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John Funnell

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African Continent Explores Deep-Sea Safety

Where there is oil, there will be exploration

The Deepwater Horizon spillage in the Gulf of Mexico highlighted the challenges that face companies looking to extract oil in deeper waters, and how offshore technologies are potentially not up to the job of stemming a spillage.

The affect rippled across the globe, putting all countries that participate in deepwater drilling on guard - putting further emphasis on equipment safety protocol and an investment in more suitable drilling equipment.

In September US oil major Chevron bought a 70 percent interest in three deepwater exploration blocks off Libera, which led Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to warn that her country would not fall victim to the oil curse.

Yet, where there is oil, there will be exploration, and if the African continent is to extract its vast offshore reserves, then it is imperative that the risks of deepwater drilling is further investigated, and more robust and technological drilling equipment is explored to ensure safe and successful exploration; a repeat of the catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico would be a political and environmental disaster.

Since Offshore's 2001 Deepwater Drilling Rig Poster was published last July, 74 (83 percent) of the deepwater rigs are operated by US-based companies, while the remaining 15 (17 percent) are operated by contractors outside the US. In total, nearly two-thirds of the worldwide deepwater drilling fleet is in the Gulf of Mexico or offshore Brazil, these two regions, combined with West Africa, contains 75 percent of the world's deepwater rigs.

Many of the leading protagonists within the African oil industry will meet at the NG Oil & Gas Africa Summit (hosted by GDS International) in April. On hand will be senior level executives, from Exxonmobil, BP Angola, Petrobras, Shell, Total Angola, Tullow Oil and Cobalt Energy will discuss the development of subsea intervention technologies that extend far beyond the limits of current technology.

Other topics being discussed at the summit are subsea wells and what technology there is being developed that can enable improved subsea well intervention while reducing costs; increasing the subsea sector's growth whilst providing new challenges that further highlight the need for more cost effective solutions and extended reach - when subsea wells and tie-backs become prohibitively risky and costly, understanding there is increasing demand for extending from existing templates, Rigless intervention solutions may tip the balance back.

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John Funnell has worked in online media for over ten years, after achieving his First Class BSC Hons Degree (BBC Sponsored), John won Bos 18-21 Princess Trust Entrepeneur of the year at 21, setting up Clean Living Records Ltd (including www.BeatReview.com) with great success having many acts that charted in Europe and Canada. After selling the business John looked for a new challenge and joined GDS International, having a successful career in sales and Delegate acquisition, he worked up to Event Director EMEA, forging contacts with some of the biggest technology names in the world, this lead to John having a lead role in the creation of MeettheBoss.com and MeettheBoss.tv – the worlds largest business IPTV channel. John then took over as Marketing and Communications Director and ran a multifaceted global Marketing team for GDS International in New York, Sydney, Kuala Lumper and the UK.. John joined Global in 2011 with the challenge of supporting its growth by developing a solid Marketing foundation through various Digital, PR and brand initiatives.