Posts Tagged ‘cuba’

“Former U.S. Rep. David Rivera, a well-connected Florida Republican, has been arrested on federal charges that include failing to register as a foreign agent. The case centers on Rivera’s signing of a $50 million contract with Venezuela’s government in early 2017, and his subsequent attempts to thaw Venezuela’s icy relationship with the U.S.”


Perhaps Mr Rivera’s conduct at a 2012 hearing on Cuban offshore drilling was a hint of things to come. Mr. Rivera inappropriately pressed BSEE, represented by Lars Herbst, to find ways to “bleed” Repsol should there be an incident while they were drilling in Cuban waters.

So, we need to figure out what we can do to inflict maximum pain, maximum punishment, to bleed Repsol of whatever resources they may have if there is a potential for a spill that will affect the U.S. coast. So, I hope you will look into that and verify that for us.”

Congressman David Rivera, 2012 Hearing on Cuban offshore drilling

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This presentation from the IADC Environmental Conference in Trinidad is linked. The Scarabeo 9 is the Saipmen rig that is scheduled to drill offshore Cuba later this year.

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Reuters article

“For us, the major goal is to prevent these major accidents from happening,” said Fidel Ilizastigui Perez, an official of Cuba’s Office for Environment and Nuclear Safety Regulation.

“The companies must show that they meet all international standards,” he told the conference in Port of Spain.

Perez said Cuban officials had studied and already implemented oil industry safety practices from Britain and incorporated others from the United States.

Mr. Perez participated in the 2005 International Regulators’ Offshore Safety Conference in London and made a very favorable impression.

Dan Whittle, a senior attorney at the U.S.-based Environmental Defense Fund, said the Cuban government appeared to be taking the safety issue seriously because of the potential economic benefit of the project.

“Cuba has a lot at stake,” he said. “They’re doing the best they can with limited resources and with obstacles to access those resources.”

“I think we’re seeing the beginning of a more international dialogue on what the Cubans are planning,” he added.

Sensible comments from the EDF.

Also, Cuba and the Bahamas have agreed on a maritime boundary.

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While US politicians continue to gnash their teeth or express outrage, the International Association of Drilling Contractors (IADC) has been busy promoting constructive dialogue about Cuban exploratory drilling. IADC has overcome major administrative obstacles and arranged for the participation of Cuban regulators in the Environmental Conference which begins tomorrow in Trinidad.

“This will pretty much be the first time the Cuban deepwater drilling project managers will make a presentation of what their regulatory requirements are going to be for the companies that drill in Cuban waters,” said Lee Hunt, president of the Houston-based International Association of Drilling Contractors, which is organizing the conference. Reuters

The Cuba session is scheduled for tomorrow afternoon. I look forward to seeing the news reports and posted presentations.

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Mariel Boatlift

Mariel — the town 30 miles west of Havana that was a departure point for more than 100,000 Cubans who left the island in the 1980 Mariel boatlift — is being remade into a servicing hub for the Cuban oil industry of the future.  NPR

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From Platts Oilgram News:

The US has given permission for a Cuban delegation to attend a conference sponsored by the International Association of Drilling Contractors in Trinidad next month to discuss Cuba’s deepwater drilling plans, the IADC said April 29.

If the Cuban delegation, which includes a top drilling regulator, attends, it will be the first time the Cubans have discussed their deepwater drilling plans in an international forum.

The IADC had applied to the US Treasury Department for a license to allow Cubans to attend the conference and was told on April 29 the license had been granted, Brian Petty, IADC senior vice president of government affairs, said.

The session on Cuba should be quite interesting.

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The recent departure by Petrobras from Cuba should not be taken as a final verdict on Cuba’s oil and gas potential, or as a signal on possible strained political relations between the governments of Cuba and Brazil.

It was simply an economic and strategic decision by Petrobras, following their long term-vision of focusing resources on developing its recently found 10 billion barrels of deepwater offshore oil and natural gas at the Santos and Campos basins, along the Atlantic coast. As Petrobras CFO Almhir Guilherme Barbassa recently stated in a Forbes interview: “…Petrobras has more to gain from organically growing its position in Brazil than going abroad to expand production.” Cuba Headlines



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Add Sonangol, Angola’s state-owned oil company, to the intriguing list of companies that will be involved in Cuban exploration:

“We have signed agreements with Cupet (the Cuban state-run oil company) to explore and develop two blocks,” said Mateus de Brito, a member of the corporate executive committee. El Universal

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Scarabeo 9

Delivery of a Chinese-built drilling rig that will open the first full-scale exploration for oil in Cuban waters looks unlikely until at least August in the latest delay to beset the project, sources said this week. Upstream

Comment: Look for the first well to be delayed until after the hurricane season, possibly into next year.

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Bahamas Petroleum, the oil and gas exploration company with licences in The Bahamas, is pleased to announce that the company has completed the acquisition of 1120 km of long-cable (8km) 2D seismic in its southern licences.  The new seismic survey has confirmed the presence of multiple prospects, some of which are 4-way closure in nature and some of which are combination stratigraphic-structural traps.

I’ll defer to the geologists regarding the significance of this announcement, but the results would seem to provide further encouragement for the island nation’s exploratory drilling plans. Will Florida politicians try to bully the Bahamas the way they have been bullying Cuba?

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