ExxonMobil drilling wells simultaneously in Stabroek, Canje block

0

…as repaired flash gas compressor arrives in Guyana

Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL) is engaged in a busy drilling campaign involving its holdings in both the Stabroek and neighbouring Canje Block, as it drills several wells simultaneously.

This publication understands that EEPGL, the subsidiary of oil giant ExxonMobil, spudded the Koebi-1 well last week in the Stabroek Block using drillship Stena Carron. This particular well was spudded on March 3 and drilling will conclude on March 20.

Another well being drilled in the Stabroek Block is the Longtail-2 well. According to a notice from the Maritime Administration Department (MARAD), this well is being drilled in the Stabroek Block by the Stena DrillMax from March 10 to March 27.

The map of Exxon’s holdings in the Canje and Stabroek Blocks

Meanwhile, Exxon is engaged in drilling the Jabillo-1 well within the Canje Block, using the Stena Carron drillship, between March 10 and March 27. This publication understands that the Stena Carron, after drilling the Jabillo-1 well and maintenance activities, will resume drilling on the Koebi-1 well.

The Jabillo-1 well happens to be the second of three exploration wells Exxon has scheduled for drilling in the Canje Block in 2021. The other two are the Bulletwood-1 well and the still to be drilled Sapote-1 well.

Westmount Energy, an indirect shareholder in the Canje Block, had previously made the announcement that Exxon had commenced drilling the Bulletwood-1 well with the Stena Carron drillship. Westmount had said that Bulletwood-1 was a 500 million barrels of oil prospect, similar to the profitable Liza Field wells.

However, news emerged last week that Bulletwood-1, dug 2846 metres below surface, turned up with no oil in commercial quantities. While there were reservoirs, it was not of commercial value.

Compressor

Meanwhile, the troublesome flash compressor that Exxon had to ship to Germany to fix after it malfunctioned onboard the Lisa Destiny FPSO vessel and resulted in increased flaring, has returned to Guyana fixed and ready for reinstallation.

According to a statement from Exxon, the flash gas compressor and silencers arrived in Guyana on Thursday evening. These items will be reinstalled on the Liza Destiny FPSO, after which it is expected that flaring will return to pilot levels.

The statement explained that the technical experts who will support the local ones in reinstalling the compressor have also arrived in the country. It is understood that these personnel have been tested for COVID-19 and are going through the necessary protocols including isolation.

EEPGL had announced that it was experiencing technical problems with the seal on Liza Destiny’s flash gas compressor in January of this year. The problem resulted in Exxon having to reduce its production and also conduct routine flaring.

It was subsequently revealed that Exxon had been flaring 16 million cubic feet of gas per day, an increase from the volume of flaring the company conducted last year which reportedly ranged between 12 and 15 million cubic feet. A calculation would show that at current rates, Exxon has flared over 500 million cubic feet of gas since January of this year.

It is a situation that Exxon executives have said no one is happy with, even as they work along with the regulatory agencies.

While some have called for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to act, their hands are, in fact, tied. At a recent press conference, Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo had pointed out that Exxon is limited to flaring 14 billion cubic feet of gas.

This is per the approved Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), which means that according to calculations, Exxon wouldn’t reach that flaring ceiling at current levels until the end of April 2021.