In an e-mail sent to Offshore Energy Today Spanish oil company Repsol has confirmed that the company has started drilling offshore the Canary Islands, Spain.
According to Repsol’s spokesperson, the drilling began yesterday and it is expected to last for six weeks. The company hired Rowan Renaissance drillship for this exploratory work.
Offshore Energy Today has previously reported that the environmental organization Greenpeace on Saturday (November 15) protested against the company’s drilling off the Canary Islands. Greenpeace said that during this protest one of their activists was hospitalised and another injured as Spanish Navy boats repeatedly rammed Greenpeace boats engaged in a protest. Following the protest, the environmental organization’s ship Arctic Sunrise was detained by Spanish authorities in the port of Arrecife, Lanzarote, Spain.
When asked about Repsol’s stance on the Greenpeace protests, the spokesperson said: “I have no comment on the protests beyond that Repsol is convinced that evaluating Spain’s oil potential will benefit the country, and we carry out our operations with the most stringent safety measures as a matter of course.”
To remind, Repsol was given final approval by the Spanish government to begin exploratory work off Canary Islands in August 2014. The licence had been awarded to Repsol and its partners Woodside and RWE Dea back in 2002, but due to several appeals against the drilling in the area the drilling was delayed. In June this year Supreme Court of Spain rejected seven appeals against the Government’s decision to grant permission for exploration drilling in the area. The area covers a small Atlantic margin basin, which is prospective for gas as well as oil.
Offshore Energy Today Staff