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Lloyds List: US Gulf’s energy conveyor belt keeps turning

Published: Aug 08, 2006

OIL companies have discovered several new deepwater oil and gas fields in the US Gulf of Mexico to keep the conveyor belt of developments flowing.

Italian oil major Eni and Canadian independent Nexen have found gas on the Ringo prospect in Mississippi Canyon block 546 in 750 m of water. Semi-submersible rig Transocean Amirante encountered 50 m of net gas pay in the well, which could be tied back to nearby infrastructure next year.

Calgary-based Nexen thinks Ringo could hold 60bn to 170bn cu ft of gas reserves and wants to confirm this with an appraisal well before going ahead with its development.

‘Including Ringo, our exploration programme has resulted in seven discoveries over the past 18 months, including the major discovery at Knotty Head,’ said Nexen’s president and chief executive Charlie Fischer.

Nexen has also found oil in an exploratory well in 1,200 m of water in Alaminos Canyon block 856, which lies west of Shell’s large Great White field.

According to partner Total this was an appraisal well that found 30 m of net oil pay and confirms the extent of the structure, which could be part of a major regional oil project

Milan-based Eni had another piece of good news in the US Gulf of Mexico when it started oil production from the Allegheny South field in Green Canyon block 298. One subsea well is producing 3,000 barrels per day to the Allegheny tension-leg platform.

US major Chevron has found more oil on its Big Foot discovery in Walker Ridge block 29 and is thinking of drilling more appraisal wells. The latest sidetrack well found 100 m of net oil pay, providing more evidence of a sizable field in 1,500 m of water.

New York-based Hess Corp has found more oil on its Pony discovery with appraisal sidetracks. The field in Green Canyon block 468 has at least 100m barrels and lies adjacent to Nexen’s Knotty Head discovery.

– ATP Oil ‘ Gas has increased its stake in the Telemark, Mirage and Oasis oil and gas fields in the Mississippi Canyon area which gives it control of a new deepwater development.

Combined with the Morgus discovery, ATP is looking to develop these fields through a spar production platform.

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