Clontarf sees growth potential at Bolivian fields

By OGJ editors

Clontarf Energy PLC sees potential for increased activity in Bolivia, where the company or its affiliates own interests in Monteagudo oil and gas field and El Dorado gas-condensate field in the Chaco basin.

Repsol YPF operates and has 30% interest in Monteagudo, which has been producing for 40 years and is in decline. Clontarf has 30%, and Petrobras and Andina each have 20%.

There is a well defined deep target in Devonian formations at 4,000 m in the block, and Total, Petrobras, and Repsol have made giant gas discoveries in the same Huamampampa and Santa Rosa formations on adjacent blocks.

Agreement has been reached and formalized with Repsol and Petrobras to sell their Monteagudo stakes, subject to normal state approvals. Operatorship will be transferred to Clontarf’s new partner, Latinoamericana de Energia, which will result in much lower operating costs and hence, profitability, for Monteagudo field.

This restructuring will also facilitate early drilling of the deep gas play. Approvals by the Bolivian government and legislature are expected by the end of first quarter 2012, Clontarf said.

Monteagudo has produced more than 38 million bbl of oil and gas from 57 wells since 1968. The area offers great potential for infill drilling and workover as well as the deeper exploration potential.

Meanwhile, YPFB Chaco is operator of El Dorado producing gas field, 90 km southeast of Santa Cruz de la Sierra. Clontarf has 10% interest in El Dorado and expects to resolve legal and financial issues with YPFB Chaco.

Clontarf, through its 100% ownership of Bolivian company Petrolex SA, has been involved in El Dorado field for more than a decade. Early drilling suggested a field in excess of 400 bcf of gas, but low gas prices frustrated exploitation plans in the early 2000s. However, YPFB Chaco has drilled more wells, constructed a modern gas processing plant, and is producing 21 MMcfd of gas and 500 b/d of condensate.

The joint venture has drilled four exploratory wells. The DRD X-1001 well, drilled in 1998 following a complete 3D seismic campaign, was a discovery well, yielding 20 MMcfd of gas and 365 b/d of condensate at 4,150-4,200 m. In 2000, the DRD X1002 confirmed the reservoir and productivity of the previous well. The DRD X1004 well in 2004 was meant to test the same reservoir, but results were inconclusive.

The DRD X1005 well in 2010 yielded 10 MMcfd of gas and 360 b/d of condensate. This exploration success is now being assessed but will certainly extend the estimated field and expand reserves, Clontarf said. Later there was a successful reentry of the DRD X-1003 well that had previously been viewed as dry.

The field is producing a combined 15 MMcfd and more than 300 b/d of condensate from the DRD X-1001, DRD X-1002, and DRD X-1005 wells.  The processing plant is nearly new, installed originally for Percheles field in 2008 and applied to El Dorado after Percheles watered out. Plant capacity is 35 MMcfd.

Two further production wells, which include exploration and reservoir confirmation objectives, are scheduled for 2011 and are expected to result in the field reaching its targeted production level of 35 MMcfd plus condensate and natural gas liquids.

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