Imperial Oil files applications for Aspen oil sands project

Imperial Oil Limited, Calgary, has filed regulatory applications for a new oil sands project that would have three phases of 45,000 b/d each and use steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) technology.

Imperial said it is considering the use of solvents to achieve enhanced in-situ recovery and reduce water use and carbon dioxide emissions on its Muskeg lease about 45 km northeast of Fort McMurray.

The proposed Aspen development on a 52-section lease area has a recoverable potential of 1.1 billion bbl. 

Development would have three phases during the expected 40-year span with each phase bringing on commercial bitumen production of about 45,000 b/d.

Imperial said a final investment decision could be made as soon as 2017 and the project could be producing as early as 2020.

Aspen is one of several oil sands projects Imperial is considering, including the Corner and Clyden leases near Fort McMurray, and Grand Rapids on Imperial’s Cold Lake lease (OGJ Online, Feb. 3, 2012).

Solvent-assisted SAGD technology is being evaluated in a pilot at Cold Lake.

Applications for the Aspen project have been filed with the Alberta Energy Regulator and Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development.

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