Looking to possibly restart the long shut-in oil field, operator BP Exploration and an independent oil company are proposing to drill two wells in the Badami unit over the next two years.
The plan could keep BP from losing leases at the problematic North Slope field.
Pending state approval of the development plan, BP and Savant Alaska LLC will drill an exploration well at the unit due east of Prudhoe Bay by Sept. 30, 2009, or give up Badami leases outside of the Badami Sands Participating Area and waive the right to appeal.
The companies also agreed to drill a development well at Badami by Sept. 30, 2010.
The drilling commitment is part of a revised seventh plan of development for Badami.
According to the proposed revised plan of development, Savant will fulfill the work commitments contained in the new development plan on behalf of BP.
Those commitments require Savant to complete drilling and seismic work by firm deadlines or risk giving parts of the Badami unit back to the state.
Following state approval of the revised plan of development, Savant will have 90 days to secure a drilling rig for the exploration program. Then, the company will have until the end of the year to take another look at seismic surveys from certain areas at Badami, Northwest Badami and Mikkelsen Bay to finalize a target for the exploration well.
Finally, Savant will have to drill the exploration well. Depending on the time of year Savant drills the wells, it will either use an ice island or an existing gravel pad at Badami.
Savant Alaska is the local subsidiary of the Denver-based Savant Resources LLC. The company drilled an unsuccessful exploration well this winter at the offshore Kupcake prospect, located between Prudhoe Bay and Badami near BPís proposed Liberty project.
Editorís note: See the complete story in the July 13 edition of Petroleum News, available online at noon Alaska-time on July 11.