Larne company joins exploration project

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Gas storage and petroleum exploration company InfraStrata has welcomed a new partner joining the exploration project in east Antrim.

The company has confirmed the new partner as Larne Oil and Gas Limited, part of Larne Basin Exploration LLC, a recently formed US-based investment firm set up for the purpose of investing in oil and gas exploration in the Larne Basin.

Back in July, Larne Oil and Gas Limited signed an option agreement with InfraStrata and their joint venture partners, Brigantes Energy Ltd and Terrain Energy Ltd, with respect to onshore licence PL1/10 (which stretches from Larne to Lough Neagh) and offshore licence P2123 (off the Antrim coast).

The company has now exercised that option, meaning it will hold a 50 per cent stake in both licences.

Operators InfraStrata will now hold a 20.83 per cent interest, with Terrain holding 12.50 per cent and Brigantes holding the remaining 16.67 per cent.

InfraStrata is also a partner of Islandmagee Storage Ltd (IMSL), who have plans for a strategically important gas storage scheme at Larne Lough.

Dr Andrew Hindle, CEO of Infrastrata, said: “IMSL continue to make progress towards drilling a well at Islandmagee which, subject to completing funding, will be drilled in early 2015. This will be a key milestone towards making the creation of a gas storage facility a reality.”

The Islandmagee well will be drilled to a total depth of approximately 1700 metres. It will be a data gathering well which will core the Permian salt and enable the project front‐end engineering design to be completed.

Subject to being granted a ‘Consent to Drill’ by the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment, and IMSL completing the funding, it is planned to drill the Islandmagee well as part of the same drilling programme as InfraStrata’s Woodburn Forest oil and gas exploration well.

InfraStrata is planning to hold public information events during November to provide further information and answer questions from the public.

Meanwhile, InfraStrata has announced that Anita Gardiner, from Ballymena, is to be appointed as a director of the company. She is joining InfraStrata following nine years at BP.

She will be based in Northern Ireland and manage the Islandmagee gas storage project, a role she undertook previously in her last post with BP throughout the two years they were involved in the project until January 2014.