OTC: Things are thinning out

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The first clue that OTC is thinning out is in the parking lots. They aren’t packed anymore. Even the trolley drivers look a little lonely. Conference fatigue is setting in on Day 4. However, there is still plenty to see. There’s a little less foot traffic in Reliant Park’s conference center and the stadium, but […]
Categories: General

OTC: Deeper and deeper they go

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The Gulf of Mexico’s shelf is becoming a grandaddy in terms of oil production, pumping about 1 million barrels a day for the last 30 years or so with declines showing up. But deepwater continues to beckon companies that are up to the challenge of drilling thousands of feet below the seabed. Current deepwater production […]
Categories: General

OTC: Qatar LNG plant vs. Reliant Stadium

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Smiley N. Pool/Chronicle Reliant Stadium might be big, but building it paled in comparison to the effort required to bring some of today’s global oil and gas projects online. Building Reliant Stadium was a big project, right? Not when you compare it to some of the massive oil and gas projects being built around the […]
Categories: General

OTC: Listen, but not too closely

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Throughout the plethora of presentations at the Offshore Technology Conference, speakers start by displaying “forward-looking statements,” those legalese-packed paragraphs that essentially say whatever the speaker says shouldn’t be taken as absolute fact on which any one would make an investment. But once in a while, someone gives the forward-looking statement its due. Steve Thurston, vice […]
Categories: General

OTC: Who should pay for security in Nigeria?

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Nigeria is perhaps known as much for its volatile political climate and security issues as it is for its vast oil reserves. So it came as no surprise today at OTC when a senior executive with Total, the French oil company, expressed reservations about spending more money in the country on oil and gas exploration. […]
Categories: General

OTC: Will oil majors devour services companies?

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AP Schlumberger feels comfortably independent. Government-run oil companies like Norway’s StatoilHydro and Saudi Arabia’s Saudi Aramco< are increasingly competing with international oil companies like Exxon Mobil and BP. But oil services companies like Schlumberger and Halliburton are in demand for both. Bill Coates, president of Schlumberger's North America division, says he's not too worried that […]
Categories: General

OTC: OPEC not worried about biofuels

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The focus of the 2008 Offshore Technology Conference this week is, as you might guess, the future of offshore oil and gas industry. But that discussion cannot take place without some mention of the role of renewables in coming years. On Tuesday, an official with OPEC touched briefly on biofuels like ethanol, which have been […]
Categories: General

OTC: Beyond the oohs and ahhs

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Anyone would be amazed to see the towering equipment and hi-tech tools fanned across Reliant park this week. But there’s a reason why the annual Offshore Technology Conference is closed to the public. At its heart, it is a technical conference for professionals in the oil and gas industry. And when I say technical, I […]
Categories: General

OTC: Award mixes oil and water

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A marine biologist winning an award at the Offshore Technology Conference? Did I hear that right? Yup. James Ray, president and founder of Oceanic Environmental Solutions, cut his teeth as a marine biologist for 30 years with Shell Oil, and he was the company’s manager of environmental sciences for most of that time. He won […]
Categories: General

OTC: Pemex could get chance to hire some help

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Mexico’s government-controlled oil company needs a little help from its friends. Jesus Reyes-Heroles, director general of Petroleos Mexicanos, or Pemex, says the company is the government’s most important source of income, as is typical for government-run oil companies throughout the world. But Pemex’s production is slipping, particularly in its once-great Cantarell field offshore. America cares […]
Categories: General