Kenya's Hydrocarbon Reserves

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Tullow Oil in a joint venture with Africa Oil and Marathon Oil struck oil reserves in the southern part of the Tertiary Rift Basin in Turkana county, a region borderning South Sudan to the North and Uganda to the West.[1] Apache discovered natural gas in the offshore Mbawa-1 well.[2]

Hydrocarbon Reserves

According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), Kenya has no proven hydrocarbon reserves.[3] In 2012, Tullow Oil in a joint venture with Africa Oil made two significant oil discoveries in the Tertiary Rift Basin. The first at Ngamia-1 well, in Block 10 BB, and the second at Twiga South-1 well located in Block 13T.[4] This was followed by further successes at Etuko-1 well (Block 10BB) in July 2013 and at Ekales-1 well (Block 13T) in September 2013, for which, according to both the companies, flow test will be conducted at the end of the year 2013 in order to determine the production potential of both wells.[5] [6] Additionally, on 22 November 2013 Tullow announced a further find in Block 13T adding to the string of successful explorations in the Tertiary Rift Basin.[7] The find was in the Agete-1 exploration well where the company says it "discovered and sampled moveable oil with an estimated 100 metres of net oil pay in good quality sandstone reservoirs",[8]. "Net oil pay" refers here to the depth of the rock formation from which the discovered oil can be extracted.[9] It is thought that Blocks 10BB and 13T contain 280 million barrels (MMbbl) and 87 MMbbl of gross contingent oil resources respectively.[10]

In September 2013, CEO of Africa Oil Keith Hill announced that the find passes the threshold of commercial viability[11] while Tullow Oil's 2013 half-year report states that the discovery is "a crucial step towards establishing commercial viability".[12]

In September 2013, Africa Oil indicated that the Tertiary Rift Basin might contain a total of 20.1 billion barrels of oil[13] while according to Bloomberg, Tullow Oil Operations in Kenya claims that Kenya’s deposits may top 10 billion barrels.[14]

There is speculation that the Anza Basin in Eastern Kenya may contain even more oil than Western Kenya, where Tullow Oil's discoveries have gained global media attention.[15]

With respect to gas, Apache discovered gas at the offshore Mbawa-1 well in 2012. However, the company has since plugged the well after failing to find commercial quantities of natural gas or crude oil.[16] In October 2013 the company announced that it gives up its hunt for hydrocarbons in Kenya.[17]

Production

According to Tullow Oil's Chief Operating Officer Paul McDade, the company plans to start pumping oil as early as in 2014. [18]

References

  1. Tullow Oil plc Key statistics”. Tullow Oil plc, 1 October 2013.
  2. Emerging East Africa”. Energy Information Agency, 23 May 2013.
  3. Kenya: Country Analysis Note”. Energy Information Agency, April 2013.
  4. Tullow Oil plc Key statistics”.Tullow Oil plc, 1 October 2013.
  5. "Etuko-1 find boosts Kenya’s oil prospects”. BusinessTEch, 31 July 2013.
  6. "Tullow, Africa Oil to test Ekales oil discovery in Kenya”. Oil and Gas Journal, 26 September 2013.
  7. "Agete-1 Oil Discovery in Kenya”. Tullow Oil plc, 22 November 2013.
  8. "Agete-1 Oil Discovery in Kenya”. Tullow Oil plc, 22 November 2013.
  9. "Formation Evaluation PETE 663”. Ayers and Schechter, September 2010.
  10. Reserves/Resources”.Africa Oil Corp, 31 July 2013.
  11. "Kenya oil estimates now 368m barrels", Daily Nation, 3 September 2013.
  12. "Tullow Oil plc 2013 Half-Yearly Results", Tullow Oil plc, 31 July 2013.
  13. "Explorer confirms increased Kenya oil reserves”. Africa Review, 4 September 2013.
  14. "Kenya From Nowhere Plans East Africa’s First Oil Exports: Energy”. Bloomberg, 20 August 2013.
  15. "A Marketing Feature from Taipan Resources: International oil stocks finding success", Financial Post, 23 October 2013.
  16. Emerging East Africa”. Energy Information Agency, 23 May 2013.
  17. Apache Corp. Says Quits Kenyan Offshore Oil Block”. Reuters, 9 October 2013.
  18. "Kenya From Nowhere Plans East Africa’s First Oil Exports: Energy”. Bloomberg, 20 August 2013.