Operations have started on two wells at a depth of 6,400 metres about 140 km off the coast of the city of New Orleans. Linked to the Na Kika platform, one of four drilling platforms operated by BP in the Gulf of Mexico, the wells are to produce a total of 20,100 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d). BP and Anglo-Dutch Shell each hold a 50 % working interest in the Manuel development.
“Our disciplined investment in Manuel is part of our target to add 900,000 boe/d of production from new projects by the end of 2021,” said Ewan Drummond, BP Senior Vice-President of Projects, Production and Operations.
The starting point for achieving these aims was 2015 – the company planned in 2021 to launch five new projects. In addition to Manuel, these include:
- Raven – third phase of the “West Nile Delta project, with eight wells off the Egyptian coast in the Mediterranean Sea, BP is to produce 165,000 boe/d.
- KG D6 Satellite Cluster – second of three phases on the KG D6 block off the east coast of India, where, at a depth of 1,300 to 2,000 metres, the company is to produce 45,000 boe/d.
- Second phase of the southern part of the Thunder Horse field in the Gulf of Mexico where, at its peak, production is to total 50,000 boe/d.
- Zinia 2 – a project on Block 17 of the Atlantic cost of Angola, with plans to drill nine wells to a depth of 600 to 1,200 metres with a total combined capacity of 30,000 boe/d – with floating storage production and offloading units.
After 2021, BP plans to launch a further 13 offshore projects – including three in Trinidad and Tobago (Cassia, Matapal, Cypre) and two each in the Gulf of Mexico (Mad Dog Phase 2, Herschel), Angola (Platina, Palas-Astrea-Juno) and in the North Sea (Seagull, Murlach) and four more in Azerbaijan (ACE), India (KG D6. MJ), Indonesia (Tangguh) and Mauritania and Senegal (Tortue). The sum total of production will exceed 680,000 boe/d.
Offshore production has become one of the drivers of the oil and gas sector. In the period from 2021 to 2023 a total of 592 offshore project will be undertaken – an increase of 67 % compared to the period 2016-2020 (355) and 24 % greater than the period 2011-2015 (478).
This forecast was issued in March by Rystad Energy, using as a base projects in which more than 25% of its overall greenfield capex is awarded through contracts. Among the reasons for the growing popularity of offshore projects, Rystad cited a fall in oil prices which led to lower rates for hiring floating storage production and offloading vessels.