Canadian company will explore Jordanian oil shale

Rusty Jordan flag and Amman buildings view
Source: DollarPhotoClub

Canadian company Questerre Energy Corporation announced on Friday that it has entered into a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan for the appraisal and development of oil shale acreage in Jordan.

The MOU encompasses two blocks covering 388 square kilometers in the Isfir-Jafr area, approximately 200 km south of the capital, Amman. To date, a total of 35 core holes have been drilled on these two blocks by the Natural Resources Authority of Jordan. The Company is analyzing available data from these wells to develop its work program.

According to a statement made by the company, the primary objective of the work program will be to assess the acreage for potential oil shale development. The assessment will include economic viability, geologic, geophysical, hydrological studies as well as the feasibility of internal project electrical generation using oil shale. The initial term of the MOU is two years and may be extended. Questerre Energy estimates its commitments could range between $3 million – $5 million over the two year initial term of the MOU. Subject to results, the company intends to develop a subsequent work program that would be conducted during the initial phase of a future concession agreement.

Questerre Energy Corporation has base production and reserves in the tight oil Bakken/Torquay of southeast Saskatchewan. It is bringing on production from its lands in the heart of the high-liquids Montney shale fairway.

The Canadian company is the latest in a number of foreign firms to set-up shale exploration activities in Jordan. In September 2013, Anil Trigunayat, Indian ambassador to Jordan, announced that the two countries will cooperate in unconventional oil and gas exploration. At the time he said that “Jordan could play an important role in our energy security paradigm, given the fact that it claims to have the second largest shale deposits in the world after the US.”

Unlike its hydrocarbon-rich neighbours, Jordan is poor in energy resources and relies on imports to fulfil its energy needs. However, Jordanian oil shale deposits underlie more than 70 per cent of Jordanian territory, amounting to approximately 31 billion tonnes of oil shale. Tapping this potential could allow the country to cease to rely on imports from Egypt – a source which is increasingly unreliable due to the fallout from the Egyptian Revolution in 2011.

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