Wintershall Exploring Possibiliy of Revitalizing Oil Fields in Bavaria

Wintershall AG, based in Kassel, Germany’s largest producer of crude oil and natural gas, is currently testing the possibility of revitalizing a former oil field in Arlesried/Allgäu, Bavaria.

Wintershall is drilling the “Bedernau 1” well at the former Arlesried oil field.  The aim of the exploration well, which will operate for three weeks, is to test whether the field still has areas with substantial residual oil, as a re-appraisal of the field. 

Experts hope to find a deposit at a depth of about 1,500 meters which could produce crude oil for the next thirty years. 

Around two million tons of crude oil were produced from the crude oil production site at Arlesried between 1964 and 1995.  As operator, Wintershall is drilling the well.  Rhein Petroleum GmbH from Heidelberg is a 50% consortium partner and holder of the authorization.

Wintershall stopped production in Arlesried in 1995 since is was not economically viable. However, the conditions required for restarting production have become more favorable since then: advances in reservoir simulation now allow oil-bearing strata to be identified more effectively.  If the project is successful, other abandoned fields could also be revitalized.

The proportion of Wintershall’s crude oil production in Germany is relatively low compared to overall consumption.  Domestic production, which totals 3.1 million tons, covers just three percent of demand in Germany.  But any production on one’s own doorstep enhances supply security, Dr. Ties Tiessen, Member of the Wintershall Board of Executive Directors and responsible for production, underlined.

Source: Wintershall AG

Please also see our post about RWE Dea AG starting exploratory drilling in an area in Lower Saxony where the company produced oil until the 1990s.

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