Apache Corp. said the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement approved a permit to enable the company to resume plugging and abandonment operations at East Cameron Block 278 Platform B in the Gulf of Mexico. Operations were suspended when a leak was discovered Sunday morning by an Apache crew, which saw bubbling near the platform (see Daily GPI, Jan. 20). Air monitoring equipment found no traces of gas emissions on the facility and power had been restored to assure safe operations, the company said Thursday. The depleted gas field is in water depths of 168 feet about 95 miles south of Cameron, LA. Apache acquired East Cameron 278 in 2003. The development of the wells and installation of the platform occurred in the 1990s by prior owner-operators. Apache holds a 50% working interest, with Stone Energy holding the remaining working interest.

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