Noble Energy Announces New Discovery in Equatorial Guinea and Provides Update on Other Exploration Activity

    HOUSTON, July 15 /CNW/ -- Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:   NBL) today provided
an update on its exploration activities in West Africa and the deepwater Gulf
of Mexico.
    Offshore Equatorial Guinea, the Company is drilling its Diega prospect
and results to-date confirm the discovery of multiple hydrocarbon-bearing
reservoirs.  Initial formation logs have identified 38 feet of net gas-
condensate pay in the primary zone which correlates to earlier discoveries in
the region.  A deeper previously untested feature was also discovered and
found to contain 30 feet of net gas-condensate pay underlain by 37 feet of net
oil pay.  Preliminary analysis suggests that liquid yields from the gas zones
are expected to be greater than at the Belinda gas-condensate discovery on
Block "O."  Once drilling operations are concluded, a testing program will
commence.  Diega, the second oil discovery by Noble Energy and its partners on
Block "I," represents the sixth successful well drilled on the block with no
dry holes.  Noble Energy is the technical operator on the block with a 40
percent participating interest.
    In the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, the Company and its partners identified
a high-quality reservoir at the Tortuga prospect within Mississippi Canyon
Blocks 561 and 605.  The well, drilled to a total depth of 19,885 feet,
encountered natural gas in a secondary objective.  The primary objective was
determined to be wet.  The well has been temporarily abandoned pending future
development plans.  Noble Energy operates the discovery with a 50 percent
working interest.
    The Company also announced that its Stones River exploration well,
located in Mississippi Canyon Block 285 and drilled to a total depth of 9,800
feet, was unsuccessful.  Noble Energy operated the prospect with a 100 percent
working interest.  The Diamond 'Ocean Quest' rig has subsequently moved to
drill an appraisal well at Raton South, where the Company has a 62 percent
operated working interest in the discovery on Mississippi Canyon 292.
    In addition, Noble Energy is participating in the current drilling of the
Gunflint/Freedom prospect at Mississippi Canyon Block 948. The well is
expected to reach its proposed depth of 31,000 feet later in the third
quarter.  The Company has a 37.5 percent working interest in the prospect.
    Based on these results and combined with other exploration activity in
the second quarter, Noble Energy anticipates it exploration expense for the
second quarter to be between $100 and $110 million.  With the increased
activity level, the Company now expects full-year exploration expense to be at
the upper end of its initial guidance of $240 to $310 million.
    Noble Energy is a leading independent energy company engaged in worldwide
oil and gas exploration and production.  The Company operates primarily in the
Rocky Mountains, Mid-Continent, and deepwater Gulf of Mexico areas in the
United States, with key international operations offshore Israel, UK and West
Africa.  Noble Energy is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is traded
under the ticker symbol 'NBL.'  Visit Noble Energy online at
    This news release may include projections and other "forward-looking
statements" within the meaning of the federal securities laws.  Any such
projections or statements reflect Noble Energy's current views about future
events and financial performance.  No assurances can be given that such events
or performance will occur as projected, and actual results may differ
materially from those projected.  Risks, uncertainties and assumptions that
could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected include,
without limitation, the volatility in commodity prices for crude oil and
natural gas, the presence or recoverability of estimated reserves, the ability
to replace reserves, environmental risks, drilling and operating risks,
exploration and development risks, competition, government regulation or other
action, the ability of management to execute its plans to meet its goals and
other risks inherent in Noble Energy's business that are detailed in its
Securities and Exchange Commission filings.  Words such as "anticipates,"
"believes," "expects,"  "intends," "will," "should", "may," and similar
expressions may be used to identify forward-looking statements.  Noble Energy
assumes no obligation and expressly disclaims any duty to update the
information contained herein except as required by law.
    For additional information - website


For further information:

For further information: David Larson, +1-281-872-3125,, or Brad Whitmarsh, +1-281-872-3187,, both of Noble Energy, Inc. Web Site:

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