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U.S. Officials to Review Shell’s Drilling Efforts in Arctic Ocean

The U.S. government has launched a “high-level” review of accidents and mishaps experienced by Royal Dutch Shell PLC… The review, announced Tuesday by the Interior Department, comes after one of Shell’s drilling rigs broke free of a tug boat and ran aground on an island off the coast of Alaska…

By Dow Jones Business News,  January 08, 2013, 04:13:00 PM EDT

By Tennille Tracy

WASHINGTON–The U.S. government has launched a “high-level” review of accidents and mishaps experienced by Royal Dutch Shell PLC as it started the process of oil drilling in the Arctic Ocean last year.

The review, announced Tuesday by the Interior Department, comes after one of Shell’s drilling rigs broke free of a tug boat and ran aground on an island off the coast of Alaska. Within days of the incident, environmental groups called on President Barack Obama to suspend all Arctic permits until safe operations could be guaranteed.

The review, which will be completed in 60 days, will focus on Shell’s safety practices and its ability to meet standards put in place for Arctic development, the department said.

“We have already been in dialogue with the DOI on lessons learned from this season, and a high level review will help strengthen our Alaska exploration program going forward,” Shell spokesman Curtis Smith said.

Write to Tennille Tracy at [email protected]

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(END) Dow Jones Newswires 01-08-131613ET Copyright (c) 2013 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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