BHP Billiton said on Sunday that the company planned to fully evacuate its two Gulf of Mexico oil and gas platforms because of the approach of Tropical Storm Isaac.
“We will continue to monitor the progress of the storm in order to remobilize our offshore teams as soon as the conditions allow us,” said Victor M. Cock, a company spokesman, in an e- mailed statement today.
On the same time, Royal Dutch Shell said on Sunday that the company planned to fully evacuate and shut production at its east-central Gulf of Mexico oil and gas platforms.
Shell did not specify which platforms would be affected, but could include Mars, with capacity to produce up to 160,000 bpd of oil and 121 mmcf of gas per day.
BP said it would evacuate and suspend production at its Thunder Horse platform, as well as pull other nonessential workers.
“No production has been impacted,” the company said in a statement on its website Friday morning.
The storm will weaken as it passes over Hispaniola and Cuba this weekend, but it could force more evacuations and interrupt operations at oil platforms if it brings strong winds into the Gulf.
Once the storm progresses into the Gulf, it could become more powerful, the Houston Chronicle’s Eric Berger reports.
Forecasters are still uncertain about the storm’s path. After moving across Haiti and Cuba, Isaac is expected to brush the tip of the Florida Panhandle before making landfall somewhere on a wide path between Florida and New Orleans.
Isaac has so far shut about 9 percent of offshore oil output, according to U.S. government figures released on Saturday. The U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement will issue updated figures later on Sunday.