Guyana: Exxon announces 13th crude oil discovery in Stabroek Block

The Noble Madden Drillship

A recent discovery of high quality sandstone reservoir has taken Guyana’s estimated number of recoverable barrels of crude oil well over 5.5 billion. The discovery, in the Yellowtail-1 well, is the fifth and largest discovery in the Turbot area of the block.

Mike Cousins, senior vice president of ExxonMobil Exploration and New Ventures, said that the shared value of the Turbot area has grown, as successive discoveries in the area have been made. Exxon expects Turbot to become a major development hub.           

“Our success here can be attributed to our industry-leading upstream capabilities, the strength of our partnerships and our ongoing commitment to growing Guyana’s offshore potential.” Cousins said.

Yellowtail-1 was drilled to a depth of 18,445 feet (5,622 meters) in 6,046 feet (1,843 meters) of water, by the Noble Tom Madden. That undertaking resulted in the discovery of approximately 292 feet (89 meters) of high-quality oil bearing sandstone reservoir.

The well is located approximately six miles (10 kilometers) northwest of the Tilapia discovery, one of the two discoveries announced in early February.

The Noble Tom Madden began drilling the Yellowtail well on March 27. It will next drill the Hammerhead-2 well.
Later in 2019, according to Exxon, the Stena Carron is expected to drill a second well at the Ranger discovery. The Noble Bob Douglas drillship is currently completing development drilling operations for the Liza Phase 1 development. ExxonMobil is also evaluating plans to add another exploration drillship, bringing the number of drill ships offshore Guyana to four.

ExxonMobil is working toward meeting the potential for at least five floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessels on the Stabroek Block, so that production mounts to more than 750,000 barrels of oil per day by 2025.

The Liza Phase 1 development is expected to produce up to 120,000 barrels of oil per day utilizing the Liza Destiny FPSO, by the first quarter of 2020. That FPSO will arrive in Guyana by the third quarter of this year.

Exxon expects Liza Phase 2 to startup by mid-2022. According to a release from Exxon, the project plans to use the Liza Unity FPSO to produce up to 220,000 barrels per day. That investment is subject to government and regulatory approvals.

Payara, the third development, is also expected in 2019, with startup projected for 2023.

The Stabroek Block is 6.6 million acres (26,800 square kilometers). ExxonMobil’s subsidiary Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL) is operator and holds 45 percent interest in the Stabroek Block. Hess Guyana Exploration Ltd. holds 30 percent interest and CNOOC Petroleum Guyana Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of China National Offshore Oil Corporation Limited (CNOOC), holds 25 percent interest.
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