April 2014, Vol. 241 No. 4


Business Meetings & Events

April 2014 Ad Index

Advertisers from the print edition of <em>Pipeline & Gas Journal</em>, April 2014, Vol. 241 No. 4.

Editor's Notebook

Editor's Notebook: Arctic Friendship

I’m watching the Crimeans celebrate in the streets after the Russian invasion. Don’t you understand you’ve just lost your freedom? Then again, they may have had guns pointed at them.


2014 Offshore Technology Conference Highlights

Offshore Technology Conference (OTC 2014) - the world’s foremost event for the development of offshore resources in drilling, exploration, production, and environmental protection -- will be held May 5-8 in Houston's Reliant Center.

Better Ways To Balance, Defend Pipeline Route Selection

Earning a “social license to operate” is an increasingly important part of pipeline planning, route selection, construction and operation these days. Without the agreement or support of people affected by the project – or, who perceive that they are – it may be that approval hearings get extended, political and regulatory support slips, costs go up and timelines stretch.

BGE Chief DeFontes Steps Down, Looks Back

<!--break-->The year was 1972 and the offices of Baltimore Gas & Electric were quite different places than they are today. Computer technology was of the mainframe variety and cellphones were not around to makes the business of gas distribution easier. In fact, the newly introduced Hewlett Packard 3..

Computing Risk: Leak Detection Strategies

Kalamazoo River, Mayflower, Grand Marsh, Bonga Field, Little Buffalo – all places that suffered pipeline spills in the last several years. The recurrence of significant incidents has many countries spending more and more time investigating the pipeline industry’s safety practices. This resurgence comes at a time when oil and natural gas initiatives around the world are putting pressure on new pipeline development.

Convoy Escorts Floating Gas Plant On Dangerous 3,000-Mile Journey

When OLT Offshore LNG Toscana had to move a huge LNG platform from the Middle East to Europe, they knew special preparations were needed. Drydocks World of Dubai had just finalized conversion of the carrier to a floating LNG platform.

Energy Struggles Between Russia, Ukraine Feed Conflict

Just how serious the Ukraine-Russia situation is and whether it will threaten global security and stability is still unknown. However, the contribution of energy politics to the clash is well-established. It was on the minds of world energy leaders who met at the annual IHS-CERA Conference in Houston March 3-7, shortly after pro-Russian forces occupied strategic areas of Crimea.

European Offshore Pipe Industry Set For Recovery

The European outlook for the offshore pipe industry in 2014 is positive, according to a recent study conducted by Tata Steel.

Exxon Executive Urges Construction Unions To Support Pro-Growth Energy Policies

ExxonMobil Corporation’s Chairman and CEO Rex W. Tillerson is calling for a renewed focus on workforce training in the U.S. and a sound energy policy to support jobs in the coming years.

FPSO Decommissioned Off Tunisia

Unique Seaflex, a Unique Maritime Group, recently carried out a complex underwater lift project in 300 meters of water off Tunisia for Lundin Tunisia BV in the Oudna field. Lundin Tunisia BV is a 40% stakeholder in and operator of the Oudna field located 80 km off Tunisia.

GTS Finds Its Niche With Gas Utilities

You might justifiably say that Gas Transmission Services, Inc. is a model one-stop-shop if you’re in the natural gas business, especially in California. The company, better known as GTS, works for nearly anyone involved in the natural gas value chain, from gas pipeline owners and operators to gas producers to residential and commercial developers to public power and investor-owned utilities to producers of biomethane. Among their wide variety of services, hydrotesting heads the list. Last fall, GTS authored a study on hydrotesting for the INGAA Foundation.

Life In A Fish Bowl: Two Industry Veterans Work To Rebuild PG&Es Gas Operations

The wall of windows in Nick Stavropoulos’ 32nd-floor office near the Embarcadero in San Francisco can produce some panoramic views. It’s a perspective befitting a 30-year-plus industry veteran whose career parallels the emergence of the modern natural gas pipeline industry, making him one of the leaders in shaping these advances.

Making America Understand Benefits Of Natural Gas Top Priority For AGAs Gregg Kantor

The American Gas Association (AGA) elected Gregg S. Kantor to serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors for 2014. Kantor is president and CEO of NW Natural. Headquartered in Portland, OK, NW Natural provides natural gas service to 689,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in Oregon and southwest Washington. It is the largest independent natural gas utility in the Pacific Northwest.

Massive Pipeline Investment Hot Topic At Energy Conference

Huge investments will be required in pipeline infrastructure, especially in North America, according to a consensus of speakers at the 2014 IHS CERAWeek conference in Houston March 3-7.

Natural Gas Price Advantage Creates Opportunities And Benefits For LDCs
News / LDC

A recently released IHS study, Fueling the Future with Natural Gas: Bringing It Home, is intended to serve as a resource for gas LDCs, their customers, regulators, legislators and other policymakers, industry, and the general public to use in adjusting to the new realities of the natural gas market. It describes the unconventional natural gas revolution (also known as the “Shale Gale”) and how it has upended long-held notions of natural gas supply and cost.

North American LNG Exports Effect On Global Gas

Natural gas industry commentators, bulls and bears alike, know and agree on one thing for certain – North America will export LNG. This is most likely to occur by 2016 from the Sabine Pass terminal.

Preparing For The Next Big Labor Squeeze

Industry experts and company leaders alike have been talking about the looming construction labor shortages for years now. The Great Recession has exacerbated this concern due to the thousands of workers that have left the construction industry.

Prirazlomnoye: Russia's First Arctic Offshore Field Begins Production

Gazprom announced In December the start of oil production from the Prirazlomnoye Field. It is the first Russian project for developing Arctic shelf reserves and the beginning of Gazprom's large-scale activities aimed at creating a large hydrocarbon production center in the region.

Sevan 1000 FPSO Readied For Barents Sea

Eni Norge has selected the Sevan 1000 FPSO, developed by Sevan Marine, to produce the Goliat field in the Barents Sea northwest of Hammerfest at a depth of 400 meters. Italian energy company Eni Norge is operator of the field with an ownership of 65% while Statoil owns 35%.

Shells First FLNG Readied For Western Australian Operations

In December, the 488-meter hull of Shell’s Prelude floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility was floated out of dry dock at the Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) yard in Geoje, South Korea where the facility is under construction. Shortly after float out the hull was towed to a nearby dock and readied for installation of the massive LNG facilities.

Superstorm, Super Effort: National Grid Executive Recounts Sandy Recovery Process

It is often said along the East Coast that no two storms are alike, and so it was with Superstorm Sandy, which unleashed the full brunt of its fearsome wrath on the New York City area on Oct. 29, 2012.

The Tortoise, The Hare And The Pipeline Project

Who doesn’t remember Aesop’s fable about the tortoise and the hare? The story concerns a hare who ridicules a tortoise that has challenged him to a race. The hare soon leaves the tortoise behind and, confident of winning, takes a nap midway through the course. When the hare awakes, however, he finds that his competitor has arrived at the finish line before him.

UK Production Starts Rose Through 2013

The number of fields which began producing oil and gas in the UK hit its highest level in five years in 2013, as operators focused on development activity. This is according to the latest report into offshore activity from Deloitte, the business advisory firm.


Rail Transportation Of Oil: A Growing Congressional Safety Concern

Both House and Senate committee leaders with jurisdiction have begun to show impatience with what they view as out-of-date federal regulations on railroads carrying oil produced in the Bakken, Eagle Ford and Marcellus shale regions.

In The News

Ronnie Wise Elected President At PLCA Convention

John Allen, outgoing president of the Pipe Line Contractors Association (PLCA) and president of Pipeline Constructors, LLC, welcomed 625 delegates to the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa in Bonita Springs, FL at the PLCA’s 66th Annual Convention.

WEC Sees Energy Price Volatility And Recession As Top Issues For Energy Leaders

High energy price volatility has for the first time replaced global climate framework as the top critical uncertainty driving the world energy agenda, says the 2014 World Energy Issues Monitor, released by the World Energy Council (WEC).


APA Group Proposes $1.2 Billion Australian Connector Project

APA Group has proposed a project to connect its Northern Territory and east-coast gas assets which would cost $1.2 billion.

Bredero Shaw To Weight Coat Pipe For South Stream Pipeline

ShawCor Ltd.’s pipe coating division, Bredero Shaw, has received a contract with a value of US$50 million from Europipe GmbH for the concrete weight coating of Line 1 of the South Stream offshore pipeline segment.

Double Eagle Pipeline Begins Full Service

Double Eagle Pipeline LLC, a 50/50 joint venture between Magellan Midstream Partners, L.P. and Kinder Morgan Energy Partners, L.P. said the entire system, comprised of 195 miles of pipe, is now in full operation to Corpus Christi.

EIS Submitted For Canadian LNG Export Facility

Pacific NorthWest LNG formally submitted its Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to both the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA) and the BC Environmental Assessment Office (BC EAO) for the planned LNG export facility on Canada’s Lelu Island in Port Edward, near Prince Rupert, BC.

Energy Transfer To Provide Midstream Services In Permian Basin

Energy Transfer Partners has entered into a long-term agreement with XTO Energy Inc., a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corp., to provide midstream services for natural gas produced from certain XTO wells in the Permian Basin.

EQT Midstream Focuses On Gathering/Transmission Projects

EQT Midstream Partners, LP has definitive agreements with a subsidiary of Range Resources Corp. to provide gathering, compression, and transmission services in eastern Washington County, PA.

Excelerate Seeks Approval For First FLNG Export Facility In U.S.

Excelerate Energy has filed its formal application with FERC requesting authorization to construct, own, and operate the first floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) export facility in the United States.

Gas Natural Activates First Phase Of Loring Pipeline

Gas Natural Inc. has completed activation of the first 60 miles of its Loring Pipeline, north of Bangor, ME. Gas Natural acquired a leasehold interest in the 189-mile Loring Pipeline which runs from Searsport to Limestone in September 2012.

Genesis Energy To Build $150 Million Terminal In Louisiana

Genesis Energy, L.P. plans to invest $150 million to construct a crude oil, intermediates and refined products import /export terminal in Baton Rouge, LA. The terminal will be located on 90 acres of land near the Port of Greater Baton Rouge and connect to the port’s existing deepwater docks on the Mississippi River.

Innovative Subsea Test Manifold Saves Time, Money

As part of a recent North Sea pipeline project, EnerMech was contracted to flood and hydro test offshore subsea flowlines. The testing operations were to be conducted in standard industry fashion by using a vessel-based downline spread. This meant the vessel would need to remain connected to the flowlines via the downline throughout the test period, adding to client cost.

KazTransGas To Build 311-Mile Gas Pipeline

KazTransGas signed an agreement for a $700 million loan from China to expand a pipeline to boost gas exports to its neighbor.

Line Reversal Underway To Ship NGLs

NuStar Energy L.P. has signed a long-term agreement allowing Occidental Petroleum to ship NGLs on the company’s idled 200-mile, 12-inch pipeline between Mont Belvieu and Corpus Christi, TX.

NGPL Holds Non-Binding Open Season For Gulf Coast Expansion

Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America (NGPL) held a 14-day non-binding open season which closed on March 4 to gauge interest in expansion of its Gulf Coast mainline system.

Offshore Expert Expects Deepwater To Dominate

Michael Haney founded Douglas-Westwood’s Houston office in 2012 and has more than a dozen years of experience consulting for energy and chemicals clients. He has completed consulting projects for most of the IOCs, many NOCs, and several oilfield service clients.

Osaka Gas/Chubu Electric Invest In Proposed Freeport LNG Facility

Osaka Gas Co., Ltd. and Chubu Electric Power Co., Inc. have entered into an agreement with Freeport LNG to invest $1.2 billion of equity funding for Freeport LNG's proposed natural gas liquefaction and LNG-loading facility on Quintana Island near Freeport, TX. The facility involves the development of three liquefaction plants or trains.

Petrobras Achieves Output Record From Cascade And Chinook Fields In Gulf

On March 4 production at Cascade and Chinook fields hit 40,000 bpd, a new output record for these oilfields.

Pivotal/WesPac Plan LNG Plant In Florida

Pivotal LNG, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of AGL Resources, and WesPac Midstream LLC have been selected by TOTE, Inc. to provide LNG to fuel TOTE's two new container ships in Jacksonville, FL.

Shell Starts Production From Mars B Development In Gulf

Shell started production from the Mars B development through Olympus – the company’s seventh, and largest, floating deepwater platform in the Gulf of Mexico on Feb. 4. It is the first deepwater project in the Gulf to expand an existing oil and gas field with significant new infrastructure, which should extend the life of the greater Mars basin to 2050 or beyond.

Texas Eastern Seeks FERC Approval For OPEN Project

Spectra Energy’s Texas Eastern Transmission plans to construct the Ohio Pipeline Energy Network (OPEN) project.

Turkmen president: 2015 start for pipeline work

ASHGABAT, Turkmenistan (AP) — Turkmenistan's president has demanded that construction work begin in 2015 on a pipeline that will carry natural gas from his energy-rich country to Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.

UAE Contemplates Importing LNG From U.S.

The United Arab Emirates is looking at importing natural gas from North America in what would be one of the most striking developments since the start of the U.S. shale boom, Reuters reported.

Underwater Vehicle Solves Subsea Monitoring Of Oil And Gas Installations

The Sabertooth double-hull can roam freely for up to 40 miles, is depth-rated to 3,000 meters and has 360-degree orientation.

Williams Transco Plans $2.1 Billion Atlantic Sunrise Expansion Project

Williams Partners' Transco has received binding commitments for 1.7 MMDth/d of firm natural gas pipeline capacity on its proposed $2.1 billion proposed Atlantic Sunrise expansion project.This includes 15-year shipper commitments from producers, local distribution companies and power generators.

Web Exclusive

Pipeline supporters seek quick Senate vote

WASHINGTON (AP) — Supporters of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline are seeking a swift Senate vote on legislation to approve construction of the project that environmentalists oppose strongly and the Obama administration has delayed indefinitely.

Ruth Michels Receives University of Wisconsin Lifetime Achievement Award

Ruth Michels, CEO and chairman of the board of Michels Corporation, was awarded the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW) Construction Club’s Lifetime Achievement Award on Friday, April 25 at the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery.

What's New

April 2014 New Products

New products from Flagshooter, Tri Tool, Enerpac, Pipetel, Deere, Schneider Electric, Weir-Jones Engineering, L.D. Osborne Company, PeopleNet, ESAB and more.