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Emerging Deep Water Areas


Wednesday, May 26, 2010
The Geological Society

Deep Water Exploration success has underpinned global exploration discovery volumes since the mid-1990’s when results from the Gulf of Mexico began to be matched by those from the deep water parts of the Congo, Niger and Nile deltas and the Campos basin. From time to time, we began to think that perhaps there would be no more deep water provinces and then along came Ghana and the Santos basin! And of course the Gulf of Mexico continues to test ever deeper water, ever deeper targets and ever more ‘paradigm-breaking’ depositional systems.

But surely the end must now be in sight!

One of our Finding Petroleum number has, we recall, previously offered to drink all the oil that’s developed around the Falkland Islands and surely offshore Greenland is too remote, too hostile? And isn’t New Zealand a long way from anywhere? And are the Indian deeper water discoveries really as large as reported?

And if we are going to explore ever more remote deepwater regions, can we say anything about technologies that help us in meeting the challenge without losing our shirts in the process; can we reduce exploration risk, can we reduce the extraordinarily high cost of drilling?

Our Forum addressed these issues, recognising the potential of Greenland, the West Africa Transform Margin and its South American ‘conjugate’, deep waters off Indonesia and New Zealand, and showing off some of the technologies that will help screen and rank these opportunities, including seep detection & sampling, earth modelling, gravity gradiometry and electro-magnetics; we also looked an innovative, lower costs, drilling technology. Although our chairman was nervous – nobody stood up for the Falklands!

And of course there was a shadow in the room – will ongoing events in the Gulf of Mexico impact the industry’s ability to explore and develop these remote frontier regions?


9:00 Arrivals and Registrations
9:40 David Bamford - Director
Finding Petroleum

Welcome and Introduction

David Bamford is well known around the oil & gas industry both as an explorer and a geophysicist. He holds a Physics degree from the University of Bristol and a Ph.D in Geological Sciences from the University of Birmingham.

Since 2004, he has been a non-executive director at Tullow Oil plc, being recruited for this position especially for his exploration knowledge. He serves on the Nominations and Remuneration Committees, and was chairman of the latter, and Senior Independent Director, for 3 years prior to his retire from the board at the end of April 2014.

He was on the board of Premier Oil from May 2014 to May 2016.

He retired from BP plc in 2003, his last four positions being Chief Geophysicist (1990-1995), Business Unit Leader (General Manager) for first West Africa and then Norway (1995-1999), and finally Head of Exploration until 2003.

He has served on the boards of Paras Ltd, a small exploration and IS/IT consulting company in which he held 22% equity, until its sale to RPS Energy in 2008 and Welltec a/s, a Danish well engineering company, as the nominee of the private equity investor Riverside.

From 2012 to 201 he was on the board of ASX-quoted Australia Oriental Energy as a non-executive director.

He was a founder of Richmond Energy Partners, a small oil & gas research house, and several media companies that focus on the oil & gas sector, and has served as an advisor to Alliance Bernstein, Opus Executive, the Parkmead Group plc, and Kimmeridge Energy LLP. Since retiring from BP, he has undertaken asset and company valuation projects for investment banks, hedge funds and small oil companies.

Finding Petroleum
Finding Petroleum was established to help the oil and gas industry network, and stay up to date on t
9:45 Neil McMahon - Senior Analyst
Bernstein Research

Deep water E&P in a global context

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Dr. McMahon joined Sanford C. Bernstein in 2002 as a senior research analyst covering the Global Integrated Oil Industry and the Refining Industry. He is currently top ranked in both the Institutional Investor All American Research Team and European investor surveys for energy research. Previously, he was a management consultant with McKinsey & Co, based in both Houston and London, where he had been since 1999. At McKinsey he mainly advised Petroleum and Electric Power and Natural Gas clients, and undertook proprietary research within their industry practices. Prior to McKinsey, Dr. McMahon worked in the oil industry as a Geoscientist with BP and British Gas before moving into management consulting with Arthur D. Little, where he became a Manager in their Global Energy Practice.

Dr. McMahon received an honours degree from The University of Edinburgh in Geology and Geophysics, where he later undertook further research to complete a BP sponsored Ph.D. Dr. McMahon has also published a number of technical and management oriented papers in leading oil and gas industry journals, and is on the advisory board of Durham University's Centre for Research into Earth Energy Systems (CeREES) and the Durham Energy Institute.

Bernstein Research
Sanford C. Bernstein is widely recognized as Wall Street's premier sell-side research firm. Their re
10:20 Alan Williams - Oil & Gas Manager
Fugro NPA Ltd

Satellite Seep Detection of Leaking deep-water oilfields. Fact or Fiction?

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Graduated back in the Jurassic era in Geology from Swansea and in Geochemistry from Leeds.

Over 40 years experience, 30 of them in the oil and gas industry.

Joined BP in 1979, initially to run the Geochemistry Review Group and latterly as the lead interpreter for BP’s high profile ALF Project. This culminated in him running a highly successful integrated seep detection project in the Gulf of Mexico – the Glass Clock Project – immediately after which he was made redundant in the Lord Bowne purge of 1992.

Since then has transitioned to the dark side as a contractor and has worked with a number of service companies including World Geoscience, NRSC (now Infoterra) and, saving the best for last, NPA (Nigel Press Associates) who were painlessly subsumed into the Fugro mother ship in April 2008.

Fugro NPA Ltd
Fugro NPA is the world leader in satellite interpretation for the oil and gas industry. Their servic
10:55 Katherine Durtnell -
Landmark Exploration Insights

Predicting the presence of deep water reservoirs

Landmark Exploration Insights (formerly Neftex), is a product family within Landmark, a business lin
11:30 Lunch, Coffee and Tea - Sponsored by Bernstein Research
12:15 Dr. Svein Ellingsrud - Founder & Vice President

Exploration experience with CSEM in deep water areas

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Dr. Svein Ellingsrud's Awards

2009 - "Honorary Award 2009" from the Geological Society of Norway for notable achievements in the development and applications of CSEM in petroleum exploration

2008 - "Geofysikkprisen 2008" from NPF (Norwegian Petroleum Society) The Norwegian Geophysical Prize.

2007 - Society of Exploration Geophysicsts: Virgil Kaufman Gold Medal for: "initiating the first substantial test of controlled-source electromagnetic (CSEM) for direct hydrocarbon indication. This pioneering work spawned a new service industry devoted to acquiring, processing, and modelling CSEM data for directly observing hydrocarbons by capitalizing on the resistivity contrast observed in selected hydrocarbon basins. The practice of utilizing CSEM data to lower drilling risk is quickly becoming standard practice in some plays and has been cited as possibly the most significant technology in oil exploration since 3D seismic."

EMGS is a Norwegian, leading market share Geophysical company focused on the acquisition, processing
12:50 John Siegfried - EVP Operations

Earth Modelling using Integrated Seismic and Gravity Gradiometry data – A case History from Gabon.

Talk Description
This paper is co-authored by Jim Martin from CGG Veritas
John Siegfried joined ARKeX in 2006 and was the Chief Operating Officer and then CEO from 2010 until 2014. John has a BSc in Marine Science and has over 30 years’ of exploration industry experience. He has worked in all aspects of exploration including management positions as Country Manager for Western Geophysical, operational positions as Global Operations Manager for Western Geophysical and technical positions as Global Operations Support Manager for WesternGeco/Schlumberger.

ARKeX provides airborne and marine geophysical surveys for the oil & gas exploration industry. It sp
13:25 Tony Bamford - Technical Director
Geoprober Drilling

Transforming deepwater drilling

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DOB 4-10-1950 St Austell, Cornwall

Graduated in Geology from Kingston University 1972

Joined Schlumberger worked in cementing, stimulation, well testing, directional drilling – N Africa, M East and Far East

Gulf Oil – Drilling & Production Engineering, Jakarta and Houston

OPITB Aberdeen – Manager: Drilling & Production Training Centre, Drilling Well Control & Blowout Prevention

Started Rigsim Ltd – Building drilling and production simulators

Halliburton – UK Sales Mgr, Project Manager: “Swift Riser” composite flexible riser

Started Geoprober Drilling Ltd in 2004 – Technical Director

Geoprober Drilling
Geoprober Drilling is developing a deepwater exploration drilling system deployed from a mono-hull v

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