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ConocoPhillips Ups Estimate of China Oil Spill

Fri, 08/12/2011 - 3:37am
Reuters

ConocoPhillipsBEIJING | (Reuters) - ConocoPhillips China, a subsidiary of the Houston-based oil company ConocoPhillips, said on Friday that as much as 2,500 barrels of oil and mud leaked from an oilfield in China's northern Bohai Bay.

A recent survey at the C platform of Penglai 19-3 oil field identified more oil-based drilling mud on the sea floor than originally estimated, the company said on its website (www.conocophillips.com.cn), adding that it expected to complete a cleanup by the end of this month.

Last month, ConocoPhillips estimated around 1,500 barrels (240 cubic meters) of oil and oil-based drilling fluids had been released into the sea and that an order to shut down the platforms would result in a temporary output reduction of about 17,000 barrels of oil per day.

"We have already cleaned up approximately 70 percent of the mineral oil-based mud on the seabed and will have the additional volume cleaned up by the end of August," said Georg Storaker, President of ConocoPhillips China.

The oil leaks, which started in June at platform B and C of China's largest offshore oil field, have polluted 840 square kilometers of water, China's State Oceanic Administration has said.

SOA has urged ConocoPhillips to apologize for its slow cleanup and has asked the company to contain the oil spill, clean up polluted areas and conduct a thorough investigation to eliminate further risks of oil spills before August 31.

Conocophillips has a 49 percent stake in the oilfield and acts as the operator, while China's offshore oil specialist CNOOC Ltd has the remainder.

Reporting by Judy Hua and Chen Aizhu; Editing by Jonathan Hopfner and Michael Urquhart

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