Exxon Gets Green Light to Expand Hebron Offshore Oilfield
ExxonMobil has secured approval from its Canadian regulators for the expansion of the Hebron offshore oil field, adding an estimated 165 million barrels to the project's reserves.
Exxon asked for permission to add new wells to the development plan for Hebron, based on recent surveys and drilling results. The area adds new strata in the Jeanne d'Arc Formation, which were not covered by the original plan. According to Exxon, expanding will "enable optimization of the development and provide the maximum chance of economic success while reducing waste."
The Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB) has issued formal approval of the expansion plan. In a notice, the board said that Exxon was doing its part to reduce emissions from production.
No extra equipment or facilities are expected, nor new drilling installations.
Hebron was discovered in the 1990s, approved for development in 2008 and produced its first oil in 2017. The gravity-based platform sits about 200 miles off the coast in about 300 feet of water, and is rated for about 150,000 barrels per day of capacity. Exxon is the operator with a 35 percent stake, along with Chevron (30 percent), Suncor (21 percent), Equinor and Nalcor.
Offshore oil and gas is economically important to the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, and is a rare engine of growth for a region with limited industrialization. It makes up about one-quarter of the province's GDP and about 40 percent of its exports.