US DOE helps two tribes develop oil, gas

The US Energy Department will spend $695,000 to help the Jicarilla Apache Tribe in New Mexico and the Ute Indian Tribe in Utah develop oil and gas resources. Energy Sec. Bill Richardson said, 'Our goal is to provide tools for Native Americans to develop and manage their mineral resources by providing them access to the latest technological innovations.'


The US Energy Department will spend $695,000 to help the Jicarilla Apache Tribe in New Mexico and the Ute Indian Tribe in Utah develop oil and gas resources. Energy Sec. Bill Richardson said, "Our goal is to provide tools for Native Americans to develop and manage their mineral resources by providing them access to the latest technological innovations."

Advanced Resources International Corp., Denver, will work with the Jicarilla Apache Tribe. DOE said the southern half of the reservation in north-central New Mexico has oil and gas production, while the northern half is on the same geologic trend as oil-producing fields outside the reservation.

With $195,000 in DOE funding, Advanced Resources will screen the northern half of the reservation using satellite and seismic imaging data, gravity measurements, and aerial magnetic surveying. The researchers hope to identify underground fracturing and, with data from few wells drilled in the area, select well locations.

Advanced Resources and the tribe will contribute $62,000 toward the 1-year project.

In Utah's Uinta basin, Wind River Resources Corp., Roosevelt, Utah, will work with the Ute Tribe to apply 3D seismic on the Uintah and Ouray Reservation. The firm will survey a 15 sq mile area of the tribe's Hill Creek Extension field, where no 3D seismic has been run.

DOE will provide $500,000 for the 19-month project, and Wind River Resources, $275,000.

This is the second set of DOE projects designed to help Indian tribes. Last December, DOE announced projects to help the Fort Peck Assiniboine and Sioux tribes in Montana, the Osage Tribe in Oklahoma, and the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes in Wyoming.

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