New oil finds push Guyana above industry standards

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US Oil giant, ExxonMobil on Wednesday confirmed the two additional discoveries offshore Guyana at Tilapia-1 and Haimara-1 wells, bringing the total number of discoveries in the Stabroek Block to 12.

Guyana Chronicle on Wednesday broke the story on the discoveries hours before ExxonMobil and the Department of Energy issued two separate statements on this new development.

The discoveries at Tilapia-1 and Haimara-2 build on the previously announced estimated recoverable resource of more than five billion oil-equivalent barrels in the Stabroek Block.
ExxonMobil said that Tilapia-1 is the fourth discovery in the Turbot area that includes the Turbot, Longtail and Pluma discoveries.

“Tilapia-1 encountered approximately 305 feet (93 meters) of high-quality oil-bearing sandstone reservoir and was drilled to a depth of 18,786 feet (5,726 meters) in 5,850 feet (1,783 meters) of water,” the oil giant explained. The well is located approximately 3.4 miles (5.5 kilometres) west of the Longtail-1 well.

The US-based company said that the Noble Tom Madden drillship began drilling the well on January 7, 2019, and will next drill the Yellowtail-1 well, approximately six miles (10 kilometres) west of Tilapia-1 in the Turbot area. Baseline 4-D seismic data acquisition is underway.

“We see a lot of development potential in the Turbot area and continue to prioritise exploration of high-potential prospects here,” President of ExxonMobil Exploration Company, Steve Greenlee, said.
“We expect this area to progress to a major development hub, providing substantial value to Guyana, our partners and ExxonMobil,” he added.

At the Haimara-1 well, approximately 207 feet (63 meters) of high-quality gas-condensate bearing sandstone reservoir was encountered. It was explained that the well was drilled to a depth of 18,289 feet in 4,590 feet of water. It is located approximately 19 miles east of the Pluma-1 discovery, and according to ExxonMobil, it is an area with great potential for development. The Stena Carron drillship began drilling the well on January 3 and will next return to the Longtail discovery to complete a well-test.

ExxonMobil said there is potential for at least five floating production storage and offloading vessels (FPSO) on the Stabroek Block producing more than 750,000 barrels of oil per day by 2025.
“The Liza Phase 1 development is progressing on schedule and is expected to begin producing up to 120,000 barrels of oil per day in early 2020, utilising the Liza Destiny FPSO,” it explained.

Liza Phase 2 is expected to startup by mid-2022. “Pending government and regulatory approvals, sanctioning is expected in the first quarter of 2019 for the project, which will use a second FPSO designed to produce up to 220,000 barrels per day. Sanctioning of a third development, Payara, is also expected in 2019, and startup is expected as early as 2023,” the company explained.

In a separate statement on Wednesday, Guyana’s Director of Energy, Dr. Mark Bynoe said the recent discoveries mean well for Guyanese.
“This continues to be positive news for the people of the Co-operative Republic of Guyana, but the real substance of these finds will come when all Guyanese are able to benefit from these discoveries, whether directly and/or indirectly,” he said.

While pointing out that the 10th discovery at Pluma-1 well had increased the estimated recoverable resource for the Stabroek Block to more than five billion oil-equivalent barrels, Dr. Bynoe said the rate of the discoveries put Guyana above industry standards.

“The rate of these finds remains well above industry standards and continues to allow for further de-risking of the deep and ultra-deep one, but we still have a substantial way to go before we can confidently say the one has been de-risked”, Dr. Bynoe added.

The Energy Department continues to work assiduously with its partner institutions in an effort to put the requisite framework in place to ensure all Guyanese benefit from the discoveries.

The Stabroek Block comprises 6.6 million acres (26,800 square kilometres). ExxonMobil affiliate Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited operates and holds 45 per cent interest in the Stabroek Block. Hess Guyana Exploration Limited holds 30 per cent interest and CNOOC Petroleum Guyana Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of CNOOC Limited, holds 25 per cent interest.