Chevron starts drilling well at Kajol to fix gas reserve
FHM Humayan Kabir
The US oil company Chevron has started drilling an exploratory well at the potential Kajol structure in the southern Patuakhali district aimed at determining the actual gas reserve and the locations for developing wells, officials said.
State-owned energy corporation Petrobangla officials said the US company, now operating in Bangladesh, has found presence of gas at the Kajol structure under Block-7 upon completing two-dimensional survey in 2009.
“Since the survey has found gas structure at Kajol, Chevron has recently begun drilling an exploratory well to ascertain the volume of actual reserve and select sites for developing gas wells,” a senior Petrobangla official told the FE.
A Chevron official in Dhaka said, “Based on a preliminary assessment we are hopeful of some 0.50 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of reserve at the Kajol structure under block-7, situated in Barisal, Patuakhali, Jhalakathi and Pirojpur districts.”
“We would drill the exploratory well up to a 4500-metre depth at the country’s southern potential structure,” he said requesting anonymity as he is not entitled to talk to the media.
“If the exploratory well clicks there, we will start well development works from the next year to lift gas,” the Chevron official said.
Chevron, operator of the country’s largest gas production field in north-eastern Bibiyana, started 2D seismic survey at the gas block-7 in late 2008 to explore hydrocarbon presence in a bid to procure gas.
As per direction of Petrobangla, Chevron conducted survey on 465-line kilometres investing nearly US$ 12 million funds at three sites including Kajol, Amtoli and Chandramohan areas in Patuakhali.
“We’ve asked the US energy company to complete the ongoing drilling as soon as possible and start developing wells for producing gas from the very prospective field,” the senior Petrobangla official said.
“We want gas supply to the national grid from the potential structure from as early as next year,” he added.
Amid the prevailing gas crisis and the country’s growing energy demand, the US oil company has undertaken the move to explore and lift gas in Block-7.
The state-owned Petrobangla supplies about 1980 million cubic feet of gas per day (mcfd) against the demand for over 2500 mcfd.
The Petrobangla official said Chevron has plans to add gas to the national transmission line from Kajol installing pipelines up to the nearest national grid in the onshore area.
Chevron is working in Bangladesh to extract gas at three blocks including Block-7 under three separate production sharing contracts. It is now supplying nearly 900 mcfd of gas from the Bibiyana, Jalalabad and Moulvibazar gas fields to the state-run energy corporation Petrobangla.
The US company, which took over Unocal’s operations in Bangladesh, alone accounts for about 80 per cent of total daily gas production by the international oil companies in Bangladesh with its giant Bibiyana gas field alone supplying nearly 20 per cent of the country’s daily gas supply.