TotalEnergies abandons deepwater Gulf of Mexico project to pursue better ones

French energy major TotalEnergies is withdrawing from its operated project located in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico to focus on better opportunities to allocate its capital.


TotalEnergies informed on Thursday that its affiliate, TotalEnergies E&P USA, decided not to sanction and so to withdraw from the North Platte deepwater project in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.

The decision not to continue with the project was taken as the company has better opportunities of allocation of its capital within its global portfolio, TotalEnergies explained.

TotalEnergies who held a 60 per cent operated interest in North Platte, alongside its joint-interest owner Equinor (40 per cent) has duly notified its partner and the relevant authorities of its immediate withdrawal from the project, and of its resignation as the operator. This will be effective following a short transition period to ensure an orderly hand-over of operatorship.

The North Platte field straddles four blocks of the Garden Banks area, 275 kilometres off the coast of Louisiana in approximately 1,300 meters of water. The reservoir is of high quality, both in porosity and permeability, with thickness in places exceeding 1,200 meters. The discovery was made in 2012.

TotalEnergies started the front-end engineering and design (FEED) for the North Platte discovery in December 2019. Engineering company Worley was working on the FEED for the development under a contract awarded in early 2020. The final investment decision was expected in 2021.

The development was supposed to include a semi-submersible floating production unit (FPU) in water depths of over 1,300 meters. The development plan was based on eight subsea wells and two subsea drilling bases connected via two production loops to a newbuild, lightweight FPU. The production was supposed to be exported through existing oil and gas subsea networks.

Oil production at the plateau level was expected to average 75,000 barrels per day and the output was supposed to include associated gas.

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TotalEnergies last month also decided to withdraw from its operations in Myanmar without any financial compensation amid a worsening situation following a military coup in the country in February 2021. TotalEnergies’ partner in Myanmar, Chevron, also confirmed its exit from the country.

Australia’s Woodside followed suit with an exit from the A-6 Joint Venture as joint operator and participating interests in exploration permits AD-1 and AD-8.

The French energy major has also recently sold a third of its interest in the Greater Laggan Area (GLA) producing gas fields and associated infrastructure.

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