Bob Higgins

The Oil Game They’re Playing In Our Oceans Ain’t “Beanbag”

Posted in Environment by Bob Higgins on June 22, 2010

Oil giant Chevron, in the wake of one of the world’s worst environmental disasters in the Gulf of Mexico is dragging its corporate feet over Canadian requests for increased safety procedures at a deep water well off the coast of Newfoundland. The company’s Lona O-55 exploratory well is about 258 miles northeast of St. John’s, in the Orphan Basin.

BP’s out of control gusher in the gulf is just over 5000 feet deep while the Chevron well off the Canadian coast is 8,530 feet beneath the surface.

If the pressure of the water column at the site of the BP wellhead is 40,000 lbs per square foot (277 lbs/sq. in.)  the pressure of the water column at the site of the  Chevron well would be over 68,000 lbs per square foot (473 lbs/sq. in.) The pressures in the reservoir of BPs Gulf well are in the neighborhood of 12,000 lbs/sq. in. after you add up the weight of the water column and the thousands of feet of mud and rock above the reservoir. (water at 8 lbs/cu. ft – rock at 160 lbs/ cu. ft.)

Chevron says that a relief well isn’t necessary; according to their “Atlantic Manager,” Mark McLeod:

“We believe all wells can be drilled incident free. We believe this well will be drilled incident free and we won’t need a relief well.”

Apparently Chevron’s managers and technocrats are suffering under the same the same level of arrogance as their counterparts at BP.  I mean really “what could go wrong?”