Desire drills another dry hole off Falklands

Eric Watkins
OGJ Oil Diplomacy Editor

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 30 -- Desire Petroleum PLC said its 25/5-1 well on the Dawn/Jacinta prospect reached a depth of 1,313 m, but drilling and wireline logging data show no hydrocarbons have been found.

“The well will now be drilled to the planned total depth around 1,670 m to evaluate the deeper Dawn Prospect,” Desire said, adding that the reported results are based on the work of Senergy (GB) Ltd.

The announcement will likely be greeted with cheers in Argentina, which has long complained of British-led efforts to discover oil and gas in the region around the Falklands Islands, over which the two nations went to war in the 1980s.

Argentina recently passed a law includes the disputed islands as part of its Tierra del Fuego province, and the Latin American nation also declared the Desire drilling illegal.

In October, Desire Petroleum disappointed investors by announcing its 14/15-1 well on the Rachel prospect in the remote North Falkland basin found thick, porous reservoir rock but no hydrocarbons and would be sidetracked (OGJ Online, Oct. 15, 2010).
According to industry observers, Desire’s failure on the Jacinta prospect will put pressure on Rockhopper Exploration PLC with its next well, aimed at proving an extension to the Sea Lion find reported in May.

At the time, Rockhopper said its Sea Lion discovery in the North Falkland basin in the South Atlantic found an estimated 170-242 million bbl of recoverable medium-gravity crude oil as “the first contingent oil resource in the Falklands” (OGJ Online, June 7, 2010).

Rockhopper plans to start drilling next month using the Ocean Guardian rig currently being used by Desire, which was named after HMS Desire, the British ship that claimed to have discovered the Falklands in 1592.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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