THE WALL STREET JOURNAL/DOW JONES NEWSWIRES: Shell May Delay Repairs To Mars Platform (ShellNews.net)
DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
Posted 21 October 2004
NEW YORK -- The mammoth Mars oil and gas platform in the Gulf of Mexico may not be shut down for two weeks in early November as planned by operator Royal Dutch/Shell Group (RD, SC), a company spokesman said Wednesday.
"We are looking at that schedule," said spokesman Fred Palmer, who said that a postponement of repairs is being considered.
The move may come as a relief to the severely squeezed U.S. oil and natural gas market, which is suffering from daily outages of more than 400,000 barrels of oil and 1.5 billion cubic feet of gas a day as a result of damage caused by Hurricane Ivan.
The repairs to the tension legs on the Mars platform would have shut in an additional 100,000 barrels a day of crude and 170 million cubic feet of natural gas for two weeks or 1.4 million barrels and 2.38 Bcf over the course of the repairs.
Palmer would not elaborate on the reason for the possible delay, though the availability of repair staff and equipment while the damage from Ivan is being fixed would be one reason for putting off work on a platform that is operating normally.
-By Spencer Jakab of Dow Jones Newswires; 201-938-4377; email@example.com