ExxonMobil announces eighth oil discovery offshore Guyana

The Stenacarron drillship

ExxonMobil Corporation said today it made its eighth oil discovery offshore Guyana at the Longtail-1 well, creating the potential for additional resource development in the southeast area of the Stabroek Block.

In a release ExxonMobil said it encountered approximately 256 feet (78 meters) of high-quality, oil-bearing sandstone reservoir. The well was safely drilled to 18,057 feet (5,504 meters) depth in 6,365 feet (1,940 meters) of water. The Stena Carron drillship began drilling on May 25, 2018.

“The Longtail discovery is in close proximity to the Turbot discovery southeast of the Liza field,” said Steve Greenlee, president of ExxonMobil Exploration Company. “Longtail drilling results are under evaluation. However, the combined estimated recoverable resources of Turbot and Longtail will exceed 500 million barrels of oil equivalent, and will contribute to the evaluation of development options in this eastern portion of the block.”

The release said that ExxonMobil is currently making plans to add a second exploration vessel offshore Guyana in addition to the Stena Carron drillship, bringing its total number of drillships on the Stabroek Block to three. The new vessel will operate in parallel to the Stena Carron to explore the block’s numerous high-value prospects.

The release said that the Noble Bob Douglas is completing initial stages of development drilling for Liza Phase 1, for which ExxonMobil announced a funding decision in 2017. Phase 1 will comprise 17 wells connected to a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel designed to produce up to 120,000 barrels of oil per day. First oil is expected in early 2020. Phase 2 concepts are similar to Phase 1 and involve a second FPSO with production capacity of 220,000 barrels per day. A third development, Payara, is planned to follow Liza Phase 2.

The release said that Guyanese businesses, contractors and employees continue to play an important role in ExxonMobil’s operations in the country. ExxonMobil and project partners spent US$24 million with more than 300 local suppliers in 2017 and opened the Centre for Local Business Development in the capital city of Georgetown to promote the establishment and growth of small- and medium-sized local businesses. The Stabroek Block is 6.6 million acres (26,800 square kilometers).

Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited is operator and holds 45 percent interest in the Stabroek Block. Hess Guyana Exploration Ltd. holds 30 percent interest and CNOOC Nexen Petroleum Guyana Limited holds 25 percent interest.

The Government of Guyana today issued the following release on the find:

ExxonMobil announces another major oil find

– Govt congratulates ExxonMobil on historic 8th discovery

– delighted that a third drillship will be brought to Guyana’s waters

The Government of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana today congratulated ExxonMobil and its partners, Hess Guyana and CNOOC Nexen Petroleum, on another historic oil discovery offshore Guyana at the Longtail-1 well. This brings to a total of 8 reservoirs in which oil has been discovered.

ExxonMobil today announced that it encountered approximately 256 feet of high quality, oil-bearing sandstone reservoir. The well was safely drilled to 18,057 feet in water 6,365 feet deep in the southeast area of the Stabroek Block.

This discovery will add to the 3.2 billion oil-equivalent barrels which have already been discovered in seven previous reservoirs:

  1. Liza
  2. Payara
  3. Liza Deep
  4. Snoek
  5. Turbot
  6. Ranger*
  7. Pacora

*3.2 billion oil-equivalent barrels does not the Ranger reservoir which has not yet been determined.

Oil finds in Guyana’s waters (DPI graphic)

Government is equally delighted that ExxonMobil and its partners will bring a third drillship in Guyana’s waters, adding to the Stena Carron and the Noble Bob Douglas.

The government views this not only as an unmistakable demonstration of ExxonMobil’s confidence in Guyana’s vast offshore reserves but also in the prudent management of our national affairs in general and the budding oil and gas sector specifically.

“This 8th discovery at Longtail-1 is yet another verification and validation of Guyana’s massive offshore oil reserves. All Guyanese will be brimming with further excitement of this historic news which reinforces that in the near future Guyana’s share of profit oil will allow for national infrastructural, economic and social transformation hitherto unimaginable,” Minister of Natural Resources Raphael Trotman said.

“The people of Guyana have the assurance that with the Coalition Government their country is in stable, responsible and judicious hands, managing with their best interest and the interest of future generations in mind,” Minister Trotman added.

“There are those who have expressed the desire for Guyana to begin embarking on an irresponsible spending and borrowing spree but we urge all Guyanese not to be baited by these pie-in-the-sky enticements and to understand that a sensible approach is what is required and advisable as we stride confidently towards first oil in May, 2020,” Minister Trotman said.

Government is further reassured that the sound policies of the David Granger/Moses Nagamootoo led Coalition are being again vindicated despite some naysaying, uninformed pseudo-analysis and public posturing.

These are indeed exciting times for Guyana and the government appeals to all Guyanese to look to the future with anticipation and assurance that Guyana is moving meaningfully forward and that a better life for all Guyanese is ahead.

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