Brazil's Petrobras reports another oil spill

Jan 31, 2012
Brazil's state-run energy giant Petrobras on Tuesday reported that 160 barrels of crude oil may have spilled from a deep-water well off Sao Paulo state but said the situation was under control.

Brazil's state-run energy giant Petrobras on Tuesday reported that 160 barrels of crude oil may have spilled from a deep-water well off Sao Paulo state but said the situation was under control.

A company statement said a production string rupture of the FPWSO Dynamic Producer (vessel platform) was detected early Tuesday, roughly 300 kilometers (180 miles) off the coast of Sao Paulo state, where water depth reaches 2,140 meters (6,600 feet).

It said the well was automatically shut down after the rupture by the and has been secured.

"A preliminary estimate indicates that 160 barrels of oil may have spilled. There is no possibility of the oil reaching the Brazilian coast," Petrobras said.

It added that an investigation was launched to determine the cause of the leak.

Petrobras said it notified the Brazilian Navy, the Brazilian Institute of Environment and Renewable Natural Resources (IBAMA) and the Brazilian National Petroleum Agency (ANP).

It was the second oil spill in Brazil in less than a week.

Last Thursday, Transpetro, a Petrobras subsidiary, said it had detected a spill off the coast of Rio Grande do Sul state but did not know how much had spilled.

Petrobras's transportation unit said it was not possible to estimate how much oil had leaked but said personnel and equipment were deployed to contain and remove the spill off the coast of the southern state.

In November, another oil spill was detected in a well operated by US energy company Chevron near the Frade field, 370 kilometers (231 miles) northeast of the coast.

The spill was eventually contained and Chevron was subject to several environmental fines.

The case was a wake-up call for Brazil as it prepares to tap huge underwater oil fields, which ANP says hold reserves that could surpass 100 billion barrels of high-quality recoverable crude.

These fields are off Brazil's southeast Atlantic beneath kilometers of ocean, bedrock, and hot salt-beds.

In 2010, Petrobras was the world's third biggest oil producer in terms of market value at $228 billion. By late last month it had fallen to 5th place, with its value down to $156 billion, according to the daily newspaper O Globo.

Explore further: Pilot study reveals new findings about microplastics in wastewater

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Brazil's Petrobras unit reports oil leak

Jan 26, 2012

Transpetro, a subsidiary of Brazil's state-run energy giant Petrobras, said Thursday it had detected an oil leak off the coast of Rio Grande do Sul state but did not know how much had spilled.

Chevron suspends Brazil offshore drilling

Nov 24, 2011

US oil giant Chevron Corporation said on Thursday that it had suspended its current and future drilling operations off Rio de Janeiro state, following a crude oil slick in the area.

Chevron faces $145 million in possible Brazil fines

Nov 22, 2011

Brazil could slap fines of more than $145 million (105 million euros) on Chevron over its oil spill, and the US energy giant could be barred from operating in the country's deepwater fields, officials said ...

Brazil prosecutors want Chevron work shut down

Dec 15, 2011

Prosecutors in Brazil on Wednesday called for a shutdown of Chevron's activities nationwide and said the US oil giant should be fined $11 billion for damage caused by an oil spill last month.

Brazil warns Chevron over offshore oil well seepage

Nov 17, 2011

Brazilian authorities warned US energy giant Chevron Thursday that it faces severe punishment if it fails to completely seal an offshore well that has been seeping oil in waters off Rio de Janeiro state.

New oil leak found in Brazil: officials

Dec 18, 2011

Brazil's environmental authorities said they have discovered a 10,000 liter leak at an oil platform in the pristine Bay of Ilha Grande, the second such mishap to threaten this country's shorelines in recent ...

Recommended for you

Bladderwrack: Tougher than suspected

3 hours ago

The bladderwrack Fucus vesiculosus is actually one of the most important species of brown algae along the North Atlantic coasts. But for years their populations in the Baltic Sea were declining. Looking for the reasons, biolog ...

Australia set to pay polluters to cut emissions

14 hours ago

Australia is set to approve measures giving polluters financial incentives to reduce emissions blamed for climate change, in a move critics described as ineffective environmental policy.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.