Photo: Liberator field; Source: i3 Energy

i3 Energy abandons ‘sub-commercial’ Liberator licence

Independent oil and gas company i3 Energy has relinquished its UK North Sea Licence P.1987, which contains the Liberator field, after determining that the development would not be commercially viable.

Liberator field location - i3 Energy
Liberator field location; Source: i3 Energy

Located in Blocks 13/23d and 13/23c, the Liberator field was discovered in November 2013.

The field is located in the North Sea, some 64 kilometres north-east of Aberdeen. The Greater Liberator Area consists of the Liberator oil field discovered by well 13/23d-8 and the Liberator West extension.

i3 Energy said on Monday that the UKCS Licence P.1987 reached the end of its two-year second term on 31 December 2020 and, as per the terms of the licence, it has been agreed with the OGA that it be relinquished.

To move into the third term of the licence, an approved Field Development Plan would have been required, i3 Energy explained.

However, the Licence P.1987, which encompasses UK Block 13/23d contains contingent resources which have been evaluated as sub-commercial by i3 and in an ‘independent competent person’ report and as such do not represent a viable commercial development.

i3 may choose to re-apply for Licence P.1987 licence in the future if justified by its appraisal of the Liberator West / Minos High prospective areas and/or the Serenity discovery.

According to the company, the relinquishment will result in a significant saving in licence fees whilst i3 progresses its appraisal of resources on its adjoining P.2358 Licence.

This relinquishment has no impact on Licence P.2358, which started its four-year second term on 30 September 2020 and contains the vast majority of the resources and potential reserves in the company’s UK acreage.

Licence P.2358 includes the Serenity discovery and the Liberator West and Minos High prospective areas, which will be the focus of plans for appraisal and exploration drilling.

The preliminary well results for the Serenity discovery were consistent with i3 Energy’s pre-drill estimate of 197 MMbbls STOIIP for the entire Serenity closure within the company’s license area.

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