HOUSTON, July 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NBL) announced today that all three wells at the Galapagos development in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico are now producing and at rates above the original forecast. The Company also announced that appraisal of the Deep Blue prospect will not continue at this time.
Production in the Galapagos area was initiated from the BP operated Isabela field in early June, followed by the Noble Energy operated fields of Santa Cruz and Santiago. The fields were individually flow tested and production increased over the course of several weeks. The Company's net production of 13,000 barrels of oil per day and 8 million cubic feet of natural gas per day is about 30 percent greater than previously forecast. With the addition of Galapagos, Noble Energy's deepwater Gulf of Mexico production has increased to approximately 30,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, with over 80 percent oil.
David L. Stover, Noble Energy's President and Chief Operating Officer, commented, "Galapagos is our second major project to start up in the past eight months and will provide significant production and cash flow growth. We continue to build on our strong track record of execution as this project came on-line less than three years after sanction. Galapagos is one of the first development projects to start up in the Gulf of Mexico after the moratorium, and our permit to drill Santiago was the first such permit received following the moratorium."
At Deep Blue, although hydrocarbons were found in both the initial exploration well and subsequent sidetrack, the Company and its partners have decided not to proceed with additional appraisal activities at this time. The Deep Blue well was originally spud late 2009 and sidetrack operations were underway when the moratorium was announced. Noble Energy was required to suspend operations, and the rig working at that time was released. After the moratorium was lifted, another rig was certified under new regulatory requirements to finish the sidetrack. The Company expects to record $118 million of exploration expense in the second quarter related to the Deep Blue prospect.
Noble Energy is a leading independent energy company engaged in worldwide oil and gas exploration and production. The Company has core operations onshore in the U.S., primarily in the DJ Basin and Marcellus Shale, in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, offshore Eastern Mediterranean, and offshore West Africa. Noble Energy is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is traded under the ticker symbol NBL. Further information is available at www.nobleenergyinc.com.
This news release contains certain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as "indicates," "anticipates," "suggests," "possibility," "believes," "expects," "intends," "will," "should," "may," and similar expressions may be used to identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are not statements of historical fact and reflect Noble Energy's current views about future events. They include planned development activities, business strategy and other plans and objectives for future operations. No assurances can be given that the forward-looking statements contained in this news release will occur as projected and actual results may differ materially from those projected. Forward-looking statements are based on current expectations, estimates and assumptions that involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected. These risks include, without limitation, exploration and development risks, drilling and operating risks, the presence or recoverability of estimated reserves, the volatility in commodity prices for crude oil and natural gas, environmental risks, competition, government regulation or other actions, the ability of management to execute its plans to meet its goals and other risks inherent in Noble Energy's business that are discussed in its most recent annual report on Form 10-K and in other reports on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These reports are also available from Noble Energy's offices or website, http://www.nobleenergyinc.com. Forward-looking statements are based on the estimates and opinions of management at the time the statements are made. Noble Energy does not assume any obligation to update forward-looking statements should circumstances or management's estimates or opinions change.
SOURCE Noble Energy