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Providing coverage of Alaska and northern Canada's oil and gas industry
March 2020

Vol. 25, No.12 Week of March 22, 2020

Oil Search files Pikka unit extension

Kay Cashman

Petroleum News

An application to extend the term of the Pikka unit was filed by Oil Search Alaska March 5 and posted on the Division of Oil and Gasí website March 13. The application was simultaneously filed with Arctic Slope Regional Corp.

The 77,744.47 acre Pikka unit is west of the central North Slope, between the Colville River and Kuparuk River units. The original operator of many of its leases and the company that organized it and brought in working interest owners Repsol and Oil Search was a Bill Armstrong firm. The three different unit operators to date have been Repsol, Armstrong Energy and now Oil Search, which is developing it, targeting first production in in 2024.

Oil Search filed the application on behalf of itself and its primary working interest partner Repsol E&P USA, asking the division, which is part of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources, to extend the unit for five years from June 1, 2020, to June 1, 2025.

The initial unit formation and initial plan of exploration requests for Pikka were submitted to the division and ASRC in February 2014 and approved in June 2015.

The first plan of exploration, or POE, was submitted in September 2016. Annual POEs have generally run until October or November of each year, although the latest and fourth POE was extended until Jan. 31 of this year.

The unit plan of operations for the big Nanushuk project in the Pikka unit was filed with the division on July 15, followed by a request for modifications on Sept. 23, with the entire package approved Nov. 26.

On Nov. 4 Oil Search submitted the first plan of development, or POD, for Pikka for the period of Feb. 1 to Jan. 1, 2021. It was approved by the division on Dec. 11 and by ASRC on Jan. 13.

Oil Search and the previous operators, Repsol and Armstrong, have done extensive reservoir evaluation consisting of seismic, geologic and engineering studies, drilled several exploration and appraisal wells, many with sidetracks. Oil Search is currently conducting civil works operations to construct the gravel infrastructure for development of the unit area.






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