Nalcor leapfrogs smaller partners in Hibernia South

Moira Baird
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Oil & Gas

The final numbers are in, and Nalcor Energy's 10 per cent equity stake in Hibernia South has sent ripples through all the ownership interests held by the oilfield partners.

In one part of Hibernia South, the provincial energy corporation is now the fourth-largest partner behind ExxonMobil, Chevron Canada and Suncor Energy.

The final numbers are in, and Nalcor Energy's 10 per cent equity stake in Hibernia South has sent ripples through all the ownership interests held by the oilfield partners.

In one part of Hibernia South, the provincial energy corporation is now the fourth-largest partner behind ExxonMobil, Chevron Canada and Suncor Energy.

For a $30-million investment, Nalcor gets ownership in most of Hibernia South and pays its share of future development costs.

The provincial government also gets an enhanced royalty scheme when world crude prices exceed US$50 per barrel, and the top royalty rate is now 50 per cent in most of the southern extension.

Then, things get complicated.

Hibernia South consists of four main areas, and Nalcor has an equity stake in three of them. The four areas are:

AA Block located in the original oilfield known as production licence 1001, which has pumped oil since 1997. (Nalcor has no equity stake in this block.)

Three smaller blocks also located in production licence 1001 - KK, GG and NN blocks.

Production licence (PL) 1005.

Exploration licence (EL) 1093.

Oil in blocks KK, GG and NN straddles the boundaries of both PL 1005 and EL 1093. So, Nalcor opted for what's called a beneficial working interest in those blocks.

"That allows us actually to get on the licence, to enjoy some of the benefits on the licence and to shed some of the liabilities on the licence," said Jim Keating, vice-president of Nalcor's oil and gas division.

"That's why there's a difference."

Nalcor also opted not to take an equity stake in the AA Block, which started production of its estimated 48 million barrels of oil in November.

"It was a block that was wholly contained in PL 1001. So, no part of it spilled into new licences," said Keating.

"We were mostly interested in the new oil. When the energy plan says we're going to be in for 10 per cent of developments, it's really go-forward (developments)."

mbaird@thetelegram.com




HIBERNIA SOUTH PARTNERS BY THE NUMBERS

Here are the new ownership stakes for all the partners in most of Hibernia South since Nalcor Energy finalized its 10 per cent equity stake in the oilfield. The partners are not the same for the main two parcels of land in Hibernia South.
Exploration Licence 1093 Current Previous
ExxonMobil Canada 25.3125 % 28.125 %
Chevron Canada 24.1875 % 26.875 %
Suncor Energy 18 % 20 %
Nalcor Energy 10 % 0
Canada Hibernia Holding Corp. 7.65 % 8.5 %
Murphy Oil 5.85 % 6.5 %
ExxonMobil Canada Hibernia Holding Co. 4.5 % 5 %
Statoil Canada 4.5 % 5 %
Production Licence 1005 Current Previous
ExxonMobil Canada 22.5 % 25 %
Chevron Canada 22.5 % 25 %
Suncor Energy 22.5 % 25 %
Statoil Canada 22.5 % 25 %
Nalcor Energy 10 % 0
Source: Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board

Organizations: ExxonMobil, Chevron Canada 24.1875, Suncor Energy Statoil BY THE NUMBERS Canada Hibernia Holding

Geographic location: Hibernia South, Canada

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Comments

Comments

Recent comments

  • Manuel
    July 02, 2010 - 13:32

    Why shouldn't we take from the oil companies? All they have done since the war is triple the price of fuel.
    It didn't cost them more to get it. It cost the same,they just knew they could milk us all and get away with it.
    They come in to alberta and make a fortune and give the government squat compared to what they are making. Kill wildlife in the area and cover it up.
    They know we need oil as it is our main source of fuel.they inflate the price and all live lie kings while the average person struggles to put fuel in his car because opec doesnt want to increase production. Leave prices high,they get rich and you get nothing except a slap in the face with the next price hike.
    OilBusters you should go to alberta and stay there. It almost seems like you work for one of the companies that wants the stake nalcor has.

  • KL
    July 02, 2010 - 13:29

    Set aside all of your political propaganda and remember that Nalcor belongs to the people of NL so more ownership translates to more overall benefits, particularly in the long term. If you would rather the province not seek any significant return on its own resources and let multinational corporations walk away with whatever they wish to take, that's your personal preference - however I agree with Nalcor's objectives in becoming a player for the people of NL.

  • Member of the 93%
    July 02, 2010 - 13:25

    I agree with Penny and KL. As well, you cannot compare Alberta and NL when it comes to oil. There is no comparison. The cost to extract oil from the oilsands is enormous. Not to mention that Alberta has the right to it's oil, while all our oil, being offshore, belongs to the Feds.

  • Oilbusters
    July 02, 2010 - 13:21

    I wonder how many of these companies will start to pull out of the Newfoundland offshore in the near future? To remain competitive the strong arm tactics of the Williams Government need to be reigned in. The Royalty Regime in Alberta has recently been lowered to attract investment and growth. Would it not be in the best interest of business to direct investments in locations that provide the highest return then to see profits and expansion stifled by the unfair practices seen here? Greed is a two way street, and the greed of the corporations and shareholders out-weight those of the province. It is there money after all that is used to invest and pay wages, not governments.

    Time will tell. If we see Alberta booming once again shortly and Newfoundland faltering we will have our answer. Exploration licences have seen an increase to the Alberta coffers due to the royalty roll back this week already. Where is the exploration and jobs here this week?

  • Paul
    July 02, 2010 - 13:17

    Alberta oil extracted from oilsand is mined or steamed out of the earth, is is separated from the sand with great expense and it is then upgraded with even greater expense.

    The massive human effort to make a barrel of oil in Northern Alberta is daunting. It commands a lower royalty rate.

    By comparison the offshore oil is allowed to flow into a tanker and sent to a refinery at a million barrels per trip. There are 100 150 workers on a rig and a dozen on the tanker.
    No upgrading, separating steaming or mining required.

    Apples and oranges. A 50 % royalty for the offshore oil is standard in many jurisdictions.

  • Oilbusters
    July 02, 2010 - 13:13

    I wonder if people would still be so supportive if all the players walked away for greener pastures forcing the province to go it all alone? High risk, but also high return. Companies are out to maximize return on investments, not to pay to play. We as consumers look for the lowest price and the biggest bang for our buck as well. Why would this be any different in the corporate world? We would suffer if the large corporations pulled out due to costs. Alberta suffered due to over inflated costs and wages. They are now waking up and see that to remain in the game they need to play a little more fairly. Are we going down the same path and will see investments dwindle and employee payrolls shrink in the near future? We need to be cautious if we want to progress. This industry is fickle, and it takes very little to have all the gains lost over night. What industry is left in this province, the fishery is gone, the forestry is gone, mines have labour and union problems. We really need to exercise caution if we want a future at this point. We have very little left to gamble with since the oil will not last forever.

  • Penney
    July 02, 2010 - 13:13

    Oilbusters - they will never leave the Newfoundland offshore as long as they are making money and right now they're making a lot of money in NL.

  • Manuel
    July 01, 2010 - 20:20

    Why shouldn't we take from the oil companies? All they have done since the war is triple the price of fuel.
    It didn't cost them more to get it. It cost the same,they just knew they could milk us all and get away with it.
    They come in to alberta and make a fortune and give the government squat compared to what they are making. Kill wildlife in the area and cover it up.
    They know we need oil as it is our main source of fuel.they inflate the price and all live lie kings while the average person struggles to put fuel in his car because opec doesnt want to increase production. Leave prices high,they get rich and you get nothing except a slap in the face with the next price hike.
    OilBusters you should go to alberta and stay there. It almost seems like you work for one of the companies that wants the stake nalcor has.

  • KL
    July 01, 2010 - 20:17

    Set aside all of your political propaganda and remember that Nalcor belongs to the people of NL so more ownership translates to more overall benefits, particularly in the long term. If you would rather the province not seek any significant return on its own resources and let multinational corporations walk away with whatever they wish to take, that's your personal preference - however I agree with Nalcor's objectives in becoming a player for the people of NL.

  • Member of the 93%
    July 01, 2010 - 20:12

    I agree with Penny and KL. As well, you cannot compare Alberta and NL when it comes to oil. There is no comparison. The cost to extract oil from the oilsands is enormous. Not to mention that Alberta has the right to it's oil, while all our oil, being offshore, belongs to the Feds.

  • Oilbusters
    July 01, 2010 - 20:04

    I wonder how many of these companies will start to pull out of the Newfoundland offshore in the near future? To remain competitive the strong arm tactics of the Williams Government need to be reigned in. The Royalty Regime in Alberta has recently been lowered to attract investment and growth. Would it not be in the best interest of business to direct investments in locations that provide the highest return then to see profits and expansion stifled by the unfair practices seen here? Greed is a two way street, and the greed of the corporations and shareholders out-weight those of the province. It is there money after all that is used to invest and pay wages, not governments.

    Time will tell. If we see Alberta booming once again shortly and Newfoundland faltering we will have our answer. Exploration licences have seen an increase to the Alberta coffers due to the royalty roll back this week already. Where is the exploration and jobs here this week?

  • Paul
    July 01, 2010 - 19:57

    Alberta oil extracted from oilsand is mined or steamed out of the earth, is is separated from the sand with great expense and it is then upgraded with even greater expense.

    The massive human effort to make a barrel of oil in Northern Alberta is daunting. It commands a lower royalty rate.

    By comparison the offshore oil is allowed to flow into a tanker and sent to a refinery at a million barrels per trip. There are 100 150 workers on a rig and a dozen on the tanker.
    No upgrading, separating steaming or mining required.

    Apples and oranges. A 50 % royalty for the offshore oil is standard in many jurisdictions.

  • Oilbusters
    July 01, 2010 - 19:51

    I wonder if people would still be so supportive if all the players walked away for greener pastures forcing the province to go it all alone? High risk, but also high return. Companies are out to maximize return on investments, not to pay to play. We as consumers look for the lowest price and the biggest bang for our buck as well. Why would this be any different in the corporate world? We would suffer if the large corporations pulled out due to costs. Alberta suffered due to over inflated costs and wages. They are now waking up and see that to remain in the game they need to play a little more fairly. Are we going down the same path and will see investments dwindle and employee payrolls shrink in the near future? We need to be cautious if we want to progress. This industry is fickle, and it takes very little to have all the gains lost over night. What industry is left in this province, the fishery is gone, the forestry is gone, mines have labour and union problems. We really need to exercise caution if we want a future at this point. We have very little left to gamble with since the oil will not last forever.

  • Penney
    July 01, 2010 - 19:50

    Oilbusters - they will never leave the Newfoundland offshore as long as they are making money and right now they're making a lot of money in NL.