Cairn 'Remains Encouraged' after Greenland Failure

The following operational update relates to Cairn's 2011 exploration drilling campaign offshore Greenland where drilling operations were extended to complete activities on the last two wells in the Atammik block.

AT7-1 Well: Atammik Block, South Ungava Area

The Leiv Eiriksson (UDW semisub) has completed drilling the AT7-1 well in the Atammik block, located in 909 meters (m) of water and 202 kilometers (km) offshore Nuuk. Following the results from a Modular Dynamic Tester (MDT) program, the well has now been plugged and abandoned.

The well had encountered a 113m gross interval with 53m of net reservoir quality sands of Cretaceous age, although the lithology of the highly permeable zone of losses remains unknown.

Severe mud losses and poor hole conditions have hampered the full evaluation of this interval which was thought to be of potential interest because of oil and gas shows.

An MDT program recovered fluid samples to surface and those samples examined at the rig revealed only mud filtrate and failed to establish hydrocarbons. A set of sealed MDT samples have been sent to laboratories in the United Kingdom for further analysis, together with samples of the gases recovered from gas influx events during operations. While interpretation of MDT pressures indicate that the reservoir in AT-7 is water filled, further evaluation is required to confirm the origin of the hydrocarbon shows.

AT2-1 Well: Atammik Block, South Ungava Area

The Ocean Rig Corcovado (UDW drillship) has completed the AT2-1 well, the fifth well in the 2011 exploration drilling campaign, located in a water depth of 1,045m and approximately 181km offshore Nuuk and 46km from AT7-1. The well reached Total Depth (TD) at 4,847m in Cretaceous sediments having encountered minor hydrocarbon shows. The well has now been plugged and abandoned.

Baffin Bay

A 3D seismic program covering 1,500km2 acquired on the Pitu block in Baffin Bay is currently being processed with fully migrated results expected in 2012. The results of the shallow borehole geo-chemical analysis confirmed micro seepages of oil and gas in the immediate vicinity of the main structures identified on the previous 2D seismic data.

Southern Greenland

The 3D seismic data acquired over parts of southern Greenland is currently being processed and fully migrated results are expected in H1 2012.

2012 Program

Further evaluation will be undertaken to review and assess the exploration program over the last two years as active farm out discussions over select areas continue for future operations in Greenland. An additional 3D seismic survey over the Lady Franklin and Atammik region is under consideration for 2012 with the potential for further drilling in the West Greenland basins in subsequent years.

Simon Thomson, Chief Executive, Cairn Energy PLC said, "The first phase of Cairn's exploration program in Greenland has encountered oil and gas shows across multiple basins and now reservoir-quality sands in the Atammik block. Whilst we have yet to make a commercial discovery we remain encouraged that all of the ingredients for success are in evidence.

"Evaluation of data across Cairn's multiple blocks is ongoing against a backdrop of active farm-out discussions for selected areas."


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