Exxon makes huge oil discovery off the coast of Nigeria

Off the coast of Nigeria, Exxon Mobil Corp. and its partners have found a reservoir that is estimated to hold between 500 million and 1 billion barrels of oil beneath 2 miles of ocean floor.

ExxonMobil announced the discovery in a news statement Thursday. The Irving, Texas-based company has a 27 percent interest in the find, in a joint venture with Chevron Nigeria Deepwater G Ltd. (27 percent interest), Total E&P Nigeria Ltd. (18 percent interest), Nexen Petroleum Deepwater Nigeria Ltd. (18 percent interest), and the Nigeria Petroleum Development Company Ltd. (10 percent interest).

ExxonMobil’s affiliate Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria drilled the Owowo-3 well to 10,410 feet in 1,890 feet of water; the field itself is contained in the Oil Prospecting License 223 and Oil Mining License 139. Originally spud Sept. 23, the Owowo-3 found about 460 feet of oil-bearing sandstone, adding to the Owowo-2 find of 515 feet, according to the company.

Nigeria’s flow oil – both offshore and onshore – has been disturbed several times in recent years by geopolitical and socioeconomic violence. In 2010, seven workers were kidnapped from an ExxonMobil oil platform. And in 2013, the International Maritime Bureau found 22 incidents of piracy and armed robbery offshore Nigeria during the first six months of the year.
Just this morning there was a report that the Nigerian "Avenger" group blew up a pipeline halting exports from a 250,000 barrel a day terminal.  The attacks appear to be part of an extortion racket against the government and the firms exporting oil.


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