Monday, March 5, 2018

08:00 – 08:30               Registration and Refreshments

08:30 – 10:00               Session 1: International Cooperation in Offshore Exploration Safety and Environmental Protection
                                   Welcome: Dr. Richard Dodge

                                   Dr. Dodge is Dean, Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography, Nova Southeastern University
                                   Geopolitics and Ocean Resources: Dr. Lee Hunt, Hunt Petty LP

                                   The short history of U.S. – Cuba cooperation in mutual agreements for ensuring maximum safety, spill prevention and response in the Gulf of Mexico and

                                   the Straits of Florida.

                                   Commander, U.S. Coast Guard District 7: RADM Peter Brown


                                   The Seventh Coast Guard District is responsible for Incident Command of oil spill events in the eastern Gulf of Mexico, southeast Atlantic coast and the

                                   Greater Caribbean.

                                   Evolution of US – Cuba Policy: Angela Mariana Freyre

                                   Ms. Angela Mariana Freyre is a Former Special Advisor for Cuba Policy at the National Security Council and Senior Vice President and General Counsel of the                                         Export-Import Bank of the United States

                                   Legal Issues in transnational oil spills: Dr. Richard McLaughlin, Endowed Chair for Coastal and Marine Policy and Law, Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico                                     Studies, Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi.

                                   Ocean currents flow according to the laws of nature. The laws of nations, boundary lines on a map are inconsequential. A noted and respected international                                         lawyer, Dr. McLaughlin will explain the relationship and importance of international boundaries in the Gulf of Mexico and The Florida Straits.

Tuesday, March 6

08:00 – 09:00              Morning Refreshments

11:30 – 1:30                Session 6: Surface and Subsea Response to Oil Spills

                                  Moderator: Bob Tippee

                                  Mr. Tippee is editor of Oil & Gas Journal

                                  ​Industry’s Response Capabilities: Subsurface & Surface: Paul Schuler, Direct External Affairs – Americas, Oil Spill Response Ltd.

                                  Mr. Schuler will discuss the full suite of surface response capabilities: mechanical recovery, in-situ burning, surface/aerial dispersants, surveillance as well as                                    complementary technologies for subsea capping, containment, dispersant injection and monitoring.

​                                  Dispersant Science: How dispersants work and why you would or wouldn’t use them: Thomas Coollbaugh, Oils Spill Response Advisor, Exxon Mobil Cooperation

                                  The importance of understanding the trade-offs associated with different response tools through a Net Environmental Benefit Analysis (NEBA) / Spill Impact                                        Mitigation Assessment (SIMA) approach.

​                                  Well Containment Screening Tools (WCST): Lance Labiche, J Conner Consulting

                                  Pushing the technology envelope with WCST +, Mr. Labiche, a former BSEE official, explains Relief Well Screening and Cap & Contain Screening tools being                                          developed to a new level of proficiency and utility.

                                  ​Relief Wells – The Final Solution: Dr. Ray Tommy Oskarsen, Sr. Vice President, Well Control & Blowout Support, addenergy

                                  If we drill it, can we find it? If we find it, can we kill it? The mechanics of a relief well explained. Emerging technology in relief well hardware.

3:00 – 3:30                 Session 8: The Way Forward and Conference Closing

                                 Moderator: Brian Petty, Hunt Petty LP

                                 Oil Spill Risk Management in the Florida Straits - planning and exercising to prevent and mitigate spills.: Paul Lattanzi, Senior Consultant at The Paratus Group.

​                                 A critical review of current response plans and a proposal for an improved planning and exercise regimen. Prior to founding The Paratus Group, Paul was a                                         career officer with the U.S. Coast Guard. His previous tours included serving as the Senior International Maritime Organization’s consultant to the United                                           Nations at the Regional Activity Center in Curacao, where he assisted 29 Caribbean nations and territories to prevent and respond to pollution events.

                                 Preserving Progress in Marine Environmental Protection: Dan Whittle, Environmental Defense Fund

10:30 – 12:30               Session 2: Potential Environmental Impacts

                                   Moderator: Dr. Larry McKinney

                                   Dr. McKinney is Executive Director, Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies, Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi.

                                   Perspectives from Deepwater Horizon and Ixtoc Spills to Inform Future Incidents in the Gulf: Dr. Paul Montagna, Endowed Chair for Ecosystem Studies &                                                 Modeling, Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies, Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi.

                                   Dr. Montagna’s research on spill effects and recovery is founded on a historical review of these two previous major events in the U.S. and Mexican Gulf of                                             Mexico.

                                   The Florida Straits and Ecological Risks in the Littoral Territories of Florida and Cuba: Dan Whittle, Environmental Defense Fund

                                   Senior Attorney for EDF’s Cuba Fisheries Program, Mr. Whittle will discuss environmental risks and the importance of two recent Memoranda of Understanding                                     between the U.S. and Cuba for the protection of reefs and aquaculture.

                                   Cuba’s Twilight Zone Reefs Expedition: Dra. Patricia González, Center of Marine Investigations, University of Havana, & Prof. John K. Reed, Cooperative                                                 Institute for Ocean Exploration, Research and Technology (CIOERT), Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Florida Atlantic University

                                   This expedition’s circumnavigation of Cuba explored the island’s diverse mesophotic coral reefs at 30 to 150 meter depths, revealing what may be one of the                                       most extensive, healthiest reef habitats in the Caribbean. The expedition was conducted under “The Sister Sanctuaries Memorandum of Understanding,” the                                         first agreement of any kind signed by the U.S. and Cuban governments following the reestablishment of diplomatic relations in 2015

                                   Sustaining a One Gulf Aqua-Culture Habitat: Dr. Larry McKinney, Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies, Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi.

                                   Meeting the challenges and opportunities in protecting and preserving the marine environment of the Gulf of Mexico, particularly focusing on the special                                             circumstance occasioned by an oil spill from the U.S., Mexican or Cuban seas impacting the coastal areas of the Gulf.

10:00 – 10:30               Refreshment Break

10:00 – 11:30              Refreshment Break

3:30 – 5:30                  Session 4: Scientific Research on Oil Spill Behavior

                                  ​Moderator: Dr. Rich Roffman

                                  Dr. Rich Roffman is Publisher of the magazine CUBA TRADE and co-host of Made in America, Radio America

                                  Water Flow and Horizons in The Florida Straits: Alexander V. Soloviev, Professor, HCNSO, Nova Southeastern University

                                  Long term observations in the Straits of Florida reveal a transient southward flow in the form of an undercurrent jet attached to the continental shelf. This                                        undercurrent jet is observable during summer months. In autumn, the jet weakens and presumably migrates to the surface, contributing to the development of                                    a coastal counter current during winter months.

                                  Remote Sensing of Oil Seeps in Caribbean Waters: Dr. Susanne Lehner, German Aerospace Center (DLR), Germany

                                  Possibilities and limitations to image crude oil on the sea surface for optical and radar satellites in low to high wind speeds are presented by Dr. Lehner, with                                      examples from studies conducted in the Gulf of Mexico, the Mississippi Delta and from Cuban waters.

                                  Remote Sensing of Ocean Surface Features - crude oil, surfactants, breaking waves and other phenomena: Dr. Will Perrie, Bedford Institute of Oceanography,                                        Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada

​                                  Satellite remote sensing can detect ocean surface features to resolutions of a few 10s of meters. A problem is always to differentiate the various phenomena                                      that are observed. In this presentation, we provide a summary of the methodologies used, and the processes observed, for example: crude oil, macro-algae and                                    mesoscale eddies, to list a few.

                                  Value of in situ data for Predicting Ocean Current Behavior: Matt Cadwallader, Horizon Marine

                                  Data demonstrating variability in the Loop Current and the Florida Current.

1:30 – 3:00                  Session 3: Spill Prediction and Prevention

                                  Moderator: Dr. Richard Dodge

​                                  Dr. Dodge is Dean, Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography, Nova Southeastern University

                                  High-Resolution Sustained Observations of the Ocean’s Surface Currents: Tamay Ozgokmen, Professor of Ocean Sciences, University of Miami

                                  Dr. Ozgokmen recently conducted extensive studies of ocean surface currents in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. The research was conducted under the auspices of                                      the Consortium for Advanced Research on Transport of Hydrocarbon in the Environment (CARTHE).

                                  ​Quantifying Spill Volume: Dr. Amir Paknejad, addenergy

                                  Essential to effective spill response pre-planning and government permitting is estimating maximum spill potential. Dr. Paknejad explains reservoir analysis                                          methodology used in predicting flow and volume of spills from deepwater wells.

                                  Well Control Training for Rig Crews: Doug Derr, Boots and Coots

​                                  Crew understanding of well control trouble signs and competency in managing events are the first line of defense in the prevention of blowouts and subsequent                                    spills.

3:00 – 3:30                  Refreshment Break

 1:30 – 3:00                 Session 7: Practical Factors in Cooperative Response 

                                 ​ Moderator: Edward Porner, Director, Recovery and Resilience Division, Virginia Department of Emergency Management

                                  As a Senior Officer CAPT (ret), Edward Porner was the US Coast Guard and Department of Homeland Security liaison at the US Special Interest Section in                                            Havana Cuba.

                                  ​Cooperative Agreements for Spill Resource Deployment: Dr. Lee Hunt, Hunt Petty LP

                                  Two major response consortia exist in the U.S. By charter their resources are restricted for use within US Gulf of Mexico. Cuba has no corresponding                                                  consortium. A vexing issue is whether US Embargo legislation will permit the export of US spill response technology and resources to address a spill originating                                    in or traversing Cuban territorial seas.

                                  ​The Architecture of Simultaneous Operations: Barry Compagnoni, US Coast Guard CAPT (ret), Trendsetter Engineering

                                  What does an integrated response look like offshore? CAPT Compagnoni discusses the structure of a Common Operating Picture for the management of vessel,                                    aircraft and the wide array of equipment involved in a response and what this would look like in the Straits of Florida.

                                  ​MEXUS Exercise: An Example of Joint Industry-Government Engagement: Mike Drieu, Anadarko Petroleum & Mike Sams, U.S. Coast Guard District 8

                                  MEXUS is a bilateral oil spill agreement between the U.S. and Mexico detailing specific roles and responsibilities of Mexican and U.S. regulatory agencies: the                                    US Coast Guard, the Mexican Navy and private oil industry resources.

The Florida Straits Conference:
Model for International Cooperation

March 5 – 6, 2018
Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography

Nova Southeastern University

Ft. Lauderdale, FL

09:00 – 11:00              Subsea Source Control

​                                  Moderator: Bill Loveless

                                  Mr. Loveless is Co-host, Columbia Energy Exchange; Director, Columbia Energy Journalism Initiative

                                  The Three Pillars of Spill Response - Capping, Containment and Relief Well: Mike Cargol, Trendsetter Engineering

                                  The mechanics and structure of a sub-sea response entail very specific denotation of the individual missions of response elements.

                                  ​Application of a Tightly Integrated Systems Modeling Framework to Quantify Complex Subsea Blowout Capping Operations: Steve Fitzgerald, Intuitive Machines

                                  The physics of a subsea response entail many different forces, which must be viewed as part of a whole. Advances in computer processing are allowing industry                                    to bridge the hardware gap to create high fidelity Capping Stack installation models encompassing the entire subsea environment.

​                                  Capping and Containment - The Mechanics of a Soft Shut In: Brett Morry, Trendsetter Engineering

                                  How to operate a capping stack once it is on a well to effect a safe shut-in or to mitigate flow into the environment.

A Strategic Resource for the Global Oil & Gas Exploration Industry

12:30 – 1:30                 Buffet Lunch