Apache's Forties redevelopment gains speed

Alan Petzet
OGJ Chief Editor-Exploration

HOUSTON, Mar. 1 -- Apache Corp., Houston, will drill three exploration wells around its UK North Sea Forties field redevelopment project, where it will employ a jack up and two platform rigs to drill 15 development wells.

Forties averaged 61,400 b/d of oil in 2009, up 2.5% on the year and the second year of increased output. The 35-year-old field was at 40,000 b/d when Apache purchased it in 2003. Last June, Apache said it had an inventory of 79 drilling targets at Forties.

Pipeline riser repairs on Bravo platform, now completed, reduced production in the 2009 fourth quarter. Apache drilled 17 wells and added 9,200 b/d of production last year.

Apache made the Maule discovery in the Forties area in the 2009 fourth quarter that it expects to place on production at 5,000 b/d by mid-2010.

The Forties Charlie 6-3 well, completed at 10,500 b/d last June, had recovered 1.3 million bbl of oil by mid-February 2010. The Forties Alpha 4-5 well, completed in January 2009, has produced 1.7 million bbl of oil and is still flowing nearly 5,000 b/d of water-free oil.

Apache owns a 97.14% interest in Forties, the UK North Sea’s largest single discovered oil accumulation.

Contact Alan Petzet at alanp@ogjonline.com.

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