New gas reserves discovered in Abu Dhabi, Dubai

By Eudore R. Chand

ABU DHABI 4 February 2020: The United Arab Emirates announced yesterday the discovery of 80 trillion standard cubic feet (TSCF), of shallow gas resources in place within the area between Saih Al Sidirah and Jebel Ali in the Emirates of Abu Dhabi and Dubai respectively.

This new discovery reinforces the nation’s goal of achieving gas self-sufficiency, enabling major development projects in preparation for the next fifty years of the union.

The announcement was made during the signing of a strategic cooperation agreement between the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc), and Dubai Supply Authority (Dusup), to continue to explore and develop the shallow gas resources in this area in a joint project named ‘Jebel Ali’.

This signing of the agreement was witnessed by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

The agreement was signed by H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Director-General of Dusup, and Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of State and Adnoc Group CEO.

Following the signing of the agreement, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid and H.H. Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed were given a presentation where details of the project were outlined, including the nature of the shallow gas reservoir, the project development plan and the innovative technologies Adnoc’s is leveraging to unlock the UAE’s vast hydrocarbon resources.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed said, “We look forward to working closely with Adnoc to further explore gas resources in the area between Abu Dhabi and Dubai as part of diversifying our energy resources. This collaboration will contribute to raising our long-term energy security, which is crucial to realising our aspirations in a new economic era of growth to be a leader in shaping the future of the region and the world, as well as enhancing the happiness and welfare of our people.”

The discovery of the 80 TSCF of shallow gas resources was made within an area of 5,000 square kilometers between the two emirates with Adnoc drilling more than ten exploration and appraisal wells, signifying the first time Adnoc has explored for hydrocarbon resources in Dubai.

Dr. Al Jaber said, “The strategic cooperation agreement between Adnoc and Dusup is a natural evolution of our shared commitment to harness energy resources in the service of the UAE. We look forward to swiftly progressing the ongoing work and further exploring, appraising and developing the area by leveraging best-in-class expertise and innovative technologies to ensure the success of the project. We see significant potential in this joint project to create long-term and enduring value for the nation.”

As part of today’s agreement, in collaboration with Dusup, Adnoc will deploy capital, technology, and expertise to develop and produce shallow gas resources and conduct further exploration to assess further volumes and firm up development costs.

The gas produced will be supplied to Dusup, to support Dubai’s economic growth ambitions and enhance its energy security as it reinforces its position as a pivotal hub of the global economy.

The discovered reservoir is unique and is referred to as ‘shallow gas’, as it contains high-quality organic gas at relatively shallow depths from the earth’s surface. Adnoc is utilising both conventional and unconventional drilling and completion technologies and methods to access this trapped gas, including horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing to enable optimal productivity while reducing the number of drilling rigs required.

Today’s announcement comes less than three months after Abu Dhabi’s Supreme Petroleum Council announced increases in hydrocarbon recoverable reserves of 7 billion stock tank barrels of oil and 58 TSCF of conventional gas, moving the UAE from seventh to the sixth position in both global oil and gas reserves rankings with a total of 105 billion STB of recoverable oil, 273 TSCF of conventional gas and 160 TSCF of unconventional gas resources.


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