Oil-spill recovery vessels offered free of charge if BP pays transport costs

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PARIS, France, May 11, 2010 -- 800 m³ of oil has been discharged each day into the Gulf of Mexico since 22 April 2010. BP has attempted to put a dome on the leaking oil to stem the oil spill. The device was to be removed on Saturday due to the formation of crystals similar to ice. On 4 May 2010, the Minister of State, Jean-Louis Borloo, suggested on France Inter that France would offer assistance by sending ships provided by Ecoceane.

This innovative company, supported by OSEO, FEDER, the Brittany Region and the French State will make available three oil-spill recovery vessels designed to skim oil from the sea if BP takes responsibility for the transportation, which would cost EUR 250,000: the Catamar, a prototype of the Spillglop SG180 ocean-going vessels, can work up to force 5 and recover oil without creating emulsions, 300m3/day/mm of hydrocarbons; and two Cataglop CG92 and CG66 to clean up the coastline.

Since 2007, Ecoceane has sold 50 Cataglop vessels around the world. The Catamar was unveiled in April 2009 by its sponsor Maud Fontenoy, Vice-President of "Conservatoire du Littoral," in the presence of a delegation from the Elysée and the Ministry of Ecology, Energy, Sustainable Development and the Sea.

"Over the past few days we have been meeting with the public authorities, namely the Ministry of Ecology, and we have met advisers from the Ministry of External Trade. We have the support of all the French authorities. We have made direct contact with the US authorities via the US embassy, the Consul in Houston and the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as the Secretary General of the Sea. We are offering three of our vessels free of charge if BP agrees to pay the transport costs of EUR 250,000," explained Eric Vial, President of Ecoceane.

The French authorities support our approach
Since June 2008, the company has been meeting the public authorities and participated in an exercise as part of the POLMAR plan in June 2009. Ecoceane also organized a demonstration of the Catamar at La Rochelle in June for the Secretary of State in charge of Transport, Mr. Dominique Bussereau. For more than one year we have also been in regular contact with Ms Valérie Létard, Secretary of State in charge of Green Technologies, Ms Michèle Pappalardo, Commissioner for Sustainable Development and Mr. Jean-François Tallec, Secretary General of the Sea.

Eric Vial added that: " Ms Valérie Létard, Secretary of State in charge of Green Technologies, invited us to a national conference on professions relating to green growth on 28 January. During the conference we demonstrated to the Minister of State, Mr. Jean-Louis Borloo, the enormous potential for job creation in the marine and river cleaning and anti-pollution sector."

Founded in 2003, the innovative company, devoted exclusively to research, the development and marketing of ships, which holds the patents for the collection of hydrocarbons and floating solid waste at sea, will be able to create nearly 5,000 jobs through its activity by 2015 on a market estimated at more than 300 ships per year.

Three large markets
I. Maintenance and cleaning up of coastlines, ports, marinas and water surfaces: Cataglop range. The Cataglop CG92 can clean up a surface of 8,000m2/hour, or 8ha/day, recovering 80 m³/day/mm.

II. Services to oil and gas rigs: Workglop range. The Workglop WG128 works at 4 knots over a width of 4.5m and cleans up a surface of 25,000m2/hour or 25ha/day, recovering 25 m³/day/mm. The 1st Workglop will be commissioned at the end of 2010.

III. Offshore oil-spill recovery: Spillglop range (Catamar prototype). This sea-going vessel works at 4 knots up to force 5 over a width of 6 m. It cleans up an area of 30,000m2/hour, 30 Ha/day and recovers 300m3/day/mm. (600m3/day if the slick is 2 mm thick).

French technology with an international patent
As soon as the motor is started, the ECOCEANE boat begins filtering the water which passes through its tanks: solid waste is filtered through a mesh and the hydrocarbons are channeled into a separator where the hydrocarbons are stored floating.

An innovative SME with high potential
ECOCEANE has its own engineering and design department and a shipyard specialized in aluminum construction. With this know-how, the whole industrial process is brought under control, making it possible to envisage large-scale production with subcontractors. ECOCEANE is striving to be the world leader of this market within the next five years. According to the company, the market is estimated at more than 300 boats per year, which over the next 10 years will represent 3,050 around the world for the maintenance and cleaning up of coastal ports, 620 for services to oil rigs and 270 for pollution control at sea and services.

Through its activities, ECOCEANE expects to generate around 4,200 jobs by 2015, excluding indirect and related jobs, which are estimated at more than 3,000.

The company relies on a unique concept in a market which is on course to develop over the next 10 years. At the time of the launch of the marketing campaign in 2007, ECOCEANE had sold more than 50 boats in the Cataglop range, of which 85% were for export. 28 orders were received in 2009. The innovative company is continuing to invest in research and development so as to move its projects, and all the logistics required, into the operational framework. This know-how will provide an opportunity for the aluminum ship construction sector in France. These new markets will help boost the activity in regions affected by the drop in orders in the shipbuilding sector.

About ECOCEANE ( www.ecoceane.com )
ECOCEANE provides states, local government and councils with solutions for collecting and storing floating macro waste and hydrocarbons: on the open sea, in ports, on beaches, in estuaries, lakes, ponds, canals, rivers, etc.

With the support of OSEO Innovation and FEDER, ECOCEANE specializes in marine pollution control and improving water surface quality. The French Navy unit, CEPPOL, played a consulting role for ECOCEANE during the development of CATAMAR.

As soon as motor is started, the ECOCEANE boats start filtering the water that passes through the hull: macro waste is caught in a basket and the hydrocarbons are channeled into a separator where they are stored floating. The technology has been patented.

The company, founded in 2004, employs 30 staff, eight of whom are based at the Paris head office and around 20 at the shipyard in Paimpol, Brittany. Thanks to its network of agents, 85% of ECOCEANE's turnover is generated by exports. Pierre-Armand Thomas, Senior Vice-President of Technip, recently joined Ecoceane as Director of International Development oil and gas industry.

ECOCEANE boasts several references in France and abroad (Australia, Uruguay, Madeira, Angola, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Morocco, Nigeria, Kenya, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Montenegro, and Turkey). More than 50 boats have already been sold since the company was set up.

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