The explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico in April 2010 led to the largest oil spill in U.S. history and threatened Gulf ecosystems, the local Gulf Coast economy and the future of U.S. offshore drilling. As more scientific and technical information becomes available about the causes and consequences of the disaster, the need for new policies and approaches to offshore drilling has become apparent. The conference "U.S. Offshore Oil Exploration: Managing Risks to Move Forward" brings together students, scientists and industry leaders, as well as national and Gulf Coast policymakers and political leaders, to discuss the path forward toward ensuring a safe and effective U.S. offshore drilling industry. Experts will address the options for new technologies designed to prevent future oil spills and debate policies needed to create a successful regulatory framework to achieve the important goals of environmental protection, national energy security and economic prosperity on the U.S. Gulf Coast.
Ambassador Edward P. Djerejian, Founding Director, Baker Institute
"U.S. Offshore Drilling: What is at Stake?"
J. Robinson West, Founder and CEO, PFC Energy
"Mixing Oil and Water and Fish and Birds: An NGO Perspective after Deepwater Horizon"
G. Paul Kemp, Ph.D., Vice President, Louisiana Coastal Initiative, National Audubon Society
Morning Session One - The Ecology of the Gulf Of Mexico, Post Macondo
"The Ecology of the Gulf Of Mexico, Post Macondo"
Alan D. Thornhill, Ph.D., Science Advisor to the Director, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement
Jerry Patterson, Texas Land Commissioner
"Texas Coastal Marshes and Potential impact of Gulf of Mexico Oil Spills"
Ronald L. Sass, Ph.D., Baker Institute Fellow in Global Climate Change, and Harry C. and Olga K. Wiess Professor Emeritus Of Natural Sciences, Rice University
"Marsh Ecology: Aftermath of Macondo"
Linda Hooper-Bￃﾹi, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Entomology, Louisiana State University
Session Two - Policy Frameworks for Safe Offshore Drilling
Moderator: Kenneth B. Medlock III, Ph.D., James A. Baker, III, and Susan G. Baker Fellow in Energy and Resource Economics
Carol E. Dinkins, Partner, Vinson & Elkins LLP
Russell Gold, Staff Reporter, The Wall Street Journal
Karen Alderman Harbert, President and Chief Executive Officer of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Institute for 21st Century Energy
Shirley Neff, Senior Analyst, National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling
Kris Van Orsdel, Senior Policy Analyst and Governmental Affairs Manager of Ocean Conservancy's Gulf Restoration Program
Prepared text of remarks by Michael R. Bromwich, Director, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement
Session Three - Managing Risks through Technology: Engineering Challenges for Deepwater Drilling
Moderator: George J. Hirasaki, Ph.D., A.J. Hartsook Professor, Chemical Engineering, Rice University
"Technological and Regulatory Challenges in Deep Water Drilling"
Gene Beck, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Petroleum Engineering, and Stephen A. Holditch Faculty Fellow in Petroleum Engineering, Texas A&M
"Marine Well Containment Company (MWCC)"
Clay W. Vaughn, Vice President Deepwater Projects, ExxonMobil Development
"Managing Risks Through Technology: Engineering Challenges for Deepwater Drilling"
Eric Larson, Vice President and General Manager of North America Offshore, Schlumberger
"Sensing Systems for "Harsh" Environments"
Dean Neikirk, Ph.D., Cullen Trust for Higher Education Endowed Professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin
Session Four - A Discussion: The Path Forward
The business case for creating a safety culture: What is needed?
Moderator: J. Robinson West, Founder and CEO, PFC Energy
Charles D. Davidson, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Noble Energy, Inc.
Gary Luquette, President, Chevron North America Exploration and Production Company
Louis A. Raspino, President and Chief Executive Officer, Pride International, Inc.
Eric N. Smith, Clinical Finance Professor, A.B. Freeman School of Business, and Associate Director, Tulane Energy Institute, Tulane University
Kent Wells, Group Sr. VP, Global Deepwater Response, BP
"Offshore Drilling and U.S. Energy Security"
Amy Myers Jaffe, Wallace S. Wilson Fellow in Energy Studies, Baker Institute, Rice University