Touchstone Exploration announced that its first exploration well has encountered four zones with prospective natural gas accumulations on the Ortoire exploration block, onshore in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.
The Coho-1 exploration well was spud on August 7, 2019 and reached a total measured depth of 8,560 feet (8,543 feet true vertical depth) on September 3, 2019 using Well Services Petroleum Ltd. Rig #80.
According to the Touchstone, the well logs indicate four gas bearing packages in the Herrera member of the Mid-Miocene aged Cipero formation. Based upon wireline logging, two sand packages with approximately 64 feet of net gas pay were encountered in the upper Herrera Gr7b section between 5,486 feet and 5,782 feet. The Gr7b sand packages correlate to the offsetting Corosan-1 well drilled in 2001, where similar sands tested natural gas in excess of 8 million cubic feet per day.
Wireline logging also indicated two prospective gas sand packages in the Herrera Gr7c section between 6,530 and 7,240 feet. These two sand packages contain a combined 41 feet of probable net gas pay which was not tested in historical offsetting wells. In addition, logging identified the presence of oil sands in the lower Herrera Gr7b repeat section at a depth of 7,788 feet. This lower quality 100-foot thick gross interval does not appear to be commercially prospective but proves the presence of hydrocarbons in this previously untested thrust sheet and may de-risk future exploration opportunities.
A press release from the company indicated that the Coho-1 well was drilled on time and within budget, and the Touchstone is initiating a comprehensive testing plan to evaluate the economic potential of the prospective gas sands.
Following rig release at Coho-1, Well Services Petroleum Ltd. Rig #80 will be mobilized to the Cascadura-1 location which is the second of four initial exploration wells the Company plans to drill on the Ortoire property. Cascadura-1 is expected to be drilled to a total dept of 8,190 feet and is targeting two oil zones in the Herrera sands in a fault block separate from the discovery at Coho-1.
Paul R. Baay, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented: "Although Coho-1 targeted the smallest prospect in our Ortoire exploration inventory, the initial drilling results represent significant potential growth for the Company. The presence of hydrocarbons in the turbidite sands of the Herrera confirms that our geological model is correct, and our drilling operations confirm that our team can drill future wells in a safe, timely and cost-efficient manner. This result gives the Board and Management a great deal of confidence to move directly to the Cascadura location which will test a separate structure targeting significant oil prospects in a similar geological setting."
James Shipka, Chief Operating Officer, stated: "We are very pleased to have found 105 feet of prospective gas pay at Coho-1 which we will now evaluate for commercial production. The well was drilled to evaluate the untested Herrera Gr7 repeat section and follow up on the offsetting Corosan-1 well which was never placed on production. The primary objective in Coho-1 was natural gas but oil noted in the repeat section of the well confirms the presence of previously unproven hydrocarbons and confirms the potential for further exploration targets in the lower Herrera sand sheets within the Ortoire exploration block."
The Coho-1 and Cascadura-1 wells are the first two of four minimum commitment earning exploration wells under Touchstone's Ortoire Exploration and Production Licence. The Company has an 80% working interest in the licence but is responsible for 100% of the drilling, completion and testing costs associated with the initial four exploration wells. Heritage Petroleum Company Limited holds the remaining 20% working interest.
Touchstone has no reserves associated with the Coho-1 and Cascadura-1 wells as per the Company's December 31, 2018 Reserves Report. An independent prospect evaluation review prepared by GLJ Petroleum Consultants Ltd. dated January 16, 2019 and effective December 31, 2018 estimated 2,058 thousand barrels of oil equivalent (best estimate) of unrisked Contingent Resources (Development Pending) and 1,190 thousand barrels of oil equivalent (best estimate) of unrisked Prospective Resources (Prospect) for the Company's 80% working interest in the Coho-1 well (residue natural gas and natural gas liquids). Further, the evaluation estimated 944 thousand barrels of crude oil (best estimate) of unrisked Contingent Resources (Development Pending) for the Company's 80% working interest in the Cascadura structure.