Friday, December 20, 2019

Whoa: Switzerland's Allseas Withdraws From Nord Stream 2 Pipline Project

We are rather fond of Allseas and their big boat.

From Sputnik:
Swiss Entity Participating in Nord Stream 2 Suspends Gas Pipeline Construction Due to US Sanctions
The US Senate has passed a $738-billion defence bill for 2020 fiscal year that in part calls for tough sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 and TurkStream gas pipelines. The bill is yet to be enacted by US President Donald Trump, although he has promised to sign it without delay.
Swiss-based Allseas Group S.A. said in a statement early on Saturday that it had suspended its commitments to the landmark European energy project due to possible US restrictions.
"In anticipation of the enactment of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Allseas has suspended its Nord Stream 2 pipelay activities. Allseas will proceed, consistent with the legislation’s wind down provision, and expect guidance comprising of the necessary regulatory, technical and environmental clarifications from the relevant US authority", the statement said.
The Swiss-based engineering giant had been responsible for the installment of deep-sea gas pipes. Earlier this week, US Senators Ted Cruz and Ron Johnson, in a letter to Allseas Group S.A., urged the multinational to immediately stop its activities on the project and warned of "crippling sanctions" under the NDAA.

The Nord Stream 2 project is a joint venture between Russia's Gazprom and five European companies — France's ENGIE, Austria's OMV, the UK-Dutch Royal Dutch Shell, and Germany's Uniper and Wintershall. The 745-mile-long twin gas pipelines will carry nearly 2 trillion cubic feet of gas per year from Russia to Germany, passing through territorial waters and exclusive economic zones belonging to Denmark, Finland, Germany, Russia and Sweden....
Our readers have seen Allseas a dozen or more times on Climateer Investing, usually with me oohing-and-ahhing over the current heavy-lift world champion, Pioneering Spirit:

February 2018
Big Boats: "Switzerland's Allseas plans world's largest construction vessel"
We noted the current record holder in May 2017's:
Shipping: Guy Says $3 Billion Boat "One Of The Bigger Bets Of His Career"
Which raises the question "What other bets have you made Mr. Heersma?"
Well, here's an upcoming speculation. From Reuters. Feb. 7:
Swiss offshore services firm Allseas is planning to build a vessel big enough to be able to remove the world’s largest oil and gas platforms when they reach the end of their production lives, its chief executive said.

The vessel, to be called Amazing Grace, is designed to remove the heaviest platforms in a single lift and could reduce decommissioning costs for global oil and gas producers, the firm said.
It would be a bigger version of Allseas’ existing Pioneering Spirit ship, which removed Shell’s Brent Delta platform in the North Sea last year, and would cost about $3 billion, Allseas CEO Edward Heerema told Reuters....MORE
These ships are basically two oil tankers strapped together:
  Lifting of the Delta topsides. Credit: Allseas

Pioneering Spirit measures 382 x 124 meters and is calculated at 403,342 gross tonnage. Note that gross tonnage is a calculation of enclosed volume times a multiplier and is not deadweight tonnage....

There's a bit of a cult coalescing around this ship.
We last looked at it when it was laying pipe for the Nord Stream 2 Pipeline:
 Belt and Road (and Tunnel): "€15bn Chinese funding deal for Helsinki-Tallinn tunnel"

...Here's the ridiculously large ship being used to lay pipe further west, in Swedish waters:

The Pioneering Spirit is basically two oil tankers strapped together with a deck thrown across the top.
We've featured it a few times but with this view I'm trying to judge if it is larger than the amusement pier in:

The Financial Times' Izabella Kaminska Examines Seasteading and Is Bemused
More accurately, she comes down on the concept somewhere between bemused and dubious.
We've looked at the idea of islands or ships full of geeks, nerds and billionaire geek/nerds a few times over the years:
Oops that's Brighton Pier by Landscape Photographer of the Year, 2017 finalist Matt Cooper via Geographical.
How embarrassing, the roller coaster should have been a tip-off. 
Here's Izabella. I'll go look for the intended picture....MORE
Sorry, bit of free association there.
It then went to Rotterdam for a bath, reported by  

Offshore Magazine  
Pioneering Spirit departing Baltic Sea for topsides work

Marine Logistics Professional:
Pioneering Spirit Arrives Rotterdam

Marine Technology News"
Pioneering Spirit Gets a Scrub Down

I'm sure Allseas will find work for the big 'un.