In May 2022, the Brazilian government’s environmental agency, IBAMA, announced that it had greatly reduced the impacts on coral of a proposed oilfield revitalization project through a licensing review. Oil producer Petrobas had sought approval for the project, which would have impacted coral formations in the Marlim offshore oil and gas field. IBAMA’s requirements led to the proposal of using “two new Floating Production, Storage and Offloading Unit (FPSO) platforms and production lines” over current subsea infrastructure.
Coral impacts in Campo de Marlim, located in the northeast portion of the Campos Basin, on the northern coast of the State of Rio de Janeiro, were reduced by 95% through the changes.
The project initially was expected to directly impact 132 coral formations, but IBAMA required that changes be made in order to proceed with their analysis of environmental feasibility.
As a result of the changes, the number of impacted formations was reduced to seven.
Production output at the Marlim oilfield had dropped from 580,000 barrels of oil/day in 2002 to current output below 71,000 barrels/day, which prompted Petrobras to propose the revitalization of the fields.