Cyprus and ExxonMobil on Thursday announced a gas find estimated between 5-8 trillion cubic feet (tcf) in an offshore field inside the island’s exclusive economic zone.
The discovery was made in the Glafcos (Glaucus) 1 well in Block 10 of the EEZ.
“Based on preliminary interpretation of the well data, the discovery could represent an in-place natural gas resource of approximately 5 trillion to 8 trillion cubic feet (142 billion to 227 billion cubic metres). Further analysis in the coming months will be required to better determine the resource potential,” the company said in a statement.
“These are encouraging results in a frontier exploration area,” said Steve Greenlee, president of ExxonMobil Exploration Company. “The potential for this newly discovered resource to serve as an energy source for regional and global markets will be evaluated further.”
According to the company, the well encountered a gas-bearing reservoir of approximately 436 feet (133 metres).
The well was safely drilled to 4,200 metres depth in 2,063 metres of water.
Glafcos was the second of a two-well drilling programme in Block 10. The first well, Delphine-1, did not encounter commercial quantities of hydrocarbons, the company said.
This is the second big find following Noble Energy’s discovery of 4.5 tcf in 2011 in the Aphrodite field in Block 12.
Speaking at a press conference in Nicosia, energy minister Giorgos Lakkotrypis said Glafcos is the largest discovery so far discovered in the EEZ and according to official data one of the greatest discoveries in the world in recent years.
“The results,” he added, “demonstrate the potential of our EEZ because it is a high-quality reservoir”.
ExxonMobil’s Vice-President for Europe, Russia, Asia, the Pacific and the Middle East, Tristan Aspray said he was very encouraged by the discovery and added that in the coming months, there would be an appraisal drilling, in order to determine the full potential of the field.
Block 10 is 635,554 acres (2,572 square kilometres). ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Cyprus (Offshore) Limited is operator and holds 60 per cent interest in the block. Qatar Petroleum International Upstream OPC holds 40 per cent interest.