European Gas buys Charbonnages subsidiary Gazonor

European Gas has acquired, for €26.2 million, "Gazonor," a subsidiary of France's Charbonnages de France, the state-owned coal company, which recently was shut down.

Jan 11th, 2008

Doris Leblond
OGJ Correspondent

PARIS, Jan. 11 -- Pursuing coalbed methane and coal-mine methane projects in France, European Gas Ltd. has acquired, for €26.2 million, "Gazonor," a subsidiary of France's Charbonnages de France, the state-owned coal company, which recently was shut down.

Gazonor owns operating coal-mine methane production assets and associated surface infrastructure in northwestern France in the Nord Pas de Calais district. There are three main extraction sites, Avion and Divion in the Poissonière permit and Desiree in the Desiree permit.

Current production hovers around 40 million cu m/year of methane, which could be greatly increased following a detailed feasibility study planned for early 2008. An independent report prepared by Deutsche Montan Technologie GmbH of Essen, Germany, estimated the remaining 1P reserves at 865 million cu m of methane over the next 30 years.

Coal-mine methane is extracted under very low mine pressure through degasification wells drilled into the old underground workings, gathered, and transported to the central processing facilities at the three sites where it is filtered, compressed, dehydrated, odorized, and measured for quality and quantity under gas sales agreements.

European Gas Ltd. has coalbed methane assets in Lorraine where Bleue Lorraine's second well is being drilled, in Lons Le Saunier in central France near the Swiss border, in Saint Etienne near Lyon, and in Gardanne in southern France.

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