WASHINGTON, July 21, 2010—The American Petroleum Institute welcomes today’s announcement that a new rapid response system to protect the Gulf of Mexico is under way from ExxonMobil, Chevron, ConocoPhillips and Shell.
“Today’s announcement demonstrates our industry’s leadership and commitment to safe operations,” said API President and CEO Jack Gerard. “Engineering experts will design, develop and implement state-of-the-art containment systems that go beyond the lessons of the Deepwater Horizon incident to raise industry safety preparedness and capability.”
The companies have committed $1 billion to form a nonprofit organization, the Marine Well Containment Company, to build and operate a system which can be deployed within 24 hours. The system consists of a newly designed and fabricated subsea containment assembly, which will prevent oil from escaping into the water in the event of future deepwater accidents.
ExxonMobil has been designated to lead the engineering and construction efforts and other Gulf of Mexico operators are being encouraged to participate in the organization.
“Immediately following the Deepwater Horizon incident, the oil and natural gas industry developed a number of task forces to focus on improvements to equipment, operations, subsea well control and spill containment,” said Gerard. “This effort complements the work already ongoing from the task forces, and we will continue to work together to regain the public’s confidence in the industry.”
Oil and natural gas supply 60 percent of the nation’s energy needs and government forecasts show increased demand over the next several decades. The Gulf of Mexico accounts for 30 percent of domestic oil production and 13 percent of our natural gas production. Deepwater resources are vitally important to our energy security: 20 of the top producing wells are located in deepwater.
Updated: July 21, 2010