Jim Letourneau's Blog

Investing, Technology, Travel, Geology, Music, Golf. I think that covers it.

Crater from SAGD Operations at Joslyn, Alberta

The steam from Total's  Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) project at Joslyn in Northern Alberta managed to find its way to the surface last year.

ERCB Staff Review and Analysis of the incident described it as follows:

The steam release occurred near the heel of the first well pair in pad 204 (well pair 204- I1P1), and caused a surface disturbance about 125 metres (m) by 75 m, with rock projectiles travelling up to 300 m horizontally from the main crater and a plume of dust about 1 kilometre long stretching to the southwest of the release point. There was no loss of life or injury, and there were no harmful gaseous emissions.

Thank goodness!


A Total spokesperson stated that said the pilot was producing 3,500 barrels per day when it was suspended last spring, far short of its 10,000 bpd goal (Calgary Herald).

The bottom line is that "more steam!" is not always the correct approach to getting heavy oil out of the ground.

There are interesting photos in the ERCB reports about the incident.  Click here for the details.