16 September 2011
Company Announcements Platform Australian Securities Exchange Level 4
20 Bridge Street
SYDNEY NSW 2000
ABN 51 108 230 995
MOSELLE PERMIT INDEPENDENT ASSESSMENT OF IN-PLACE VOLUMES Significant Conventional and Unconventional Hydrocarbon Potential Identified
Elixir Petroleum Limited (Elixir or the Company), the international oil and gas exploration and production company (ASX:EXR) is pleased to advise that the conventional and unconventional in- place volumetric assessment undertaken over the Companys 100% owned, 5,360km2
acre) Moselle Permit located in the Paris Basin has identified significant potential for hydrocarbons within the Triassic and Carboniferous Sections.
Consulting reserves auditors, Netherland, Sewell & Associates, Inc. (NSAI) have completed an independent evaluation of the Moselle Permit and have prepared an estimate of both conventional and unconventional undiscovered original hydrocarbons in-place within the Moselle Permit.
The Moselle Permit is the largest onshore exploration permit in France, and is located in the eastern part of the highly prospective Paris Basin.
The Carboniferous Section within the Moselle Permit is over 3,500m thick and includes oil, condensate and dry gas hydrocarbon maturity windows that remain generative at the present day.
NSAI has provided an unrisked gross unconventional undiscovered original oil in place (OOIP) and original gas in-place (OGIP) best estimate (P50) within the Carboniferous Section of the Moselle Permit of:
164.7 billion barrels (BBbls) of OOIP and 649.7 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of OGIP
Approximately one third of the OGIP volume is anticipated to contain condensate and natural gas liquids (NGLs).
19 conventional prospects and leads have been identified and mapped in the Triassic and
Carboniferous Sections of the Moselle Permit.
NSAI have provided a combined mean unrisked gross conventional undiscovered in-place hydrocarbon volume in the Moselle Permit of:
2.1 BBbls of OOIP or, alternatively, 2.2 Tcf of OGIPASX CODE: EXR www.elixirpetroleum.com
Elixir Petroleum Limited Level 20, 77 St Georges Terrace PERTH WA 6000, AUSTRALIA
T: +61 8 9440 2650 F: +61 8 9440 2699 E: [email protected]
Elixir considers the identified conventional prospects as drill ready and intends to immediately commence planning, procurement and permitting for up to a three well programme targeting high graded conventional prospects to be drilled in 2012.
Elixir acquired the Moselle Permit, which is located in the eastern part of the Paris Basin, in April 2010. Hydrocarbon exploration activities have been conducted in, and around, the Moselle area for almost 60 years. Prior to the acquisition of the Moselle Permit by Elixir, no systematic evaluation of the unconventional hydrocarbon potential of the permit area or conventional prospectivity in the Upper Carboniferous Section had to Elixirs knowledge been undertaken.
Over the course of the past 15 months, Elixir has sourced available technical data on the Moselle Permit and surrounding areas and compiled an extensive geological and petrophysical database in order to re-assess the petroleum system present in the local Saar-Lorraine Sub-Basin. Elixir has purchased all available digital 2D raw seismic data over the Permit area, representing some 2,500 line kilometres, and reprocessed and reinterpreted approximately 1,000 line kilometres. This has been complemented with extensive core and cuttings sampling from existing wells (>800 samples) which have been used in geochemical and chemostratigraphy analysis and sedimentology and burial history studies.
The re-interpretation of this data has led to new insights regarding the prospectivity of the Saar- Lorraine Sub-Basin and the identification and mapping of 19 conventional prospects and leads in two play systems. These are the Triassic and Upper Carboniferous conventional hydrocarbon play and the deeper Carboniferous unconventional hydrocarbon play. Together, these plays provide multiple opportunities to test the hydrocarbon potential within the sub-basin.
The results of the work undertaken by Elixir has allowed NSAI to undertake an independent review of the undiscovered in-place conventional and unconventional hydrocarbon volumes within the Moselle Permit which are described in greater detail below.
Unconventional Undiscovered Hydrocarbons In-Place Assessment
The following table summarises the estimated distribution of undiscovered in-place hydrocarbons between sand and shale sequences located within the Carboniferous Section of the Moselle Permit:
Undiscovered Gross (100 Percent) OOIP (MMBBL)
Undiscovered Gross (100 percent) OGIP (BCF)
- - - 37,872
- - - 74,496
Total (1) 67,667 164,739 394,182 248,376 649,707 1,633,764
Totals may not add because of rounding
(1) Totals are the arithmetic sum of multiple probability distributions
It is expected that oil, condensate and dry gas have been generated and reservoired within the
NSAI have stated that whilst potentially significant quantities of shale and tight gas are known to exist in the project area, the Moselle project is at an early stage of appraisal and will require a significant commitment to appraisal drilling and laboratory studies before any decision concerning the development of the resource could be taken.
The typical method by which wells in low permeability environments (such as the Carboniferous Section of the Moselle Permit) are stimulated to achieve commercial flow rates is through the use of hydraulic fracture stimulation (fracing). As previously announced, in July 2011 the French Parliament passed legislation which prohibits the use of fracing following drilling as a stimulation technique in France. In accordance with the requirements of the new legislation, Elixir submitted a report to the French regulatory authorities on 12 September 2011 confirming that the Companys current exploration strategy does not envisage the use of fracing within its work programme at Moselle.
It should be noted that the ability to drill into the Carboniferous Section, to core, log, test and to acquire fluid samples (all being significant and necessary pre-requisites to the development of unconventional hydrocarbon resources), without fracing the formation, remains an opportunity for Elixir to pursue.
Elixir, as a key stakeholder, with an interest in what could potentially be a world class resource, continues to participate positively to the discussion in France concerning the future exploration of unconventional hydrocarbon resources and the appropriate circumstances under which that may occur. Our view remains that the enormous possible economic and social benefit to France of pursuing unconventional resources should not simply be ignored.
Recent global developments to better define worlds best fracing practices, continuing improvements in unconventional exploration technologies and their implementation, the successful pursuit of unconventional exploration in other European countries, rising oil and gas prices, Frances almost total reliance on foreign sources of hydrocarbons and the inherently low and manageable environmental risks associated with unconventional hydrocarbon exploration activities means that further consideration ought to be given to this issue in France in due course.
If at any point there is a change to the policy position on the use of fracing in France, we anticipate Elixir will be well prepared to fully assess the possible value of the unconventional hydrocarbon resources located within the Carboniferous Section of the Moselle Permit.
Conventional Undiscovered Hydrocarbons In Place Assessment
The following two tables summarise the alternative oil and gas estimated distributions of undiscovered in-place hydrocarbons between prospects and leads located in the Triassic and Carboniferous Sections:
If oil: Undiscovered Gross (100%) OOIP (MMBbls)
Depth to Top
Triassic 4 460 - 800 36.0 109.2 160.7 334.5
Top Carboniferous 7 600 - 1,300 146.3 560.9 1,081.6 2,349.6
C5 4 1,250 - 2,200 33.2 239.4 657.3 1,496.9
C4 4 1,700 - 2800 18.5 97.6 217.1 485.8
Total (1) 19 234.0 1,007.10 2,116.7 4,666.8
Or, if gas: Undiscovered Gross (100%) OGIP (Bcf)
Depth to Top
Triassic 4 460 - 800 20.5 61.0 88.5 182.4
Top Carboniferous 7 600 - 1,300 127.9 440.3 775.5 1,670.0
C5 4 1,250 - 2,200 46.0 335.2 951.6 2,179.3
C4 4 1,700 - 2800 30.1 160.3 366.9 804.2
Total (1) 19 224.7 996.60 2,182.5 4,836.1
Totals may not add because of rounding
(1) Totals are the arithmetic sum of multiple probability distributions
The source of hydrocarbon charge for these conventional, structurally defined prospects and leads is the Carboniferous Section. It has been assumed that the prospects and leads have an equal likelihood of being charged with oil or gas. As a consequence, the tables above describe two independent outcomes (that is, either oil charged, or alternatively, gas charged) and therefore the results described in each table are not additive and should not be combined.
Importantly, two multi-horizon groups of prospects and one multi-horizon group of leads have been mapped. This will allow single wells to be drilled into each of the groups of targets to examine their prospectivity, rather than requiring multiple wells to test each identified horizon.
Whilst there has been no production to date from the Top Carboniferous Section of the Moselle Permit, two wells have tested hydrocarbon gas at surface from the Top Carboniferous Section during earlier drilling operations conducted in the area. This result gives confidence that the play, although currently not producing, is prospective within the Moselle Permit.
Going forward, Elixirs exploration efforts at Moselle will concentrate on the portfolio of conventional prospects and leads that have been identified over the past 15 months of study work.
Elixir intends to immediately commence well planning, procurement and permitting activities in respect of a Phase 1 drilling programme, expected to comprise up to three wells to be drilled in the second half of 2012 (subject to receipt of final permitting approvals and rig and equipment availability).
The Phase 1 programme will target conventional prospects with a certified combined mean in-place resource of 1.65 BBbls of oil or, alternatively, 1.5Tcf of gas, which represents approximately 78% of the total mean in-place oil, and 70% of the total mean in-place gas volumes certified by NSAI.
At present, only approximately 35% of the Moselle Permit is covered by 2D seismic data, and it is from this data that the 19 conventional prospects and leads have been developed. The Carboniferous Sequence which provides the hydrocarbon source for these conventional structural targets is essentially present across the entire Moselle Permit. Consequently, further seismic data will be required to evaluate the conventional prospectivity in the remaining part of the Moselle Permit not currently covered by 2D data. The conventional leads identified by Elixir will also require further seismic to better define them and elevate them to prospect status prior to consideration for drilling.
In addition to preparations for the Phase 1 drilling programme, Elixir intends to investigate in parallel the possible acquisition of an airborne gravity/magnetics gradiometry survey and the acquisition of additional seismic data in order to map further conventional targets and to work up its current inventory of leads.
Further details concerning the in-place hydrocarbon certification prepared by NSAI are set out in the presentation which accompanies this announcement.
Commenting on the announcement, Elixirs Managing Director, Mr. Andrew Ross said:
This large, maiden in-place hydrocarbon evaluation of the Moselle Permit by NSAI provides independent verification of the substantial value proposition we believe exists at Moselle. Even though the recent prohibition on the use of hydraulic fracture stimulation in France sets back our plans to fully assess the enormous unconventional potential of the Moselle Permit, we are delighted with the exciting portfolio of significant conventional oil and gas targets we will be pursuing into 2012.
Moselle represents a world scale acreage position and a significant opportunity for Elixir and its shareholders. We are very encouraged by the results of the NSAI volumetric analysis and are keen to commence the necessary planning and design work which will lead to a multi-well conventional exploration work programme at Moselle.
We also look forward to discussing our programme in the coming months with industry partners who share our vision for Moselle and who may be able to assist us in implementing our exploration strategy for 2012.
ELIXIR PETROLEUM LIMITED
The statements in this release relating to the undiscovered original gas in-place and original oil in-place estimates for unconventional hydrocarbons within the Carboniferous formation and conventional hydrocarbons within the Triassic and Top Carboniferous formations within the Companys Moselle Permit in France are based on assessments conducted by Netherland Sewell & Associates, Inc. (NSAI). These estimates are included in a transmittal to the Company dated 13 September 2011 compiled by Mr John G. Hattner, a full time employee of NSAI. Mr Hattner has consented to the statements based on this information, and to the form and context in which these statements appear.
This report contains some references to forward looking assumptions, estimates and outcomes. These are uncertain by nature and no assurance can be given by Elixir that its expectations, estimates and forecast outcomes will be achieved.