Alaskan West Sak Oil field begins production

Dec 31, 1997 01:00 AM

The West Sak oil field on Alaska's North Slope began commercial production from the field's first producing well on Dec. 26.
Production from the well, which is now producing 200 bpd, is being slowly increased and is expected to reach the project's production target of 300 bpd per well.
Fifty West Sak wells - both production and injection wells - are scheduled for completion by early 1999. Work on the field began in October 1997. Nine wells have been drilled and cased and will soon be in operation.
"Our Phase 1 West Sak development programme is on budget, on time and will contribute to achieving ARCO's North Slope production goal of "No Decline After 99," said ARCO Alaska President Ken Thompson.
"This effort will develop 51 million barrels of new reserves (26 mm ARCO net) and add near term production of 4,000 bpd gross in 1998, increasing to 7,000 bpd day gross in early 1999," Thompson said.
A successful Phase 1 project will mean additional West Sak drilling. Phase 2 development of the West Sak core area would require 500 additional wells, would yield additional reserves of 400 mm barrels and would push production to 37,000 bpd in 2002 increasing to 70,000 bpd by 2005.
"Success at West Sak is dependent on our ability to develop and operate the field at low cost," Thompson said. "We're hitting our cost targets on the development side. We expect to be just as successful in our operation of the field."
Because of low cost drilling and completion technologies, and because West Sak will make extensive use of existing Kuparuk drill sites, common lines and processing centres, total estimated Phase 1 development costs are only $ 98 mm.
West Sak is a large, relatively shallow viscous oil accumulation that overlies much of the large ARCO-operated Kuparuk field. Oil in place has been estimated at more than 15 bn barrels.
The West Sak field is owned by ARCO (55 %), BP (39 %), Unocal (5 %), Mobil, and Chevron.

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