in the telecoms, offshore renewables, power and oil and gas market segments. The…

Total Reinforces its Exploration in West Africa

Map: Total

Total and the National Office of Petroleum of Guinea (ONAP) signed a Technical Evaluation Agreement to study deep and ultra deep offshore areas located off the coast of Guinea Conakry, covering approximately 55,000 square kilometers. “By taking this position on a new under-explored area, Total pursues its exploration strategy targeting deep offshore prospective basins,” declared Kevin McLachlan, Senior Vice President Exploration for Exploration & Production at Total. “Therefore…

Saab's Maritime Solution Protecting Great Barrier Reef

Photo: Saab AB

As one of the wonders of the natural world, many consider the Great Barrier Reef one of the Earth’s most beautiful places. The marine environment in the area is extremely sensitive and with around 4000 commercial vessels passing every year, it is important for the vessel services operators working onshore to keep track of the traffic at all times. That’s where Saab comes in. Comprising nearly 3000 individual reefs and almost 100 islands, the Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef system.

Op/Ed: ASTRO Act Shoots For the Stars

Randall Luthi (Photo: NOIA)

National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) president Randall Luthi weighs in after the House Natural Resources Committee held a hearing on offshore development and introduced the Accessing Strategy Resources Offshore (ASTRO) Act. Today’s hearing was a slam dunk by the House Natural Resources Committee. Not only did the Committee bring in experts and stakeholders with their own unique offshore perspectives to the hearing, the Committee took a bold step in introducing the forward thinking ASTRO Act.

Glencore Sees Record Oil Trading Volumes as Margins Shrink

Glencore looks set to cement its position as the world's second-largest oil trader as it tries to offset low volatility and tight margins with record volumes this year, its global head of oil, Alex Beard, told Reuters. The London-listed commodities trader and miner will shift around 6 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude and refined product this year, up 25 percent from last year. The figure represents around 6 percent of global supply and only rival Vitol trades more oil, at some 7 million bpd. Most merchants are being forced to ramp up volumes to protect profits in an environment of low volatility. "We don’t set targets in terms of volumes," Beard told the annual Reuters Global Commodities Summit.

Industry Task Force Pushes for Decarbonization Urgency

Global Maritime Forum, Carbon War Room, the Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition (CPLC), and University College London (UCL) has announced the launch of a Task Force on Decarbonizing Shipping. This industry-led initiative will develop tangible pathways for shipping’s decarbonization through five working groups, each focussed on a key area of the industry. Outcomes of the task force will be presented at the Global Maritime Forum’s inaugural summit in October 2018. The Task Force on Decarbonizing Shipping will bring together leaders and experts from across the maritime industry to develop and mobilize the industry along tangible pathways aligned with ambitious, science-based emission reduction targets.

U.N. Bans Four Ships over N.Korea Coal, U.S. Mulls Four More

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) )

The United Nations Security Council has banned four ships from ports globally for carrying coal from North Korea, including one vessel that also had ammunition, but the United States postponed a bid to blacklist four others pending further investigation. The vessels are the first to be designated under stepped-up sanctions imposed on North Korea by the 15-member council in August and September over Pyongyang's sixth and largest nuclear test and two long-range ballistic missile launches.

Royal IHC Buys Into Rotterdam Offshore Group

Photo: Royal IHC

Royal IHC has announced its acquisition of 50% of the share capital of Rotterdam Offshore Group (ROG). The agreement will enable IHC to strengthen its ship repair and conversion capabilities with the addition of a dedicated facility in Rotterdam, which has uninterrupted access to open sea. Rotterdam Offshore Group has a strong reputation in the worldwide maritime and offshore industry for dockside and on-site services. Located in Rotterdam, ROG has lay-by facilities for vessels up to 300m, heavy-lift crane capacity, a large yard area and a fully equipped workshop.

Statoil Selects Gas4Sea for LNG Bunkering in Rotterdam

Photo: Gas4Sea

Gas4Sea partners - ENGIE, Mitsubishi Corporation and NYK - have been selected by Norwegian multinational energy group Statoil to be their liquefied natural gas (LNG) marine fuel supplier in the port of Rotterdam, in the Netherlands, for four crude shuttle tankers. The four planned dual fuel vessels are to come into service in early 2020 and will be operated by Statoil in Northern European seas. Gas4Sea will supply LNG using the ENGIE Zeebrugge which started operations earlier this year.

Top Regulatory Concerns on the US Commercial Waterfront

© John Merlin / Adobe Stock

A top 10 list of regulatory concerns is by no means all-inclusive, but it does bring to light the full weight of the regulatory hammer on the collective domestic commercial waterfront. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us...” – Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities, 1859.

Corpus Christi: Energy Port of the Americas

(Image Courtesy Port of Corpus Christi)

The Port of Corpus Christi lives up to its moniker ‘Energy Port of the Americas,’ as the movement of energy in and out dominates the port’s history and future. John P. LaRue, Executive Director, Port Corpus Christi recently visited Maritime Reporter’s headquarters in New York to discuss the nearly $50 billion in investment projects driving the port forward. “Let’s just start with what we are and what we are not,” said LaRue. “We are not a container port. Up until a few years ago we were an oil import port (serving) three refineries: Citgo, Valero and Flint Hills Resources.

DNV GL Acquires ComputIT

Are F. Tjønn, CEO, DNV GL - Software (Photo: DNV GL)

DNV GL said it has acquired ComputIT, a specialist independent company for Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) software and R&D. ComputIT develops unique high-end technology for simulating fires, explosions and gas dispersion. “This acquisition brings us world-leading capabilities in the CFD domain,” says Are F. Tjønn, CEO, DNV GL - Software. With its roots in the offshore sector, ComputIT has also served onshore oil and gas, power generation, chemical, transport, maritime, and construction industries. It has been engaged by governmental bodies for investigation of fire accidents.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Nov 2017 - The Workboat Edition

Maritime Reporter and Engineering News’ first edition was published in New York City in 1883 and became our flagship publication in 1939. It is the world’s largest audited circulation magazine serving the global maritime industry, delivering more insightful editorial and news to more industry decision makers than any other source.

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