Shell Goes Deep

After spending most of my week on Coskata (and actually working at my real job) the energy news has piling up on me. While I still need to clean up some loose ends on Coskata, I also need to clear out some of these other stories.

I have an informative guest post on ocean thermal energy conversion (an under-rated energy option, in my opinion), CNN says that expensive oil is here to stay (regular readers will know that this is my mantra as well), Christina Laun gives us 100 tips and tools on how to enjoy a greener career – Number 31 may save your life someday 😉 – and Shell has gone ultra-deep with their new Perdido platform. I will lead off with Shell, since it has been in my in-box the longest.

I got the following information second-hand from Ignacio Gonzalez, who is a Communication Specialist for Shell. Their new Perdido platform will be the deepest water platform in the world.


The Shell-operated Perdido Regional Development Spar has arrived in the ultra deepwaters of the Gulf of Mexico and is currently being secured to the seafloor in about 8,000 feet of water. Once completed, the Perdido spar will be nearly as tall as the Eiffel Tower and weigh as much as 10,000 cars. Perdido will be the deepest oil development in the world, the deepest drilling and production platform in the world and have the deepest subsea well in the world.

Positioning the spar into place required carefully-orchestrated maneuvers. Here is a link to a YouTube video of the process, which you may embed as you wish.

Perdido will be a fully functional oil and gas platform with a drilling rig and direct vertical access wells, full oil and gas processing and remote subsea wells. The facility is designed to produce 100,000 barrels of oil per day and 200 million standard cubic feet of gas. The production from these fields will be transported via new and existing pipelines to US refineries.

The Perdido Spar will bring in production from three fields: Great White, Silvertip and Tobago. These fields are located in 10 Outer Continental Shelf blocks in Alaminos Canyon, approximately 200 miles south of Freeport, TX. This development will provide the first Gulf of Mexico commercial production from a Paleogene reservoir. All three fields have been granted production units from the Minerals Management Service and the accumulations are completely in US waters, some eight miles north of Mexico international borders. First production from Perdido is expected around the turn of the decade.

Shell has more info about the project area, as well as maps, here.

And you can follow the progress of Perdido here.

3 thoughts on “Shell Goes Deep”

  1. I am constantly amazed at the technology and the people employed by oil companies to deliver a vital resource to the rest us. The immense amounts of capital, the human and financial risks involved, all of it. Yet the industry’s commonly reviled – how did that happen?

  2. As a greenie-weenie leftie, I have to say this is the weakest aspect of lefties. They demonize productive people. I tell my friends the GM Volt is an amazing car — a game-changer, a death ray for OPEC — if it works, and they sniff only Toyota and Honda can possibly be cool. GM is (probably) first with an EV car that can go 40 miles on a charge, and 50 mpg after that. If the car was produced by a Swedish quasi-public entity, lefties would love it. The GM Volt will do far more to reduce energy consumption and cut AGW than Gore.
    Shell not only drills deep, they are working on a viable process for shale, and on a process that converts biomass to gasoline. All in just one company!
    Human ingenuity is just a remarkable trait.
    I’ll tell you one thing: Exxon was massively stupid in not settling completely and fast on the Valdez spill. Pay everybody off. That was one black eye you wanted out of the picture fast. They kept it in the public eye for decades, bickering about settlements, and hiring PR shops to make it look nice. A complete failure.

Comments are closed.