Eni, TotalEnergies Strike Gas a Third Time on Cyprus Block 6

The results of well testing at Zeus-1 are being combined with results of testing at two other discoveries to create a plan for the fast-track development of the offshore block.

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The Tungsten Explorer drillship operating offshore Cyprus.
Vantage Drilling

Eni and TotalEnergies have struck gas for a third consecutive time in their drilling campaign in the deepwater Block 6 prospect offshore Cyprus.

The latest discovery (announced on 21 December) followed drilling and testing of the Zeus-1 well which encountered 105 m of net gas pay in a carbonate reservoir sequence with preliminary estimates of between 2.0 and 3.0 Tcf of gas in place, the partners reported in separate news releases.

The Tungsten Explorer drillship drilled and tested Zeus-1, and results of those tests are now being folded into an evaluation of the discoveries cluster that will drive subsequent studies and operations targeting a fast-track development of Block 6, according to Eni Cyprus, which holds a 50% operator interest with TotalEnergies as partner with 50%.

Previous discoveries on the block included Cronos-1 in August and Calypso-1 in 2018. Zeus-1 is 162 km off the coast of Cyprus and 5 km west of Cronos in 2300 m of water.

Eni has worked in Cyprus since 2013. It operates Blocks 2, 3, 6, 8, and 9, and has participating interests in Blocks 7 and 11 operated by TotalEnergies, with a 50% interest in each.

“This success at Zeus-1 further enhances the potential of Block 6, only four months after the Cronos-1 discovery,” said Kevin McLachlan, senior vice president, exploration at TotalEnergies. Preliminary estimates put gas in place at Cronos at about 2.5 Tcf.

In Cyprus, TotalEnergies participates also in offshore Block 2 (20%), 3 (30%), 8 (40%), and 9 (20%).

Cyprus’ Minister of Energy, Commerce, and Industry, Natasa Pilides, told the Cyprus Mail that the Zeus-1 discovery strengthens the country’s prospects for developing gas in Cyprus’ exclusive economic zone.

Pilides said that Cyprus expects to export its first gas in 2027, but exactly how will depend on the results of a study by Chevron of options for the export of gas from the island’s offshore Aphrodite field via Egypt. Results of the study are expected to be released in 2023.

Chevron operates the 4.0 Tcf Aphrodite field as a 35% stakeholder, with partners Shell (35%) and Israel’s NewMed Energy (formerly Delek Drilling) with 30%. Chevron also operates Israel’s Leviathan field (22 Tcf) which will also likely export via Egypt.

Options for gas export from Cyprus as well as the Israeli offshore include possible floating LNG units as well as possible connections into networks with existing LNG facilities in Egypt.