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KG-D6 gas output hits another low

RIL closes down well after well as water, sand combine to foul up India’s largest fields

business Updated: Dec 18, 2012 00:51 IST
Anupama Airy

Continuing its downslide, India’s biggest gas producing fields in the Krishna Godavari basin (KG-D6), controlled by Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) and UK’s BP, has reached its lowest output levels since its inception.

After touching peak production levels of 60 million standard cubic metres of gas per day (mmscmd), the output was 22.77 mmscmd in the week ending December 9, according to an output status report submitted by the regulator to the petroleum ministry.

The report cited high water and sand ingress into the fields as reason for shutting seven out of the 18 producing wells in the KG-D6 block. Gas production in November was about 25.11 mmscmd, and 26 mmscmd in October. The gas field was producing about 33 mmscmd at the beginning of the fiscal in April.

Production from Dhirubhai-1 and 3, the largest among the 19 oil and gas finds that RIL has made in the KG-DWN-98/3 or KG-D6 block, slipped to 18.52 mmscmd in the week ended December 9 from 20.06 mmscmd in November.

Another 4.25 mmscmd was produced by MA oilfield in the same block during the week ending December 9.

The target output for this time of the year is 80 mmscmd.

Gas output from D1 and D3 have been on a decline since hitting a peak of 55 mmscmd in August 2010, as RIL shut well after well. Of the 18 wells in D1 and D3, only 11 are operational.

On the MA oil and gas field, six wells have been commissioned for production — five oil and one gas. Of these, four wells are operational at present. Two oil wells were shut down due to water loading.

Of the 22.77 mmscmd output, 14.84 was sold to fertiliser plants and 5.03 to power plants at the government-approved rate of $4.2 a unit. The remaining 2.90 mmscmd gas was consumed by other sectors such as LPG.

RIL holds 60% interest in KG-D6, UK’s BP holds 30% and Canada’s Niko Resources 10%.