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Petrobras expects to begin in 2024 offshore exploration drilling close to the mouth of the Amazon River in the so-called Equatorial Margin offshore Brazil, the chief executive of the Brazilian state-owned oil and gas giant said on Wednesday.
Petrobras expects to start drilling off the coast of the state of Amapa in the first half of 2024, CEO Jean Paul Prates said, as carried by Reuters.
The Brazilian firm currently doesn’t have permission from regulators to drill for oil and gas in the environmentally sensitive area.
Earlier this year, Brazil’s environmental protection agency, Ibama, refused to grant approval for a controversial offshore oil project in the area led by Petrobras. The company was preparing to drill a well in the Foz do Amazonas area in the Equatorial Margin where the Amazon River meets the Atlantic.
Petrobras has appealed the decision of the environmental protection agency.
The so-called Equatorial Margin offshore Brazil, which includes the Foz do Amazonas, Pará-Maranhão, and Barreirinhas basins, and is estimated to hold large oil and gas reserves.
The administration of Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is looking to accelerate the energy transition, but it is also betting on continued development of the oil and gas industry, to pay for more incentives for green initiatives.
Despite the efforts to accelerate emissions reductions, the Brazilian administration has signaled that there isn’t a discrepancy in Brazil’s efforts to advance the energy transition and its state oil company Petrobras pursuing drilling in domestic frontier areas.
“There is no contradiction. You indicate where you want to get and then you'll need resources for that,” Lula’s chief of staff Rui Costa said in a radio interview in August carried by Reuters.
“We are going to build a sustainable, renewable energy matrix, but it's obvious that we need to fund that transition process,” Costa added.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.