Minerals Management Service (MMS) Company News

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Obama Names New Head of MMS
Tuesday, June 15, 2010Obama picked Michael Bromwich to lead the Minerals Management Service.

Abbey Implements New Drilling Requirements
Monday, June 07, 2010Drilling in water depths less than 500' will be allowed to move forward provided the operator submits additional information.

MMS Chief Resigns
Thursday, May 27, 2010MMS Director has resigned as the oil spill puts growing scrutiny on the agency's oversight of offshore drilling.

NOIA Responds to MMS Restructuring
Thursday, May 20, 2010The National Ocean Industries Association supports any administrative action that leads to ensuring safer exploration and development of the offshore oil and gas.

Salazar Formally Orders MMS Break-Up
Wednesday, May 19, 2010Ken Salazar said he was mulling whether the agency should continue to derive part of its funding from fees on oil and gas companies.

Platts: Change Merits Consideration for MMS
Tuesday, May 18, 2010Randall Luthi, former director of the Minerals Management Service, said Sunday that "some kind of change has to be contemplated" at the agency in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.

MMS Toughens Oversight of O&G Ops
Tuesday, May 11, 2010Ken Salazar will enforce laws and regulations that apply to O&G companies operating on the Outer Continental Shelf.

Energy Partners Regains Supplemental Waiver Status from MMS
Monday, May 03, 2010Energy Partners reported it was recently informed by the Minerals Management Service (MMS) that it had regained supplemental waiver status.

MMS Postpones 2010 Offshore Industry Safety Awards
Thursday, April 29, 2010The ongoing situation with the Transocean Deepwater Horizon drilling accident has caused the MMS to dedicate considerable resources to the successful resolution of this event, which will conflict with holding this ceremony next week.

U.S. Govt. Issues Safety Review of All Offshore Rigs
Thursday, April 29, 2010The Obama Administration Thursday escalated its response to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and is ordering a safety review of all offshore rigs.

BP's Relief Well to Halt Oil Spill Will Cost $100MM
Tuesday, April 27, 2010The relief well that BP will drill to permanently stem an oil leak spreading across the Gulf of Mexico will cost about $100 million, the company's Chief Executive Tony Hayward said Tuesday.

ATP Updates on Telemark Deepwater Ops
Tuesday, April 20, 2010ATP has received approval from the Minerals Management Service for the commingling of two zones at the Atwater Valley 63 #4 well.

MMS Limits Flaring, Venting for OCS Production
Tuesday, April 20, 2010The U.S. Department of the Interior's Minerals Management Service published a Final Rule on April 16 in the Federal Register that sets limits on the flaring or venting of natural gas into the atmosphere.

MMS Recognizes Safety Excellence in GOM
Thursday, April 15, 2010The Interior Department's Minerals Management Service announced the 2009 District Safety Award for Excellence (SAFE) recipients for the Gulf of Mexico Region.

MMS Posts Preliminary Revised O&G Leasing Program
Wednesday, April 07, 2010The MMS' remanded program schedules no sales in the North Aleutian Basin and Beaufort Sea, Alaska; nor will there be any additional sales in the Chukchi Sea other than Sale 193.

MMS Schedules Public Meetings for Environmental Study
Monday, April 05, 2010The MMS has scheduled 13 public scoping meetings in seven locations to solicit comments for the development of a PEIS for future geological and geophysical exploration in the Mid- and South-Atlantic OCS.

MMS to Prepare EIS for Offshore Leasing Program
Monday, April 05, 2010The MMS published a Notice of Intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed 2012-2017 Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program.

18.8MM Acres Up for Grabs in Western GOM
Thursday, April 01, 2010The next federal oil and gas lease sale in the Gulf of Mexico will occur in New Orleans on August 18, and will offer 18.8 million acres for oil and gas development.

U.S. Interior Dept Opens New Areas for Offshore Drilling
Wednesday, March 31, 2010"Our efforts to strategically open new areas in the Eastern Gulf would represent the largest expansion of our nation's available offshore oil and gas supplies in three decades," said Ken Salazar.

MMS Recognizes Danos & Curole's Offshore Leadership
Friday, March 26, 2010Gene Barfield, CSP and Garrel Rowell of Danos & Curole have been recognized by the MMS as 2010 recipients of the Offshore Leadership Award.

MMS Chooses PetroVR Software to Evaluate OSC Bids
Thursday, March 25, 2010PetroVR will receive the torch from MONTCAR, an internal software solution that has been in use by the U.S. MMS for more than three decades.

New Science Advisor to Assist MMS Director
Wednesday, March 24, 2010Alan Thornhill will assist Director Birnbaum in the review of scientific and technical data that will ensure the effective management of energy resources located on the nation's Outer Continental Shelf.

U.S. Central GOM Sale Attracts $949MM in High Bids
Wednesday, March 17, 2010A total of 151 tracts in water depths less than 656 feet received bids. Anadarko and Mariner submitted the highest bid for Walker Ridge, Block 793.

Statoil Bids High to Extend Deepwater GOM Footprint
Wednesday, March 17, 2010Statoil was the highest bidder on 21 leases today in the central area lease sale for the US Gulf of Mexico.

MMS to Unveil Central GOM Sale 213 Results Tomorrow
Tuesday, March 16, 2010The Director of Minerals Management Service, Liz Birnbaum, will open the Central Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 213 in New Orleans on March 17.

Offshore Energy Industry Bets on Central GOM
Tuesday, March 16, 2010The offshore energy industry continues to show interest in the Gulf of Mexico's Outer Continental Shelf, with 67 companies submitting 642 bids on 468 tracts.

US Misses Deadline for Offshore Drilling Study
Friday, February 26, 2010The Obama administration failed to meet a deadline for submitting a court-ordered analysis of the environmental effects of offering new leases to drill in Alaskan coastal waters.

MMS Adds New Auditors for Onshore Producers
Thursday, February 18, 2010MMS has finalized its 2010 audit plan to ensure that energy producers on Federal and American Indian lands are properly paying the royalties due to the Federal Government and American Indians.

Final Notice for Central Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 213
Thursday, February 11, 2010The Department of the Interior's Minerals Management Service is issuing the final notice for a Federal oil and gas lease sale in the Central GOM.

President Sets Budget for MMS in 2011
Monday, February 01, 2010With a budget designed to increase America's energy security by expanding the nation's energy portfolio and ensuring a fair return for these public resources, the President has proposed $364.8 million in funding for the MMS in 2011.

Devon's Partners Buy Stakes at Cascade, St. Malo
Tuesday, January 26, 2010Devon confirmed Monday that its partners in two ultradeep water oil discoveries in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico have decided to exercise their preferential purchase rights.

New MMS Deputy Director Takes Reins
Wednesday, January 20, 2010The Department of the Interior's Minerals Management Service has named Mary Katherine Ishee as deputy director.

Fire on Apache Platform Off Louisiana Is Fatal to Worker
Thursday, January 14, 2010A fire aboard an Apache Corp. oil and natural gas platform in the Gulf of Mexico left one contract worker dead and halted production at the facility.

MMS Probes Mystery of Loop Current in Eastern GOM
Wednesday, January 06, 2010A study released by the MMS examines the circulation in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico and sheds new light on the behavior of the Loop Current and Loop Current Eddies, which can affect oil and gas activities within the region.

MMS Notifies Offshore Lease Owners of Inspection Fees
Wednesday, December 23, 2009The MMS is notifying offshore lease owners and operators that new fees will be collected to recover the costs of offshore inspections conducted during Fiscal Year 2010.

New Gulf Regional Supervisor Takes Reins at MMS
Thursday, December 17, 2009MMS Gulf of Mexico Regional Director Lars Herbst has selected David W. Cooke, Ph.D., as the new Regional Supervisor for Resource Evaluation in the Gulf Region Office.

MMS Inks MOU to Exchange Offshore Data with Norway's PSA
Friday, December 11, 2009The Minerals Management Service signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Norway's Petroleum Safety Authority to facilitate the exchange of technical and programmatic information related to offshore oil, gas, and mineral resources.

MMS Collects $111MM in High Bids for Western GOM Sale 210
Thursday, December 10, 2009The Minerals Management Service has accepted high bids valued at $111,385,124 and awarded 155 leases to the successful high bidders who participated in Western Gulf of Mexico Oil and Gas Lease Sale 210 held August 19, 2009.

MMS Disburses $10.68 Billion in FY 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009The Department of the Interior's MMS has disbursed more than $10.68 billion in Fiscal Year 2009 from revenues collected from energy and mineral production on Federal and American Indian lands, including production from the Outer Continental Shelf.

MMS Issues Final Offshore Activity Update Following Gulf Storm
Friday, November 13, 2009The Minerals Management Service Continuity of Operations Plan team is concluding its activities related to Tropical Storm Ida. As of yesterday morning, only one production platform was still evacuated, with Gulf production nearly 100% online.

Central GOM Sale to Offer 36MM Acres for Oil, Gas Devt
Friday, November 13, 2009The MMS will offer nearly 36 million acres in the Central Gulf, which could produce up to 1.3 billion barrels of oil and 5.4 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

Entek Snaps Up 3 New Gulf of Mexico Blocks
Wednesday, November 11, 2009Entek was awarded the West Cameron Block 517, the Galveston Area Block 212 and the Galveston Area Block 213 from the MMS' oil and gas lease sale held in August 2009.

Rocksource Reels in 13th Lease in Gulf of Mexico
Wednesday, November 11, 2009Rocksource has been awarded another lease in the Western Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 210. This brings the total number of awards to 13 with a further two bids pending.

UPDATE: Rough Seas Delay Gulf Production Activities
Wednesday, November 11, 2009Oil companies are continuing to fly workers back to offshore installations in the Gulf of Mexico, but still-rough currents are causing some delay, potentially stretching returns into Thursday.

MMS: More Than 30% of Gulf Oil Production Still Shut-In
Wednesday, November 11, 2009The MMS reported that a total of 17 production platforms and four rigs are currently evacuated following Tropical Storm Ida. More than 30% of oil production and 7.6% of natural gas production remains offline.

MMS Issues Offshore Activity Report in Wake of Gulf Storm
Tuesday, November 10, 2009Offshore oil and gas operators in the Gulf of Mexico are reboarding platforms and rigs and restoring production following Tropical Storm Ida.

MMS Monitors Offshore Activity in Path of Tropical Storm Ida
Monday, November 09, 2009Personnel have been evacuated from a total of 126 production platforms and eight rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. Approximately 29.6% of oil production has been shut-in.

UPDATE: Producers Take Heed as Storm Targets Oil Patch
Monday, November 09, 2009Several major oil companies in the Gulf of Mexico have shut-in production and evacuated workers as tropical storm Ida heads for the offshore oil patch today.

ATP Donates GOM Platform for 'Rigs-to-Reefs' Program
Tuesday, November 03, 2009ATP Oil & Gas announced that on September 30, 2009 it donated its Vermilion 318 "A" platform jacket to the Louisiana Artificial Reef Program (Rigs-to-Reefs) for the creation of a new artificial reef in the Gulf of Mexico in South Marsh Island 133.

MMS Awards Galveston Island Block A133 to Entek Energy
Friday, October 30, 2009Entek Energy was awarded Galveston Island Block A133 (GA A133) by the Minerals Management Service, and estimates up to 24 BCF of proven, probable, possible and prospective resources on the Block.