Providing coverage of Alaska and northern Canada's oil and gas industry
September 2023

Vol. 28, No.39 Week of September 24, 2023

AOGCC approves Granite Point gas pool

Hilcorp requested pool, estimates 40-100 bcf of gas lies above oil; wells to be drilled from Bruce Platform beginning this fall

Kristen Nelson

Petroleum News

The Granite Point unit primarily produces oil, and two Granite Point oil pools have been defined by the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission in pool rules, the Granite Point Middle Kenai Oil Pool and the Granite Point Hemlock Oil Pool.

There is also natural gas production and in March operator Hilcorp Alaska requested that the commission define the Granite Point Gas Pool, telling the commission in a June 6 hearing on the request that the company believes there is a sizeable gas accumulation at Granite Point, some 40-100 billion cubic feet of natural gas.

In a Sept. 19 order the commission has approved definition of the Granite Point Gas Pool, GPGP).

Pool rules define the vertical and map extent of a pool and establish rules modifying statewide requirements, making for more efficient operation while continuing to protect underground freshwater, correlative rights and requiring safe and environmentally sound operations, AOGCC said.

The gas would be produced from the Bruce platform and the commission said the pool area is predominately in the Granite Point unit, but also partially extends onto two state leases outside the unit boundary.

Hilcorp proposed that the top of the GPGP be defined as 3,095 feet measured depth -- at the first consistent coal bed -- and the base of the pool as 7,725 feet measured depth, coinciding with the top of the Granite Point Middle Kenai Oil Pool. References are to the Granite Point No. 1 well, which defines the oil pools.

GPGP is in the upper portion of the Tyonek formation, AOGCC said.

Bruce platform

The commission said one leg of the Bruce platform has seven to eight available slots for drilling, optimizing drilling for the shallower reserves, while redrilling of existing wells will also be evaluated.

Because development at Granite Point has focused on deeper oil pools, limited information has been gathered on the shallower gas pool area and Hilcorp told the commission that it plans to do as much data gathering as possible when drilling the new wells.

The company said the Spartan 151 rig would be moved to the Bruce platform for drilling, as there no rig on the platform.

Drilling is anticipated to begin this fall, Hilcorp said in its application for the pool definition, and is part of its "commitment to extend natural gas production from legacy offshore production facilities throughout Cook Inlet."

There are three platforms at Granite Point: Anna, Bruce and Granite Point, all installed in 1966.

Hilcorp acquired Chevron/Union Oil Company of California's Cook Inlet assets in 2012.

In July, the most recent month for which AOGCC production data is available, Granite Point averaged 2,223 barrels per day of crude, 27.1% of inlet production, and 3,247 thousand cubic feet per day of natural gas, 1.6% of July inlet production.

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