U.S oil major ExxonMobil announced its third oil discovery on Guyana’s Stabroek Block at its Snoek-1 well offshore Guyana.
The Stabroek Block is 26,800 sq-km. The well was drilled to 5,175 metres at a water depth of 1,563 metres. It encountered 25 metres of oil-bearing sandstones of Maastrichtian-Aptian age, similar to the Liza-1 discovery well just nine kilometres to the north. The rig will next drill the Liza-4 appraisal.
“The latest discovery at Snoek demonstrates the continued success we have achieved in this technically complex play, which is just part of the significant exploration province offshore Guyana,” said Steve Greenlee, president of ExxonMobil Exploration Company.
“As we continue to evaluate the full potential of the broader Stabroek Block, we are also taking the necessary steps to ensure the safe, cost-efficient and responsible development of this world-class resource, which can provide long-term, sustainable benefits to the people of Guyana,” added Greenlee.
Wood Mackenzie in a note said that: This discovery follows on the heels of the Payara discovery and Liza-3’s discovery of a new reservoir. Our base case for Liza-Payara is 1.5 billion barrels of oil. Snoek adds another 220-370 million barrels in our estimate. The partners have identified another five prospects to drill on the Stabroek block through 2018.”
The fcat that the three Stabroek discoveries benefit from close proximity (around 30 km), Wood Mackenzie says that conomies of scale can be achieved if FPSOs and subsea infrastructure are shared.
“With each discovery, the disposal of associated gas (we estimate over 3 tcf) becomes a bigger challenge. Initially, the JV will target low-GOR areas and will re-inject produced gas, but FLNG or a long pipeline may be required as well. The partners are taking a phased approach to the area’s development. We model two large FPSOs to develop Liza and Payara. We assume Snoek will require another vessel.”
Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited is operator and holds 45 per cent interest in the Stabroek Block. Hess Guyana Exploration holds 30 per cent interest and CNOOC Nexen Petroleum Guyana holds 25 per cent interest.