November 10, 2011 / 8:20 PM / in 9 years

UPDATE 1-Brazil, Chevron investigate leak near Frade

* Brazil’s ANP oil regulator investigating leak     * ANP says leak one km from Chevron’s Frade field     * Company checking whether oil leaked from crack in seabed    (Adds details, background, changes dateline from SAO PAULO)     RIO DE JANEIRO, Nov 10 (Reuters) - Brazil’s oil regulator ANP and Chevron’s local subsidiary are investigating a reported oil leak located near Chevron’s offshore Frade field.     The ANP said on Thursday the oil on the ocean’s surface was located about one kilometer from Chevron’s Frade field which began production in 2009 and averaged 50,000 barrels per day of output in 2010.     Chevron (CVX.N) spokesman Scott Walker said the company was aware of the oil sheen between its Frade field and one of Brazil’s biggest producing fields, the Roncador, operated by the state-run oil company Petrobras (PETR4.SA).     “Chevron is investigating the source of the oil sheen. All the appropriate actions to respond are being taken. As soon as we have further information we will notify,” Walker told Reuters by email.     There were no further details, Walker said.     A press officer at the company said it was investigating the possibility that the oil leaked from a crack in the seabed.     The Frade field lies about 230 miles (370 km) from the northeast coast of Rio de Janeiro state and its output feeds into a floating production, storage and offloading vessel (FPSO), according to details on Chevron’s Web site.     The company has been drilling to add five more development wells and three injection wells to the project on top of the existing eight development and four injection wells.     The oil giant owns a 51.7 percent stake in Frade, Petrobras owns a 30 percent slice and the remainder belongs to the Frade Japao Petroleo consortium.     The spill is in the Campos Basin that accounts for the bulk of Brazil’s oil output off the coast of Rio de Janeiro state.     Brazil’s oil output is expected to leap from around 2 million barrels of crude per day at present, once vast offshore reserves lying at depths of around 7 kilometers beneath the seabed come on stream.     The ANP tightened regulations for offshore oil production in the wake of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in 2010 which dumped millions of barrels of crude into the ocean following an explosion on a BP (BP.L) platform.     (Reporting by Brian Ellsworth, Reese Ewing and Sabrina Lorenzi and Peter Murphy; editing by Sofina Mirza-Reid)

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