Grupo Stier recently launched a new Offshore Training Centre in Las Palmas in the Canary Islands. You may have seen our blog post about the launch night, if not then click here. Now we are delighted to give you a bird’s eye view of the event as Grupo Stier have kindly provided us with a promo video from the night. You will see the guests arrive, view the new offshore training equipment provided by SEFtec, see the Head of College (NMCI), Conor Mowlds opening the new Offshore Training Centre, and much much more.
“The first phase of Mr Hobbs’s Own Our Oil campaign was the launch of a book yesterday with the same title that aims to change the public’s attitude to Irish oil resources.
The book looks at Ireland’s geology, policy, taxation, history and planning when it comes to the oil industry and is dedicated to former minister Justin Keating who developed a strict taxation regime for Irish resources in the 70s.
The book is the first part of a campaign that is aiming to challenge the oil and gas industry in Ireland. Mr Hobbs warned that if the oil industry attempted to dismiss his campaign he would “take them apart”.
In the book, Mr Hobbs places a lot of emphasis on the difference in regimes between Ireland and Norway. Norway managed to build a sovereign wealth fund three times larger than Ireland’s national debt by effectively managing its natural resources.
However, the chairman of the Irish Offshore Operators’ Association, Fergus Cahill, said comparing the two countries is a fundamental mistake.
“Norway produce two million barrels of oil a day. We produce none. Norway exports natural gas, we import virtually all of ours. To compare the two is a fundamental mistake,” he said.
Mr Hobbs also drew parallels between the oil companies’ behaviour in Norway and Ireland. Mr Hobbs said that in the 1950s Norway was repeatedly told that there was no offshore oil in Norway.
Mr Cahill said that was what the companies believed at the time and it was only with improved technology that the Norweigian industry developed.
Mr Hobbs said they were not interested in trying to unpick any of the licensing options that are in place, but there was a need to try and maximise future returns from potential assets.
Up to a third of Ireland’s marine territory is already under licence from a period between the 1980s and 2007, when exploration terms signed ownership of various assets over to exploration companies, following then minister for energy Ray Burke’s dismantling of the tough taxation regime Justin Keating had put in place.
This means returns from these assets will disproportionately go to company shareholders and not the Irish taxpayer.”
The founder and chief executive of Providence Resources, Tony O’Reilly, believes Cork could rival Aberdeen as a European hub for oil and gas exploration — if the county embraces the industry.
Providence’s Barryroe oil field could be pumping oil as early as 2018 and Cork will be on track to become an oil and gas hub, if people in the services industry make the investment of time and effort to install the full suite of service industries, he said.
Mr O’Reilly said people in the oil industry in Aberdeen are “very aware that Ireland is taking off and that Cork is going to be the place”.
He called for information sharing with the Scottish city. “I don’t know if you have ever been to Aberdeen, but Cork is a lot nicer and you have the tax rate here.”
Despite praising Ireland’s corporate tax rate, he took issue with a portrayal that Ireland’s oil and gas resources have been given away.
He argued that while the tax on extractive industries in Ireland was lower than in Norway and the UK, that is because they have proven industries in place.
Mr O’Reilly said that “Norway produces 2m barrels of oil every day hence they have a 78% tax rate; the UK a million-plus barrels a day; Ireland zero. Now hopefully we are going to change that, but you have to see it in that context.”
Referring to a report commissioned by Providence, Mr O’Reilly said: “The tax take from a field the size of Barryroe at the 40% tax that some people think is a giveaway, €4.5bn over its lifetime. That is just the corporation tax revenue. There is also the employment and all the associated benefits. That is equivalent to the whole corporate tax take in Ireland in 2011; that is just from one field.”
Mr O’Reilly said he is “evangelical” about promoting Ireland as the next frontier of oil and gas. He believes the stable political climate and government attitude will allow Ireland to emerge from the shadow of the North Sea.
“The activity like we are leading with Providence coupled with the proactive stance of the Government… coupled with the geopolitical climate in Ireland; you have got to understand that the majority of the oil in the world is in not nice places.
“This is a lovely place, I mean, we had guys working on the rig in Barryroe who could fly back into Cork and go play some golf at the Old Head. You can’t do that in Kurdistan”.
“Europa has signed a farm-in agreement with a subsidiary of Kosmos Energy to acquire its two Licencing Options, LO 11/7 and LO 11/8, in the South Porcupine Basin, offshore of Ireland.
As part of the deal, Kosmos will buy an 85% interest and take up the operatorship of both licences, alongside incurring 100% of the costs of the first exploration well on each block.
The company will also fully fund the cost of a 3D seismic programme on each licence and pay 85% of the costs incurred by Europa to date.
The first exploration wells on LO 11/7 and LO 11/8 have investment caps of $90m and $110m, respectively, while Kosmos will share 85% of the excess costs of the investment cap, with the remaining coming from Europa.
Both LO 11/7 and LO 11/8 cover an area of about 1,000km² each in the prospective South Porcupine basin, while the licences have been mapped using existing 2D seismic data and are currently undrilled.
“The company will also fully fund the cost of a 3D seismic programme on each licence and pay 85% of the costs incurred by Europa.”
Europa has identified two previously unknown prospects in the Lower Cretaceous stratigraphic play – Mullen in LO 11/7 and Kiernan in LO 11/8.
Europa CEO, Hugh Mackay, said Kosmos is an experienced operator in frontier basins and pioneered the Cretaceous stratigraphic play that lead to a major exploration success in the Atlantic margin basins.
“The farm-in provides recognition of the substantial potential value lying in our Irish exploration prospects. The work programme associated with the farm-in has the potential to deliver significant value realisation,” Mackay added.
“Europa’s retained 15% interest exposes the company to substantial upside in the event of drilling success at either or both of these prospects at a much reduced risk and cost to our shareholders.
“We understand that the Eirik Raude rig is in Irish waters to drill Exxon‘s Dunquin well. An exciting new chapter in the exploration of Ireland is starting and we are delighted to be part of it.”
The closing of the farm-in agreement is subject to approval from the Irish Government.”
“Oil giant ExxonMobil kicks off a $160m-plus (€125m) drilling programme off the west coast of Ireland this weekend with hopes that confirmation of major fossil fuel reserves will transform the country’s economy.
The US company is planning to drill test wells over a four-month period at two prospects at the Dunquin licence area in the Porcupine Basin, 200km off shore.
Previous data has suggested that there could be over 300 million barrels of oil and 8.5 trillion cubic feet of gas between the two Dunquin prospects.
If they could be proven and then extracted, such finds would mark one of the biggest ever global discoveries of oil and gas and be a game-changer for Ireland’s economic fortunes.
But despite the 200 or so wells drilled off Ireland’s shores in the past number of decades, only two have resulted in commercial fields – Kinsale and Corrib.
Both are minnows compared to the prospective resources that could be hidden at Dunquin. Kinsale had about 1.5 trillion cubic feet of gas, while Corrib has about one trillion.
Located at a point in the Atlantic where the ocean is 1.6km deep, ExxonMobil’s drilling programme is being eagerly watched by oil companies from abroad and Ireland, including Petrel Resources, which has an exploration block just 35km away from the Dunquin prospect.
ExxonMobil controls 27.5pc of the Dunquin prospect, with Italian firm Eni holding another 27.5pc.
Spanish energy firm Repsol owns 25pc and UK-based Sosina has a 4pc interest. Irish exploration firm Providence Resources has a 16pc interest in the prospect. A major oil or gas find could catapult its shares higher.
The Dunquin prospect – where the reserves are as deep as 3.6km under the seabed – is one of the most important exploration areas for Providence, which is headed by Tony O’Reilly Jnr.
Providence is also betting that it could have a major oil find on its hands at a site called Barryroe, which is close to the Kinsale field. The company reckons that there could be 280 million barrels of recoverable oil at the Barryroe prospect.”
On 14 March 2013, His Excellency Sheikh Saoud bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, Minister of Sport & Secretary General of the Qatar Olympic Committee (QOC) is pictured with Board Members of SEFtec NMCI Offshore (“SNO”), Conor Mowlds (pictured 2nd from left) and Darren O’Sullivan (pictured 4th from left). This was taken prior to the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between SEFtec NMCI Offshore and IRM Offshore to provide support for the development of dedicated TEMPSC coxswain training facility in Qatar over the next 12 months.
Fastnet Oil & Gas has initiated a farm-out process to help cover the cost of its forthcoming $18m (€14m) surveying activity in the Celtic Sea, which will be the biggest of its kind ever undertaken in the area.
Last month, the exploration firm selected French geophysical specialist, CGG to carry out the 3D seismic survey to cover 2,200sq km of the Celtic Sea.
Fastnet say the 3D survey will last for about 50 days. It is due to begin in April.
The firm had been expected to partially pay CGG from the €18.6m capital it raised late last year, but it has commenced a search for a partner who will stump up most of the cash in return for a stake in one of the licence areas being surveyed.
The survey will cover Fastnet’s ‘Mizzen’ prospect and adjoining areas — where several large structures have been identified — but will begin at the Deep Kinsale Prospect, in which Fastnet purchased a 60% stake last month.
The prospect is a potential oil-bearing reservoir situated underneath the Kinsale Gas Field. The potential to expand the 3D study exists, but depends on interest from potential partners.
Paul Griffiths, Fastnet’s managing director, said that even at this early stage, the company is “very encouraged” by the level of interest being shown, “by a broad spectrum of companies”.
“This is the first large-scale 3D seismic programme to be acquired in this part of offshore Ireland. Whilst we are targeting proven hydrocarbon systems around the Kinsale and Barryroe fields, we are also evaluating a prospective part of the Celtic Sea Basin, covering approximately 4,250 sq km, that has seen only one well drilled, in 1975 by Esso, which encountered oil shows. 3D seismic is the first step to creating material, ‘drill ready’ prospects.”
Minimum Industry Safety Training (MIST) – Oct 17th & 18th
Basic Offshore Safety Induction and Emergency Training (BOSIET) Oct 19th -21st
Further Offshore Emergency Training (FOET) Oct 28th
Our BOSIET comprises of Sea Survival, Fire fighting and Self Rescue. During the BOSIET delegates are also put through their paces on the HUET,(Helicopter Simulator) which is preparation training in the event of that the helicopter is required to ditch.
Our BOSIET is fully approved by the Offshore Petroleum Industry Training Organization (OPITO). OPITO currently operates in 32 countries around the world and brings with it over 30 years of experience in maritime training.
For more information please call us on: 021 497 0609, book online at: www.nmci.ie, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
All delegates who undertook or intend to undergo BOSIET training we recommend they keep a close eye on the Northern Marine Manning Services (NMMS) website. NMMS have a team of dedicated recruitment specialists with many years of experience in all aspects of resource management.