White Bark has brought the Rex-4 development well online after completing tie-in operations and is now cleaning up the injected fracture stimulation fluid.

The well is currently flowing the fluids at a controlled rate of about 230 barrels per day as part of the company’s plan – and experience from the earlier Rex-1 through Rex-3 wells – to bring it into stabilised production.

White Bark Energy (ASX:WBE) expects this work, which included allowing the wellbore to ‘rest’ in order to heal naturally from the fracture stimulation program, to ensure that the frac sand stays in the zone and maximise the well’s reserve potential.

During the clean-up period flow rates will be maintained at the current rate which is seen as a good balance between optimising the timing of first hydrocarbons and not drawing down the well and pulling frac proppant sand into the horizontal section (as it did at Rex-3).

Once the frac fluid is recovered, the company will gradually increase Rex-4 oil flow rates towards its targeted stabilised initial rate of 300 barrels per day with associated gas of about 1.4 million cubic feet per day, lifting overall production at the Wizard Lake field in Alberta to about 750 barrels of oil equivalent (boe) per day.

“The strategy of resting the well prior to commencing pumping to recover the frac fluid is a direct result of recognising the importance of the lessons learnt from previous wellbore management practices and applying them at Rex-4,” interim chief executive officer Dr Simon Brealey said.

“This has meant allowing the fracs to heal naturally, maximising the eventual amount of proppant retained in the reservoir and optimising production and ultimate well longevity.

“The initial cleanup flow rates are pleasing to note, and are in line with our model to gradually manage flow and bring the well up to modelled ultimate post-cleanup rates over several weeks.”

Successful fracture stimulation

White Bark had successfully run 50 hydraulic fracture stimulation stages in the target Rex Sandstone reservoir at Rex-4.

This program was the most ambitious yet at Wizard Lake and was consistent with the strategic plan of increased horizontal length and a greater number of fracture stages than in previous wells.

Besides the significant boost to Wizard Lake production, Rex-4 is also expected to have ultimate recovery of about 146,000 barrels of oil and 1.3Bcf of gas.

Wizard Lake development potential

While Rex-4 is working up towards production, the company is already making plans to further increase production.

Its next four wells – Rex-5 to Rex-8 – will address Proved (1P) Reserves calculated at about 2.3 million boe.

White Bark plans to drill these wells from the existing well pad without further infrastructure investment required.

It has also identified 20 additional development locations which will target the remainder of the company’s 2P (Proved and Probable) Reserves (5.12 MMboe in total) and contingent resources (an additional 4.7MMboe).




This article was developed in collaboration with White Bark Energy, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.