BP may see Competition in Post-Conflict Libya
British Petroleum (BP) is one of the very few foreign oil and gas companies with exploration and production licenses in Libya. BP signed a $900 million agreement with Libya’s National Oil Company in 2009, granting the company access to 21,000 square miles of land both onshore and offshore of Libya’s coast. However, with analysts expecting a post-conflict Libya to be more pro-business and pro-west, BP may soon see a flood of competitors enter the country, such as ExxonMobil, Chesapeake, Anadarko and Chevron to name a few possibilities.
As the 9th largest oil producer in the world, Libya has in the past exploited its own resources. Producing roughly 1.8 million barrels of oil a day and exporting about 85 percent of that to the world market, Libya holds the largest proven oil reserves in Africa—47 billion barrels.
BP’s history in Libya dates back decades. Prior to 1971, the company had a vast presence throughout the country. However, BP’s assets were nationalized by the Libyan government in 1971, and BP’s operations in the country came to a screeching halt.
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In 2007, BP reentered Libya through an agreement with Libya’s National Oil Company. Part of the transaction involved BP lobbying the British government to release Libyan prisoners back to their home country. Helping to expedite the prisoner release ultimately landed BP the deal.
However, despite having access to Libyan reserves, BP hasn’t produced a single barrel of oil from the country. BP’s 2010 drilling plans were put on hold amidst the company’s troubles in the Gulf of Mexico, where the Deepwater Horizon blowout and subsequent oil spill put BP in the international limelight. In June 2011, when the company had planned to begin offshore drilling, the conflict broke out in Libya. The company currently employs about 100 Libyan locals, but no foreign workers are operating in the country while the conflict continues.
At this point, BP officials claim to be “years away from production.” No one can be certain as to what the political landscape will look like in Libya post-conflict. However, it’s likely that we will see an inflow of foreign oil and gas companies offering competition to BP.
Hydrostor receives $4m funding for A-CAES facility in Canada
Hydrostor has received $4m funding to develop a 300-500MW Advanced Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES) facility in Canada.
The funding will be used to complete essential engineering and planning, and enable Hydrostor to plan construction.
The project will be modeled on Hydrostor’s commercially operating Goderich storage facility, providing up to 12 hours of energy storage.
Hydrostor’s A-CAES system supports Canada’s green economic transition by designing, building, and operating emissions-free energy storage facilities, and employing people, suppliers, and technologies from the oil and gas sector.
The Honorable Seamus O’Regan, Jr. Minister of Natural Resources, said: “Investing in clean technology will lower emissions and increase our competitiveness. This is how we get to net zero by 2050.”
A-CAES has the potential to lower greenhouse gas emissions by enabling the transition to a cleaner and more flexible electricity grid. Specifically, the low-impact and cost-effective technology will reduce the use of fossil fuels and will provide reliable and bankable energy storage solutions for utilities and regulators, while integrating renewable energy for sustainable growth.
Curtis VanWalleghem, Hydrostor’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are grateful for the federal government’s support of our long duration energy storage solution that is critical to enabling the clean energy transition. This made-in-Canada solution, with the support of NRCan and Sustainable Development Technology Canada, is ready to be widely deployed within Canada and globally to lower electricity rates and decarbonize the electricity sector."
The Rosamond A-CAES 500MW Project is under advanced development and targeting a 2024 launch. It is designed to turn California’s growing solar and wind resources into on-demand peak capacity while allowing for closure of fossil fuel generating stations.
Hydrostor closed US$37 million (C$49 million) in growth financing in September 2019.