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The North Atlantic - where are the big fields hiding?

Understanding the North Atlantic opportunity
Paul Harrington
» GORE® Surveys
Graham Pritchard and Ian Vann
» Serica Energy

Full Agenda

Tuesday, October 30, 2012
The Geological Society

We would like to invite you register to attend our free half day forum in London on October 30th about where the big fields might be hiding in the North Atlantic and technologies which might help access them safely.

The event includes tools for accessing technical expertise from oil and gas experts outside your company; a case study of analysing ocean floor cores from offshore Newfoundland and Labrador; a look at offshore Nova Scotia; the case for Ireland; and using data from the West of Shetland.

Speakers include Ian Vann, formerly group vice president, exploration and business development with BP; Greg Coleman, formely group vice president HSE and security with BP, and Graham Scotton, formerly general manager of BP Angola.

Somewhat surprisingly the North Atlantic is beginning to feel like a poor cousin in exploration terms.

The South Atlantic has chalked up a series of new petroleum provinces – Deep Water Angola and Nigeria, the West Africa Transform Margin, maybe French Guiana, certainly the Santos and Campos basins of Brasil – with disappointment in the Falklands and offshore Namibia, perhaps.

In contrast, the North Atlantic has offered little recently, with next to nothing along the North American seaboard, disappointment offshore Greenland (so far), nothing much offshore Ireland, Spain and Portugal, not very much in the Norwegian Sea, modest discoveries West of the Shetlands……..

What is going on? Is it that the geoscience ‘fundamentals’ are simply not working for us in the North Atlantic or that we have not yet unravelled them?

Or, bizarrely, are the regulatory and fiscal regimes more difficult in the North?

Or is the North Atlantic simply a tougher, more hostile, place in which to contemplate a development?

If the latter two concerns predominate, then the discovery of big oil fields will change everything! Where might they be hiding?


9:30 Hamish Wilson - CEO & Founder

Welcome & Introduction

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Mr Wilson was previously founder and managing director of Paras Consulting, which was acquired by RPS Energy in October 2008. He worked as an exploration geologist at BP covering the North Sea, South East Asia and Alaska, and then became BP's project manager of corporate database development.


9:40 Brian Smart, Greg Coleman, Graham Scotton -
Future Energy Partners Ltd

21st Century Risk Management - HSE and more

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Talk Description
Frontiers such as the North Atlantic pose new risks in relation to exploration, appraisal, development, production, decommissioning and abandonment. The traditional approach of companies faced with these risks is to use their own banks of understanding, to examine what others know, to invest in the generation of new understanding, and to look over their shoulders at what other operators are doing. For companies pioneering the development of a new frontier, some of these opportunities are limited. Sourcing of relevant understanding from a diverse community is therefore key, and we look at a new way of providing access to available understanding in the context of fractured basement reservoirs.
Future Energy Partners (FEP) is a unique oil and gas advisory service which prides itself on technic
10:15 Paul Harrington -
GORE® Surveys

Analysis of preserved ocean floor cores for hydrocarbons from the east coast of Newfoundland and Labrador

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Talk Description
Over 5000 offshore ocean floor cores have been taken from the Atlantic
region of Canada. These cores are preserved and date back to the 1970's but
were never analyzed for hydrocarbons. A selection of cores dating from 2011
back to 2001 were sampled to determine if hydrocarbon signal in detectable
quantifies can be found on some of these cores. If so the scope of the
project can be expanded. Any information gained from the analysis can than
be used to help guide additional exploration efforts in areas where very
little exploration has occurred to date.
Founded in 1958, W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc. is a privately-held company headquartered in Newark,
10:50 Tea & Coffee
11:15 Hamish Wilson - CEO & Founder

Why offshore Nova Scotia?

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Mr Wilson was previously founder and managing director of Paras Consulting, which was acquired by RPS Energy in October 2008. He worked as an exploration geologist at BP covering the North Sea, South East Asia and Alaska, and then became BP's project manager of corporate database development.


11:50 Graham Pritchard and Ian Vann -
Serica Energy

The case for Ireland

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Talk Description
Forty years of sporadic petroleum exploration along the Atlantic margin of Ireland have demonstrated all the required elements of a major petroleum province including the discovery of a several large fields. However, partial success has not to date been converted into the intensity of exploration that the region may merit and Ireland remains something of "the orphan child" of exploration in Western Europe. Globally the last decade has seen major success in many areas previously written off by the industry particularly in Africa, both offshore and onshore, driven largely by innovative exploration and risk management by small and medium sized companies. In this talk we intend to evaluate the potential of this margin, examine some of the elements both technical and commercial that have slowed exploration and demonstrate that major opportunities remain to be explored in our own back-yard.
Serica Energy plc is an oil and gas exploration, development and production company with activities
12:25 Steve O'Connor - Technical Manager/Senior Geologist
Ikon GeoPressure

The Value of Regional Studies in the West of Shetland

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Talk Description
Stephen is a petroleum geologist who has worked with many types of oilfield data, particularly in the areas of reservoir quality, structural geology, fault seal and pore pressure.
He started his career working on exploration assignments for Unocal and BP/Amoco, before returning to university to undertake MSc. in Sedimentology at Reading University, studying the Clair Field, West of Shetland.

After graduating, he worked as a sedimentologist for a range of consultancies and more recently he specialized in fault seal, working for Rock Deformation Research, which included working in such areas as building structural models using Petrel, petrophysical log interpretation, analysis of fault zone properties and fluid flow on a macro to micro-scale.

His current role as Technical Manager at Ikon GeoPressure involves supervising all technical aspects of worldwide project work, including producing pore and fracture pressure profiles using direct pressure measurements, petrophysical logs and seismic velocity data and incorporating results into well plans and field-scale and regional studies.

He has published papers in areas such as lateral drainage/hydrodynamics and seal breach.

Ikon GeoPressure
Ikon GeoPressure provide global best practice in subsurface pressure analysis. Delivering consulting
13:00 Raffle prize draw, followed by lunch and refreshments

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