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How much impact did the North Sea gas leak have on the environment?

Greenhouse gas emissions and hydrocarbon contamination lower than expected While the Elgin North Sea natural gas leak that was plugged on Wednesday was a massive financial blow for its operator Total, it appears the incident had little impact on the environment in terms of global warming and local marine life.The Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) says it estimates that during the 52-day leak, Elgin released the equivalent of 47,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide, or 18,000 tonnes more than would have been released during normal operations of the well.The greenhouse gas impact was mitigated when Total was able to slow the leak of natural gas from 200,000 cubic metres a day at its start to around a third of that in mid April, and then down to 50,000 cubic metres by the time the well was stopped with heavy mud on 15 May.A Decc spokesman said:"The provisional total UK emissions of the basket of six greenhouse gases covered by the Kyoto protocol, including the offshore sector, during 2011 was 549.3m tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent, or approximately 45.8m tonnes per month.""The Elgin release therefore represents approximately 0.1% of the UK's monthly emissions total. Only considering the increase in emissions ...

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Total stops North Sea gas leak

Work to stop leak on Elgin platform, which involved pumping heavy mud into well, has been a success The near two month crisis around a gas well on the Elgin field in the North Sea appeared to have been averted on Wednesday with French operator, Total, saying it had succeeded in plugging the leak.Shares in the company rose more than 2% on the announcement that no more methane was being released into the environment and the company can soon put a halt to its relief operations which have been costing it $3m a day."A major turning point has been achieved," said Yves-Louis Darricarrere, Total's head of exploration and production, but the company said it was too soon to say when gas and condensate production could resume.The Elgin platform used to pump about 3% of Britain's total gas output from nearly four miles below the seabed, and the incident comes on top of production problems elsewhere.Safety issues in Yemen and a gas leak in Nigeria have been putting a brake on the company's target of increasing its global output by 2.5% through to 2015.The oil world is very nervous of offshore incidents after BP's Macondo oil well spill in the Gulf ...

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Total gas leak operation begins at Elgin North Sea platform

The energy company has started pumping mud into the well in an attempt to stop the leak The oil company Total started pumping heavy mud down its leaking well in the North Sea on Tuesday in an attempt to stop an escape of gas that has lasted nearly eight weeks and could deprive Britain of nearly 6% of its supply this summer."The well intervention operation got underway at 8:20am with the pumping of heavy mud into the well from the main support vessel," the oil and gas major said in a statement.The work, at the Elgin platform, 240 km off the coast of Scotland, is expected to last several days before engineers can determine whether the leak has been stopped, Total said.The leak is costing the company around 1.8m a day in relief operations and lost net income.The Department of Energy and Climate Change, which gave the go-ahead for the "well kill" work earlier this month, said it was monitoring the situation closely.The company said last week the amount of gas leaking from the platform had shrunk to a quarter of the original quantity and that parallel work to drill a relief well continued.In the meanwhile, a nearby gas field ...

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Total’s Indonesia Unit Ships First LNG to West Java Terminal

11.75 million metric tons of LNG to the unit Total SA (FP)'s Indonesian exploration unit delivered the first liquefied natural gas cargo to a floating storage regasification unit off West Java.Total E&P Indonesie shipped the cargo from the Bontang LNG plant in East Kalimantan on Borneo island to the nation's first floating terminal on April 25, the company said in an e-mailed statement today. It didn't specify the cargo volume.Total and Japan's Inpex (1605) Corp. will supply 11.75 million metric tons of LNG to the unit from the Mahakam block in 2012 to 2022, Total said.The floating LNG terminal has a capacity of more than 3 million tons a year and is operated by PT Nusantara Regas, a venture between Indonesia's state oil company, PT Pertamina, and the country's largest gas distributor, PT Perusahaan Gas Negara, according to Regas' website. The gas will be delivered to two power plants operated by PT Perusahaan Listrik Negara, the state utility, through a subsea pipeline, the company said.Source: LNG

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Total’s Elgin Platform Gas Leak Suffers Unfavorable Comparisons To BP

Total reassure public that damage from its gas leak will be limited soon Oil giant Total has moved to reassure investors and environmental activists over the past week that the financial and environmental damage from its gas leak in the North Sea would be limited, a task made more difficult by comparisons to BP's handling of a catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico nearly two years ago.Initial data showed that the leak from Total's platform in the Elgin gas field 150 miles (250 kilometers) off the coast of Scotland - which was first detected March 25 - was pouring out about 7 million cubic feet (200,000 cubic meters) of natural gas each day. On Friday, the company said the rate of the leak appeared to have slowed but had no new figure.In a conference call to analysts and reporters last week, Total Chief Financial Officer Patrick de La Chevardiere appealed to those listening to avoid comparisons between the Elgin leak and the Gulf spill at BP's Macondo well."While we understand that comparisons to Macondo are inevitable, we would like to state clearly that the situations are very different," he said. "There is no crude oil involved here and ...

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North Sea Gas Leak: Experts Assess Climate Impact of Ongoing Accident

Total estimates that it may take six months to stop the leak The French energy company Total estimates that its North Sea Elgin field gas well is leaking about 200,000 cubic meters of natural gas per day, enough, according to the U.S. Energy Information Agency, to supply more than 100 average homes with natural gas for an entire year. Total estimates that it may take six months to stop the leak.If the gas continues escaping at that rate, and all of it reaches the atmosphere, it would approximate the annual global warming impact of 35,000 Americans, says Carnegie Institution for Science Department of Global Ecology director, Christopher Field.At a news conference on Monday, Total's chief financial officer, Patrick de la Chevardiere, said that because the leak involves natural gas, which disperses into the atmosphere very quickly, and not crude oil, "the current impact on and risks for the environment are relatively low." But climate scientists and biologists say the leak's impact shouldn't be dismissed just because it isn't creating a beach- and wildlife-fouling oil slick.The leak, detected March 25th, is at the wellhead platform of Total's G4 well, located approximately 150 miles east of Aberdeen, Scotland. The gas is mostly ...

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Total Elgin Platform Gas Leak Inspection Delayed Due To Winds

Bad weather prevents experts from flying to the platform French oil major Total has further delayed plans to fly engineers to stem an 11-day leak of explosive gas at its North Sea Elgin platform due to continuing adverse weather conditions, a company spokesman said on Wednesday. He said strong winds were still blowing the gas cloud towards where a helicopter carrying the team of crisis engineers would land, pushing relief efforts back to Thursday or Friday.Wind direction was initially forecast by the UK's MetOffice to change by Wednesday evening and through Thursday morning, blowing gas away from the landing point and allowing a team of eight experts to assess the steps needed to stop the large and potentially explosive leak.The company said on Tuesday the team of engineers would assess conditions on the platform and find out whether a so-called "well kill" was feasible through pumping mud into the well and whether any other measures would be necessary.Total says the gas leak is costing it $2.5 million a day.Another, more expensive option being pursued in parallel is to dig two relief wells to the source of the gas at 4,000 metres depth, far below the sea bed. Experts have said ...

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Total’s Elgin Platform Gas Leak: Rough Seas And Heavy Wind Could Thwart Company’s Efforts

Total to move drilling rigs from two nearby fields Total faced rough seas and heavy winds on Monday as the oil and gas company prepared to send men and machines to battle a leak at its Elgin platform in the North Sea that has spewed gas into the air for over a week.The French company, which is spending $1 million per day on efforts to plug the leak, plans to move drilling rigs from two nearby fields, fly staff to the platform if it is deemed safe and send two underwater inspection vehicles to check where best to drill relief wells, Total said on Monday."Both (inspection) vessels are currently awaiting optimum sea conditions before they can be deployed," Total said, raising concerns that relief operations will be delayed as Met Office forecasts showed even stronger wind levels for Monday afternoon.The company is expected to fly its own staff to the platform within the next few days, industry sources told Reuters.If a first visit to the platform is successful, Total plans to fly out more engineers by the end of the week to begin injecting mud into the well to stop the gas leak, the industry sources said.Workers are expected to ...

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