Providence proposes Rathlin drilling
Exploration group Providence Resources believes that the oil prospect it has discovered close to Rathlin Island could be drilled from the mainland.
The company is likely to start exploratory drilling around the island off the Antrim coast next year after surveys revealed geological structures that could oil.
Initial calculations estimated that the main prospect, which Providence has dubbed Polaris, could hold up to 530 million barrels, the company said.
Providence suggested in a statement that, given its proximity to the mainland, Polaris could be drilled from an onshore location.
Technical director John O’Sullivan said: “We continue to be very encouraged by the results of the recent full tensor gradiometry programme, which has exceeded our pre-survey expectations.”
The Rathlin Basin has always been considered prospective due to the presence of a rich oil-prone source rock. However, poor seismic imaging has historically rendered it difficult to determine the basin’s true hydrocarbon potential.
Mr O’Sullivan said it formed part of Providence’s ongoing multi-basin drilling programme.