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Photo: Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

BP is spending $1.3 billion to expand development of its big Atlantis field in the Gulf of Mexico — and technology is unlocking more resources there, the oil giant said.

Where it stands: BP touted the company's breakthroughs in seismic imaging and reservoir characterization, noting they revealed another 400 million barrels of oil. More broadly, the company said Tuesday that the same tech has identified another 1 billion barrels at a separate Gulf field called Thunder Horse.

Why it matters: Energy tech is often discussed in terms of next-wave sources — advances in solar, batteries and so forth.

  • But BP's discoveries show how tech is helping the industry find far more oil-and-gas in a more cost-effective way — even as BP and other majors expand their low-carbon portfolios.
  • That helps the industry, but also has implications for the pace of the global transition to lower-carbon sources.

The big picture: The Financial Times yesterday posted a cool video explainer on advances digital technologies for onshore and offshore development. Their summary notes...

"Technological advances and innovations in data management could save the oil and gas industry $75 [billion] a year by 2023.Along with cost savings, increased production made possible by new methods will push down oil prices, and help the industry fight back against advances in renewable energy, battery storage and electric vehicles."

Back to BP for a moment, the company yesterday announced a series of Gulf-related production plans, resource estimates and new discoveries.

  • Overall, the company said it plans to boost oil production in the Gulf to around 400,000 bpd of oil-equivalent through the mid-2020s, up from over 300,000 today.

Go deeper: Reuters discusses BP's tech use in the Gulf of Mexico

Go deeper

Updated 5 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Vaccines: U.S. ahead of pace on vaccines.
  2. Health: Lessons for trapping the next pandemic.
  3. Tech: "Fludemic" model accurately maps COVID hotspotsVirtual doctor's visits and digital health tools take off.
  4. Politics: Harris breaks tie as Senate proceeds with lengthy debate on COVID relief bill — Republican governor of West Virginia says there's no plan to lift mask mandate.
  5. World: Canada vaccine panel recommends 4 months between doses — In AstraZeneca spat, EU fights hard for a vaccine its hardly using.
Dave Lawler, author of World
8 mins ago - World

In AstraZeneca spat, EU fights hard for a vaccine its hardly using

Macron, Merkel and European Council President Charles Michel (R) at a summit in October. Photo: Yves Herman/Pool/AFP via Getty

Italy on Thursday blocked the export of 250,000 AstraZeneca doses to Australia, becoming the first EU country to exercise an export ban due to a vaccine shortfall in the bloc.

Why it matters: The controversial step exposes multiple major challenges to distributing vaccines — even among the world’s richest countries.

Dave Lawler, author of World
32 mins ago - World

Global freedom continues steady decline: report

The global erosion of democracy has continued for a 15th consecutive year, according to an annual report from Freedom House.

Zoom in: The report calls particular attention to India, which slipped from “free” to “partly free” due to the government's “scapegoating of Muslims” and “crackdown on critics.” Prime Minister Narendra Modi is, according to the report, “driving India itself toward authoritarianism.”