Total is in the process of drilling in the deap sea of South Africa’s coast, and they expect to find quite a bit of promise. According to sources close to the deapsea drilling project, this drilling could result in a “game-changer not only for Total, but also for the country”. Reuters recently reported that Total is days away from receiving results.

About the Deapsea drilling project

The area Total is drilling in is called BrulPadda (Afrikaans for “Bullfrog”), found about 175km off the coast of Mossel Bay. Total, however, is not the only shareholder of the area. Qatar Petroleum, Canadian firm Africa Oil Corp and Canadian Natural Resources are also shareholders in the Brulpadda field.

According to Keith Hill, CEO of the Canadian firm Africa Oil Corp, “The outlook for finding hydrocarbons (in the Brulpadda field) is extremely high. The question is whether it is gas or oil, and whether it is a good-quality reservoir”. Hydrocarbons are organic compounds that are made of only hydrogen and carbon atoms. They are found in many places, including crude oil and natural gas. They are important for fuels, fragrances, detergents and many other things. Hill goes further to say that Brulpadda could deliver 1.5 to 3 billion barrels – much higher compared to initial forecasts of 500m barrels. Africa Oil has found that there were 5 high-quality prospects found in the field.

According to the US oil and gas data supplier, Drilling Info, “Although the shallow waters are well-explored in parts, South Africa’s deeper waters have remained almost untouched; only one well has previously been drilled in more than 500m water depth”.  This is primarily due to the very strong Agulhas current. Total is expected to reach 1,432m deep in the Brulpadda field.

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