ConocoPhillips, BP producing from new Kuparuk River field extension

By OGJ editors

HOUSTON, Dec. 18 -- ConocoPhillips subsidiary ConocoPhillips Alaska Inc. and BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. have started production sooner than expected from Drill Site 3S (the Palm exploration wells) in Kuparuk River field. Drill Site 3S came on line earlier this month and currently is producing 16,000 b/d of oil from the three wells. It was originally expected to begin production in 2003.

The Palm discovery, which extends Kuparuk field 3 miles to the northwest and lies in what is considered the Greater Kupuruk Area, is being developed as an extension of Kuparuk with production being processed through existing Kuparuk field facilities. The oil accumulation, discovered by the Palm exploration wells drilled during the winter of 2001, is estimated to contain an additional 35 million bbl of oil reserves (OGJ Online, May 18, 2001).

This development will help the company meet its objective of keeping its Alaska production at 375,000-400,000 boe/d for the next several years, ConocoPhillips said.

Kuparuk, the second largest oil field in North America behind Prudhoe Bay, began production in1981. The Greater Kuparuk Area, which includes four satellite fields, currently produces about 210,000 bo/d.

Operator ConocoPhillips Alaska holds a 55.17% interest in Kuparuk River field, and BP Exploration holds 39.19%. Unocal Alaska Resources, ExxonMobil Corp., and ChevronTexaco Corp. also hold minor interests.

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