Exploration set in Atlantic, Beaufort frontiers off Canada

Three major international oil companies are joining forces in varying groups for exploratory drilling off Newfoundland and a 3D seismic survey in the Beaufort Sea offshore Canada.

Chevron Canada Ltd., Statoil Canada Ltd., and Repsol E&P Canada Ltd. signed agreements to conduct exploratory drilling off Atlantic Canada. Chevron and Statoil finalized a separate agreement for exploration in the Canadian Beaufort Sea.

These new joint ventures over large blocks in deep water represent important strategic steps for all three companies, they said.

Repsol and Statoil will participate under farmouts from Chevron in a planned 2012 Orphan basin exploratory well on EL 1074R that covers 604,000 ha off Newfoundland and Labrador. Chevron is operator with 65% equity interest. Repsol will have 20% and Statoil 15%.

Chevron, Statoil, and Repsol were recently named the successful bidders on two exploration parcels in the Flemish Pass basin off Newfoundland and Labrador (OGJ Online, May 13, 2011).

The successful bids were for Parcel NL 11-02-01 covering 247,016 ha and NL 11-02-02 on 186,780 h ha. The tracts are 400 km east of St. John’s in 700-2,600 m of water.

Statoil will be the operator with 50% equity interest. Chevron has 40% and Repsol has 10%.

Meanwhile, Statoil will participate by farmout from Chevron in a Beaufort Sea 3D seismic program tentatively set for summer 2012. The proposed 3D survey would cover EL 460, a 2,060 sq km block in 800-1,800 m of water 120 km offshore. Chevron is operator with 60% equity interest, and Statoil will have 40%.

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