Royal Dutch Shell will continue its deep-water drilling programme to meet rising global oil demand, its chief executive said, despite safety concerns following rival BP’s Gulf of Mexico blowout. ‘Given the rise in the population and rise in the developing world of energy needs, we will have to develop those resources in deep waters as well, so my expectation is that we will go forward with it, but it will need some changes,’ Peter Voser, said during the Fortune Global Forum in Cape Town.
Voser said Shell would not have drilled the well, which has leaked tens of thousands of barrels of oil for more than a month, in the same way as BP did. ‘We would not have drilled the well in the same way. We have got other safety procedures across the globe. But I think for some companies there will be some learning from this as well,’ he said. BP’s share price has plunged as it struggles to contain the well amid allegations by U.S. lawmakers that it took short cuts on drilling to save time and money.
Voser said new proposals from the U.S government to try and prevent similar accidents in the future was in line with current safety procedures at Shell. ‘If I look at what (Interior Secretary Kenneth) Salazar is now proposing to change in terms of regulations in the United States, I can say this is pretty much in line with our global (safety) standards,’ said Voser.