Providing coverage of Alaska and northern Canada's oil and gas industry
November 2017

Vol. 22, No. 45 Week of November 05, 2017

S Miluveach expansion application amended

BRPC adds 1,920-acre tract, expansion now 21,472 acres, unit would be 30,432 acres; 4th POD amended to add N Tarn 1A reentry work

Kristen Nelson

Petroleum News

Brooks Range Petroleum Corp. has amended its fourth plan of development for the Southern Miluveach unit on the North Slope to include re-entry of the North Tarn 1A well this year. Citing poor economic conditions, the company moved most of the work in its POD for 2017, the fourth, to its fifth proposed POD for 2018. It has also amended its application to expand the unit with the addition of an additional tract.

The amendment to the fourth POD added plans to re-enter the North Tarn 1A well (see story in Oct. 22 issue) and conduct a flow test following hydraulic stimulation.

In approving the amendment for the fourth POD, James Beckham, deputy director of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Oil and Gas, said the amendment “adds a drilling commitment that, if successful, could provide a basis for the unit extending past its December 31, 2017 expiration date.”

He said BRPC had previously indicated that it hopes to certify the North Tarn 1A well as capable of producing in paying quantities for purposes of an automatic unit extension, but said the division has advised the company “that in addition to well certification, it will need to either be producing from the well or able to produce and continuing to conduct operations under an approved POD.”

Work in fourth POD not completed

BRPC submitted its fifth POD for Southern Miluveach Oct. 23.

In reporting on activities under the fourth POD, BRPC said it refined drilling plans and procedures for managed pressure drilling and advanced subsurface evaluation of the Kuparuk “C” and “A” sands, and has a reentry, fracture stimulation and test of North Tarn No. 1A underway, with requests for proposals solicited and received for North Slope installation work.

But, the company said, plans under the fourth POD in general remained in “warm standby” during the term of that POD because of continued low oil prices and difficult economic conditions.

The majority of the fourth plan was not accomplished: A drilling rig was not commissioned to drill development wells because a processing facility is not available. The company did not re-engage with engineering contractors or engage procurement contractors for remaining equipment and services because of continued adverse economic conditions, nor did it solicit RFPs for fabrication work or fabricate remaining modules. Other elements on hold from the fourth POD include installation of additional piles, completion of the tie-in to Alpine and installation of cross-country pipelines.

Alaska-fabricated modules were not installed, nor were Canada-fabricated modules set and tied-in.

And oil production will not begin in December 2017 because the processing facilities are not complete.

Fifth POD

The fifth POD includes long-range proposed development activities, “including plans to delineate all underlying oil or gas reservoirs, to bring the reservoirs into production, and to maintain and enhance production once established,” the company said.

Facilities for the Southern Miluveach unit include a central processing facility with a 15,000 barrel per day capacity, drill site facilities, two cross-country pipelines, non-process infrastructure including buildings and equipment, a communications tower and related infrastructure and up to nine production wells and 17 injection wells.

The company also said it plans to explore or delineate any land in the unit not included in a participating area.

Details of proposed operations for at least one year following submission of the plan include fabrication of remaining modules beginning this coming January and continuing through December; installation of all remaining on-pad piles in the first quarter of 2018; ConocoPhillips Alaska-pipeline tie-in work in the fourth quarter of 2018 or the first quarter of 2019; cross-country pipeline installation in the fourth quarter of 2018 or the first quarter of 2019; first Alaska-fabricated modules would arrive on the Slope in June and the last Alaska-fabricated modules would arrive for installation in December 2018.

Canada-fabricated modules would arrive via sealift in August 2018 with installation complete in August and September of 2018.

A 60-90 day system-wide functional check-out followed by commissioning and start-up would lead to first oil in the first quarter of 2019.

Unit expansion

BRPC applied for an expansion of the Southern Miluveach unit in June, requesting an expansion along the west, north and east of the existing unit.

In October, the company amended the request, adding an additional lease, 1,920 acres, to the proposed expansion area, bringing the total proposed expansion area to some 21,472 acres in 12 state oil and gas leases.

The expanded unit would contain 30,432 acres. The lease added to the expansion request is a noncontiguous lease to the west of the unit.

The company said it planned to develop the expansion area and process the recovered hydrocarbons through the future Mustang facility to maintain maximum throughput. An additional drill site would be installed which would accommodate up to 40 wells, 20 producers and 20 injectors, with produced fluids transported to the Mustang pad via a 20-inch multiphase pipeline.

BRPC operates the Southern Miluveach unit on behalf of working interest owners CaraCol Petroleum LLC, TP North Slope Development, MEP Alaska LLC, Ramshorn Investments Inc., AVCG LLC, Mustang Road LLC and MOC1 LLC.

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