Connacher's Great Divide expansion okayed

Connacher Oil & Gas Ltd. has received approval from the Energy Resources Conservation Board of Alberta for an expansion of thermal production of bitumen from its delayed Great Divide Oil Sands acreage 70 km south of Fort McMurray.

The steam-assisted gravity drainage development will add 24,000 b/d of production capacity to Connacher’s Algar SAGD project, one of two existing Great Divide projects with approvals to produce 10,000 b/d of bitumen each. At midyear Algar and the other project, Pod One, were producing about 6,000 b/d each, according to a June presentation to investors.

The new project will expand capacity of the Algar central processing facility to 34,000 b/d and have two phases of drilling, one involving 73 well pairs from 12 pads and another involving 83 well pairs from 19 pads.

In February, Connacher adjusted start-up targets for the expansion to 2014 for the first 12,000 b/d phase of production and to 2016 for the second phase from 2013 planned initially (OGJ Online, Feb. 22, 2012).

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