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E & P News

2017

Aug 2017: Nexen, a wholly-owned subsidiary of CNOOC (25%), announced that the Hangingstone project has commenced production comprising a steam-generators, well pads, 32 well pairs, water treatment and bitumen flowlines. Peak production of 20,000 bbls per day is planned for 2018. Japan Canada Oil Sands (JACOS) holds the remaining 75% and is operator.

May 2017: Husky Energy (operator) has approved the West White Rose Project off Newfoundland and Labrador using a fixed wellhead platform tied back to the SeaRose FPSO vessel. First oil is expected in 2022 with peak production of around 75,000 bbls per day in 2025. Partners are Suncor and Nalcor.

Apr 2017: The Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB) issued a Call for Bids (NL17-CFB01) for 3 areas in the Jeanne d’Arc region. Bids are due by November with a sole criterion - the amount of money committed to spending on exploration during Period I.

Feb 2017: Norman Wells in the high arctic will soon be shut-in by Imperial Oil, ending almost a century of production in the area 1,700 kms north of Calgary. Gas produced from the site is used to generate local electric power. Oil output dropped to just under 9,000 bbls per day in 2016, down 73% from its 1991 peak of 33,000 bbls per day.

2016

Oct 2016: The Canada-Newfoundland & Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB) collected US$565 mm in work commitments in bids for deep water blocks off East Newfoundland and in the Jeanne d'Arc basin. BP was the highest bidder. C-NLOPB will issue licences in January 2017.

May 2016: Husky has started steam operations at the Vawn Lloyd Thermal Project in Saskatchewan, the second of 3 thermal projects to be commissioned in 2016. The 10,000 bbl per day development will produce first oil in Q3 2016. The Edam East development began production in mid-April.

Apr 2016: BP (operator, 40%) is delaying its exploration project off Nova Scotia until 2018 from a previous timing of late summer 2017. It is the operator of four exploration licences, ELs 2431, 2432, 2433 and 2434 in water depths ranging from 500-3600m. Partners are Hess Canada (40%) and Woodside (20%). The plan for the licences is up to 7 exploration wells over a 3-year period.

Mar 2016: Husky started steam operations at the Edam East heavy oil thermal project in Saskatchewan, the first of 3 new thermal projects coming online in 2016. With the addition of Vawn and Edam West a total of 24,500 bbls of oil per day capacity is expected. These are part of the Lloyd heavy oil development including the Saskatchewan gathering system, upgrader and asphalt refinery.

2015

Aug 2015: ConocoPhillips (50%, operator) and Total (50%) announced start-up of the Surmont 2 SAGD oil sands project in Alberta. Production will ramp up through to 2017, adding 118,000 bbls per day capacity. Total capacity for Surmont 1 and 2 will be 150,000 bbls per day.

Jul 2015: Husky (operator) started production from the South White Rose project in the Jeanne d’Arc Basin off Newfoundland and Labrador. It is Husky’s second subsea tieback after the North Amethyst project, extending the life of the White Rose field and SeaRose FPSO. The Hibernia-level well beneath North Amethyst field is expected to begin production later in 2015.

Jun 2015: ConocoPhillips (operator, 50%) has achieved first steam at Surmont phase 2. First oil is expected by the third quarter of 2015 with production ramping-up through 2017. Capacity for Surmont 1 and 2 is expected to reach 150,000 bbls per day. Total (50%) is partner.

May 2015: There could be up to 200 bn bbls of oil resources  beneath the central Northwest Territories in the Canol and Bluefish shales of which perhaps 4% could be recoverable.

May 2015: Offshore gas production from the Deep Panuke platform, which came onstream in 2013, has been shut in due to excess water cut. Operator, Encana, has converted the field to a seasonal operating strategy. Gas from Deep Panuke is processed offshore and transported, via subsea pipeline, to Goldboro, Nova Scotia. It will now only produce in the winter.

Mar 2015: Husky (operator, 50%), with BP (50%), has started oil production at the Sunrise SAGD Energy Project in northern Alberta. Steam operations began in December 2014. Total production is expected to ramp up to full capacity of 60,000 bbls per day at the end of 2016.

Jan 2015: Canadian Natural Resources will defer the first phase of its 40,000 bbl per day Kirby North thermal project until oil prices stabilise. Phase one of the SAGD project was targeted for the fourth quarter of 2016. CNRL is proceeding with its Horizon oil sands project which will add 125,000 bbls per day of synthetic oil capacity by 2018.

2014

Dec 2014: Husky will defer the final investment decision on its offshore West White Rose oilfield extension project. First production  was originally anticipated for 2017. Husky also expects first oil from its South White Rose extension in mid-2015, later than planned.

Nov 2014: Woodside and partners have approved the Persephone Project comprising 2 wells and a 7km subsea tieback to the North Rankin Complex. Project start-up is planned for 2018, helping to maintain supplies to the Karratha Gas Plant. Partners are Woodside (operator), BHP, BP, Chevron, Japan Australia LNG and Shell (all 16.67%).  

Nov 2014: The Northwest Territories, including the Arctic islands and the Beaufort Sea, hold 1.2 bn bbls of oil and 465 bcm of gas according to the National Energy Board (NEB) (Globalshift notes: this seems an underestimate considering the extent of sedimentary cover in this region).

Sep 2014: Statoil has postponed the Corner field development at the Kai Kos Dehseh oil sands project in Alberta due to high costs. Statoil acquired Kai Kos Dehseh in 2007 and in 2014  divided the leases with PTTEP. Statoil holds 100% of Leismer and Corner with PTTEP holding 100% of Thornbury, Hangingstone and South Leismer. Leismer is unaffected.

Jun 2014: Husky Energy expects to begin production from the Bay du Nord field, discovered in 2013 off Newfoundland in 1100m of water, early in the 2020s. The development would be the first in the Flemish Pass region, 500 kms northeast of St. John's. Statoil is operator with 65%, along with Husky (35%).

Mar 2014: Cenovus Energy has approval for its Grand Rapids oil sands project which is expected to reach a production capacity of 180,000 bbls per day. Cenovus has been operating a SAGD pilot project at the site and has 2 other operating projects; Foster Creek producing  110,000 bbls per day and Christina Lake producing 130,000 bbls per day. Expansions are continuing.

Jan 2014: Husky has sanctioned two new heavy oil thermal (SAGD) projects in Saskatchewan, which will deliver a total of 20,000 bbls per day of production. These are the Edam East project and Vawn project with first oil expected in 2016. Husky has a pipeline of additional thermal projects under evaluation for development into its Lloydminster Upgrader.

2013

Oct 2013: Suncor (operator, 40.8%), Total (39.2%) and Teck Resources (20%) will proceed with the Fort Hills oil sands mining project in Alberta's Athabasca region. The project is scheduled to produce first oil in late 2017. Capital investment is US$13.5bn or US$84,000 per flowing barrel of bitumen.

Oct 2013: Shell is to proceed with its Carmon Creek project, Peace River, Alberta. The thermal in situ project is expected to produce up to 80,000 bbls of oil per day and will be producing for more than 35 years.

Sep 2013: Canadian Natural Resources has achieved its first steam injection at its wholly owned Kirby South steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) project. Kirby South is targeted to increase to 40,000 bbls per day by end 2014 and is the first step in an expansion plan for the greater Kirby area, targeted to eventually increase to 140,000 bbls per day.

Aug 2013: Statoil, in partenership with Husky, has made a third oil discovery in the Flemish Pass Basin, offshore Newfoundland on the Bay du Nord prospect, estimated to hold 300 to 600 mm bbls of light oil, in block EL 1112. Bay du Nord was drilled by the West Aquarius semisub in 1,100m of water.

Jun 2013: Statoil has discovered light oil in the Harpoon well within the Flemish Pass Basin, offshore Newfoundland, EL 1112. Harpoon was drilled by the semisub West Aquarius in 1,100m of water. It is located 10 kms south-east of the 2009 Mizzen discovery, estimated to hold up to 200 mm barrels of oil. Statoil is operator with 65% along with Husky (35%).

Jun 2013: Husky has received regulatory approval for a development plan amendment for the South White Rose field. The original plan was approved in 2007 and the amendment provides for gas injection allowing access to the South Avalon Terrace on the southern tip of the main White Rose field. It will be developed via subsea tie-back to the SeaRose FPSO with first oil planned for 2014.

Apr 2013: ExxonMobil announced the startup of the Kearl oil sands project in Alberta. Kearl will access 4.6 bn bbls of bitumen and is the first oil sands mining operation without an upgrader, instead using paraffinic froth treatment to produce diluted bitumen. Startup of additional trains will proceed in sequence bringing production to over 200,000 bbls per day by 2016 and ultimate capacity of 345,000 bbls per day by 2021. Kearl is 75 kms northeast of Fort McMurray and is operated by Imperial Oil.

Apr 2013: In 2012 Statoil increased oil sands production by more than 60% at the Leismer Demonstration Project and in the Kai Kos Dehseh (KKD) leases in northern Alberta. Production at the Leismer SAGD facility began in 2011. In 2012 it produced 16,333 bbls per day.

Mar 2013: Canada invited companies to nominate drilling lands in the Arctic for inclusion in a property auction. The region, part of the Nunavut territory, has been barely explored since the 1970s, when high oil prices and government grants encouraged companies to drill. That exploration boom led to the discovery of 16 fields including the 12 mm bbl Bent Horn field on Cameron Island, 1,600 kms south of the North Pole. It produced nearly 3 mm bbls of from 1985 to 1996 before it was abandoned.

Jan 2013: ExxonMobil plans to develop the Hebron oil field spending $14 billion and beginning oil production in 2017. It will be developed using a gravity-based structure capable of storing 1.2 mm bbls of oil and supporting a topsides deck. The structure will allow for the recovery of over 700 mm bbls and be capable of producing 150,000 bbls per day. Partners include ExxonMobil with 36%, Chevron (26.7%), Suncor (22.7%), Statoil (9.7%) and Nalcor (4.9%). Hebron was discovered in 1980 in the Jeanne d'Arc Basin and lies 350 kms southeast of St. John's and 9 kms north of the Terra Nova project in 92m of water.

Jan 2013: Imperial Oil ‘s Kearl oil sands project in northern Alberta will start commercial production in early 2013 after delays. The 110,000 bbl per day first stage bitumen development is undergoing commissioning. Impending production from the US$11 bn development has been a factor behind discounts on Canadian heavy oil, as export pipeline capacity remains limited. The project has been under construction since 2009. Kearl will be Canada's fifth tar sands mining venture.

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