photo: Mark Rain/CC BY
A new deal has been reached between Exxon and Russian oil firm Rosneft. Under the $3.2 billion agreement oil exploration in the Arctic Kara Sea will take place in what The Guardian describes as "one of the last unconquered drilling frontiers". An Exxon statement describes the new areas the venture will be exploring as being "among the most promising and least explored offshore areas globally, with high potential for liquids and gas."
Furthermore, Exxon will share fracking technology and expertise with Russia.
The deal strikes a blow against BP, which had been developing its own deal with Rosneft, but which had been blocked in May. As the Exxon deal was signed, BP offices in Moscow were raided by bailiffs (Upstream Online). The motivations and details of the raid are not entirely clear, with BP describing them as not having "legitimate grounds".
The Motley Fool has background on why the BP-Rosneft deal was scuttled, but basically it means BP is shut out from exploring in the Russian Arctic.
Anyone want to take bets on how long it'll be before there's a major oil spill in the Arctic, for which there really isn't technology to clean it up?