Petrel applies for more acreage offshore Ireland

Petrel Resources, an Irish based exploration and production company, has submitted applications for Licence Options in the recent Irish Offshore licensing round.

The company says it has targeted three separate packages of acreage, in the Porcupine Basin Region 2, offered in the Submission of Applications for the 2015 Licensing Round – Atlantic Margin. Petrel adds that the company is funded through 2017 on current plans.

Petrel has a joint venture with Woodside Energy of Australia who farmed into its two offshore Irish blocks, licences 3/14 and 4/14 in the Porcupine Basin, covering 1,050 sq km with plays in about 600-800 m of water.

Petrel holds a 15% interest and is substantially carried by Woodside through the initial exploration programmes. The company says it is prepared to undertake a 3D seismic acquisition programme which will better identify and outline potential hydrocarbon-bearing structures. The programme is expected to be undertaken in 2016.

As for this round, closed on September 16, 2015, the company said that its geological team had used its data bank and currently available data to identify priority areas.

The Irish oil and gas company says it anticipates early discussions with the authorities on its proposals. The company further said that it is confident that its record to date, both in developing new plays and attracting world-class partners, would help to win an award.

David Horgan, Director, said: “Petrel was previously awarded two License Options, in the deep-offshore Atlantic Margin, in 2011. We subsequently worked up a number of high potential prospects and are now in partnership with Woodside, a leading Australian LNG company. The partnership expects to embark on a 3D seismic programme in the first available weather window (summer 2016), which we hope will lead to deep-offshore wells.

“Arising out of the innovative work conducted on our Licence Options between 2011 and 2013, our geologists and geophysicists have helped open up an entirely new oil & gas province, adapting West African experience to develop a Cretaceous play in the Irish Atlantic. Our ground-breaking work and farm-out efforts contributed to the entry into the Irish Atlantic Margin of aggressive new players. During the period of Licence Options 11/4 and 11/6, Petrel operated the then 1,400 km2 of acreage, attracting considerable interest from majors, as well as Independent Oil Companies and National Oil Companies which had not previously been involved in the Irish offshore.”

Rising interest in Irish offshore

Horgan noted that the large number of applications received in the recent Licensing Round confirms industry interest in the Irish offshore. 

“The applicant companies included majors, and mid-capitalised companies, as well as juniors. Notwithstanding the lower oil price and retrenchment elsewhere, this record response to the recent Licensing Round signals rising industry interest in offshore Ireland oil and gas exploration.”

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