Northern Petroleum Reports 'Encouraging' Gas Testing Operations

Northern Petroleum Plc announces that its wholly owned subsidiary, Northern Petroleum Nederland B.V. has been flaring gas as part of a program of well remediation workovers followed by hydraulic fracturing of the reservoir formation to confirm and possibly improve gas production flow rates.

The flares look impressive to onlookers. Coming to a reliable fully informed opinion takes a little time. The wells are first flowed to clean up residual liquids and solids from the fracture operations then flow test measurements taken at different pressures. The results are then analyzed to provide better gas and condensate production rate forecasts for confirmation of development design and sales contracts.

The on-site works and flow tests have been completed at Wijk en Aalburg and at Brakel, where a second flare stack was installed to take the volume and reduce noise and heat radiation. Down-hole works have also been conducted at Grolloo to prepare the well for hydraulic fracturing operations.

Northern will announce a summary of the Wijk en Aalburg and Brakel results when the analyses are complete in order to avoid over optimistic interpretation of any flow rates from selected parts of the test period.

In early 2009 this five field program of work will move on to the Geesbrug and Ottoland fields.

The program is being undertaken to strengthen confidence in production forecasts prior to negotiating gas sales contracts. Production forecasts will only be increased once the required confidence levels are established.

Subject to finalizing the EBN participation in all the licenses, the interests in all five fields are Northern Petroleum Nederland, (Operator) 45%; EBN, 40%; Dyas, 15%.

"We are pleased to be moving ahead now with the five fields with existing production wells and must look forward to the test results with a degree of optimism," said Derek Musgrove, managing director of Northern Petroleum. "The process of obtaining permissions from numerous authorities has required patience from management and shareholders alike. It is not over, but it is satisfying to be conducting operations again. We are endeavoring to be as informative and helpful as possible to our immediate neighbors in The Netherlands and will take into account any concerns and difficulties our operations might cause. This is important as we intend to be a good neighbor. We are grateful for their intelligent understanding of our operations."