Norway-based oil and gas company Statoil Petroleum along with its partner Exxon Mobil has announced to begin the development of Julia oil field in the Gulf of Mexico.
The Julia oil field situated about 200 miles south of New Orleans, Louisiana, US, was discovered in 2007 and is estimated to hold approximately six billion barrels of resource in place.
Drilling operations of the oil field are expected to begin in 2014 at a cost of $4bn, while production is anticipated to begin in 2016.
The lifetime of the Julia field is estimated to be up to 40 years with an initial production rate of up to 34,000 barrels of oil per day.
ExxonMobil Development Company president Neil W. Duffin said the development of Julia field will provide new source of domestic energy to the US.
“Julia is one of the first large oil discoveries in the ultra-deepwater frontier of the Gulf of Mexico,” Duffin added.
“This resource is located more than 30,000 feet below the ocean’s surface. Enhanced technologies will be deployed to ensure the safe and environmentally responsible development of this important energy resource.”
The field comprises of five leases in the ultra-deepwater Walker Ridge blocks, WR-584, WR-627, WR-628, WR-540, and WR-583.
Exxon Mobil with 50% interest in the field is the operator, while Statoil owns the remaining 50% interest.