Linc Energy Ltd., Brisbane, will seek international partners with expertise and funding to explore and develop shale oil potential in the Arckaringa basin in South Australia, where consulting engineers identified formations that have total organic carbon, permeability, porosity, and thicknesses that compare favorably to the Bakken and Eagle Ford in the US.
DeGolyer and MacNaughton estimated 103 billion bbl of oil equivalent and Gustavson Associates Inc. 233 billion boe of unrisked prospective resources in unconventional reservoirs on Linc’s Arckaringa acreage.
Linc Energy holds 100% interest in licenses and applications on 16 million contiguous acres, the majority of the 19.8 million acre basin. The resource estimates relate to sweet spots that cover about 4 million acres held by Linc Energy. The holdings are in eastern South Australia 250-300 miles west of Cooper basin oil and gas fields and facilities.
The consultants judge that the Early Permian Stuart Range and Boorthanna formations and Prepermian formations “may form the basis of a new liquids-rich shale play,” the company said. Gustavson has also conducted a preliminary assessment of the resource potential of conventional reservoirs in parts of the basin amounting to a separate 125 billion boe on an unrisked basis, Linc Energy said.
The Arckaringa formations are described as being 230 ft to more than 1,000 ft thick and 2,000 ft to more than 4,300 ft deep. Linc Energy lists TOC values of 4.5 to 10% and porosity of 5-17%.
The company has retained Barclays Bank to advise on strategic options, including the introduction of an experienced shale operator.