Venture Production reported that the Andrea well 48/15b-10 (Venture 100%) commenced drilling from the Noble Julie Robertson jackup drilling rig on June 6, 2009 and entered the reservoir 60 feet high to prognosis on July 10, 2009 confirming gas bearing sands. The well was designed to test a Leman sandstone and cores are currently being taken to confirm reservoir quality, prior to drilling to total depth ("TD") and testing the well.
Andrea, which is located in the 'A' Fields production hub, has the potential to be Venture's largest discovery to date with pre-drill recoverable resource expectations of between 3 and 44 million barrels of oil equivalent ('MMboe'). Although reservoir quality needs to be proven before any resources could be deemed commercial, confirmation of gas bearing sands eliminates the primary 'trap effectiveness' risk and it is anticipated that within approximately two weeks the remaining critical information required to confirm estimated recoverable resources will be available.
At March 31, 2009, in its total proven and probable reserves of 240 MMboe, Venture had no booked reserves associated with either Marram (contingent resources) or Andrea (prospective resources). In addition, this figure did not take into account the impact of either the successful second Cygnus appraisal well or the successful Kew appraisal well.
Commenting on the news, Chief Executive Mike Wagstaff said, "As the largest holder of net exploration acreage in the UK North Sea, the continuing success of our 2009 drilling campaign underlines the breadth of the exploration and appraisal opportunities in our portfolio. Following extensive seismic re-processing activity on the Andrea prospect we're delighted that we have confirmed further potential gas resources in our core 'A' Fields hub. On a risked basis the Andrea well was one of the top opportunities in our 2009/10 drilling program and the information so far is extremely encouraging. With the opportunity being so close to existing infrastructure, rapidly unlocking the value of any discovery should be relatively straightforward. We will provide a further update as soon as the remaining well evaluation data is acquired. On completion at Andrea the Noble Julie Robertson will move to the East Annabel extension well, also within the 'A' Fields hub, targeting another substantial low risk opportunity."
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