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offshore drilling

A worker is seen with stacks of drilling pipe on the Hercules 251, a shallow water drilling rig owned by Hercules Offshore on Wednesday, Aug. 11, 2010, near Port Fourchon. While shallow offshore drilling is not subject to a federal moratorium, Hercules officials say only two permits have been issued since June, idling activity in their fleet. The company has about 250 employees on idle rigs, with each rig costing the company about $25,000 per day to operate while generating no revenue for the company.  ( Smiley N. Pool / Chronicle )

Two companies announce 245 layoffs in the Houston area

The crude bust has claimed another 245 jobs in the Houston area as two companies announce plans to curtail operations amid waning demand for offshore drilling and oil and gas equipment.
(Matthew Lloyd/Bloomberg)

BP’s drilling plan offshore Australia turned back by regulator

BP is seeking to drill in the Great Australian Bight, a remote region the company has described as “pretty much the last big unexplored basin in the whole world.”
(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Atwood Oceanics extends Gulf of Mexico rig contract, eyes additional work in Brazil

Atwood’s new contract for the rig is 60 percent smaller than a previous three-year contract with Noble.
Otis Barnes, left, of Port Arthur, and his daughter, Kay Barnes, of Groves, watch as the 15-story, 8,000-ton hull of the Neptune SeaStar - an oil and gas production platform that Australia-based BHP Billiton, Marathon Oil, Woodside Energy and Repsol will operate - is towed by tugboats down the Port Arthur Ship Canal Saturday morning, May 19, 2007.
BHP Billiton commissioned the rig to be built in June 2005, and that year's hurricanes didn't stop construction. This is one of the few hulls built in the U.S. rather than Finland, Korea or Japan, and the construction provided jobs when the hurricanes wiped out a lot of others for months.
May 19, 2007

Marathon Oil selling Gulf fields for $205 million

The Houston oil producer said Monday it is holding onto minority stakes in two Gulf projects.
Transocean's Deepwater Asgard arrived in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2015 to work under a two-year contract with Chevron. (Chevron)

Transocean will reduce fleet to meet tough market

The world’s largest offshore operator is also cutting back its workforce and consolidating most of its support functions in Houston.
A group of idle rigs is seen behind James Noe, Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer for Hercules Offshore while aboard the Hercules 251 a shallow water drilling rig owned by on Wednesday, Aug. 11, 2010, near Port Fourchon, La. (Smiley N. Pool /Chronicle)

Hercules Offshore could emerge from bankruptcy protection soon

The company has slashed costs to cope with the diminishing demand for offshore services, primarily saving money by operating a smaller fleet.

Norway oil-rig tender reveals ‘desperate’ drillers in price rout

Offshores drillers such as Transocean Ltd., Seadrill Ltd. and Fred Olsen Energy ASA have been caught in a double whammy of falling demand for their services and a glut of new rigs coming into the market.
This June 15, 2015 file photo shows kayakers trying to block the departure of the Shell Oil Polar Pioneer rig platform as it moved from Elliott Bay in Seattle, Washington.  (Tim Exton/AFP/Getty Images)

Even as it walks away from Arctic drilling, Shell keeps door open for future work

The company says it’s walking away from oil exploration in U.S. Arctic waters for the “foreseeable future,” but it’s keeping its options open.

Feds probing death of worker on Gulf drillship

The worker on the Pacific Santa Ana was killed as the drillship prepared to bore a well for Chevron, BP and ConocoPhillips.
(Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement)

Obama administration closes off two avenues for new Arctic drilling

The Interior Department announced it was canceling government auctions of drilling rights in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas, previously scheduled for 2016 and 2017 respectively. At the same time, it formally rejected bids by Statoil and Shell for more time to search for crude under their existing Arctic leases.