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Posts on ‘January 20th, 2013’

As Shell looks to future, critics point to timing, risks

Shell’s first year of drilling on those leases was nothing short of a PR disaster, with a grounded rig and a drifting drillship highlighting the challenges of searching for crude in the remote and icy waters hundreds of miles north of the Arctic Circle. The high-profile mishaps have prompted a federal investigation of the perils of Arctic drilling and are spurring some in the oil industry to re-evaluate whether the crude on top of the world is worth the logistical challenges, financial costs and environmental risks of getting to it.

Updated 20 January 2013

By JENNIFER A. DLOUHY — Hearst Newspapers

WASHINGTON — When Shell started buying leases to drill in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas in 2005, the company was betting on Americans’ thirst for any oil locked under those Arctic waters, which could replace declining crude production from Alaska’s North Slope and other onshore resources.

Flash forward eight years, and the scenario has changed dramatically.

Now, energy companies are extracting ever more oil from dense rock formations in south Texas, North Dakota and other states, making the need to tap offshore frontiers less urgent. read more

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