China National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC) revealed that oil and gas production at its largest base – the northern section of Bohai Bay – has been affected by icy weather.
According to a statement released by CNOOC in the weekend, large amounts of water in the Bohai Bay have frozen, forming a layer of ice up to 15 centimeters thick.
The country's meteorological administration also issued a statement in the weekend, warning of continued harsh conditions moving into February. In its statement, the administration said that North China experienced its coldest winter in 42 years, with temperatures hitting minus 7.4 degrees Celsius, 2.4 degrees lower than the average level in the previous years.
In order to ensure safe oil and gas production in its affected fields, CNOOC and China Oilfield Services (COSL) have deployed 13 ice breakers, installed radar equipment and employed people to monitor the changing conditions in the Bohai Bay.
CNOOC confirmed that producing areas of the Jinzhou 9-3 oilfield and the Jinzhou 20-2 gas field have been affected. The deployed ice breakers are at present operating in oilfields such as Jinzhou 25-1, Jinzhou 25-1 South and Suizhong 36-1.
CNOOC's recorded oil and gas production in the Bohai Bay was over 30 million cubic meters last year, although the company's biggest offshore oilfield – Penglai 19-3 – remains shut after a series of oil spills in 2011.
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