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  • Writer's pictureSarah Whiteford

IceMAX in the Bahamas, Aker BP deal, ECO vessel, high speed maritime transport, new V.Group CEO

It’s Good News Monday!

This Monday we talk about:

  1. BPC to Spud Bahamas Well in December Using Stena IceMAX Drillship

  2. Rigs report: Odfjell inks deal with Aker BP for North Sea deep-water semi

  3. Edison Chouest Offshore to Build and Operate First Large Jones Act-Compliant Offshore Wind Vessel

  4. ‘Didn’t bp say no more advertising?’

  5. Post-Pandemic High Speed Maritime Transport

  6. V.Group Names René Kofod-Olsen as New CEO

Image Credit: Offshore Engineer

The Stena IceMAX drillship is heading the Bahamas to spud Perseverance #1, a new offshore well owned by Bahamas Petroleum Company. Drilling was close in March but delayed due to COVID-19. The exploration period for this well has been extended once and it’s expected to be extended again. The vessel will arrive in December and begin drilling within a few days.

“The Perseverance #1 well is targeting recoverable P50 oil resources 0.77 billion barrels, with an upside of 1.44 billion barrels.

The Stena IceMAX is a dynamically positioned, dual mast ice-class drillship, capable of drilling in water depths up to 10, 000ft (3,048m). The drilling rig is currently in Las Palmas.”

After drilling in the Bahamas, the IceMAX will be heading to Mexico to drill for Repsol.

Image Credit: Riviera

“Aker BP and Oslo-listed Odfjell Drilling has signed a contract that commits further work to sixth generation, deepwater and harsh environment semi-submersible Deepsea Stavanger under an existing frame agreement.

Based on a GVA 7500 design, Deepwater Stavanger is capable of drilling in 3,000 m of water. The initial contract scope is for five wells, with an estimated contract value of up to US$44M, plus incentives. The contract will start at latest by end of Q3 2021, coinciding with Deepsea Stavanger’s return from South Africa.”

Semi-submersible Deepsea Aberdeen’s contract was cancelled by BP Exploration, who will pay early termination payments to Odfjell Drilling. The vessel has already been secured by Wintershall Dea Norge AS for exploration wells at the Norwegian Continental Shelf.

Image Credit: gCaptain

“Edison Chouest Offshore (ECO), Ørsted and Eversource have executed a long-term charter agreement for the provision of the first-ever Jones Act-compliant Service Operations Vessel (SOV) for the U.S. offshore wind industry.”

This is a custom SOV for maintaining and operations of wind farm projects. It will be a base for technicians, designed to transport them safely to and from offshore turbine locations. Comfort, safety, maneuverability, endurance, and reduced emissions are top priorities. The U.S.-flagged vessel will be built in Florida, Mississippi, and Louisiana, directly responsible for 300 new construction jobs. It will be approximately 260 feet long and have room for 60 passengers, operating on diesel electric power with proprietary ECO Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) to reduce emissions.

This will be ECO’s first foray into offshore wind. Mr. Chouest said the industry is well developed in Europe, but still in an early stage in the United States, making it a great time to get involved. 1,700 wind turbines are scheduled to be built in thirteen states over the U.S.

“‘Today’s news represents a key moment in the advancement of the offshore wind industry in the United States,’ added Joe Nolan, Executive Vice President at Eversource Energy. ‘Not only is this new vessel a critical component of our plans to build and develop the next generation of clean energy in our country, it’s a testament to how far the industry has come in such a short time and what we can achieve moving forward. This new state of the art vessel will help us deliver on the promise of creating jobs, driving economic growth, and combating climate change and will play a key role in our efforts to support states in meeting their commitment to decarbonization.’”

Image Credit: bp

bp recently made the commitment to stop corporate reputation advertising as part of the net zero ambition earlier this year. Geoff Morrell, EVP of communications and advocacy for bp, weighs in to clarify their strategy. They plan to stop reputation advertising, but continue advocating for progressive climate policies through marketing.

One of the areas they are currently focused on is smart carbon pricing in the US. “The most public-facing advocacy we’ve done so far is in support of two regional plans – the Transportation and Climate Initiative and the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.” They also helped form a coalition of businesses that share their view.

Image Credit: The Maritime Executive

With COVID-19 reducing airline travel, customers will be seeking bargain priced transportation. An interesting option is wing-in-ground (WIG) technology that could provide short-haul transport between cities. Pilot training is less expensive than for aircraft and the W.I.G. planes can touch down on seaplane runways at a fraction of the cost than normal seaplanes. The benefits also extend to fuel consumption: “When traveling at half the speed of a commuter plane flying at 10,000-feet or at 150-knots instead of at 300-knots, theoretical fuel consumption would calculate to 1/3rd x 1/8th x 1.5 = 1/16th that of the aircraft. Touching down on a seaplane runway and riding up a ramp at a coastal airport would allow battery-electric W.I.G. planes with take-off wheels to accelerate along a runway to become airborne, greatly reducing energy usage compared to accelerating on water to lift-off speed. Battery-electric W.I.G. planes would greatly exceed the travel range of battery-electric commuter planes and occupy a unique market niche.”

W.I.G. vehicles can carry more cargo than a typical seaplane, with a 50 seat model being built in South Korea but will likely go to the military. German Tandem Wing Group even has a 100-seat vehicle in the works.

Image Credit: The Maritime Executive

René Kofod-Olsen is joining V.Group, a ship management and marine support company, as CEO. Former CEO Graham Westgarth will be joining the board as Chairman.

“‘These are challenging and changing times for the global shipping industry, with a multitude of opportunities ahead,’ said René Kofod-Olsen. ‘This year, V.Group has provided strong support to customers and crews in response to the Covid crisis and also won significant new business. This underlines the trust which V.Group’s customers place in the company’s overall value proposition. I am delighted to be joining the V.Group team on their continuing journey of delivering value to our customers’.”

Kofod-Olsen has been in the global shipping industry for almost 30 years. Most recently, he was Chief Executive Officer of Topaz Energy & Marine from 2012 to 2020. During that time he transformed the company and stepped down after a successful divestment.

Smile, it’s Good News Monday! :-)


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