Story By Andreas Exarheas |RigZone| Wood Mackenzie has announced that TotalEnergies was named the upstream industry’s most admired explorer, and received the Discovery of the Year award, in Wood Mackenzie’s 15th annual exploration survey.
The survey tallies views from across the exploration sector and asks respondents to identify which explorer, aside from their own company, they most admire, Wood Mackenzie outlined in a statement sent to Rigzone. TotalEnergies received the Discovery of the Year award for Venus in Namibia, in partnership with QatarEnergy, Impact Oil & Gas, and NAMCOR, Wood Mackenzie highlighted in the statement.
“For the third time in our industry-leading survey, TotalEnergies has received the illustrious recognition of being named the most-admired explorer,” Andrew Latham, the Senior Vice President of Energy Research at Wood Mackenzie, said in a company statement.
“I would like to congratulate the company’s long-standing head of exploration, Kevin McLachlan, and his team for a well-deserved win,” he added.
“The industry continues to admire operators who can not only open new frontiers but also find large volumes of advantaged resources. TotalEnergies recent efforts and discoveries have been excellent examples of both trends,” Latham continued.
In the statement, Latham noted that the Venus discovery “is truly a play opener that has the entire industry very excited”.
“If this project is able to move forward, it will establish an important new industry for Namibia,” Latham said in the statement.
In February last year, TotalEnergies announced that it had made a “significant” discovery of light oil with associated gas on the Venus prospect, located in block 2913B in the Orange Basin, offshore southern Namibia.
The Venus 1-X well encountered approximately 84 meters of net oil pay in a good quality Lower Cretaceous reservoir, TotalEnergies noted in a company statement at the time.
“This discovery offshore Namibia and the very promising initial results prove the potential of this play in the Orange Basin, on which TotalEnergies owns an important position both in Namibia and South Africa,” Kevin McLachlan, the Senior Vice President of Exploration at TotalEnergies said in a company statement announcing the discovery.
“A comprehensive coring and logging program has been completed. This will enable the preparation of appraisal operations designed to assess the commerciality of this discovery,” he added.
Rigzone has contacted TotalEnergies for comment on being named the upstream industry’s most admired explorer and on receiving the Discovery of the Year award. At the time of writing, the company has not yet responded to Rigzone.
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E&P, NOC Explorers of the Year
In the statement sent to Rigzone, Wood Mackenzie revealed that Hess Corporation was recognized as E&P explorer of the year and that Petrobras was recognized as NOC explorer of the year.
This is the second year in a row that Hess has been recognized as E&P explorer of the year, Wood Mackenzie said in the statement, adding that the company “has transformed itself with an enormous run of giant successes in Guyana since 2015”.
Wood Mackenzie also noted in the statement that Petrobras has returned to operating high-impact deepwater exploration in Brazil and highlighted that recent results include the “giant Aram discovery found in 2022”. Appraisal drilling at Aram could confirm around two billion barrels in Brazil’s Santos basin, Wood Mackenzie pointed out in the statement.
“The exploration industry continues to see an excellent series of high-impact finds in many parts of the world,” Latham said in a Wood Mackenzie statement.
“The industry remains very dynamic and these recognized companies, as well as many others, continue to deliver advantaged resources that can displace less sustainable supply,” he added.
“Their development will reduce oil and gas emissions and provide cashflow to fund investment in low carbon alternatives through the energy transition,” Latham continued.
When contacted for comment on being recognized as E&P explorer of the year, a Hess spokesperson told Rigzone, “Hess is honored to be recognized as the E&P explorer of the year for the second time in a row by industry-leaders Wood Mackenzie”.
“An achievement that could not have occurred without the incredible partnership we share in Guyana with ExxonMobil, CNOOC, and the people of Guyana,” the spokesperson added.
“To date this partnership has discovered more than 11 billion barrels of oil equivalent with multi-billion barrels of exploration potential remaining,” the spokesperson continued.
Rigzone has also contacted Petrobras for comment on being recognized as the NOC explorer of the year. At the time of writing, Petrobras has not yet responded to Rigzone.
In June last year, Wood Mackenzie announced that Eni had been named the upstream industry’s most-admired explorer. The company highlighted at the time that this was the fourth time in seven years that Eni had bagged the accolade.
Wood Mackenzie revealed last year that Eni’s Baleine oil discovery in offshore Cote d’Ivoire was recognized as the discovery of the year and that QatarEnergy was recognized as NOC explorer of the year.
In a statement posted on its website in June 2022, Wood Mackenzie outlined that Tullow Oil was the inaugural winner of the upstream industry’s most admired explorer award in 2009. The company retained the title through to 2013 before Anadarko secured the award in 2014 and 2015, Wood Mackenzie highlighted, adding that, “since then, the majors have dominated the event”. Eni’s previous victories were in 2016-2018, ExxonMobil won in 2019, and TotalEnergies won in 2020-21, Wood Mackenzie pointed out in the statement.
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