Monday July 21, 2008 | Offshore Drilling

July 21, 2008 at 7:56 am | Posted in On Air | 6 Comments

There are renewed calls to open possible oil and gas fields deep under water off the coast of North and South Carolina.  We’ll learn about what might be out there, where it is and what it would take to extract it.  We’ll also discuss the possible environmental impact.
Bob Tippee – Editor,
Oil and Gas Journal
Franklin Yoho – Senior Vice President – Commercial Operations, Piedmont Natural Gas
Listen to show



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  1. I have heard multiple claims that “nothing happened” when Katrina and Rita went through the Gulf Coast in 2005, and that is simply not true. Your guests have said there was a “low impact.”

    According to the Norwegian firm MMS that did the official report from the disaster reported the following:

    Unsurprisingly, this devastation caused significant spillage, according to the official report prepared for the MMS by a Norwegian firm:

    Hurricanes Katrina and Rita Caused 124 Offshore Spills For A Total Of 743,700 Gallons. 554,400 gallons were crude oil and condensate from platforms, rigs and pipelines, and 189,000 gallons were refined products from platforms and rigs. [MMS, 1/22/07]

    Hurricanes Katrina and Rita Caused Six Offshore Spills Of 42,000 Gallons Or Greater. The largest of these was 152,250 gallons, well over the 100,000 gallon threshhold considered a “major spill.” [MMS, 5/1/06]

    Add into the fact that the onshore spills from Katrina were in excess of 9 million gallons, and even the Houston Chronicle stated:

    “The quantity and cumulative magnitude of the 595 spills, which were spread across four states and struck offshore and inland, rank these two hurricanes among the worst environmental disasters in U.S. history.”

    This was not a low impact story.

  2. How many leases, and acres, are Piedmont, their partners, their suppliers, etc., sitting on right now that are neither being explored or if known drilled?

    How long have they had these leases?

    Why haven’t these companies, if not going to use the present multi-million acres of leases, not giving them to other companies or startups?

  3. There was an excellent segment on this topic during the July 18th Science Friday program.

  4. I’m curious as to how drilling proponents expect that new offshore drilling would lead to a reduced dependence on what people continue to falsely call “foreign” oil. I could be wrong, but it seems that being the globally traded commodity that it is, oil retrieved from deposits off of the NC coast would be just as likely to end up in Europe as in Charlotte.

  5. People want to drill off-shore to lower the price of gas. Did anyone mention how expensive it is to drill one well? According to articles at, a drilling platform leases for $700,000 per day. How many days does it take to drill a well? How many wells will be needed? How expensive will it be to bring any oil they MIGHT find to market? By the way, according to the same site, all platforms, world wide, are already leased through 2013. An on-shore terminal will have to be built to receive any oil through pipelines. The price of steel has gone through the roof. All of this will affect the price of any oil that might be found.

    Another factor that will affect the price of any oil found in the future is the depletion rates among mature fields. The mature fields that have reached their peak in production, and now produce less oil, in spite of new extraction methods, are:
    Kuwait, North Shore, North Sea, Cantarell, all of Indonesia, continental US. Some suspect that Saudi Arabia and Russia might be there too. That means any oil found in the future will only go to replace the declining production in mature fields, which means no over all growth of supply. Which means no supply destruction of price on the world market.

  6. You make a good point on the cost. God bless the oil companies that invest so much capital to bring us the oil we need.
    So, some one knows how much oil is in our globe? Brazil found massive reserves and are now energy independent. All they did was look. If it’s running out we should look for more.
    Alternative energy is great but so far a $140 barrel of oil has more concentrated energy than any thing else on the market.
    The day is coming when there will be electric or hydrogen cars. Maybe solar jets. Not yet. In the mean time, which is also a groovy time, let’s drill!

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