Exxon could invest $10 billion into Argentine shale
It was revealed on Friday that Exxon Mobil Corp may invest more than US $10 billion in shale drilling in Argentina’s Vaca Muerta region over the next 20 to 30 years.
The world’s largest oil explorer by market value has already sunk $200 million into exploratory drilling in Vaca Muerta — a geologic formation in the Neuquén Basin which could potentially contain the most abundant shale reserves globally.
Following a meeting with Argentine President Mauricio Macri on Thursday, Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson said that the company is planning to invest another $250 million into a pilot project in the region in the coming months.
Argentina reportedly houses around 802 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, with the majority of resources concentrated in the Neuquén province, including the Vaca Muerta stores. Exxon data has designated the region as one of four “key activity” areas in South America.
The success of this summer’s pilot project will determine whether or not Exxon will launch full-scale development at Vaca Muerta which will span up to three decades.
The Argentine government has estimated that Vaca Muerta would need long-term investment of $200 billion in order to reverse the country’s ongoing energy crisis.
Meanwhile, Exxon is recovering from a $35 billion wrong-way bet on US natural gas and and a Russian exploration project brought to a halt by sanctions.
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.