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ExxonMobil says Hebron project off Newfoundland coast to cost $14 billion

IRVING, TEXAS—Exxon Mobil Corp. says it will cost $ 14 billion (U.S.) to develop the Hebron offshore oil field off Canada’s east coast and get it ready to begin producing near the end of 2017.

The Texas-based oil company, which will operate Hebron on behalf of itself and several partner companies, says it expects up to 3,500 people will be employed by the project during the construction phase.

Hebron has been in the works for some time but ExxonMobil said Friday it now expects to recover more than 700 million barrels of oil — an increase from earlier estimates.

The company, one of the world’s largest oil producers and a major player in Canada’s energy industry, said it would use its expertise in Arctic development to operate in the challenging environment surrounding Hebron.

The project is in the Jeanne d’Arc Basin, about 350 kilometres southeast of St. John’s and 32 kilometres further offshore than the Hibernia oilfield.

“Hebron is one of several large-scale oil developments that ExxonMobil will bring on stream in the next five years,” said Neil Duffin, president of ExxonMobil Development Company, said in a statement from Irving, Texas.

The offshore platform is being designed to produce 150,000 barrels of oil per day.

Construction of the gravity-based structure for the offshore platform is underway in Bull Arm, N.L. Fabrication of the topside structure is expected to begin later this year, the company said.

A subsidiary of ExxonMobil, which owns 36 per cent of the project, will operate the oilfield. Other partners in the Hebron project are Chevron Canada Ltd. with 26.7 per cent of the equity, Suncor Energy Inc. with 22.7 per cent, Statoil Canada and Nalcor Energy Oil and Gas.

The federal and provincial governments, which will receive royalties from the oil, gave their approval last May.

thestar.com – Business

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