Cuba's Lackluster Oil Exploration
Another offshore well in Cuban waters has been declared a failure, according to Cuban media. Although oil was found, the rock was too dense to allow production to continue under Malaysia's giant state-owned oil company Petronas and Russia's Gazprom Neft.
The well drilled showed “the existence of an active oil system,” but the “rocks are very compacted and don't have the capacity to deliver significant quantities of oil and gas,” meaning it “cannot be qualified as a commercial discovery,” according to the Granma newspaper.
The failure comes as a low blow to Cuba's hopes in tapping offshore oil fields to help it achieve energy independence. The country currently relies heavily on socialist ally Venezuela and its weakened, cancer-stricken President Hugo Chavez to meet its oil needs.
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In May, Spain's Repsol hit a dry hole in Cuban waters and said it will probably pull out of exploration in the country after 12 years of operations and two unsuccessful wells.
Petronas and Gazprom are evaluating data and conducting seismic studies in search of another possible opportunity, according to Granma. Meanwhile, the rig Petronas used to drill in 7,408 feet off Cuba's northern coast will be passed on to Venezuela's PDVSA to drill a well off Cuba's western tip.
Hydrostor receives $4m funding for A-CAES facility in Canada
Hydrostor has received $4m funding to develop a 300-500MW Advanced Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES) facility in Canada.
The funding will be used to complete essential engineering and planning, and enable Hydrostor to plan construction.
The project will be modeled on Hydrostor’s commercially operating Goderich storage facility, providing up to 12 hours of energy storage.
Hydrostor’s A-CAES system supports Canada’s green economic transition by designing, building, and operating emissions-free energy storage facilities, and employing people, suppliers, and technologies from the oil and gas sector.
The Honorable Seamus O’Regan, Jr. Minister of Natural Resources, said: “Investing in clean technology will lower emissions and increase our competitiveness. This is how we get to net zero by 2050.”
A-CAES has the potential to lower greenhouse gas emissions by enabling the transition to a cleaner and more flexible electricity grid. Specifically, the low-impact and cost-effective technology will reduce the use of fossil fuels and will provide reliable and bankable energy storage solutions for utilities and regulators, while integrating renewable energy for sustainable growth.
Curtis VanWalleghem, Hydrostor’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are grateful for the federal government’s support of our long duration energy storage solution that is critical to enabling the clean energy transition. This made-in-Canada solution, with the support of NRCan and Sustainable Development Technology Canada, is ready to be widely deployed within Canada and globally to lower electricity rates and decarbonize the electricity sector."
The Rosamond A-CAES 500MW Project is under advanced development and targeting a 2024 launch. It is designed to turn California’s growing solar and wind resources into on-demand peak capacity while allowing for closure of fossil fuel generating stations.
Hydrostor closed US$37 million (C$49 million) in growth financing in September 2019.