Alaska & independents
Mustang partner says North Slope offers clear, level path for small companies
Majid Jourabchi, president of Thyssen Petroleum, and a partner in Mustang, the first oil field that a small independent has taken from discovery to production on the North Slope, thinks Alaska is a good place for investment under the current system.
“As far as an independent on the North Slope, I believe that going forward more and more independents will look into Alaska. Major oil companies will concentrate on new fields while the independents can develop smaller fields that fit their economic capability and appetite,” he told Petroleum News Nov. 11.
“The independents and state of Alaska have had growing pains and all of us are still suffering from the effects of it. Going forward we are not looking for any new programs that favor an independent or a major oil company; we are just looking for a clear and level path.”
As Petroleum News previously reported, the Mustang oil field, operated by Brooks Range Petroleum Corp., went online Nov. 2 utilizing an early production facility. The field is in the Southern Miluveach unit, adjacent to the Kuparuk River unit.
BRPC is run by Bart Armfield, who has directed the project from the beginning.
For the first few days Mustang oil was trucked and sold to nearby operator Eni because ConocoPhillips needed to “certify the meters, open the blinds and have a person on location,” and BRPC did not have enough storage capacity, Jourabchi said Nov. 6.
Since then the oil has been flowing through Mustang’s pipeline to the Alpine pipeline and on to the trans-Alaska pipeline.
The plan is to ramp production up to 6,000 barrels per day and use the revenue to upgrade to a larger scale and permanent 15,000 barrel-per-day production facility, BRPC told Alaska’s Division of Oil and Gas in its Sept. 30 filing of Southern Miluveach’s seventh annual development plan.
Initial production, BRPC told the division, will be from two existing wells - North Tarn 1A and SMU M-02, with Mustang 1A next. The suspended well “requires drilling lateral extension/possible sidetrack,” which will be done in January.
Up to four new wells will be drilled in 2020, with full development involving a total of 10 producer and 11 injectors.
BRPC told the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission that audited Kuparuk reserves are 21.2 million barrels of 1P (proven oil in place), with a total recovery after waterflood of up to 35%, expected to rise to 40% with tertiary recovery.