Guyana’s Environmental Assessment Board (EAB) is set to hear concerns surrounding ExxonMobil’s planned 12-well drill campaigns for the Kaieteur and Canje offshore blocks on June 30.
A notice published by the EAB on Monday outlined that the public hearing will address this Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s non-requirement of Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) for both projects. It will be held in the Conference Room of the Roraima Duke Lodge at 1 pm.
“In accordance with Section 18(2) of the Environmental Protection Act, Cap. 20:05, Laws of Guyana, the EAB shall conduct public hearings into all appeals submitted against the EPA’s decision not to require an EIA for the project,” the EAB notice said.
The public hearing will see presentations being made by the appellants, ExxonMobil, and other key stakeholders. The EAB will then deliberate and subsequently, issue a report with its decision confirming or setting aside the EPA’s decision.
Both projects were exempt from the EIA requirement. The EPA had arrived at this decision several months ago after careful consideration of existing environmental baseline information on the Kaieteur Block obtained via two separate assessments in 2019 and 2020. It also considered information from the conduct of similar campaigns in the Canje Block.
But while an EIA is not required, ExxonMobil is still expected to conduct Environmental Assessment and Management Plans (EAMP) for both projects.
ExxonMobil is operator of both the Kaieteur and Canje offshore blocks.
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The first two wells drilled on the Canje block were Bulletwood-1 and Jabillo-1. Both had hit oil but not in commercial quantities. The third well, Sapote-1, also failed to encounter commercial crude.
Over at the Kaieteur Block, the first well drilled was the Tanager-1. The well was reported as an oil discovery but non-commercial as a standalone development. The Tanager-1 also encountered high-quality reservoirs in deeper Santonian and Turonian plays.