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Huge Gas Cloud Building Around Rig In North Sea.

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posted on Mar, 30 2012 @ 06:59 AM

Originally posted by roadgravel
Oil field people talking at this at TheOilDrum

Thank you for this link. I had been following the discussion there--it was very informative. Unfortunately, the link to that article has become..."Access Denied." :

I wonder if the site owner was politely asked to make the page disappear?
edit on 3/30/2012 by Olivine because: forgot an article

posted on Mar, 30 2012 @ 07:13 AM
reply to post by thebarbecuemaster

An attack on an oil rig is possible. In this case it seems more likely that the technology isn't up to the job. It's just falling apart from the combined effects of heat and pressure.

According to L.A. Hardiman of Total E&P UK PLC in 2006.....

"The Elgin/Franklin HP/HT gas condensate fields are located some 120 miles east of Aberdeen in
the Central Graben area of the UK North Sea and at the time of sanction in 1997 was the largest HP/HT development in the world with the highest pressures and temperatures requiring the application of new technology. The fields have now been onstream for some 5 years with first production from Elgin on 31st March 2001."

Remind me not to buy any of that new technology.

posted on Mar, 30 2012 @ 08:13 AM

Originally posted by Mossadstooge
This is just freakin great! First BP poisoned all of the sea food in the gulf of Mexico now the douche bags at Dutch Shell are trying to poison all the sea life in the North Sea and eventually the Atlantic. Isn'[t about time that we gave up on fossil fuel, nuclear power and all of this other dangerous sh$t? These Corporations are raping the planet and every person on it!

Guess you missed the bit about this being a Total Rig and nothing at all to do with Shell or BP? In fact, I hazard you haven't read the thread at all. Me, I've spent two hours now slowing reading through while at work before I comment..

reply to post by rickymouse

Maybe this is true, but patents only give you 15 or 20 years of exclusivity. Surely, seeing as we apparently had these techs since the 70's or 80's and "Big Oil" just sits on them, we can now legally use such techs without fear of any litigation... Unless of course what you're saying is just a load of conspiracy crock?

Originally posted by JiggyPotamus
I blame capitalism. Get the most for the least amount of money. If it isn't profitable, don't do it, the consequences be damned. And last time I checked, refitting a well with new piping equipment is not a profitable venture, even though stuff like this wouldn't happen had that action been undertaken.

As already stated, problems like this can seriously damage a companies bottom line, sometimes fatally, so it is in their interests to play it safe. Add to that, the North Sea is probably the most regulated and safety concious oil industries on the planet, with very few incidents over the last 30-40 years and those that did happen have never been repeated due to lessons learnt.

Originally posted by TheMindWar
It costs around £30 Billion to decommision these rigs.

No it doesn't. The total estimated cost of decommissioning the ENTIRE North sea is put at £20 Billion. That's in excess of 600 rigs. £30 billion for one rig is just a plain fabrication on your part.

Originally posted by Fromabove
So, if it blows up, and it will eventually, and it somehow gets into the reservoir and that ignites. Would it then be an extinction level event, or at least on the local stage for Europe ? Gotta wonder.

Not even remotely possible. You need to read up on geology.

Originally posted by thebarbecuemaster
this is not a gas cloud it was a respponse most likely to an attack on the oil rig with the goverment using this excuse to keep the media away


Ahem... How is that they have managed to keep this "attack" from being leaked by the [b[many workers on that rig?

posted on Mar, 30 2012 @ 08:53 AM
reply to post by Olivine

I think it may have to do with the site appearing on conspiracy forums.Some self inflicted paranoia.

posted on Mar, 30 2012 @ 10:35 AM
reply to post by Kester

Hey Kester you digger you. Thanks for that rundown on the wells. Damn scary stuff. Man and his ignor/arrogance always playin on the brink of disaster for a few more therms or buckets of oil.

posted on Mar, 30 2012 @ 01:49 PM
Wasn't there a gas cloud in the UK's history that was pushed by Atlantic winds to land and killed 200+ people in a small village (can't remember the date and year)?

History repeating again?

posted on Mar, 30 2012 @ 03:33 PM




LONDON, March 26 (Reuters) - A gas cloud has encircled Total's leaking Elgin Franklin oil and gas platform in the North Sea following failed attempts to "kill" a problematic production well, an RMT union official said based on eyewitness accounts from workers on nearby rigs.

"People seven miles away can see a gas cloud coming from the Total rig," said Jake Molloy, the head of the section of the UK union that represents offshore oil and gas workers.

"Engineers have told me that it is almost certain that gas is leaking directly from the reservoir through the pipe casing," he said.

Only have mobile link sorry.
edit on 26-3-2012 by TheMindWar because: Add info.

posted on Mar, 31 2012 @ 02:43 PM
hi has anyone got an up date on the situation

posted on Apr, 1 2012 @ 03:16 AM
reply to post by jerseychannelislands

It is probably going to be plugged and the overall pollution won't be any more than an average large town produces.

The big issue is how this is going to be used to justify drilling into other high pressure/high temperature gas fields. The technology isn't advanced enough to safely tap these fields. The easy stuff has been harvested first so the more difficult fields are going to be drilled. Many in the oil industry see this crisis as a way to learn how to improve the technology.

Oil companies hire leading psychologists to show them how to convince oil workers and their families that safety is the top priority. It's all lies. The Elgin field should have been plugged and abandoned before entering full production. From the first days it's been obvious it was going to go bad. When they successfully plug this one they are going to have to either shut down the whole field or carry on and pretend they've fixed the problem. The truth is all the high pressure wells are going to suffer from similar problems. The rock above the reservoir has moved more than was anticipated and the usual well plugging techniques aren't going to stand the test of time.

The worst case scenario would be the entire field venting and possibly other fields close by. This could happen any time over the next few hundred years.

I'm struggling to give an update when I'm not there, the best I can do is to say the wells are smashed and dangerous. The gas is working it's way up through the disturbed rock and the distorted well holes. The equipment at the top has suffered numerous breakdowns due to vibration, this wasn't anticipated during planning. The Elgin Franklin development is an experiment and the way to learn most from an experiment is when it all goes wrong.

posted on Apr, 1 2012 @ 04:01 AM
New Scientist, in their article 'Report reveals earlier problems at North Sea gas site' tells us....

"In fact, many of the wells in the Elgin field and the neighbouring Franklin field have failed since Total began extracting gas there in 2001, according to the report. The casings of some of the wells became badly deformed and their internal diameters shrank by 60 per cent, like damaged drinking straws. Others may have sheared off completely.

That damage was probably a direct result of gas extraction activities. The drop in pressure as gas was removed deformed the chalk layers above. Because the wells must pass through the chalk to reach the gas fields below, they too become deformed."

"The leaky well in question was actually closed over a year ago, and sealed at depth. But because Total continued to extract gas from the Elgin field, shearing forces within the chalk above may have cracked open the abandoned well-casing 4000 metres down – 1500 metres above the main gas field – allowing methane within the chalk to seep into the well and escape to the surface.

"Based upon the information we have available, I think it is highly probable this has happened," says Jon Gluyas of Durham University in the UK, who has 28 years of experience in the petroleum industry.

At the time of publication, Total had not responded to a request to comment on the relevance of last year's report to the current leak.

"Because of the demand for oil and gas, we will see this type of field exploited more often," Gluyas says. However, that does not necessarily mean we will see many more accidents along the lines of Elgin. Rather, the gas industry may improve its practices, for instance monitoring compaction in chalk layers more closely. "The industry will learn from this substantially," Gluyas says."

Where the New Scientist and I disagree is the idea that methane seeping into a well is going to cause a hurried evacuation. My view is the gas is coming from the Elgin field, through the claystone layer up the unsuccessfully plugged and severely damaged well, filtering through the chalk then finding the easy route up the rest of damaged well. Why it cant be stopped with a valve is the million dollar question. Did the pipe shear off the wellhead? If so why? High pressure? Damaged equipment?

posted on Apr, 1 2012 @ 09:28 AM
reply to post by Kester

thank you kester

posted on Apr, 2 2012 @ 03:30 AM
From the Press and Journal....

"An elite team of offshore crisis engineers is preparing to board Total’s abandoned Elgin platform to halt a dangerous gas leak."

"The company is now preparing plans to let specialists from Wild Well Control– the firm which helped tackle BP’s Gulf of Mexico disaster in 2010 – fly to the scene by helicopter."

posted on Apr, 2 2012 @ 04:23 AM

Originally posted by reitze
There's so much carelessness in drilling and oil it makes me wonder if they don't do stuff like this on purpose.

What are they tryin to do? Get the North Pole to melt? Was the GOM leak on purpose?

The definition of Elginism is.....

Elginism (ĕl’gĭnĭz’əm) n. 1801. [f. the name of Thomas Bruce, 7th Earl of Elgin (1766-1841); see —ISM. Cf. Fr. elginisme & Sp. elginismo.]

An act of cultural vandalism. A term coined by the destructive actions of Lord Elgin who illegally transported the Parthenon Marbles from Greece to London between 1801 and 1805. tells us....

"Worldwide, there are an estimated 20-30 million oil and gas wells abandoned using primitive capping technologies, which could cause further serious headaches for operators across the globe."

We are going to see many more leaking wells over the next few hundred years. I refer again to this product.

The Elgin Platform incident seems to have been expected from the start of production and perhaps before. The management told the workers in the time honoured fashion 'Shut up and get on with it!'

LONDON/PARIS (Reuters) - "Total repeatedly assured workers on its North Sea Elgin platform that a leak was impossible until just hours before evacuating them as potentially explosive gas spread, a senior union official said on Friday.
French energy company Total, the platform's operator, said it had detected the first signs of trouble a month before Sunday's leak erupted as pressure rose in a well that had been capped a year earlier.
Safety concerns among the 238 workers aboard were then raised but repeatedly ignored, union representative Jake Molloy told Reuters.
"The workforce were repeatedly told that a failure in Annulus C (the pipe casing) could not happen and even if it did, a design feature would prevent a gas leak," Molloy, head of the RMT union's offshore oil and gas workers section, said.
"Several discussions between workers and Total technical authorities happened throughout the preceding weeks, up to and including a few hours before the event," he said.
A Total spokeswoman declined to make immediate comment."

The P and J tells us... " unions claimed workers’ fears had been “fobbed off”. This is exactly the term I used to describe my experience with HSE over this matter.

I have to ask whether the entirely predictable Elgin Blowout is an example of deliberate Elginism.

They can't plug these wells at depth because as the gas left the reservoir the rock above moved sideways and sheared the wells.

edit on 2-4-2012 by Kester because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 2 2012 @ 04:47 AM
This is the word from HSE, for what it's worth.....

"On Sunday 25 March a gas condensate release occurred on the Total Elgin wellhead platform. No injuries occurred but by early Monday morning all personnel aboard Elgin and on the adjacent Rowan Viking jack-up drilling rig were evacuated. At the time of down manning all wells were shut in and power isolated on both the Elgin platform and Rowan Viking.

With the platform and rig evacuated there is no current risk to offshore personnel. There is a 2 mile exclusion zone around the rig, and because of the uncertainties around the scale and duration of the Elgin event, and the predicted weather conditions, Shell have precautionary down manned non essential staff from their Shearwater platform and the Noble Hans Deul drilling rig.

A HSE investigation into the cause of the release will get underway in earnest once the well is under control and safe access is available onto the platform. The leak is being monitored visually and audibly by the standby vessel, and Total have assembled a team to decide on how to tackle the problem. HSE is in close and regular contact with Total to monitor the options they are developing.

A Government Interest Group, comprising HSE, DECC, MCA, CAA and Marine Scotland, has also been established to ensure good coordination between the Government agencies involved with the incident."

I might draw attention to their moment of honesty....
"...and because of the uncertainties around the scale and duration of the Elgin event..." give us this...

"Total announces elgin incident update following press conference

Monday, Apr 02, 2012

Total hosted a press conference today, attended by Rt Hon Charles Hendry, MP, Minister of State for the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) at which it provided further details of the scale of its work to control the release of non-toxic gas from the G4 well on the Elgin field platform and confirmed that the situation remains stable.

Philippe Guys, Managing Director of Total E&P UK, said:

‘Let me say how much Total regrets the incident at the Elgin complex. Our top priority is the safety of our personnel. I can confirm that, in addition to the safe evacuation of 238 personnel from the Elgin platform, the on-board safety systems of the whole complex, including the other wells, were successfully activated.’ "

So the managing director tells us Total regret having caused an dangerous incident but have successfully activated all safety systems.

Managing directors in the oil industry are how trustworthy on a scale of one to ten?

edit on 2-4-2012 by Kester because: video not working

edit on 2-4-2012 by Kester because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 2 2012 @ 06:26 AM
Here's the video.

posted on Apr, 2 2012 @ 04:29 PM
reply to post by ofhumandescent

The WHOLE system is ROTTEN to it's very core, there is NO way to fix it. It needs to go.

posted on Apr, 2 2012 @ 04:37 PM

Originally posted by Mac405
Wasn't there a gas cloud in the UK's history that was pushed by Atlantic winds to land and killed 200+ people in a small village (can't remember the date and year)?

History repeating again?

If you're on about what I think you're on about, no, it is "History repeating" at all.

That cloud was in the 1700's (I think..) and came from a volcano in Iceland, where it killed around 200,000 livestock as well as many locals.

posted on Apr, 2 2012 @ 05:59 PM
reply to post by Mossadstooge

Agreed and those that own it as well.

posted on Apr, 3 2012 @ 10:20 PM

Originally posted by Dbriefed

Originally posted by NoHierarchy

Originally posted by FraternitasSaturni

Originally posted by NoHierarchy

Originally posted by Dbriefed
For those who say this is horrible for the earth, just keep in mind whatever comes out is natural, and from the earth itself. Oil and gas have been leaking from the depths of the earth and sea naturally for eons. The earth has ways to deal with natural things that come out of itself. It's not like we're talking about kryptonite or alien or man-made chemicals.

The fact that everything is "natural" still has nothing to do with the fact that some natural things are HAZARDOUS, POISONOUS, and/or DANGEROUS to introduce in large amounts into the atmosphere, water, land, or other ecosystems. Perhaps the CONTENTS are natural, but it was man who released these poisons/chemicals which were locked up for millions of years. Now... in the blink of an historical eye, we are releasing massive quantities of poisons and destabilizing GHGs into our biosphere... we're literally playing with fire (or shall I say, internal combustion?).
edit on 26-3-2012 by NoHierarchy because: (no reason given)

Well... what he meant actually was that those gases are HAZARDOUS, POISONOUS and/or DANGEROUS....... to YOU. Not to the planet.

The planet was fine billions of years before life... I guess it can live without us or life in general for a billion more. So its OUR problem, not a PLANET's problem. See the difference?

The phrase "the planet" usually includes all lifeforms/ecosystems... so yeah, it's our problem, along with the rest of the biosphere.
The point is that oil and gasses are natural and comes from of the earth, and the earth can't be poisoned by what is already part of the earth. Even radioactive material comes from the earth. You can't hurt the earth, it's arrogant of us humans to think we can. The most humans can hope do is to create a temporary imbalance. Nature is all about a self-balancing system, imbalances are unnatural. In the near future human overpopulation will be balanced out by nature, most probably by the increasingly drug-resistent bacterias or viruses.

Certainly many things about earth are certainly not healthy for all lifeforms. Even a pristine north sea will kill a human in minutes. You can't kill nature, but nature will most likely cause your death, as the vast majority of human deaths are naturally caused.

So other species, ecosystems, water, land, air, food... these things cannot be poisoned/polluted?

I'm not sure what you mean by "nature is all about a self-balancing system"... if you mean that, after destroying most of the planet's species, they will somehow magically reappear again because the Earth (meaning, the living environment) is some magical being that is impervious to human destruction... then you're absolutely dead-wrong.

There is no rule that says that humans cannot destroy other species, ecosystems, climates, inanimate formations/geography, or the stability of the biosphere. We are doing JUST THAT, and there's no magical force stopping us... we can either stop ourselves or we'll destroy ourselves. It's in our hands and we're blowing it.
edit on 3-4-2012 by NoHierarchy because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 4 2012 @ 01:54 PM
Two more videos.

Straight from the expert representing the organisation who drilled into a high pressure reservoir and lost control while trying to plug the hole.

Straight from the expert who was there.

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