Fourteen discoveries across seven offshore regions were announced in the third quarter of this year, according to Esgian’s Well Results dataset. By region, South America was the leader with about one-third of the discoveries announced or confirmed during the quarter.
Despite Brazil being the largest country in South America in terms of working offshore rigs, none of the announced discoveries were from Brazil. Instead, two discoveries were announced off Colombia, two off Guyana, and one offshore Suriname. The Shell-operated Gorgon-2 well off Colombia, which was drilled by Transocean drillship Deepwater Thalassa, confirmed the extension of the 2017 Gorgon-1 gas discovery and confirmed the existence of a gas province in the nation’s offshore sector. Meanwhile, the Petrobras-operated Uchuva-1 well was drilled by Transocean semisub Development Driller III and encountered a natural gas accumulation.
Both discoveries announced off Guyana were operated by ExxonMobil and add to the prolific string of discoveries in the Stabroek Block. The Kiru Kiru well was drilled by drillship Stena DrillMAX, and the Seabob well was drilled by drillship Stena Carron. Off Suriname, APA Corp. confirmed oil in the Baja-1 well in Block 53. The well was drilled by drillship Noble Gerry de Souza.
In the North Sea/Barents region, all three finds were made off Norway. Aker BP used Odfjell semisub Deepsea Nordkapp to drill the 6507/3-15 well about 14km northeast of the Skarv field, as well as the Storjo well in Production Licence (PL) 261. The Neptune Energy-operated Ofelia discovery was drilled by Odfjell semisub Deepsea Yantai in PL 929. Ofelia is located about 15km north of Neptune’s Gjøa platform.
Off Southeast Asia, Harbour Energy and Mubadala Energy were successful during the quarter. Harbour made a material gas discovery off Indonesia with the Timpan well. The Vantage-managed drillship Capella drilled the well. Mubadala’s find was off Malaysia. Transocean semisub Deepwater Nautilus drilled the Cengkih-1 well in Block SK 320 and encountered a gas column of over 110m within the pinnacle carbonate reservoir.
Turning to the Mediterranean/Black Sea region, Eni made a gas discovery with a preliminary estimate of about 2.5Tcf of gas in place with the Cronos-1 discovery. Vantage Drilling drillship Tungsten Explorer drilled the well in Block 6 off Cyprus.
The solitary find announced for the Far East region was CNOOC’s Weiye-1 in the Beibuwan Basin. The well was reportedly an offshore shale discovery. In the Middle East, Eni added onto its Block 2 discovery off Abu Dhabi, UAE, adding 1-1.5Tcf of raw gas in place. The operator had previously made a discovery in a shallower zone of the same well. The aggregate total gas in place is estimated at 2.5-3.5Tcf. The well was drilled by Northern Offshore jackup Energy Emerger.
Finally, the sole discovery announced for the US Gulf in the quarter was the Hess-operated Huron well in Green Canyon Block 69. Transocean drillship Deepwater Asgard drilled the well, which encountered high-quality, oil-bearing Miocene-aged reservoirs and established the existence of a working petroleum system.