Friday, September 27, 2013 | 11:20 a.m.-1:00 p.m. | Banquet Room, 30th floor, Summit Club
J.A. (John) Turley
Topic: An Engineering Look at the Cause of BP's 2010 Blowout & Oil Spill"
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BP's Macondo blowout and oil spill on 20 April 2010 killed eleven men, sank the Deepwater Horizon, devastated the Gulf, and shocked the world. John Turley made an early observation about the disaster:Only if we understand and care about the cause of BP's Macondo blowout, will we know why it should not have happened and why it should never happen again.

Even as hearings were launched, Turley ignored finger-pointing and hearsay evidence and studied well data and federal/academic/corporate investigative reports. He published a book in September 2012 about the human, operating, and engineering causes of the catastrophe.

John's presentation is about his documented findings, from the perspective of a petroleum engineer to academic, civil, operating, and technical audiences throughout the oil-and-gas industry. In the presentation, which is NOT about his book, he focuses on documented drilling data that define links in a chain of events that led to and caused the blowout: the formation of a fluid leak . . . testing for leaks . . . exacerbating the leak . . . failing to see the leak . . . declaring the well secure . . . causing the well to flow . . . allowing the well to flow until too late. Turley's presentation starts at the seafloor, with the foundation of the well. Using engineering drawings, he and his audience rapidly drill the 3-1/2-mile-deep well, make a major discovery, then work through the remainder of the temporary-abandonment well program, experiencing, observing, making engineering decisions . . . both as intended, and as executed. The tragic result was one of the most lethal, manmade, environmental catastrophes in U.S. history. The audience leaves with engineering and operating knowledge about the cause, and a goal to never allow a repeat of the same.

J.A. (John) Turley
John Turley's early resume includes Phillips Petroleum, Fluor Ocean Services, Tenneco Oil Company, and Marietta College (professor, petroleum engineering). During the next twenty-five years with Marathon Oil Company, he held responsibilities as Gulf Coast drilling manager, U.K. operations manager, manager of worldwide drilling, and VP of engineering & technology. His academics include petroleum engineering (Colorado School of Mines), ocean engineering (University of Miami), and executive education at Harvard Business School.

After early retirement from Marathon, John focused on writing mystery novels, though that second career changed the day after BP's April 2010 blowout aboard the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico. Twenty-nine months later, he published THE SIMPLE TRUTH: BP's Macondo Blowout. The book is data-driven and research-based (though it's presented as a novel for ease of reading). A detailed nonfiction Epilogue defines the engineering, operating, and human causes of the disaster. With John's background, he assessed and wrote about the blowout from multiple perspectives: academic, on-the-rig, petroleum engineering, drilling management, and executive. Mr. Turley is a professional speaker on the topic to civic and academic groups, to professional societies, to commercial conferences, and to oil-and-gas companies. More information can be found in his Website: