Yes, as he continues to hold up drilling permits for U.S. oil companies in the Gulf.
(Reuters) — The U.S. Interior Department said on Thursday it gave final approval for Petrobras to use the first ever deepwater floating production storage facility in the Gulf of Mexico.
The facility will be used when the company begins oil and natural gas production at its Chinook-Cascade project in the near future, the department said. Petrobras is based in Brazil.
A Petrobras official who asked not to be identified told Reuters that production would begin in May.
The floating facility has a daily production capacity of 80,000 barrels of oil and 16 million cubic feet of gas. It can be disconnected and moved out of the path of a storm, unlike permanently moored production platforms, preventing long-term supply disruptions because of storms.
“These regulatory approvals pave the way for safe, new production of oil and gas resources in the Gulf of Mexico,” said Michael Bromwich, who heads the department’s agency that oversees offshore drilling.
Such vessels are common for offshore production in other countries without seabed pipelines to transport oil and gas to shore, such as West Africa and Brazil. Petrobras has a fleet of them off Brazil’s shores, and Exxon Mobil Corp uses one of the largest units in the world at one of its fields in offshore Angola.
Timely, considering the First Family’s upcoming holiday to Rio.