29 April 2012, Sweetcrude, Port Harcourt – Total has disclosed that operations to regain control of the IBW 16 well, damaged on March 20, are progressing according to the planned schedule on the Ibewa gas field in Rivers State, Nigeria.
In a statement released at the weekend, the company disclosed that after taking the necessary time to secure the area, Total E&P Nigeria’s engineers have reopened the IBW 16 well to a temporary installation, thereby reducing the flow of gas into intermediate geological layers, adding that these operations are continuing, with safety as the top priority.
“To permanently stop the gas release, well intervention equipment has been flown in from Europe and the United States by wide-body aircraft. We are preparing a snubbing operation on the damaged well to stop the gas leak within a few weeks.
“This operation consists in installing a concentric pipe in the well to pump in heavy fluid and stop the flow of reservoir fluids. As a precaution, drilling rigs are simultaneously being mobilized locally for relief wells.
“Total E&P Nigeria’s teams are continuing to monitor the area daily by helicopter and on the ground and the safety perimeter is being maintained. No new water or gas resurgence areas have been observed within the last two weeks. Around 20 domestic water wells supplying the area are being
analyzed daily. No hydrocarbons or toxic compounds have been detected, except on a single well near the resurgence area; this well has been fully secured.
“Regular contacts are being maintained with the nearby communities. Total E&P Nigeria’s senior management meets regularly with representatives of local and federal authorities, including the Governor of Rivers State, the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), the Environment and Energy Committee of the Rivers State House of Assembly and the Rivers State Environment Commissioner.
OML 58 is a concession operated by Total E&P Nigeria Ltd on behalf of the NNPC/Total E&P Nigeria joint venture in the Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Local Government Area (ONELGA), Rivers State.”