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Currently, sitting on my portch. In the beginning, spent 16 years with drilling company starting out as a roughneck and rising through the positions of drilling manager, operations manager and finally Executive Vice President and CBW (Chief Bottle Washer). I have worked with a variety of... More
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  • Buccaneer Energy needs to Name The Rig.....
    I got up this morning and found this nice piece in my e-mail box about Buccaneer teaming up with the Kenai Chamber as thier title sponsor for the 27th annual Beer and Wine Experience.  I thought, "how nice",  I always knew that Pirates know how to party and this looks like a great way to get to know the guys.  I even mused that I might fork out the $50 and drive down there myself.  Haven't been to Kenai in a while.

    Then I saw this year's theme is "Lumber Jack Jam", and thought "you have got to be kidding me..."  Who cares about lumber jacks when we are running out of gas.  But I digress, the next paragraph really caught my eye, "Name The Rig."

    Now with all the drama surrounding the little Spartan and its abilitities or lack of them, the idea that the Pirates would actually involve us in thier program is really pretty good.  Most companies don't want the public involved at all and here is a company willing to invite us in.  And while some might find the tickets to the event enticing, or the knowledge that you named the rig a point of pride, the real prize here is a tour of the rig.  I imagine that might mean a helicopter ride, or a trip on a boat and for that I am in.

    So what kind of name should be suggested?  In the story Curtis Burton, CPIC (Chief Pirate in Charge) suggests what he wants  “We are looking for a name that fits with our home base of Kenai, the spirit of Alaska, and represents our long term commitment to the area." Really, is that all?  So much more is represented by this rig.

    As the North Slope lit up we watched all of the attention focus up there.  The companies moved thier best people, they moved their equipment and they left us here to deplete our resources and wait for the day when we would run out. It did not seem to matter what promises were made, the idea of exploring in the Inlet simply wasn't economical.  I remember one presentation my team made to the head of exploration.  It seemed to be going really well.  We owned the leases, we had the target, we had the budget and we were really getting going.  Then he asked, "where is it?" When the answer was the Cook Inlet, he simply said "we are not looking for gas, next please."

    Scroll forward 20 years, it isn't Chevron, Shell, Exxon or BP that are bringing the giant to the Inlet, it is little Buccaneer Energy and Curtis Burton that pulled this together.  The big boys with deep pockets could have done this years ago, they didn't.  Curtis and his team did thier homework, they found the "right rig" and they put a deal together with AIDEA and the State to get things moving.

    Now if we are going to provide a name for the rig we should show the same commitment.  That name should represent the spirit of exploration.  It should represent the hope that fortunes will be found.  It should inspire us to look for more.  Best of all it should come with a really good looking arm patch.  The kind that when you are in the bar the ladies ask, "what is that?" and you can answer with pride.  

    The name should be a ralliying cry, something that really brings home the feeling of standing on the observation deck and watching the sun go down and having the pride of knowing we went 4,000 feet without moving an inch today.  It should say to the majors, we don't need you any more.

    So let's not take just any name.  Don't call it Alaska Rig 1.  Don't call it anything like the Spartan, and for goodness sake don't call it KOV whatever.  When I see that thing of beauty coming up the Inlet on the back of a Dockwise transport, and not some Chinese piece of $#%$$ I want to be able to say "here comes ....., and with it the future of the Cook Inlet!"

    Now not being a real poet, or very good with names.  None of the ones I have been called seem very appropriate.  I am going to stop here and contemplate what the name should be, then I am going to throw my hat in the ring and see what happens.

    Way to go Buccaneer, lets see what the community can up with to "Name The Rig".  All entries go to  And hopefully they will update the website with some pictures of the rig. 

    And here's an idea, if you guys need some help maybe designing the arm patch, let's hold another contest.

    Sep 09 9:18 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Flairs Can Tell Us Something about a Well, Buccaneer Brings in a Big one
    I have been running around the Oil and  Gas business for most of my professional life.  It has been an uphill battel to make a living and at some times we do everything right and it still goes wrong.

    Over this period I have worked in the very far reaches of Alaska, drilling wells that might work but are miles from anyone and take us months to get drilled and then hooked up to anything that might take them to market.

    Because of that, I have a real soft spot for this little Australian company, so many miles from home that is really trying to make "big" things happen up here in Alaska.  Just a few years ago, it seemed we were doomed to the whims and budgets of BP, Shell, Chevron and ConocoPhillips before we could make anything happen.  

    Now we have several operators that while small, are really committed. Buccaneer Energy being one of them.  A couple of days ago, I received a link to a video that was taken from the Wal-Mart parking lot of the flair attached to the Kenai number one well for Buccaneer.  Remember my prediction, the well was at least 2 million and maybe as much as 9.  Their recent release tells us it is closer to 10.  But if you listen to this flair, the roar that it is making.  My experience tells me this is much, much more.

    Listen to the depth and the volume, I would be surprised if this well came in under 20k.

    Check out the video.

    And remember this was taken from the parking lot of a Walmart.  This baby is a real barnstormer.

    May 30 10:33 PM | Link | Comment!
  • Buccaneer Energy (BCC) hits a Home run in the Kenai Wal-Mart Parking lot and lights a Texas Sized Barbecue

    After being the Oil and Gas industry for as long as I have it always amazes me that we ever find anything at all.

    In the old days, I would watch the “Geologist” looking at his maps, his squiggly lines, and listen to his talking points and wonder, does he really have any clue at all?  Most of the time we would get out there in the middle of nowhere, bring in equipment that barely worked and drill holes in the earth on a wing and a prayer.

    How things have changed.  Yesterday a buddy of mine sent me some photos he thought I would be interested in.  He didn’t tell me where he got them, until after he got my impression.  When he told me he had downloaded these from an Australian Blog I just laughed out loud.


    It seems we are in a very small world, made ever smaller by the Internet.  The photo, attached, shows us a gas flare.  What make it unique, it looks like a standard 100 ft tower with natural gas flaring?  Then you notice that it is right next to a Wal-Mart in Kenai.  That part is interesting, what is more interesting is the size and duration of the flame.

    Of course this is the Kenai Loop 1 well that Buccaneer is drilling right here in Alaska.  Buccaneer is also the company that recently partnered with AIDEA to bring a Jack Up rig to the Cook Inlet.  Obviously, they can find gas.

    A flare like this, without compression, and flowing freely tells us something.  First, they made a well.  When you have a marginal or under performer, the flame would not be 30 ft high.  My experience tells me that it is flowing several MMCF, at least two and probably as much as 7 to 9.  I can imagine the champaign was flowing and the office cheers could be heard all the way down in Australia.  The fact that it is right outside Wal-Mart tells me these guys are good operators. 

    Getting a permit to drill in the neighborhood must have been very tuff.  I can imagine all the hearings and time it took to secure the location.  Another tidbit, it is sitting on Marathon Road.  For those that don’t know, that means that this well is sitting on the infrastructure to bring it to market.  Infrastructure probably built by… you guessed it, Marathon Oil.

    So what does this mean?  Enstar had better get there act together and get his baby hooked up.  We need this gas in the system, now not next year when the brown outs are being threatened. 

    Great Job Buccaneer, I guess the Renaissance guys really can find hydrocarbons.  I have to ask though; does Jim Watt actually shop at that Wal-Mart?  Is that how he found out about the natural gas in the parking lot?

    May 24 12:42 PM | Link | Comment!
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