Devon and Petro-Canada Find Gas in Mackenzie Delta

Devon Energy Corp. and Petro-Canada announced significant natural gas flows at the Tuk M-18 well. The well is located about 15 miles south of Tuktoyaktuk in the Mackenzie Delta of Canada's Northwest Territories. The well was drilled approximately 9,850 feet into the Cretaceous Kamik sands.

M-18 was tested at restricted rates up to 30 million cubic feet of natural gas per day and has estimated recoverable reserve potential of 200 to 300 billion cubic feet. It has estimated sustained deliverability of about 60 to 80 million cubic feet per day. The Devon-operated well is owned 50 percent by Devon and 50 percent by Petro-Canada as part of the companies' multi-year Mackenzie Delta partnership.

"This well firmly establishes Devon and Petro-Canada as legitimate Mackenzie Delta producers with proven reserves," said John Richels, president of Devon Canada. "These results are very encouraging and bode well for additional drilling next winter."

Three exploratory wells -- Kurk M-15, Tuk B-02 and Kugpik L-46 -- were drilled in the Mackenzie Delta by the partner companies this winter and last. "Overall, this winter's drilling program was a great success from an operational perspective," said Richels. "Drilling and completions were conducted ahead of schedule and under budget, using technologies that were not previously available. While hydrocarbons were encountered at Tuk B-02, it was abandoned following drilling and testing."

"In Kurk M-15 we perforated several zones with gas shows, but didn't find anything in commercially viable quantities," said Graeme Phipps, Petro-Canada vice-president, exploration. "Kugpik L-46 was also unsuccessful; however, by drilling these wells we advanced our knowledge of the regional prospectivity, which will benefit our future drilling program. "Chances of success are always less with wildcat wells, but we're still confident in the area's gas potential," Phipps added.

Devon and Petro-Canada continue to plan next year's drilling and exploration program with the objective of being able to secure pipeline space when Mackenzie Delta gas is eventually tied into North American markets. Devon and Petro-Canada hold combined rights to more than one million acres in the Mackenzie Delta -- the largest landholding in the industry.