Zephyr Energy PLC (AIM, ZPHR, OTCQB :ZPHRF) announced that it had suspended drilling operations at its Paradox project well to ensure safety after a large and unexpected influx in hydrocarbons from an apparently natural fracture network.
Investors were told by the company that the State 36-2 LNW CC well reached a depth of approximately 9,598 feet. The well came across the fracture network, and the hydrocarbons were safely diverted to the surface.
It is currently analyzing all options for safe completion of the well. This could include running production casing or completing the well without drilling further. The lateral section was not completed and fracking would not be necessary.
“We’ve planned for years to artificially stimulate reservoir to increase hydrocarbon production from well, but we knew that encountering natural fracture networks was both a drilling danger and a feature that could significantly improve the overall productivity of well,” stated Colin Harrington, chief executive at Zephyr Energy.
“All necessary precautions and procedures were in place in case the well encountered a natural fracture network that was too pressured. While we are still in the early stages of evaluation, it is important to note that previous wells in Paradox Basin that successfully targeted natural fractures were prolific production wells.
Harrington said: “I want you to know that safety is our number one priority and that we are committed to maintaining a safe operating environment.”
“I would like to point out that the operations team has had to deal with a very challenging drilling environment over the past two-months. This included significant weather impacts and mechanical problems from the historic atmospheric river system running over and from California.
“While it can be frustrating to wait for isolation, we now have hydrocarbon presence, significant reservoir pressure, and the existence of a highly permeable network of natural fractures at this location. These are all encouraging signs for an economically and productive well.”