Area Drilling

Sept. 12, 2005


Innamincka Petroleum Ltd., Brisbane, declared a new gas field discovery in the Ginko prospect on PEL 101 in the South Australian Cooper basin 70 km north of the Moomba treatment facilities.

Ginko-1 encountered high gas readings in several Permian-age sand reservoirs, including the Toolachee, Epsilon, and Patchawarra formations. Unstable coal seams in the well prevented a drillstem test program, but early evaluation of wireline log data indicates all the sand units are gas saturated. Total gas pay zone thickness is estimated to be 5-8 m. The predrill estimate was 24 bcf of recoverable gas.

Ginko-1 was drilled on the crest of a 9 sq km northeast-southwest elongate structure near the southwest border of the permit. The find is about 5 km north of the Santos-operated Coonatie field, which has a gas pipeline link to Moomba.

Innamincka is running a 2D seismic survey to tie the find into the large yet-to-be-drilled Kapok and Crocus prospects 10 km and 20 km to the northeast, respectively.

Participants in the PEL 101 joint venture are operator Innamincka with 37.5%, Mid Continent Equipment Australia Pty. Ltd. 25%, and Vernon E. Faulconer Australia Inc. 37.5%.


BG International Ltd. and Petroleo Brasileiro SA let a contract to Grant Geophysical Egypt to acquire a 1,100 sq km 3D dual sensor transition zone/ocean bottom cable survey on the El Burg offshore concession in the eastern Nile Delta in the Mediterranean Sea.

Acquisition is to start in the fourth quarter.

The award follows successful completion of a similar survey in the Gulf of Suez this year.


TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Co., Naersnes, Norway, began acquiring a multiclient 2D seismic survey off west Greenland.

The 7,000 km program infills existing company seismic grids in the Lady Franklin basin and Discos Island area and extends into the northern Labrador Sea to investigate new structural graben trends.

Upon completion, TGS will have over 34,000 km of modern 2D seismic data available off west Greenland. Data delivery to clients will begin in the fourth quarter of 2005.


CGX Energy Inc., Toronto, plugged its Albion exploratory well on the Berbice Block in coastal Guyana at TD 6,442 ft.

This is the third dry hole on the block for the company, which was releasing the drilling rig for shipment back to Trinidad.

Operations in the nonproducing country involved the support of up to 50 Trinidadian professionals and more than 90 Guyanese at a given time, CGX Energy said.

CGX noted that Sadhna Petroleum & Production (Guyana) Inc. of Trinidad may be drilling as early as the second quarter of 2006 on a coastal block just west of Berbice and that Groundstar Resources of Canada is exploring in the Takutu basin in southern Guyana.

Suriname’s Staatsolie plans to explore the Nikerie area to the east.

CGX also holds an interest in 6.9 million acres off Guyana.


Serica Energy Corp., Toronto, plans to drill one exploratory well each on the Glagah Kambuna Technical Assistance Contract and the Asahan Production Sharing Contract in the Malacca Straits off North Sumatra.

Kambuna-2, to spud in August 2005, is near Kambuna-1 that flowed 13.9 MMcfd of gas and 950 b/d of condensate in 1985. Kambuna-1 is interpreted to have 54 bcf of gas and 2 million bbl of liquids recoverable. Also on the block is Glagah-1, which flowed 900 Mcfd and 2,100 b/d in 1985 and has an estimated 1.2 million bbl of liquids recoverable.

The second well is Togar-1A on the Asahan PSC, with objectives in Miocene Upper and Middle Keutapang sands. This drillsite is 75 km northwest of the undeveloped Tanjung Perling gas-condensate discovery in Middle Miocene Upper Baong sand, discovered in 1974.

Duinord Petroleum Inc., an Alberta independent formed in late 2004, took a farmout to earn a 25% interest from Serica’s interest in both blocks by paying Serica $1 million in back costs and half the cost of the first 2 wells.


Verenex Energy Inc., Calgary, and PT Medco Energy International Terbuka, Jakarta, are out for bids for a large 3D and 2D seismic program on Area 47 in the Ghadames basin 180 km west-southwest of Tripoli near the border with Tunisia.

Seismic acquisition could begin early in the fourth quarter of 2005. The companies snared the 6,187 sq km area earlier this year (see map, OGJ, Apr. 18, 2005, p. 29). They plan to participate in the next licensing round with bids due Oct. 2, 2005.

Verenex said its planned 2005 investment in Libya is $4-5 million, mainly for seismic and excluding any further bid exposure.


Forum Energy PLC, London, said Veritas DGC Asia Pacific Ltd. completed a 248 sq km 3D seismic survey over the undeveloped Sampaguita gas-condensate discovery in the South China Sea 250 km southwest of Malampaya gas field.

Two wells at Sampaguita, west of Palawan Island, tested gas in the 1970s and 1980s from Paleocene-Eocene sandstones. This area is considered part of the South Palawan shelf-Reed Bank basin (see map, OGJ, Nov. 19, 2001, p. 46).

PGS Reservoir Ltd. estimated recently that the accumulation could contain 2.3 tcf of recoverable gas, Forum said. Veritas plans to process the 3D data.


The government awarded Stratic Energy Corp., Calgary, and Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Co. exploration and production rights on Block 17 in the southernmost Palmyra fold belt.

The 5,076 sq km area is unexplored, but the Palmyra fold belt to the north has large structures on acreage held by Syrian Petroleum Co., Marathon Petroleum Co., and INA Naftaplin.

Stratic, as operator, has 312 years to spend $5.2 million acquiring 625 line-km of 2D seismic and drilling an exploratory well. Four and 3-year extensions are possible. The company plans to start acquiring seismic data in 2006.

Stratic plans to reduce its 6623% interest to 35%, and Kufpec has 3313%.


Curlew Lake Resources Inc., Langley, BC, has acquired 100% working interest in 11,590 acres in Antelope Valley, Eureka County. Seller is Royalon Prospection, headed by Michael Walker, Vancouver, BC.

Consideration was not disclosed. The property is subject to a 20% royalty.

The general area is 60 miles northwest of oil fields in Railroad Valley, Nye County.

New Mexico

The New Mexico part of the Raton basin has produced 58 bcf of coalbed methane from October 1999 through April 2005, state figures show.

El Paso Raton LLC and previous operator Pennzoil Co. have drilled 430 CBM wells in Colfax County. The gas comes from three fields designated as Stubblefield Canyon, Van Bremmer Canyon, and Castle Rock Park fields, all on the Vermejo Park Ranch 20-45 miles west of Raton.

The gas is produced from the Upper Cretaceous to Paleocene Vermejo and Raton formations at 1,000 to 2,200 ft, said an article in “New Mexico Geology.”

Total production averaged 1.84 bcf/month in the first 4 months of 2005. Drilling has continued on 160-acre spacing. A sandstone interval has been completed in at least one well, the article said.

The best 10 wells have cumulative production of 1-2 bcf/well.

Large areas with CBM reserves are left undeveloped to preserve habitat for elk and bison, and wells are rarely noticed when driving the main ranch roads, the article said.


South: Bayshore Exploration LLC, Houston, has drilled to 17,525 ft at the Cooke-3 wildcat projected to 21,000 ft or Jurassic Smackover in LaSalle County.

The well, 15 miles southeast of Cotulla, is to test shallow production in Cooke Ranch field zones Wilcox, Escondido, and Edwards at 12,000-17,525 ft before drilling is resumed, said participant Paxton Energy Inc., Rancho Cordova, Calif. Devon Energy Corp., Oklahoma City, also participates in the well.

The well is on an 8,884-acre prospect. The field was discovered in 1959.

West Virginia

CoalQuest Development LLC, Ashland, Ky., and CDX Gas LLC, Dallas, plan to develop coalbed methane on 9,600 acres CoalQuest holds in Barbour, Harrison, and Taylor counties.

CDX will operate the wells, and CoalQuest will retain the right to participate up to 50% in development and production on a well by well basis and receive royalty income.

CoalQuest is to be acquired by International Coal Group Inc. for $101.75 million of ICG stock.


Anadarko Petroleum Corp., Houston, and Warren Resources Inc., New York, are pressing coalbed methane pilot operations in the Atlantic Rim group of units along the eastern edge of the Washakie basin.

The units, roughly 45 miles north-south by 5-12 miles east-west, are in Carbon County southwest of Rawlins. They are prospective for gas in shallow Cretaceous Mesaverde coals (OGJ Online, Feb. 3, 2005).

Gross production is 4.2 MMcfd from the 12-well Sun Dog pilot in 16n-91w and more than 1 MMcfd and rising from the 24-well Doty Mountain unit in 17n-90w and 91w. A second compressor and second water injection well were installed at Sun Dog.

A rig has drilled 19 of 24 wells at the Jolly Roger pilot in 19n-90w, which is to be hooked up by the end of 2005.

The same rig is to drill 11 more producing wells in the Blue Sky Unit in 14n and 15n-91w, halving some well spacing to 80 acres.