Pioneer Natural Resources expects its Alaska oil production this year to be up 60 to 70 percent over 2009 rates as the company develops a third reservoir at its Oooguruk unit, northwest of Oliktok Point in the shallow waters of Harrison Bay in northern Alaska.
The Texas-based independent produced net 6,000 barrels per day in Alaska in the first quarter of the year. That’s equal to second-half production from 2009, but roughly double the production rates reported since Pioneer brought Oooguruk online in summer 2008.
The projected increase comes from two “highly productive” wells into the Kuparuk reservoir and a well into the Moraine, a shallower reservoir not included in initial development plans. The Kuparuk wells initially produced around 7,500 gross barrels per day, while the horizontally fractured Moraine well initially produced at 1,100 gross bpd.
The company said those results help confirm the increased resource estimate of 120 million to 150 million barrels of oil that the company announced in February 2009.
Pioneer plans to drill four wells into the Nuiqsut reservoir this year.
Editor’s note: See story in May 9 issue of Petroleum News, available online to subscribers on Friday, May 7 at www.PetroleumNews.com.