Kulluk ready for Transit to Kiliuda Bay

Use the live map above to follow the transit. Apparently the Kulluk has no AIS transponder onboard or intact. But she should be close to the Aiviq. The map updates automatically every two minutes, if not try to zoom or move around a bit or refresh the page (F5)

Here the update from the Unified Command:

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Shell Continues to Delay

"Progress related to the final construction of the Arctic Challenger containment barge remains steady," Shell spokesman Curtis Smith told Petroleum News in an Aug. 15 email. "We continue to work closely with the U.S. Coast Guard to outline a schedule for final inspections and an on-water deployment that would lead to certification. There's no set timeline for the completion of this important process."

petroleumnews.com: Shell continues to delay drilling, waiting for containment barge

alaskadispatch.com: Shell's oil spill-containment barge for Arctic operations was once for the birds

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ERMA releases Arctic Reponse Planning Tool

credit: ERMA

One consequence of the Deepwater Horizon disaster is the insight to have all available geo information available in one place is not only good thing, but also a measure to avoid left hand not knowing what right hand doing.

So, just in time and days before the Shell armada starts drilling in the Chukchi Sea the federal mapping tool that aided first responders in Gulf spill expanded to the Arctic. (press release)

NOAA administrator Jane Lubchenco said: “The addition of Arctic ERMA will be a tremendous benefit to responders in this rapidly developing region. This scientific tool could provide essential information in responding to potential oil spills and pollution releases in the Arctic.”

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Drilling in the Arctic Ocean - December 2011 Update

This is Shell’s vision of drilling in paradise: The ocean is calm, no ice in sight, whales keep distance, the sun is shining, all vessels operate as planned, blow out preventer functions well, contractors are experienced and all damage will be cleansed before winter darkness. The Concerned namely Scott Woodham writing for AlaskaDispatch is not convinced.

BOEM just approved Shells Chuckhi Sea drilling plan, but with strings attached. Most importantly any drilling must stop 38 days before the ice season starts. Based on a 5-year analysis of historic weather patterns, BOEM anticipates November 1 as the earliest anticipated date of ice encroachment.

Just to compare above are the ice conditions as of 2001-11-01. BOEM seems to rule out any possible recovery.

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