ExxonMobil to Drill Oil Off Vietnam... China in Dispute
Written By: John Shimkus
ExxonMobil has confirmed that it will begin offshore exploratory drilling off the coast of central Vietnam late in April. However, China has disputed drilling in the area in the past.
Apparently, China has laid claim to all of the South China Sea, including the Paracel archipelago east of Da Nang, Vietnam. The area where ExxonMobil plans to drill is located at Block 119, off Da Nang city adjacent to the Quang Ngai province.
"It's hard to see how China will react" to the drilling, said Ian Storey, a regional security analyst at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore. "I think it could be an interesting test case of where the dispute is heading."
PetroVietnam has partnered with Russia and several other countries to exploit the plentiful offshore oil fields, and other neighboring nations, such as Malaysia, Brunei, Taiwan and the Philippines all hold claims in the regions. Reports have come from various oil vessels that Chinese patrol boats often harass and intimidate explorers in the area.
SEE OTHER TOP STORIES IN THE WDM CONTENT NETWORK
U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has publicly objected to any Chinese efforts to “intimidate” U.S. Energy firms in the region.
Considering the current volatility of the international oil market, it will likely become more and more commonplace to see various nations hoarding oil reserves, even in regions of questionable proprietary right. It seems absurd for China to think it can hold claim on the entire South China Sea. The fact is, all the aforementioned neighboring countries have a right to reserves in the region. Even if one were to use the international continental shelf standard—in which a given nation has the right to reserves contained within its continental shelf—China would still only be entitled to a part of the region, not the entire Sea! However, China apparently is making claims that it has a yet unconfirmed extended continental shelf in the South China Sea, despite geographical data suggesting otherwise. It will be interesting to see just how this conflict plays out, especially with the international community’s desperate grab for oil reserves amidst tensions in the Middle East.
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.