NEW ORLEANS -- Energy Partners' exploitation well in the eastern core area on the Gulf of Mexico Shelf has uncovered bypassed oil potential that exceeded its pre-drill expectations, according to the company.
The exploitation well is the first of several wells planned for the rig in the East Bay field. The well, a development sidetrack located in one of the main fault blocks in the field, has found bypassed oil, penetrating 7 hydrocarbon bearing sands for a total of 120 ft (37 m) of apparent high quality oil pay. The well is currently being completed and is expected to be on line early in 2Q 2008, with an expected initial gross production rate of 400 to 800 b/d of oil. EPL holds a 100% working interest in the primary producing areas of this field.
EPL sees at least one more location in this current fault block, with other fault blocks containing multiple oil-bearing sands to study in the coming months. The company also plans to test a similar concept identified last year in a nearby fault block believed to contain bypassed oil. This test will be conducted through the drilling of its first well in a pilot horizontal drilling program scheduled to begin following the completion of the sidetrack well.
"This is exciting news for this 100%-owned core property," says Stephen D. Longon, senior VP of drilling, engineering, and production for EPL. "We are looking at this field with a renewed focus and have developed a three-pronged strategy to unlock this field's potential. This strategy includes enhancing oil production in the field through infill drilling and other techniques, increasing the profitability of the field through reductions in the field's lease operating and drilling costs, and finally, decreasing the maintenance requirements of the field through an active plugging and abandonment program."