Shell hits oil at new Gulf of Mexico discovery

07 16, 2014 by The Times-Picayune

Shell has made a major oil discovery in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico about 75 miles offshore, the company said on Tuesday (July 15). Shell predicts the new find holds 100 million barrels of oil equivalent.

The Rydberg discovery is Shell's third successful well in the Norphlet area, a deepwater oil and gas reservoir located in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. Shell has spent more than a decade exploring the area.

In a statement, Shell Upstream Americas Director Marvin Odum said the discoveries "represent the emergence of another hub for Shell's deepwater activities" in the Gulf.

Together with Shell's two previous Norphlet discoveries, named Appomattox and Vicksburg, the latest discovery brings the area's total oil potential to more than 700 million barrels of oil equivalent.

Shell partnered with Ecopetrol America Inc. of Colombia and Nexen, a Canadian oil and gas company, to drill the Rydberg well.

Ecopetrol owns a 28.5 percent share in the discovery, while Nexen owns a 14.3 percent share.

Shell is still completing test results on the Rydberg well, but it's already getting ready to continue drilling.

The company plans to drill another exploratory well targeting the Norphlet reservoir located about 10 miles from its Appomattox well.