Noble rig leaves U.S. Gulf for Brazil

Noble Corp. in January announced plans to move one of its deep-water drilling rigs out of the Gulf of Mexico amid a spill-related slowdown in activity. This week, the Swiss-based driller made good on its promise.

It loaded the Noble Clyde Boudreaux, an ultra-deepwater semisubmersible, on a ship in Pascagoula, Miss., that will carry the rig 5,000 miles to Brazil, where it has a contract with Shell.

That new contract, starting in April, will last for a year and is $290,000 per day, which is less than the previous Gulf lease, Noble said.

Noble, Diamond Offshore and other offshore drilling contractors have recently moved rigs out of the U.S. Gulf of Mexico in response to regulatory delays in issue new drilling permits in the wake of the BP oil spill last year.

Last week, the Interior Department approved the first deep-water drilling permit since a five-month moratorium on the practice was lifted in October. But the oil and gas industry says the process must move faster or more rigs will leave, jobs will be lost and U.S. offshore oil production will decline.

Officials with the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement deny they are stalling and dispute industry claims there is a backlog of permits awaiting approval. They contend the permitting process is necessarily taking longer than it did prior to the deadly BP blowout. Operators must prove they can comply with tougher safety and environmental rules implemented after the disaster, the bureau said.

12 Comments

  1. chiefdecoy

    It’s not just the rigs that are leaving.
    Supply boats.
    Crew boats.
    Tugs/Barges.
    Along with a plethora of other medium/shallow water equipment.
    Workover rigs, etc…..
    What hasn’t left, is being SHOPPED to leave. In the mean time, idle equipment is stacked all the way from Texas to Alabama.
    I am shocked to see that SAP hasn’t already been commenting about how much drilling and work is going on in the GOM…..

    #1
  2. While the BOEMRE took a step in the right direction by issuing its first deepwater drilling permit since the Macondo blowout in April 2010, oil companies remain hesitant to stay in the Gulf. Offshore drilling could create hundreds of thousands of additional jobs and generate billions in revenue for federal, state and local governments. If more oil rigs continue to depart the Gulf of Mexico, unemployment in Gulf Coast States will continue to rise. By issuing more deepwater drilling permits, the BOEMRE can help reduce this country’s dependence on foreign oil, create jobs and boost our economy.”

    #2
  3. pdh42

    Something tells me that Loren Steffy and many others in the LSMedia are applauding at this moment…. They are probably be happier if ALL rigs left out of the GOM and went overseas…. The left will be the first to really start whinning when the price of gasoline gets to $5.00 per gallon….

    #3
  4. Mark

    Nice job Obama…

    #4
  5. Art Vandeley

    Awesome job you are doing there President Obama, just awesome….. (cynical, sarcasm meter in the red)
    So wonder when the President will drain the National Oil Reserve dry to keep prices under $5.00/gal?

    #5
  6. drod

    You idiots have no one to blame but those british idiots and their lax safety at BP for this.

    #6
  7. justbob

    just think how much better looking the gulf will be without those sticks[platforms] jutting up from the horizon. when your friends from california come to visit you can take them to the beach and show how progressive we have become.
    now lets hope they don’t try and put those windmill things up.

    #7
  8. Robert

    Barack Obama is creating many jobs, just none for the USA.

    #8
  9. Terriann

    Obamaville

    #9
  10. jay

    Yeah drod when that happened back in April sure, but now? Obama is the only one to blame for our rising gas prices with his admin. blocking permits. First permit in like 270 days that’s ridiculuos.

    #10
  11. Mark in Houston

    Obama has got to be a one-term occupier of the White House. I will not address him as POTUS.

    #11
  12. Donal Edward Poothole

    Please stop deleting my comments.

    People need to know that our president is a charlatan, an impostor. He will stop at nothing to see the USA destroyed. If Obama’s ascendancy to the POTUS was made into a movie 10 years ago, people would have said “this is just silly. That could never happen”….alas, the great usurper defies the judiciary and issues a second moratorium. His hate for this nation is strong.

    #12