ExxonMobil has announced its fifth major oil find in Guyana’s waters, just 30 miles away from the Liza 1 well; a development that will further solidify Guyana’s potential as an oil producer.
The oil find, at what has been dubbed the Turbot-1 well, was announced by Exxon on Thursday. According to the giant oil company in a statement, the well reservoir is 75 feet deep. Exxon affiliate Esso Exploration and Production Guyana has been drilling the Turbot well since August 2017.
The well itself is located in the south-eastern portion of the Stabroek Block. This puts it 30 miles south-east of the Liza phase one project. According to Exxon, the well was drilled to 18,445 feet or 5622 metres on September 29. With such promising results, Exxon announced another Turbot well is planned for 2018.
In a statement on the oil find, Exxon President Steve Greenlee affirmed that the well results demonstrated the “tremendous potential” in exploration offshore Guyana. He said that opportunities would continue to be evaluated.
The company also noted that drilling at the new well, named the Ranger=1 Well Site, will also commence from October 11. This had first been revealed after a recent notice from the Guyana Maritime Administration Department (MARAD).
The Department had noted that there would be five vessels partaking in the operation which will be displaying the relevant international signal for oil exploration: the Stena Carron; the MV Cat Island, the MV Fast Titan, the MV Hannah Chouest and the HOS Commander.
The drill site, according to MARAD, is 160 nautical miles from Guyana’s coast and covers one square kilometre. The coordinates, the Department noted, are 08 degrees, 56.340’, 08 degrees, 56.340’, 08 degrees, 55.250’ and 08 degrees 55.250’ at Latitude North.
At Longitude West, the coordinates were 057 degrees, 18.680’, 057 degrees, 17.590’, 057 degrees, 17.590’ and 057 degrees, 18.680’. These are all in Zone 21.
Urging that ordinary vessels in the zone stay clear of the operations and the exploration vessels, MARAD had also encouraged vessels to navigate with caution when in the vicinity and to radio on VHF Ch. 16 or via the Georgetown Lighthouse.
There has been a flurry of activities in the Stabroek Block, since ExxonMobil’s 2015 oil find in Guyana. In May of that year, Exxon confirmed that more than 295 feet of high-quality oil-bearing sandstone reservoirs had been encountered at its Liza 1 exploration well.
In late June 2016, Exxon’s drilling results at Liza 2 revealed more than 58 metres of oil-bearing sandstone reservoirs in Upper Cretaceous formations. The well was drilled to 5475 metres at 1692 metres water depth. Drilling results confirmed recoverable resources to be between 800 million and 1.4 billion barrels of oil equivalent. Data from the Liza 2 well test is being assessed.
The company had announced that it made its third significant discovery in its drilling explorations offshore Guyana. Its partner, Hess Corporation, had noted that the Liza 3 exploratory well’s net value could be US$6.2 billion based on calculations from the Bank of Montreal (BMO) Capital Markets.
Drilling on Payara began on November 12, 2016, with initial total depth reached on December 2, 2016. In January of this year, the oil giant had announced it had struck oil in its Payara-1 well, targeting the same type of reservoirs as the well’s Liza counterpart.
The Stabroek Block is 6.6 million acres. Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited is the operator and holds a 45 per cent interest in the Stabroek Block. Hess Guyana Exploration Ltd holds a 30 per cent interest, and CNOOC Nexen Petroleum Guyana Limited holds a 25 per cent interest.