“Massive” explosion on Pemex production platform leaves two dead, cuts output by 700,000 bpd

Amy Stillman, Bloomberg July 10, 2023

(Bloomberg) – Petroleos Mexicanos said it lost production capacity for about 700,000 bbl of oil, more than a third of its daily output, after a massive platform explosion on Friday that left at least two people dead.

The company is working to recover production, Pemex Chief Executive Officer Octavio Romero confirmed in a video late Saturday, adding that output has already recovered to 600,000 bbl. 

Bloomberg News reported earlier that some 450,000 bbl of oil and more than 560 MMcfg, roughly 11% of Pemex’s total natural gas output, were lost on Saturday only at the Ku Maloob Zaap production asset as the company shut production as a contingency measure, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.

While the one-day loss is significant, it’s likely to be temporary as Pemex resumes some of its operations following the deadly blaze, the person said, asking not to be identified as the information isn’t public. A Pemex representative didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment on the loss or its current production capacity outside of normal office hours.

Two people died and one remains missing after Pemex reported an explosion at the Nohoch Alfa platform gas processing center in the Cantarell field early Friday. Romero said late Friday that the platform’s connection module was destroyed, but that firefighting efforts helped stop the blaze from spreading to other modules.

Pemex’s head of exploration and production Angel Cid said the explosion “substantially impacted” production at the platform.

Mexico’s Cotemar, which provides oil field services, confirmed in a statement Saturday that the two workers who died in the blast were its employees and that another one is still missing.


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