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Montevideo, July 13th 2024 - 22:41 UTC



Petrobras CEO regrets time spent without exploring Equatorial Margin

Friday, June 14th 2024 - 21:18 UTC
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”I took part in the discovery of the pre-salt,” Chambriard had noted on her first day as CEO ”I took part in the discovery of the pre-salt,” Chambriard had noted on her first day as CEO

Petrobras' newly appointed CEO Magda Chambriard said this week that Brazil's state-run oil company “lost 10 years” by not exploring an area known as the new “pre-salt” and criticized the Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources (Ibama) for the delay in authorizing oil explorations in the so-called Equatorial Margin, Agencia Brasil reported.

“We've already lost ten years,” lamented Chambriard, in reference to the 2013 bidding process. The Equatorial Margin stretches from the coast of the State of Rio Grande do Norte to that of the State of Amapá state and includes the mouth of the Amazon River.

Oil drilling there triggered the concern of environmentalists who feared possible damage. Petrobras has been cleared to drill off the coast of Rio Grande do Norte but Ibama has rejected exploratory efforts in the northernmost part of the country.

On June 12, Chambriard announced that Petrobras intended to convene a meeting with the National Energy Policy Council (CNPE), an advisory body to President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva to lay down energy policies and guidelines with which to bring about a presentation on the company's commitment to safety and “excellence” in oil production. This presentation will highlight Petrobras' efforts to ensure environmental preservation and support for affected communities, it was also explained.

“We explore in the pre-salt, off the coast of Ipanema, Búzios, and Angra dos Reis, and all stakeholders, including society, mayors, and state and federal representatives, are pleased with the results. The revenue and development stemming from this exploration and production benefit everyone,” said Chambriard with tourist destinations along the coast of Rio de Janeiro in mind.

The CEO of the state-owned company made these statements during the FII Priority Summit, an event sponsored by the government of Saudi Arabia. The summit brought together global personalities from the public and private sectors at the Copacabana Palace Hotel in Rio de Janeiro.

President Lula attended the event before leaving for Europe. “When we begin exploring the Equatorial Margin, I believe we will make an extraordinary leap in quality. We aim to do everything legally, respecting the environment and all regulations. However, we will not miss any opportunity to help this country grow,” the head of state noted.

Since late last month, when she took over as Petrobras’ CEO, Chambriard has favored oil exploration on the Equatorial Margin as an alternative to the future decline in oil production in pre-salt fields, a natural cycle in the oil industry. “It's a question of national security,” she said.

On her first day on her new job, Chambriard recalled that she had first joined Petrobras when she was 22 and had ever since been in favor of these new undertakings. ”I took part in the discovery of the pre-salt,” she noted.

Categories: Energy & Oil, Brazil.

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  • FortHay

    Both caution and optimism are warranted. I stood on the railing of an offshore jack-up rig drilling for Petrobras out of Fortaleza in the 80's and watched a steady stream of debris, drilling mud and effluents trailing away from the rig in the prevailing current. I lamented this to the Petrobras company rep on board and he concurred. The consciousness was there, but it had not translated into meaningful change. Conversely, I have witnessed strict adherence to rigorous pollution controls, both on- and off-shore. Nothing will ever be 100% safe, but we have the means and know-how to come reasonably close. I trust that Petrobras and the nation has effected meaningful change to properly manage this resource. It is indeed a matter of 'national security'.

    Jun 15th, 2024 - 10:21 am 0
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