Huge Shale Oil Deposit Discovery for YPF in Mendoza
YPF announced yesterday it has found unconventional shale oil and natural gas in Mendoza province, confirming the extension of the massive Vaca Muerta area.
The exploration at the Payun Oeste and Valle del Rio Grande blocks pointed to an estimated one billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe) in unconventional oil and gas in Mendoza.
Energy resources and reserves in the province, which borders the Andes mountain range in western Argentina, currently stand at 685 million boe.
“The results are very encouraging. They tell us these are horizontal wells similar to what is done in the United States, we can replicate the US model in Mendoza province” Tomas Garcia Blanco, head of YPF's exploration and production, told reporters gathered in Malargue, Mendoza.
Horizontal wells permit access to rocky areas where oil and gas could not be extracted with conventional vertical drilling. US energy production has surged thanks to this technology.
The announcement comes when YPF is under mounting pressure from President Cristina Fernandez and provincial governors to boost declining production to help ease the country’s energy import burden.
Thursday's announcement follows the decision by six provinces including Mendoza to revoke operating licenses granted to YPF on the grounds of slack investment.