This is a Scottish Seabirds Centre video, about seals, now threatened by Shell oil.
From the BBC:
16 August 2011 Last updated at 07:14 GMT
Shell detects second leak under North Sea
Another leak has been found in the flow line beneath the Gannet Alpha oil platform, 113 miles (180km) off Aberdeen.
Shell has been dealing with the release of an estimated 216 tonnes – 1,300 barrels – from a leak near the platform discovered last week. …
The oil company said it was working to locate the second leak.
Glen Cayley, technical director of Shell‘s exploration and production activities in Europe, said: “We’ve got a very complex sub-sea infrastructure and the position of the leak is in an awkward place with a lot of marine growth.
“It’s taken our diving crews some time to establish exactly and precisely where that leak is coming from.” …
“RSPB Scotland is ready and willing to offer its advice on how best to protect seabirds at risk, but we cannot do this without monitoring by the relevant agencies and sharing the details of what this monitoring has shown.
“We know oil of any amount, if in the wrong place, at the wrong time, can have a devastating impact on marine life.”
See also here.
RSPB Scotland responds to North Sea oil spill; update here.
Shell fails to contain North Sea oil spill: here.
Shell admits oil leak fix could take weeks: here.
Oil company Shell faced calls to open the files on its most recent pipeline inspection today a week after one of its offshore platforms spilled more than 200 tonnes of oil into the North Sea: here.
North sea oil spill ‘worst for a decade’: here.
Shell claimed it had completed a “major step” today and stopped oil from leaking out of its Gannet Alpha offshore platform into the seas around Scotland: here.
Shell’s North Sea oil spill draws U.S. attention: here.
BPing the Arctic, Again – Fast Tracking Shell’s Dangerous Drilling. Subhankar Banerjee, Climate Story Tellers: “One of the riskiest and most destructive extreme energy oil exploration projects on the planet is moving toward implementation without scientific understanding or technical preparedness – Shell’s oil drilling in the Arctic Ocean of Alaska. On August 4, the US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) conditionally approved Shell’s plan to drill up to four exploratory wells in the Beaufort Sea of Arctic Alaska starting July 2012”: here.
China’s oceanic agency announced today that it is preparing to sue US transnational ConocoPhillips for damages to the environment resulting from offshore oil spills that began in June: here.
USA: Big Oil sets up astroturf groups across the country: here.
BP says oil sheen in Gulf shows no immediate indication of new spill: here.
A New BP Leak in the Gulf of Mexico? Here.
Biggest oil find since the ‘80s
NORWAY: Energy firm Statoil announced today that two previous North Sea oil discoveries are connected and together may represent the biggest find on the Norwegian continental shelf in 30 years.
The company, which is majority-owned by the Norwegian government, said the Aldous and Avaldsnes oil discoveries together contain between 500 million and 1.2 billion barrels of oil equivalent — significantly more crude than previously thought.
Statoil vice-president for exploration Tim Dodson said: “Norway has not seen a similar oil discovery since the mid-’80s.”
Oil Spill in North Sea Called U.K.’s ‘Worst for a Decade,’ Poses Danger to Wildlife
By Wendy Rose Gould | Yahoo! Contributor Network – 2 hrs 54 mins ago
Though the oil gushing into the North Sea from a recent spill has been greatly reduced, officials have declared the spill one of the U.K.’s worst within the last decade. The oil spill occurred at the Gannet Alpha oil rig in the North Sea off the coast of Scotland. The rig is operated by Shell, co-owned by Shell and Esso and is a subsidiary of the U.S. oil firm Exxon Mobil.
Now, conservations warn that the leak poses serious harm to wildlife in the area, especially birdlife currently undergoing development.
“We know oil of any amount, if in the wrong place, at the wrong time, can have a devastating impact on marine life,” said Stuart Housden, director of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds in Scotland. “Currently, thousands of young auks — razorbills, puffins and guillemots — are flightless and dispersing widely in the North Sea during late summer, so they could be at serious risk if contaminated by this spill.”
As of Monday at 9:22 p.m. PDT in London, it’s estimated that roughly 56,000 gallons of oil have been spilled into the North Sea, making it the largest U.K. spill in the past decade.
Royal Dutch Shell’s technical director, Glen Cayley, has called the spill “significant,” in the context of annual amounts of oil spilt into the North Sea and says the company cares about the environment and regrets that the spill occurred, reports the San Francisco Gate. Cayley also said their team believed the waves would disperse the oil sheen and that oil wouldn’t reach shore lines.
According the British government, the spill is much smaller than the BP spill that occurred in the Gulf of Mexico last year. That spill released 206 million gallons of oil into the Gulf and the area is still trying to recover.
The company says it’s reduced the amount of spilled oil to less than five barrels per day. They’re currently trying to stop the oil remaining in the pipeline from leaking.
Naturally, Shell has come under scrutiny from organizations and people across the globe. Environmental activist group Greenpeace accused Shell of “a worrying lack of transparency” because it took the company two days to publicly admit the leak had occurred.
Wendy Rose Gould is a freelance journalist who resides in Phoenix. Her work has appeared both online and in print for Hearst, Conde Nast, AOL, USA Today and other publications. Gould is an avid traveler who has lived abroad and traveled the world extensively. She holds a B.A. in Journalism and another in Philosophy.
Gulf of Mexico oil crew ignored warnings: probe
The crew of an oil rig that exploded in the Gulf of Mexico last year causing one of the worst oil spills in US history ignored warning signs a disaster was imminent, an investigator said Friday.
Marshall Islands deputy maritime affairs commissioner Bill Gallagher, who carried out an inquiry into the explosion because the rig was registered in the Pacific nation, said lessons had to be learned from the disaster.
He said there were indications of a problem at the Deepwater Horizon rig before the blast that killed 11 people on April 20 last year but the crew failed to act.
“There were multiple signs that there were issues at the well itself, indicators, pressure testing, things of that nature were going on,” Gallagher told Australia’s ABC radio Friday.
“There were signs that there were some problems with the well…the blow out started and then, of course, the disaster followed shortly thereafter.”
Gallagher, whose report into the incident was released on Wednesday, also cited “deviation” from drilling rig control engineering standards as a reason for the disaster.
“These factors contributed to the substantial release of liquid and gaseous hydrocarbons, which culminated in explosions, fire, the loss of 11 lives, the eventual sinking and total loss of the Deepwater Horizon, and the release of hydrocarbons into the Gulf of Mexico,” the report said.
Almost five million barrels (210 million gallons) of oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico after the rig’s failure, causing enormous environmental damage.
British oil giant BP last month estimated the total clean-up cost at $40.7 billion.
Gallagher said his report did not attempt to determine who was responsible for the spill, an issue which is the subject of legal action in the US between BP and the rig’s operator Transocean Offshore Deepwater Drilling.
“It’s not for us to assign blame,” he said.
A US Coast Guard report in April found Transocean had “serious safety management system failures and a poor safety culture”, while a US presidential commission in January slammed “systemic” failures in oil industry safety practices.
The commission called for an overhaul of industry safety measures and the establishment of a tough new safety watchdog to avoid a repeat of the disaster.
Under maritime law, oil rigs such as the Deepwater Horizon are classified as ships, meaning they can be registered in jurisdictions such as the Marshall Islands and Panama.
The Gallagher report said inspectors acting on hehalf of the Marshall Islands inspected the Deepwater Horizon in December 2009, four months before the accident, and found it met safety, security and environmental standards.
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