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Oil and Gas Energy News Update

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Commodity Corner: Oil Clears $110

Commodity Corner: Oil Clears $110

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Rigzone Staff

The $1.47 day-on-day gain followed a report by NATO that Libyan forces loyal to Colonel Gaddafi have attacked the Sarir oil field, resulting in a fire at one or more oil facilities nearby. Earlier Gaddafi had blamed NATO coalition forces with setting the fire, but the mission's commander denied the accusation.

"We have never conducted strike operations in this area because his forces were not threatening civilian population centers from there," said Lieutenant General Charles Bouchard, Commander of NATO's Operation Unified Protector, in a written statement. "The only one responsible for this fire is the Gaddafi regime and we know he wants to disrupt oil getting to Tobruk," where terminal and port facilities are located.

Also providing a boost for crude oil was a report by the U.S. Labor Department showing a decrease in first-time jobless claims for the week ending April 2. According to the agency, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance fell 2.5 percent week-on-week to 382,000. For the same period last year, the number of claimants was 472,000.

The price of May crude fluctuated from $108.23 to $110.26 Thursday.
Moderating temperatures throughout the eastern half of the U.S. contributed to a nine-cent drop in natural gas futures Thursday. Natural gas for May delivery settled at $4.06 per thousand cubic feet after trading within a range from $4.03 to $4.16.
May gasoline held flat at $3.19 a gallon Thursday. It peaked at $3.20 and bottomed out at $3.16.

Buccaneer Gets ADEC Nod for Drilling Offshore Cook Inlet

Buccaneer Gets ADEC Nod for Drilling Offshore Cook Inlet

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Buccaneer Energy Ltd.

Buccaneer advised that the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation ("ADEC") has reviewed Buccaneer's February 1, 2011 permit application for the offshore Cook Inlet Exploratory Drilling project and has issued a preliminary decision to approve the permit application.

As the Air Quality Permits are the longest lead time permits to obtain, taking a minimum 180 days, this milestone is an important step towards drilling the Company's offshore Cook Inlet projects.

The Company already held Air Quality Permits for two drilling locations in the offshore Cook Inlet, one at each of the Southern Cross Unit and North West Cook Inlet Unit. This application was in respect to an Air Quality Permit for an additional two drilling locations, one at each of the Southern Cross Unit and North West Cook Inlet Unit.

Extensive air modeling at each drilling location was required as part of the Air Quality Permitting process. This air modeling is required to assess the impact of emissions on the environment from a drilling rig and support vessels at the particular drilling location.
ADEC is now providing opportunity for a 30 day public comment period which expires on May 2, 2011.

ASCO Awarded Contract Extension from Perenco

ASCO Awarded Contract Extension from Perenco

Thursday, April 07, 2011
ASCO UK announced the award of a 5-year contract extension from Perenco UK.

The contract is worth around £21.5million and covers logistics, transport, fuel and port services for Perenco's Southern North Sea operations in Great Yarmouth and its Northern North Sea ports in Aberdeen and Peterhead.

Derek Smith, Chief Executive Officer of ASCO's Europe, Middle East and Africa region, commented, "We're very pleased to have developed a long-standing relationship with Perenco and the award of this 5-year contract extension is testament to the safe, efficient, innovative and collaborative logistics service we have provided them so far."

Roger Everitt, ASCO's Southern North Sea Managing Director, continued, "We're delighted that the new contract will involve the addition of Aberdeen and Peterhead locations, supporting Perenco's continued North Sea expansion plans over the coming years. We very much look forward to working closely with Perenco in support of these plans."

Plexus Bags Gazflot Contract in Okhotsk Sea

Plexus Bags Gazflot Contract in Okhotsk Sea

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Plexus Holdings plc

Plexus has signed an agreement to supply as the end user Gazflot, a subsidiary of leading Russian oil and gas company Gazprom, with its proprietary TRT-S™ mudline suspension ('MLS') equipment for oil and gas exploration drilling activities for one well offshore West Kamchatka in the Magadan Basin in the Okhotsk Sea, Russia. The contract for the supply of both MLS and service is worth approximately $500,000 USD, and is expected to be completed by November 2011.

Plexus' patented TRT-S MLS equipment enables jack-up drilling rigs to transfer casing loads from a rig to the sea bed whilst allowing for a subsequent planned disengagement and possible suspension platform tieback options for a wellhead system. Due to climate conditions in the West Kamchatka region drilling activities for the well can only be conducted from May to September. However it is anticipated that additional wells will be drilled in 2012, of which Plexus is hopeful to tender both MLS services and potentially for the supply of its POS-GRIP surface wellhead equipment technology.

Plexus CEO Ben van Bilderbeek said, "This contract marks yet another geographic milestone in Plexus' growth strategy as it continues to develop into an internationally recognised force in the supply of specialised and technically superior oil and gas wellhead and equipment services. Not only is Gazflot a new customer for the Company, Russia is also a new region for us and one in which Plexus is focussed on gaining a foothold in given the ever increasing number of opportunities with large operators active in the Russian Artic Shelf such as Rosneft and Lukoil.

"I would also like to highlight that our equipment allows the removal of temporary abandonment caps through the blow out preventer ('BOP'), and for tie back to occur before the abandonment caps are removed. The importance of such an essential safety feature was formally recognised by the Montara Commission of Inquiry Report in June 2010 in relation to the oil spill incident offshore Australia in late 2009."

Atlas Wins Contract to Improve Global Offshore Safety

Atlas Wins Contract to Improve Global Offshore Safety

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Atlas Interactive

Atlas Interactive has been awarded a major contract to develop and deliver new standardized safety training to the global oil and gas industry in a deal which is expected to deliver revenues upwards of $5 million (USD) over the first year.

Delivered in partnership with OPITO, the skills body which ensures safety and competency in the worldwide oil and gas industry, the agreement will offer Atlas the opportunity to train in excess of 1.5million direct workers in exploration and production to International Minimum Industry Training Standards (IMIST) over the next two years.

This global version of the MIST program which OPITO and Atlas have successfully piloted with over 48,000 oil and gas workers in the UK since 2009, is now being developed to standardize safety training for experienced workers in oil and gas provinces around the world.

IMIST will be launched in the Middle East in July, then rolled out across 30 countries worldwide throughout Asia, Africa and the United States. It will be delivered via e-learning and tailored to meet each region's specific workforce, language and geographic needs.

The contract, which begins this month, supports an aggressive growth strategy for Atlas, which sees this deal as part of a strategic plan to double sales over the next three years.

Atlas chief executive John Rowley said, "This is a groundbreaking initiative in terms of the importance the industry is placing on health and safety. We are delighted to have been chosen to deliver the IMIST program, following a competitive tender process, for this global workforce and believe this is a clear indication of the industry's commitment to standardization and their willingness to embrace new technologies which can create a highly effective and efficient solution.

"For Atlas, this agreement will allow us to pursue our ambitious growth strategy in terms of penetration of the international oil and gas market, particularly in the emerging markets where Atlas has already secured some exciting new projects with national and international oil companies."

The IMIST standard ensures that trainees have the necessary safety awareness and training to avoid risk and ultimately incidents. The course contains up to nine modules incorporating safety observation systems, use of hazardous substances, working at height and mechanical lifting activities.

Training is undertaken via the internet and underpinned by Atlas' award winning innovative diagnostic tool called FAST TRACK which works by assessing a learner's knowledge gaps under time bound conditions. The content of the course that is then delivered to the learner is based on their personal knowledge gaps - saving time by only delivering the training that is required and ensuring 100% competency. This reduces 14 hours of classroom based content down to approximately two hours of e-learning content. Learners can take the course at any location - home, office or learning center – at any time, therefore reducing the burden of travel time and associated costs.

OPITO, which developed the IMIST course, aims to deliver common standards in the global oil and gas workforce that improve safety and competency.

The international organization works with Governments, national oil companies, multi-nationals and contractors to meet their skills needs to provide independent advice and guidance on effective management of workforce skills development, emergency response and occupational standards, qualifications and quality assurance of training delivery.

David Doig, CEO of OPITO Group, said, "The delivery and content of basic safety training varies dramatically from region to region and lacks consistency across the industry. Oil and gas workers should have confidence that their colleagues share the same level of safety training and the ultimate aim of IMIST is to make the working environment safer.
"Following a rigorous selection process we are delighted that Atlas Interactive will be developing and delivering the e-learning provision for the experienced worker program. Their technical expertise, knowledge of the oil and gas business and successful track record has proven invaluable in the development of the high quality safety training package for the industry."

PetroChina may look to bid for China Gas Holdings

PetroChina may look to bid for China Gas Holdings

Sources familiar with the matter say PetroChina (PTR) may be interested in bidding for China Gas Holdings, a Hong Kong-listed natural gas provider, the Financial Times reports, citing dealReporter. PetroChina is currently working with Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAC) on an acquisition, but two sources say the investment bank has not been formally mandated. The sources also say PetroChina could acquire China Gas on its own or use its Kunlun Energy unit to acquire the company.

ConocoPhillips Inks Deal to Bring Liquefied Natural Gas to Britain

ConocoPhillips Inks Deal to Bring Liquefied Natural Gas to Britain

Shares of ConocoPhillips (COP) are down after Britain's South Hook Gas signed a deal allowing the US oil major to access spare liquefied natural gas import capacity at Europe's biggest liquefied natural gas terminal, Reuters reported.

The deal will boost the amount of gas that can be delivered into the UK by COP through unused capacity at the terminal.

ConocoPhillips shares are down 0.16%, or $0.13, to $80.30.

Sempra Generation to supply 21 MW of wind energy to Maui Electric

Sempra Generation to supply 21 MW of wind energy to Maui Electric

Sempra Generation has entered into a 20-year contract to sell 21 megawatts of wind energy to Maui Electric Company from the Auwahi Wind project on the Ulupalakua Ranch in the southeastern region of Maui. Construction on Auwahi Wind is expected to begin in early 2012, creating approximately 150 local construction jobs at peak and about five positions to operate the facility.

The project is currently undergoing an extensive environmental review by Maui County, and state and federal agencies.

The contract between Maui Electric Company and Sempra Generation is subject to approval by the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission.

Williams Officials Outline New Gas Pipeline Project

Williams Officials Outline New Gas Pipeline Project

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News

Three Williams representatives -- Ryan Savage, general manager for Appalachian Midstream Operations; Tunkhannock-based Manager of Operations Mike Dickinson and Communications Specialist Helen Humphreys -- met with The Citizens' Voice on Wednesday to outline details of the Springville Gathering System project.

"It's clear that a lot of residents don't have a good idea about our projects, and also don't have all of the facts," Humphreys said. "We think it's important that the Springville project, which is Williams' pipeline project, be evaluated on its own merits, and that Williams be evaluated on its own merits."

Tulsa, Okla.-based Williams owns the Transco interstate pipeline that Savage said starts in south Texas and supplies 60 percent of the gas to cities like Philadelphia and New York. The Transco has been in Luzerne County since 1958, and there are currently four metering stations in the county, Savage said.

The company plans to run a new 24-inch diameter gas gathering pipeline that will run approximately 33.5 miles from the Lathrop compressor station at Springville in Susquehanna County to a new compressor station outside Tunkhannock. From there it will connect to the Transco by way of a new metering station in Dallas Township, to be located on private property about half a mile from the Dallas schools.

Williams plans to use the line for natural gas from its own wells, and has an agreement with Cabot Oil & Gas to transport gas from Susquehanna County. Williams also has been talking to other companies about using the new pipeline, Savage said.

Williams will have a hearing at 7 p.m. May 16 in Dallas Township for the proposed metering station.

For the pipeline itself, the company has already started designing the route, buying pipe and lining up contractors, Savage said.

Most requirements, including permits and an archaeological survey, have been fulfilled. After a permit from the state Department of Environmental Protection is granted, work can start in May or June and will be a three- to four-month process, he said.

"It takes a long time to get to this point, and we're in the last throes," Savage said. "Construction's really the short period. It takes a long time to get your right-of-way, and get all your permit applications in, and do all of your endangered species testing and all your other environmental protection work."

Williams' compressor station in Tunkhannock, which is under construction, will be located in a rural area away from the road, he said.

"You'd never know where it was unless somebody pointed it out to you," Savage said.

He said the same will go for the metering station. Williams will build a private, padlocked road to it from Lower Demunds Road. There will be no access from Fairground Road. Truck traffic will not come near the school during construction, Humphreys said.

The metering station will be constantly monitored at a facility in Tulsa, Dickinson said. If there is anything outside normal operating parameters, an alarm goes off and a local operator can be called or the station can be shut down remotely, he said.

Savage said a metering station is one of the most innocuous natural gas facilities, comparing it to a gas meter on a home, but larger.

"On the scale of things, these aren't dangerous facilities," he said.

Murphy Receives BOEMRE Approval for GOM Drilling

Murphy Receives BOEMRE Approval for GOM Drilling

Thursday, April 07, 2011
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) approved a deepwater permit for the drilling of a ninth well that complies with rigorous new safety standards implemented in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon explosion and resulting oil spill. This includes satisfying the requirement to demonstrate the capacity to contain a subsea blowout. The approved permit is a revised permit to sidetrack for Murphy Exploration & Production Company Well #A008 in Green Canyon Block 338 in 3,325 feet water depth, approximately 170 miles southwest of New Orleans, Louisiana.

"This permit allows the drilling of the ninth deepwater well since industry demonstrated that it had the capacity to handle subsea blowouts and spills," said BOEMRE Director Michael R. Bromwich. "We will continue to review and approve permits that satisfy our more rigorous safety and environmental standards and that demonstrate the necessary containment capabilities."

Murphy's Well #A008 is a sidetrack well. A sidetrack well is drilled to a new geologic target or a new location within the original target from the existing wellbore. The operator had a rig on location when drilling preparation activities were halted due to the temporary drilling suspensions imposed following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

As part of its approval process, the Bureau reviewed Murphy's containment capability available for the specific well proposed in the permit application. Murphy has contracted with the Helix Well Containment Group (HWCG) to use HWCG's capping stack to stop the flow of oil should a blowout occur. The capabilities of the capping stack meet the requirements that are specific to the characteristics of the proposed well.

BOEMRE has worked diligently to help industry adapt to and comply with new, rigorous safety practices. These standards ensure that oil and gas development continues, while also incorporating key lessons learned from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. This new permit meets the new safety regulations and information requirements in Notices to Lessees N06 and N10, and the Interim Final Safety Rule.

Bankers Boosts Production in 4Q10

Bankers Boosts Production in 4Q10

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Bankers Petroleum Ltd.

Bankers announced the following operational update:


Production and Oil Price

Oil sales from the Patos-Marinza oilfield in Albania during the first quarter averaged 11,894 bopd compared to fourth quarter sales of 10,424 bopd, an increase of 14%. Average production for the first quarter was 12,147 bopd and oil inventory on March 31, 2011 was approximately 168,000 barrels. Current production is 13,550 bopd. Gross sales achieved record levels for March, averaging 15,247 bopd.

The Patos-Marinza first quarter average oil price was US$68.06 per barrel (representing 65% of the Brent oil price) an increase of 28%, compared to the fourth quarter's average oil price of US$53.12 per barrel (61% of Brent).


Drilling Update

Sixteen (16) horizontal wells have been drilled during the first quarter. Thirteen (13) of these wells have been completed and are on production, two (2) drilled late in March will be placed on production this month, and one (1) drilled early in the quarter has water encroachment concerns that are being mitigated with continuing water control activities. Production rates from the last thirteen (13) horizontal wells drilled is averaging 175 bopd per well with strong initial production from the Driza (D1) sands averaging in excess of 200 bopd per well. Average production for all horizontal wells is 130 bopd per well at the end of the first quarter.

The fourth drilling rig is expected to arrive in Albania later this month and scheduled to commence drilling in May 2011. With strong oil prices, the Company is also sourcing a fifth drilling rig and expects to have one available in the fourth quarter of 2011. The additional rig capacity will support the Company's strategic drilling objectives of wells targeted for production growth and other wells planned for reserves expansion, the thermal pilot and for exploration and water disposal drilling.


Well Reactivations

Reactivation and recompletion work resumed in the first quarter with eight (8) wells on production. Current production from these wells is 250 bopd and improving.

With the recent Company announcement to acquire the remaining 140 active Albpetrol wells and sole operatorship of the Patos-Marinza oilfield, Bankers will have a larger inventory of reactivation candidates for the 2011 capital program and for the following few years.

The current production split is 7,700 bopd from new horizontal wells and 5,850 bopd from the original reactivated vertical wells. Ongoing reactivated production from the old vertical wells is offsetting primary production declines and maintaining the old vertical wells base production. Primary production growth is forecast to be achieved from the new horizontal wells drilling program.


Thermal Program & Exploration Block "F"

Road access and site construction plans are underway for the drilling and thermal facilities project. All necessary materials and equipment are in country. Drilling of the one (1) delineation and two (2) thermal wells will commence in May and first steam injection is scheduled for July 2011.

Seismic reprocessing and interpretation on Block "F" is progressing and drilling of the first gas exploration well is expected in the third quarter. Several structural and stratigraphic prospects have been identified.


Infrastructure Development

Construction of 80,000 barrels of additional storage at the Petrolifera Terminal at the Port of Vlore is now complete and fully operational. Bankers' total port storage capacity from three tanks is 160,000 barrels and the Company will now be able to handle export shipments of up to 25,000 metric tonnes in a single cargo.

Construction on the first phase of the crude oil sales pipeline, which connects the Patos-Marinza oilfield to the storage and loading Fier Hub facility, is progressing and the project is scheduled for third quarter 2011 completion.

Construction of the third and fourth oil treating train expansion of the Central Treatment Facility (CTF) has commenced. The addition of the new processing facilities should be completed by the fourth quarter 2011 and the expanded CTF will be able to handle over 25,000 bopd of net oil production.

Construction of a bridge over the Seman River in the northern area of the Patos-Marinza oilfield has commenced with completion expected in the third quarter of 2011, in time to begin a larger drilling and re-activation program in the higher productivity area north of the river.



The Plan of Development (PoD) for the field has been approved by the Albanian authorities. The PoD has a 25 year term plus Company elected extensions for further development and production of the field. Activity has commenced as part of the approved 2011 work program on the first group of wells with re-completion of two production wells, one water source well and the conversion of one water injection well. Water injection is expected to commence during the second quarter.

Norwest to Conduct FTG Survey in Northern Perth Basin

Norwest to Conduct FTG Survey in Northern Perth Basin

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Norwest Energy NL
Norwest has been awarded a Special Prospecting Authority – STP-SPA-0013 (SPA) to conduct an FTG survey to evaluate the hydrocarbon potential over 21 onshore blocks in the Northern Perth Basin. The SPA extends Norwest's footprint in the Basin across a significant area with shale gas potential.

The SPA covers an elongated onshore area running along the Western Australian coast, located between Cervantes and Eneabba (see Figure 1), and covering an area of ~860km2 (212,522 acres). As depicted in Figure 1, the SPA lies to the south of Norwest's TP15 (offshore) and EP413 (onshore) acreage, and lies geologically between the north–south striking Urella Fault and Beagle Fault systems. The sedimentary section on the block is known to contain thick shale formations, principle amongst which is the prolifically developed Kockatea Shale, which is mature for gas, with significantly high total organic carbon (TOC) content in the area of the SPA.

The potential for shale gas in the region is further supported by a third party study commissioned by Norwest in mid 2010 to report on shale gas potential within the area. Two wells included in this study were Point Louise-1 (drilled in 1981) and Jurien-1 (drilled in 1963), both located on the western side of the Beagle Fault, and both of which showed favorable indicators for shale gas. The report stated that the Kockatea shales have the potential maturity to produce gas, contain fair TOC content and are composed predominantly of type II kerogen. Both wells intersected thick sections of the Kockatea Shale, with Point Louise-1 intersecting 459m and Jurien-1 247m.

The SPA is valid for six (6) months during which time Norwest will acquire an airborne, full tensor gradiometer survey (FTG) on the area. The FTG survey is designed to more accurately identify potential basement related fault blocks and adjacent deep troughs suitable for unconventional shale gas targets. If the FTG results prove favorable, Norwest has a further six months to submit an application for a petroleum exploration permit over the SPA area. Norwest is experienced in the acquisition and application of the low impact FTG Survey technique, having successfully deployed the technology on both TP15 and its Southern England acreage. The recently drilled Red Hill South-1 well located within TP15 was evaluated using FTG, and while the presence of commercial hydrocarbons was not established at Red Hill South, it was considered a technical success, with FTG playing a major part in selecting the well location. The geology encountered during the drilling program proved consistent with the FTG modeling results.

In a statement made on behalf of Norwest Energy, CEO Peter Munachen said, "This SPA application was made some time ago, and forms an integral part of Norwest's strategy to further develop its stake in the emerging shale gas plays within the Northern Perth Basin. Shale gas is now a proven, significant resource in North America, and Norwest is determined to play an important role in developing shale gas resources within Western Australia. The company's location is also favorable for supplying the Western Australian domestic gas market, with two pipelines running through the basin – the Dampier-Bunbury and the Parmelia gas pipelines. The successful grant of the SPA can be considered a further advancement in Norwest's bid to become a major player in the development of the significant shale gas resource that exists in the Northern Perth Basin."

Ophir to Take Reins of Block Offshore Tanzania

Ophir to Take Reins of Block Offshore Tanzania

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Ophir Energy plc
Ophir announced that a subsidiary has entered into agreement with Ras Al Khaimah Gas Tanzania Ltd (RAKGas) to acquire a 70% interest and Operatorship of a Production Sharing Agreement (PSA) over an area designated as the East Pande Block in Tanzania. Completion of this agreement is subject to standard Government consents.

The East Pande license lies in the coastal region of southern Tanzania covering an offshore and onshore area in excess of 7,500km2. The block lies immediately to the west of Blocks 1, 3 and 4 in which Ophir has a 40% interest. Ophir has recently drilled the first deepwater wells offshore Tanzania resulting in three significant gas discoveries. The maximum water depth in the East Pande block is approximately 2,000m. The PSA was awarded to RAKGas in 2006.

In late 2010 RAKGas acquired approximately 1,800 line kilometers of 2D seismic data in the offshore section of the block. The data indicates the continuous nature of the geology between East Pande and the prospective Ophir acreage to the east. Subject to partner and Government consent, Ophir intends to acquire a new 3D seismic survey in the offshore section of the block.

Under the terms of the farm in agreement, Ophir will fund 100% of the cost of the 3D seismic survey and will reimburse certain back-costs. In the event that Ophir elects to drill, RAKGas will be carried through the drilling of the first exploration well.

Ophir and RAKGas are also partners in the Berbera PSA in Somaliland.

Ophir's New Business Director Jonathan Taylor commented, "We are delighted to extend our partnership with RAKGas to the East Pande project and to further deepen our relationship with the Government of Tanzania. With our recent exploration discoveries in Blocks 1 and 4, immediately adjacent to East Pande, we are well placed to build on this success and undertake a fast-track exploration campaign to pursue the petroleum potential of this exciting project."

Rosneft Acquires Exploration License in Nenets Autonomous District

Rosneft Acquires Exploration License in Nenets Autonomous District

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Rosneft acquired a license to explore the Naulsk oil field, located in the Nenets Autonomous District. The Company paid RUB 3.6 billion for the license at auction.

It is assumed that OOO Severnaya Neft, a Rosenft subsidiary, will be the operator of the project. Severnaya Neft is already engaged in exploration and production activities at three fileds - Cherpayusk, Nadeiyusk and Khasyreysk, which are part of the Val Gambourtseva oilfield.

Naulskoye's oil reserves, classified as C1 and C2, are estimated at 51.3 million tons of oil. Production should reach a maximum volume of one million tons per year. The lot size is 70.7 square kilometers. At a minimum, the cost of exploring the field is estimated at 1.5 billion rubles, including for the drilling of three wildcat wells and one exploration well, in addition to the gathering of 2-D and 3-D seismic data.

Field commissioning expected in 2016.

Polar Lights, a joint venture between Rosneft and ConocoPhillips, is currently exploring five fields in the Ardalinsk Group, which are also located in the Nenets Autonomous District.

CAMAC Drills Ahead at Ordos Well

CAMAC Drills Ahead at Ordos Well

Thursday, April 07, 2011
CAMAC Energy Inc.
CAMAC announced the spudding and progress of its ZJS-3 well in China. Drilling is expected to take between 40 and 60 days to reach the well's target depth of between 4,500 and 5,500 feet. Currently the penetrating depth is 3,300 feet drilled towards the main target formations. Mud logs have already shown gas readings from several penetrated intervals.

In January 2011, CAMAC Energy and its Chinese partner, PetroChina CBM Co., approved an aggressive work program to expedite exploration and delineation of the gas resources in the Zijinshan contract area. The work program consists of drilling three additional wells and conducting a seismic reinterpretation integrating the data obtained from recent drilling. The ZJS-3 well is the first of the three wells planned to be drilled in 2011.

Abiola L. Lawal, CFO and Executive Vice President of CAMAC Energy, commented, "We are very pleased to announce the spudding of this well. The timely start of the drilling operation is critical to ensure completion of the 2011 work program which is an important step towards commercialization of the asset. We intend to flow test this well and will use the results to help firm up succeeding wells during 2011."

The Company's Zijinshan Gas Asset covers an area of 175,000 acres in the Ordos Basin in the Shanxi Province, the second largest petroleum bearing basis in China. It is in close proximity to major infrastructure, including the West-East Gas pipeline and the Ordos-Beijing Pipelines.

Breitling Spuds 1st Shallow Gas Field in Ok.

Breitling Spuds 1st Shallow Gas Field in Ok.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Det norske Sells Stake in Garantiana

Det norske Sells Stake in Garantiana

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Det norske oljeselskap ASA
Det norske has sold a 20 percent interest in production licenses 554 and 554B to Svenska Petroleum Exploration, reducing its interest from 40 to 20 percent.

As consideration, Svenska Petroleum Exploration will carry part of the expenses related to the first exploration well to be drilled in either PL 554 or PL 554B.

The North Sea licenses are located due east of the Snorre field and were awarded in the APA 2009 and APA 2010 licensing rounds. The agreement includes the Garantiana prospect, scheduled for drilling in 2012.

This transaction should be seen as part of Det norske's continuous work to diversify and optimize its exploration portfolio. Following the transaction, Bridge as operator will hold 60 percent, while partners Det norske and Svenska will hold 20 percent each. Final agreement is subject to government approval.

Mainland Notes Program Costs for Burkley-Phillips Well

Mainland Notes Program Costs for Burkley-Phillips Well

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Mainland Resources Inc.

Mainland has finalized the Authorization For Expenditure cost estimate (the "AFE") for the completion program for the Burkley-Phillips #1 well drilled in Jefferson County, Mississippi.

The forecasted costs for the completion program are approximately $8 million to be shared on a 90/10 percent basis between Mainland and joint venture partner, Guggenheim Energy Opportunities LLC. The completion will allow the Company to flow test the well and further determine its resource potential.

The Company is in the process of obtaining and evaluating bids from several industry leading companies to execute the frac stimulation and will select a provider from bids received. Additionally, Mainland is selecting other service providers for the completion program along with ordering longer lead equipment as previously announced.

Mainland expects to commence completion operations during the third quarter of 2011 and anticipates a timeline of approximately three to five weeks.

Mainland and its working interest partners control in excess of 17,800 net acres or 28 sections on the Buena Vista prospect area where the Burkley-Phillips #1 well was drilled to 22,000 feet, cored and logged. Upon successful completion of its proposed merger with American Exploration, Mainland would own 92% of the 28 sections in the Buena Vista prospect. As recently announced, core analysis has determined that gas in place in the Buena Vista prospect could be up to 500 BCF/section based on the cored interval.

Repsol Adds to Hunt for Offshore Oil in Colombia

Repsol Adds to Hunt for Offshore Oil in Colombia

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Dow Jones Newswires
Colombia's state-controlled oil company Ecopetrol reached a deal with Repsol for the Spanish oil major to participate in two more offshore exploration projects in the Caribbean.

The deal will give Repsol a 50% stake in each of two oil blocks off Colombia's Caribbean coast, RC-11 and RC-12, Ecopetrol said in a statement late Wednesday. Ecopetrol will retain the other 50% stake in each and stay on as the operator of the blocks.

The deal must still be approved by Colombia's oil-licensing agency, ANH.

In January, Repsol took a 30% stake in another Caribbean offshore exploration block called Tayrona. Ecopetrol and the local unit of Brazil's state-run company, Petrobras, also have a stake in the Tayrona block.

Ecopetrol is Colombia's largest integrated oil and gas company, and it accounts for 60% of total production.

Colombia's oil sector is booming, and the government is hoping output will reach 1 million barrels a day by the end of the year.

Black Pearl Rig Mobilized for Gujurat Drilling

Black Pearl Rig Mobilized for Gujurat Drilling

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Oilex Ltd.
Oilex advised that Black Pearl Drilling Services, the drilling contractor, has commenced the mobilization of the Black Pearl Rig 1
rig and related services, to drill the onshore Cambay-76H well in Gujarat, India on behalf of the Cambay Field Joint Venture.

The rig is mobilizing from another location in Gujarat. Construction work at the Cambay-76H well site has been completed. Procurement of remaining drilling and fracture equipment and services for the well is substantially complete with mobilization to site progressing.

The Cambay-76H well will evaluate the production potential of the extensive Eocene "tight" Y-zone reservoir that extends across the 161 km2 Cambay PSC contract area. The well, which includes a 610 meter lateral section, is expected to take approximately 35 days to drill and complete. A two month production test will then be conducted after an 8 stage fracture stimulation of the Y zone.
The participating interests in the Cambay PSC are:
  • Oilex Ltd (Operator) 30%
  • Oilex NL Holdings (India) Limited 15%
  • Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation Ltd (GSPC) 55%

AED to Plug, Abandon Lempuyang Well

AED to Plug, Abandon Lempuyang Well

Thursday, April 07, 2011
AED Oil Ltd.
AED advised that the Lempuyang-1 well testing operations are now complete. Continued mechanical issues resulted in the testing program being curtailed, due to safety concerns associated with unintended gas flowing into the well from perforations and/or damaged casing. This is believed to be due to failure of the packer in the well and/or damage to the well casing above the packer. As a result, the Lempuyang-1 well will now be plugged and abandoned.

The Lempuyang-1 well intersected excellent quality reservoir sands, with gas being flowed to surface from two test intervals. Some thin gas sands were interpreted at the lower reservoir test interval (3077-3131.5 mMD – of which 24 meters were perforated). The upper
reservoir test interval (2849-2867.5 mMD – of which all 18 meters were perforated) flowed gas to surface before AED was forced to cease testing due to a down hole mechanical failure and as a result no gas flow rates could be established. The gas analysis from the
upper reservoir test shows higher levels of C1-C8s and lower CO2 compared to the lower reservoir gas sample (<0.5 mole% compared to approx. 5 mole%).

While the testing results are inconclusive, AED notes that the data obtained supports the Joint Venture's optimism in relation to the Lempuyang prospect and surrounding acreage. AED has obtained valuable information regarding the onshore geology of Brunei, within an overpressured environment. As such, the Lempuyang-1 drilling and testing results will be integrated and used for future exploration assessment of the updip area within the eastern part of Block L, where 3D seismic is currently being considered. Further appraisal and
exploration well locations will be identified for drilling in late 2011.

Further to the Company's release of April 1, 2011, the Joint Venture currently anticipates that the following exploration activity will occur at Block L in the near term:
  • Seismic acquisition at West Jerudong. The Joint Venture plans to begin shooting 130km2 3D seismic over the Jerudong oil field in Q3 2011. This field was previously produced and was shut-in while still on production without being fully depleted. While the field was originally drilled on surface oil seeps and limited 2D seismic coverage; the Joint Venture intends to acquire 3D seismic to accurately map the known fault blocks and to identify additional potential oil prospects (having regard to current oil prices).
  • A 3D seismic patch (13km2) and 2D seismic line (13km) east of the Lempuyang-1 well will be acquired to confirm potential structural rollover. Depending on results, an extension to the 3D seismic program of up to 150km2 could be undertaken.
The Block L Joint Venture comprises AED South East Asia Limited (50% operating interest), Kulczyk Oil Ventures (40%) and QAF Brunei (10%).

Google to invest in German solar power plant

Google to invest in German solar power plant

Google (GOOG) announced today that it has agreed to make its first clean energy project investment in Europe - a EUR3.5M investment in a solar photovoltaic power plant in Germany. The transaction still requires the formal approval of the German competition authorities and is subject to other customary closing conditions. The recently completed facility is located near Berlin.

The power plant has a peak capacity of 18.65MW, which puts it among the largest in Germany. Google agreed to jointly invest in this project with the German private equity company Capital Stage.

Subsea 7 Lands $1B Gig from Petrobras

Subsea 7 Lands $1B Gig from Petrobras

Thursday, April 07, 2011

NPD Grants Wintershall North Sea Drilling Permit

NPD Grants Wintershall North Sea Drilling Permit

Thursday, April 07, 2011
Norwegian Petroleum Directorate

The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has granted Wintershall Norge ASA a drilling permit for well 35/12-4 S, cf. Section 8 of the Resource Management Regulations.

Well 35/12-4 S will be drilled from the Songa Delta drilling facility at position 61°11’6.79” north and 03°41’29.48” east following completion of drilling of wildcat well 6507/8-8 for Nexen Exploration Norge AS in production license 434.

The drilling program for well 35/12-4 S concerns the drilling of a wildcat well in production license 378. Wintershall Norge ASA is the operator with a 45 per cent ownership interest. The other licensees are Talisman Energy Norge AS with 35 percent and Premier Oil Norge AS with 20 percent.

The area in this permit consists of block 35/12 as well as parts of block 36/10. The well was drilled 2.4 kilometers northeast of the 35/12-2 oil discovery well (Grosbeak) in the northern part of the North Sea.

Production license 378 was awarded on January 6, 2006 (APA 2005). This is third well to be drilled in this license.

The permit is contingent upon the operator having secured all other permits and consents required by other authorities before the drilling starts.