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BP cleans up in search

Maggie Shiels | 09:33 UK time, Wednesday, 9 June 2010

BP is getting blasted from every corner over its efforts to deal with the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

One place however where it is being most effective in cleaning up is when it comes to buying a slew of search terms on Google, Yahoo and Microsoft's Bing.

The oil giant has shelled out an undisclosed amount of money to purchase relevant phrases like "oil spill" and "oil disaster" to ensure its site dealing with America's biggest environmental catastrophe floats to the top of the search page ahead of millions of other results.

Screengrab of Google search page

There is nothing sinister about the effort says BP, claiming the move aims to "assist those who are most impacted and help them find the right forms and the right people quickly and effectively."

"In any crisis response situation, one of the first things you do is look at what's happening on Google - it's a pretty cut and dry tactical move," Kent Jarrell, a senior vice president at Washington consulting firm APCO Worldwide who handles crisis management told CNN.

"I do it with all of my clients, because if we aren't buying the terms, somebody else is."

John Simpson over at Consumer Watchdog is worried some users will not be able to differentiate between a sponsored link like BP's and other search results.

"I question the ethics of this because while I think people understand that the ones (results) that go down the right hand column are adverts, I am not sure however that users will understand the difference between the premium ones across the top.

"I am sorry if I am a little bit of a cynic here, but its corporate spin by one of the bigest spinmeisters in the world."

None of the companies would comment on what the move is costing BP but Scott Slatin, who runs the New York-based search engine marketing company Rivington, told ABC he estimated it would be more than $10,000 a day to maintain the various search terms.

"They paid to lock themselves into the first position against the oil spill terms, essentially putting a positive message on top of the news."

oil-covered birdArt Brodksy at Public Knowledge, which is a Washington DC-based public interest group working to defend users' rights in the emerging digital culture, is not so sure it is a winning strategy.

"Sponsored links are a fact of life on search engines but a sponsored link probably doesn't means much compared to oil covered birds."

For a totally off the chart view of BP's approach, head to Twitter where a fake BP PR account has been garnering a fast following.

The latest posting on the account says "Proud to announce we've partnered with Google to turn the Information Superhighway into a Corporate Bus Route. #bpcares" .

Proof perhaps that BP has a long way to go to win this PR battle.

Comments

  • 1. At 10:49am on 09 Jun 2010, Bauer wrote:

    Just checked out that Twitter page. It really is a HUGE disaster that BP are buying up advertising space because of this crisis isnt it? People really need to grow up. BP have done more about this than they ever needed to and will continue to do so.

    And for all the BP haters out there, everytime you drive your car, get a bus or even heat or light your house you are a much to blame for your reliance on oil

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  • 2. At 11:03am on 09 Jun 2010, Jordan D wrote:

    I'm backing BP on this, because I'm fed up of Obama mouthing off and standing by doing nothing. BP didn't own or operate the rig, yet they took the lead and attempted to tackle the problem.

    US Military/Homeland Security sat back and did nothing for an age and have then come forward to do very little - they didn't seem to have a plan or any tools between them. Obama is looking ever more out of place and seems to be playing politics with a crisis. And that behaviour is truly shameful.

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  • 3. At 11:07am on 09 Jun 2010, Les Acres wrote:

    What I'd like to know is which American sanctioned the exploration and exploitation of oil in an environmentaly sensitive area?

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  • 4. At 11:09am on 09 Jun 2010, Ann wrote:

    I'm actually quite happy that BP is taking steps to forward its profile in the media because it's suffering complete assassination at the moment and mostly quite unfairly. From a President who lacks the courage to stand beside even his own people (handing off the responsibility to the Coastguard); to a bloodsucking media frenzy drooling over every setback and publishing the same photo of the same poor oil covered pelican (is that the only one you have?) and pictures of people in pristine white coveralls walking along a pristine white beach. Come on - remember where your pension money is coming from!!

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  • 5. At 11:15am on 09 Jun 2010, ethorad wrote:

    I'm not sure what John Simpson is worried about. Google has had sponsored links at the top of search results for a long time so people shouldn't be suprised. Also, they're in a separate pale yellow block, apart from the normal list, with a title of "Sponsored links" in the top right.

    Seems to me that if you don't know that links in a separate block under the heading "Sponsored links" are sponsored links, then maybe the problem isn't with Google/BP but somewhere closer to home.

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  • 6. At 11:23am on 09 Jun 2010, David Manchester wrote:

    Some people in USA and their president have been trying very hard to bring BP down and now this has led to the possibility for BP to file bankruptcy:
    http://drippingoil.blogspot.com/2010/06/bp-nysebp-declaring-bankruptcy.html

    If this happens, then the people really effected by the oil spill will suffer first (then UK pension funds) and people who will be benefit from it are Bankers and lawyers on Wall Street.

    So if you don't want BP people and their CEO Tony Hayward do their job, then following Obama to bring BP down, then you will see very soon who will be really suffered.

    To respect people making their effort and think rationally.

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  • 7. At 11:46am on 09 Jun 2010, traviscleo1 wrote:

    The Americans and their President are quick to apportion blame and even quicker to demand compensation from BP but I do not remember such speed and determination in their dealings with the Union Carbard disaster in Indian.

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  • 8. At 11:57am on 09 Jun 2010, Mel0dymaker wrote:

    I hear many Americans saying that BP are an evil company and that they should no longer buy BP petrol or let BP pump oil out of the states any more because of this massive disaster. Well where were their moral compasses when together we invaded Iraq (twice) for petrol. Where were they when people of their own country were displaced in Orleans. Why do they continue to buy saudi oil yet fight in afghanistan where both countries are very oppressive of their people.

    More to the point I am glad that the BBC have finally done a report on the way that google controls it's adverts. It wasn't that many years ago when if you wrote E111 into google the first couple of hits were directing you to a website (Possibily chinese) saying that you can buy one for a £.

    Well they were free and this website just got all the information of the user as the govt did for the official website. It would then charge you to do something that was free. It may not sound that malicious but it could of been with details.

    Google pick and choose who they work with. One minute it suits them to work for china they will. the next and they wont. Google ARE a MONOPOLY but time will tell how things work out. I can certainly see why china doesn't like google.

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  • 9. At 11:57am on 09 Jun 2010, Lord Marford wrote:

    I wish that BP would make it clear to obama and the american public that BP only owns 65% of the oil field. The remaining 35% is owned by Anadarko Petroleum (US company) and Mitsui(Japan). The drill rig is owned by Transocean (US company) and operated by Halliburton (US company). The blowout preventer, which is the piece of equipment that should have prevented the leak but failed, was manufactured by Cameron International (US company). If obama want's to kick ass there are plenty of american companies that were far more responsible for the oil spill than BP.

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  • 10. At 12:00pm on 09 Jun 2010, TheMouth wrote:

    I think it’s totally unreasonable for BP to take all the blame. For the operators of the rig to obtain a licence to drill they needed to ensure the appropriate contingency plans were in place and approved by the US regulators.
    Although I admire Obama, he is being very critical of BP’s without being specific about what he wants them to do that they are currently not doing. Calling for the CEO to be sacked was purely politically driven, though some of the statements made by the CEO have been far from helpful.

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  • 11. At 12:01pm on 09 Jun 2010, Mel0dymaker wrote:

    3. At 11:07am on 09 Jun 2010, Les Acres wrote:
    What I'd like to know is which American sanctioned the exploration and exploitation of oil in an environmentaly sensitive area?



    Good question. Quite possibily Obama.

    Don't forget one of Obamas pledges in winning the presidency was to suck more oil out of american land so that they could have more control as a nation over the price and amount of barrels of oil produced. As OPEC had effectively held the world to ransom a couple of summers ago. So it is a big kick in the nads for him too.

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  • 12. At 12:01pm on 09 Jun 2010, andrian007 wrote:

    We all understand the anger coming from the US, whether it be the people or the federal government, but the recent rhetoric is totally non-constructive. It is in BP's best commercial interest to clean up as quickly as possible and they are doing everything they can. BP's reaction is quite simply very different from how Exxon reacted immediately after the Exxon-Valdez disaster. At least BP owned up!

    If Obama is so resentful towards BP, then perhaps BP should just drop everything and let the federal government plug the leak, let's see how they plan to do this. The ultimate root cause of this disaster is not the dodgy blow-out preventer but the very same root cause as the war in Iraq; our desire for cheap oil. Perhaps we should be concentrating our future efforts on attacking this root cause instead...

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  • 13. At 12:22pm on 09 Jun 2010, Jedra wrote:

    Having worked for BP for a few years until quite recently, I am disappointed with the bad press they are getting. I had a lot of reasons not to like BP while I was working there, but one thing I will say is that there focus on safety and the environment is second to none compared to many other places I have worked.
    I think that the US Government was looking for a scapegoat to cover their own inaction in this case and BP have stood up and taken the full blow.
    It seems that whoever actually owned and operated the platform has got away scott free so far.

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  • 14. At 12:32pm on 09 Jun 2010, dancer54 wrote:

    I entirely agree with what BP is doing. Because they are being blasted from every corner, then they have a right to tell the world what they are doing to rectify the problem. They are a company which holds safety as its number 1 priority and have used their best resources to cope with the problem. Obama is busy slamming BP, but the Americans are an oil greedy nation who do not seem to want to do anything about their gas guzzling cars, their reliance on them, and their great contribution to global warming as a nation. Americans are happy to criticise a company which has been totally upfront about every action it has taken to try to resolve the problem. Anyone remember Exxon Valdez disaster in 1989??
    Quoted "considered to be one of the most devastating human-caused environmental disasters ever to occur in history"

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  • 15. At 12:32pm on 09 Jun 2010, EllonOffshoreArab wrote:

    Bulldog - you're partially right and partially wrong. Anadarko certainly has a large share in the field and would, I would have thought, be liable for some of the costs.
    The rig would be operated under both Transocean's and BP's procedures, both of which would have been examined prior to any contracts being signed. The rig has been contracted to BP for a significant period of time hence both BP and Transocean personnel would be very familiar with each other's procedures.
    Halliburton, though, do not operate the rig. Halliburton provide a cementing service directly to BP (Transocean has no part in a decision as to who provides this or 95% of the other services on the rig) and will follow the BP drilling programme.
    We don't know the cause of the leak or whether something else should have stopped the leak. It is possible that the BOPs may have prevented the rig ultimately sinking but may not have prevented the tragic loss of 11 men initially.
    This knee-jerk decision to stop drilling is completely wrong in my view - agree that, yes, everyone's procedures must and will be reviewed, but the potential for drilling contractors to go bust as either their rigs and people have no work or for operators having to pay fortunes for rigs which they are not allowed to us will have a long-term effect on the supply of oil and gas.
    Indeed the effect will be significant on the US balance of payments if they have to import more oil - operators in other countries may take some of these very high-tech rigs in operation in the GOM out of the US and on hire elsewhere and then who will drill for these resources? People won't want to keep their rigs in the Gulf if there is no work for them.
    I'm not of the 'drill drill drill' brigade but equally so we all stand responsible - we need cars, buses and trains and many products made from oil. We have to look at the very long term and replacements for hydrocarbons but until we all stand up and be counted and reduce our use these Obama decisions will do nobody any good - this oil in challenging environments is needed for the US.
    As far as this criticism of BP goes - US companies themselves stand accused of some of the worst industrial disasters in history and their senior management and owners were protected when they were culpable of serious dereliction of duty eg Union Carbide and Bhopal and Oxy and Piper Alpha. So lets take a more balanced view of things - would BP get such a hard time if it was American ? I doubt it..

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  • 16. At 1:02pm on 09 Jun 2010, Julian Lindley wrote:

    It is an apalling way to recieve a "wake up" call. When it comes to energy America in endemically complacent, and a crisis has been due for some time

    American national governance deliberately places a light regulatory touch on "Industry" in order to promote entrepreneurial spirit and grow its enonomy in a competitive world - greed, always in the background, lends a supporting hand. Enron, Worldcom, The international banking debt crisis - all have emanated from America's shores for much the same reason.

    This scandalous crisis was avoidable, the problems were well known, preparatory, but costly engineering solutions available. Only a nation with exaggerated optimism drills for oil a mile below the ocean without having an effective plan B to cover the worse case. The American contractor drilling on BP's behalf had optimism by the barrel load - misguided and misplaced most would now say.

    If better regulatory controls result, together with a reduction of fossil fuel consumption and perhaps a reduction in unsustainable consumerism the world must surely become a better place

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  • 17. At 1:13pm on 09 Jun 2010, DontBelieveTheHype wrote:

    This environmental disaster caused by BP is a crime against humanity.

    Every single person in the world has an equal right to live on a clean, healthy, thriving planet. The amount of money you have and the extent of power you command, does not give you an unfettered right to destroy wildlife and undermine the very ability of ecosystems to function.

    BP will never be able to pay for the cost of the destruction that it has unleashed on the world, both through this incident and through fossil fuel extraction in general. Having access to clean oceans, clean air, healthy forests, productive soil, are priceless gifts that enable us to exist at all.

    Where is the democracy in allowing corporations to make decisions that take away these rights? Why are they allowed to decide to take actions which will leave a legacy of misery and pain for future generations?

    We all have a responsibility to reduce our dependence on hydrocarbons, but how can the small person stand a chance against the vested interests of corporations like BP and the power they command over the market?

    When our grandchildren are living on a planet 2 degrees (if not more) warmer than this, and they ask us what we did to prevent the collapse of our life support systems, how will we tell them that we allowed corporations like BP to behave in this way? That some of us even defended their actions?

    How will we tell them that our addiction to cheap, fast energy was more important to us than our long term ability to survive on the planet?


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  • 18. At 1:32pm on 09 Jun 2010, Delirium wrote:

    I have never seen such a long list of BP defenders in a row. I wonder what and how many other types of internet spin campaigns an oil company with deep pockets can buy?

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  • 19. At 2:00pm on 09 Jun 2010, exeterjules wrote:

    um, Dontbelievethehype, I presume you're writing your comments from your computer, which runs on that "cheap fast energy" called electricity. And sitting in a room with the lights on plus a few other essential things. What exactly do you think electrical generators use to create this power?

    I applaud your call to action to use less energy, but please wake up. Oil is an essential part of modern living, and we rely on companies like BP et al to supply it. If they disappeared tomorrow it would be catastrophic. Their mandate comes from elected governments who allow them (and even request them) to drill where they do. Sorry they didn't ask you, but I'm not sure democracy works quite like that in the real world.

    BP are doing everything they can to clean up the spill -
    I totally agree with Ann440 and Jordan D, and everyone else on here who has seen this scapegoating for what it is.

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  • 20. At 2:01pm on 09 Jun 2010, ghostofsichuan wrote:

    Since the bankers were able to get away with a much larger crime and have the taxpayers pick up the bill, BP will end up with limited damage as the governments will provide them with some assistance even if done out of sight from the public. Governments are nothing more than public tax collectors for the interest of big business and banking. The political statements of outrage are nothing more than posturing. I am not sure that anyone even believes the truth serves any real purpose these day. The problem was from a lack of regulatory compliance which reflects the arrogance of big business in its relationship with governments as they know that the governments are easily deflected with having political allies who will do their bidding at the expense of the public. The governments are corrupt and no one wants to deal with that issue. Since no one represents the interest of the people these types of large events will continue to happen as big business and banking simply don't have to follow the rules and politicans makes sure they are protected. The media concentrates on the technical matters when the real issues are ethical. The world is what it is and not what you would like it to be.

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  • 21. At 2:15pm on 09 Jun 2010, Fwd079 wrote:

    Not on Bing yet..

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  • 22. At 2:19pm on 09 Jun 2010, EllonOffshoreArab wrote:

    Exeterjules - you are right.

    Delirium / Don'tbelievethehype - these large companies exist because there is a strong market for their products ie petroleum and its spin-offs. We can argue all we like but people make their decisons to buy cars which run on fuel, to buy any plastic product or indeed any steel product whose raw material will have needed huge quantities of energy to produce.

    Unless we get to the point that each person wakes up one day and decides not to use anything with hydrocarbon extract then we are where we are. Now we could get the government to force us to do it, to punish us if we don't but that system lasted from 1918-1989 and is missed by few people. In that system the corrupt rose to the top and lived in excess, the rest got very little. We live in democracies, may not be very great but better than the other alternatives.

    I agree with your calls to reduce hydrocarbons so turn my heating down, use public transport to work etc but its up to us all to do it, not to stop drilling or producing and see the catastrophe that happens.

    No, I don't work for BP. Have worked on many of their offshore installations as a service hand and seen the conservative approach they take, their over-engineering in many cases, not ones to take too many risks. Who knows, maybe they will be proved to have been in thw wrong here but lets wait and see. And, rest assured, if it ain't them pursuing these deepwater prospects it will be someone else.

    As ghost says above, the world is what it is..

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  • 23. At 3:20pm on 09 Jun 2010, jon112dk wrote:

    I watched Obama playing his mouth about holding BP to account.

    I found myself wondering if this is the same Obama who told us he would close Guantanamo within 12 months of taking office?

    I would also be interested to hear what he has to say about US firm Union Carbide and the 3,000 (+) deaths at Bhopal - will he be holding some Americans to account any time soon?

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  • 24. At 4:55pm on 09 Jun 2010, U14498268 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 25. At 5:03pm on 09 Jun 2010, stephen thomas wrote:

    Am I crazy, or does it seem that BP has gotten all its employees and their grandmothers to comment on this news piece? This seems like an insanely one sided argument to the news piece, which I don't think I've ever seen before, ever.

    I guess if I am right, it perfectly complements the content of the story, BP's PR team in damage control overdrive...

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  • 26. At 6:43pm on 09 Jun 2010, Jason wrote:

    Vote BP not BO

    BP have put their hands up, accepted responsibility, paid $1.25bn+ already in trying to stop the spill, clean up and compensate those affected. They've set up their website to keep the public informed.

    What about Obama, he wants to throw a tantrum, he wants to kick ass/fine BP massively even though BP is almost as much owned by US investors as British so will hurt them. He's getting all uptight because the spill's in the US back yard whereas the US seems pretty relaxed about pollution by US companies abroad (example Bhopal ~ 1000s dead, chemicals still leaking).

    At least BP are trying to rectify their mistake and repair the damage. BO is just too busy politicking and trying to make no mud sticks to him / his administration.

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  • 27. At 8:37pm on 09 Jun 2010, brian wrote:

    Getting oil out of the ground has always been a difficult, dangerous and dirty business. Just like coal, gold, diamonds, uranium etc.etc. and I think it's a credit to the industry as a whole that incidents like this are so rare.

    The media has paraded many "scientists" and "environmentalists" to chastise BP - but I've yet to hear any of them propose an alternative way to deal with this problem. So I guess BP's approach may be the best that could be done. Indeed, I've not heard any professionals in the industry propose an alternative.

    Obahma's response is like kicking the cat. If he were serious he'd throw BP out and get ExxonMobil to fix the problem. But I'd guess they've already declined the offer...

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  • 28. At 08:57am on 10 Jun 2010, Jedra wrote:

    @25 - An article with 27 blog replies hardly constitutes a PR Team in damage control overdrive.

    The point here is that BP is being demonised unfairly by a President (and Media) that is totally aware of the critisisms of the US Governments repsonse in previous incidents.

    My point was that a casual observer would maybe assume that BP act 'hard and loose' with the environment in their quest to find resources. My experience when I worked there was totally the opposite. I don't work for BP anymore or the energy industry and have no loyalties to either (other than a reliance on their products in my day to day life), but it is only fair that I comment on my experience.

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  • 29. At 09:47am on 10 Jun 2010, EllonOffshoreArab wrote:

    Is there a political agenda here by Obama to force BP out and return much of these Gulf fields back into American ownership ? Certainly appears that way. Now BO is suggesting that BP pay the salaries of all those who are out of work as a result of his moratorium on drilling. That's the impact of his decisions, not BP's.

    To clarify - I do not work for BP, nor own BP shares (not a bad thing, I guess, right now !) but have worked on many BP installations and have seen their safety systems and commitment to the environment myself (check out their Wytch Farm site in the south of England for proof). Working in the drilling industry and witnessing on a daily basis the commitment to safety (to the extent that a bruised thumb can affect rig's safety records etc), risk assessment, hazard identification, what-ifs and doing the job properly it is sad to see a grown man like BO acting like one possessed. BP may turn out to be clearly in the wrong but let's wait and judge that once we have all the facts and not try to crucify them, bankrupt them and damage further our fragile economy.

    Southern US - push your car manufactures for multi-valve petrol engines, super-efficient diesels, cars that are less than 20' long and weigh less than 2T and you'll soon see the rigs disappear. Tax that fuel you use and use it to pay for people who drive to the next state to queue overnight for healthcare and don't knock the UK's 'socialist' NHS we have. OK, rant over...sorry !

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  • 30. At 10:01am on 10 Jun 2010, JunkkMale wrote:

    25. At 5:03pm on 09 Jun 2010, stephen thomas wrote:
    Am I crazy, or does it seem that BP has gotten all its employees and their grandmothers to comment on this news piece?


    It does not seem to me that BP has gotten all its employees and their grandmothers to comment on this news piece.

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  • 31. At 10:55am on 10 Jun 2010, zenmasterfu wrote:

    Surprising pro-BP bias from the lead comments. Are you complicit with the company, BBC? Wouldn't be the first time as we well know, from this allegedly independent news source.

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  • 32. At 11:27am on 10 Jun 2010, Mel0dymaker wrote:

    25. At 5:03pm on 09 Jun 2010, stephen thomas wrote:
    Am I crazy, or does it seem that BP has gotten all its employees and their grandmothers to comment on this news piece?


    As an Englishman I am (insert obscenity here) off. The USA complain and make it look like it's all BP's fault and great britains when it isn't. IF it wasn't for the states we wouldn't even be

    A, In afghanistan
    B, Murderers of IRaqis
    C, In the world biggest recession since the 1930s. Thank you sub prime mortgages.

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  • 33. At 12:22pm on 10 Jun 2010, EllonOffshoreArab wrote:

    I hope Obama reads this and sees sense:

    Impacts of President Obama’s Order Halting Work on 33 Exploratory Wells in the Deepwater Gulf of Mexico

    Roughly 33% of nation’s domestically produced oil comes from the Gulf of
    Mexico, and 10% of the nation’s natural gas.
    80% of the Gulf’s oil, and 45% of its natural gas comes from operations in more than 1000 feet of water – the deepwater (2009 data).

    Suspension of operations means roughly 33 floating drilling rigs – typically leased for hundreds of thousands of dollars per day – will be idled for six months or longer.
    $250,000 to $500,000 per day, per rig – results in roughly $8,250,000 to $16,500,000 per day in costs for idle rigs;

    Secondary impacts include:
    • Supply boats – 2 boats per rig with day rates of $15,000/day per boat - $30,000/day for 33 rigs – nearly $1 million/day
    • Impacts to other supplies and related support services (i.e., welders, divers, caterers, transportation, etc.)
    Jobs – Each drilling platform averages 90 to 140 employees at any one time (2 shifts per day), and 180 to 280 for 2 2-week shifts. Each E&P job supports 4 other positions

    Therefore, 800 to 1400 jobs per idle rig platform are at risk
    Wages for those jobs average $1,804/weekly; potential for lost wages is huge, over $5 to $10 million for 1 month – per platform.
    Wages lost could be over $165 to $330 million/month for all 33 platforms
    Secondary impacts: Many offshore workers live in Louisiana. The state is
    going to see a decrease in income taxes and sales taxes that would normally be paid by those employees. (The state does not collect a sales tax on oilfield supplies and equipment used offshore.)

    Companies Impacted:
    Oil Companies Impacted -
    Shell has seven (7) exploratory wells that will be impacted
    Others include:
    Chevron (4)
    Anadarko (3)
    Marathon (2)
    Noble Energy (2)
    Eni US Operating Co. (2)
    ATP Oil & Gas (2)
    Statoil (2)
    ExxonMobil (1)
    Petrobras America (1)
    BHP (1)
    BP (1)
    Kerr McGee (1)
    Murphy (1)
    LLOG (1)
    Newfield (1)
    Hess (1)

    The 33 gulf wells where operations are suspended were the ones inspected
    immediately after the Deepwater Horizon blowout (per Interior Secretary
    Ken Salazar); in those inspections, “only minor problems were found on a
    couple of rigs”. Salazar believes “additional safety measures can be taken including dealing with cementing and casing of wells and significant enhancements and redundancies of blowout prevention mechanisms.
    Although these rigs passed the inspections, we will look at standards that are in place.”

    Longer term impacts include -
    Idle drilling rigs in the Gulf could mean that they will be contracted overseas for work in other locations, and if/when the halt is lifted, rigs will not be available for completing the work in the Gulf.

    Loss of tolls on LA Highway 1 resulting from loss of traffic related to
    deepwater operations; tolls go directly to retiring the bond debt for
    construction of LA Highway 1 improvements, and if those tolls are lost, the state of Louisiana – as the other responsible party on the bonds - will have to pay to retire that debt, meaning loss of funding for some other programs in the state’s budget.

    A 6-month halt in new drilling would defer 80,000 barrels/day, or 4% of
    2011 deepwater Gulf of Mexico production. (Wood MacKenzie)

    Higher drilling costs might jeopardize exploration in frontier areas. More immediately, estimates are that seven current discoveries could be rendered sub-economic, putting U.S. $7.6 billion in future government revenues at risk. Proposals to increase the cap on oil companies’ liability for oil spill damages to U.S. $10 billion could exclude U.S. independents from offshore Gulf of Mexico activities. (Wood MacKenzie)
    Since these wells are not yet producing, there is no decrease in the available oil supply. However, it could lead to a decrease in the availability of domestic oil, and it is hard to tell how commodity speculators are going to respond over the next six months; there is the possibility for driving oil prices to levels well over $100 per barrel.

    Prepared May 28, 2010, based on most recent data available; will be
    updated as needed. LOUISIANA MID-CONTINENT OIL AND GAS ASSOCIATION

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  • 34. At 1:05pm on 10 Jun 2010, gary_west wrote:

    This isn't a USA vs GB issue. IF you've never been, which im sure you havent. The gulf of mexico is a beautiful place full of many species of aquatic life including endangered. It is the second largest region for fishing in America. Hasn't Lousiana suffered enough?

    The fact that BP has obviously been paying its minions to comment on this article is disgusting. Why are they wasting money on politics when they should fix the damn problem in the Gulf.

    I am sorry but the time for social web 2.0 dirty work is over. stop the leak and clean up. How is this going to look when the 1st hurricane hit's the region.

    Also it is not only USA that is suffering, all the nations in the Gulf are at risk.


    BP is trash and the obvious planted comments are proof.

    As an American I frequenty BBC news because it shows a more balanced view to American news compared to CNN / MSNBC, fox always sucks. But on this matter with BBC I find it hard to trust BBC.

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  • 35. At 2:57pm on 10 Jun 2010, EllonOffshoreArab wrote:

    Gary,

    Get a grip. If you lived here what you would realise is that the BBC gets slated regularly. Generally whichever government is in power will see it as being opposed to it and accuse it of bias.

    If you were aware of many of the scandals that have taken place here over the last few years you would realise that we are a pretty cynical nation and hold the BBC to task as much as you do. We are equally wary of the establishment and big business too.

    I have been to the gulf states about 5 times so not unaware of the situation, also visited several other ares of the US and appreciate the beauty of the country. Likewise, if a similar issue happened in the North sea most of Europe's main fishing grounds would be destroyed so be assured that people across here do not take what is happening there as a joke and as an industry we are keen to know what happened and learn the lessons to stop re-occurrence.

    Sorry you appear to be so biased against BP - obviously we will not be able to convince you that we are not paid by them. It discredits what you say, describing them as trash - having experienced many US operators, I know whose rigs I would rather be on. You can choose to rubbish what I say but I've been there and seen operations at first hand.

    You are right, though, US TV is trash, BBC is not perfect but at least has some degree of impartiality.

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  • 36. At 10:36pm on 11 Jun 2010, OldSaltoftheSea wrote:

    Obama is at fault. Pushed by American media he has come out with "Kick Ass" comments.He should be taken to task by U.K. P.M., but we are afraid of upsetting U.S. Somebody should put U.S. right. 50% investors are U.S.A. My critisimn is for BP Board. Where is the Chairman and PR department, taking the heat off the poor C.E.O. who is giving his all, whilst trying to coordiinate rescue situation? BP investors, (inc. me),get angry with the (Dutch) Board please!

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  • 37. At 10:29am on 13 Jun 2010, Macin Tosh wrote:

    Ultimately the person responsible for the effects of disaster is the person who sanctioned the $75m liability cap. Why? Because the operators can only afford to play by the rules, no one operator can afford to run a business plan which costs for a much higher potential liability - even if they did so voluntarily competition will ensure they are squeezed out of the market.

    It's not a question of ethics on the part of the operators - it is down to the regulators to set the rules of the game and down to the operators to play by those rules.

    So when people say BP is culpable for not having a "Plan D" ready to be scrambled just in case plans A-C failed (which happened) the truth is that if BP did have such resources standing by "just in case" then BP would not be operating the field in the first place - a cheaper operator would have outbid them for the licence, without a "Plan D".

    The regulators knew what they were doing - lower liability cap equals lower oil price. They wanted cheaper oil. If Obama wants to go finger pointing he should stand in front of the mirror.

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  • 38. At 8:27pm on 04 Mar 2011, Papilouve wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 39. At 12:42pm on 06 Jun 2011, Blogger2011 wrote:

    Social Media is a fickle friend in any shape or form. It doesn't take Tweeps long to jump on anything that will attract followers in their tens of thousands. The man behind @BPGlobalPR has admitted himself that all he had to do was tap into people's frustration with a little humour.

    One year on the BP oil spill has continued to trend because it is still the greatest ecological catastrophe this nation has ever experienced. However, the purchase of SEO rich keywords and sponsored links was only going to attract abuse, not raise their profile. Surely we should have blasted Google for allowing said purchases of banners? And it might also be worth explaining to users where their search results -on any subject- are coming from: a for-profit corporation.

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