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Corporate Spotlight

Whitebark offers investors a unique combination of cash generation from growing oil & gas production plus exposure to high reward exploration, a prolific North American shale play, and both conventional and non-conventional discoveries in Western Australia.
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Interview with David Messina, MD White Bark Energy


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Facilities successfully operating, preliminary production reaches 1000boepd 

ASX Announcement 7 January 2020


  • The upgraded facilities at Wizard Lake have been fully operational since 21 December 2019. 
  • Gas is being successfully transported in the 15km pipeline to Petrus and sold into the Atco system. 
  • Following filling of the new onsite oil separation and storage facilities, oil sales from the facilities commenced on the 2 January 2020. 
  • As is normal practise in these fields, the wells are slowly being brought back into production to preserve reservoir integrity and maximise long term production.

Whitebark Energy Limited (‘Whitebark’ or ‘the Company’) (ASX: WBE) is pleased to announce that it’s Wizard Lake Oilfield new facilities and pipelines have been successfully operating, trouble-free for 16 days. The facilities separate the gas from the liquids for sales via the Petrus gas processing facilities which are located 15km to the NW. Gas throughput has been held at 2 – 2.5 mmcfd while the wells continue to clean-up and stabilise. Oil throughput uses a heated cascade tank system which uses gravity to separate the oil and water (see below). This system removes up to 99.5% of the water prior to the oil being trucked to receiving stations. 

Figure 1 - Tank Cascade Separation System 

Well operations over the last two weeks (abridged due to the Christmas and New Year break) have focussed on re-establishing full flow from the wells: 

  • Rex-1 was cleaned out following the discovery of an obstruction in the hole (refer ASX announcement 13 November 2019). The well has been placed on pump to accelerate fluid recoveries and speed the return to pre-shut-in flow rates. Over 700m3 of water was injected into the well during the clean-out operations. 
  • Rex-2 is being converted back to pump, but before doing so, the well is being cleaned out to remove any frac sand that has accumulated in the borehole during the initial flow period. This resets the well and will optimise future flow rates. Production from the well will recommence this week.
  • Rex-3 continued to flow oil and gas unassisted. To date approximately 30% of the frac fluid has been recovered. The well is flowing through an 11.91mm choke to restrain the gas rate to approximately 2 mmcfd and ensure the well can clean up in an optimal manner. It is presently flowing 350-450 bopd under heavy choke and will continue to do so until the clean-up is complete, with a total fluid water cut of approximately 35%

Total field production at this stage (from two wells still in clean-up mode) is averaging approximately 550 bopd and 2.2mmcfd. Once Rex-2 is restarted these rates will increase. 

The production from the field will continue in a manner that will facilitate the well clean-up process and optimise production rates and uptime for the long term. As with other nearby fields producing from similar reservoirs, the present three wells of the Wizard Lake Oilfield are expected to require up to 90 days to attain their maximum flow rates.

On 18 December 2019, WBE announced a Definitive Agreement had been signed to acquire 100% ownership of the Wizard Lake oilfield via a staged purchase arrangement.

Whitebark Energy Managing Director, David Messina said: “The successful commissioning of the new facilities and associated pipelines and wells has been an important milestone in the monetisation of the Wizard Lake oil field. The wells are slowly being brought back into production to ensure the long term production of the field is preserved and sales in 2020 maximised.” 

Figure 2 - Wizard Lake New Surface Facilities 

Click here to view the full announcement


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Wizard Lake Facilities Completed Field Production Commences 

ASX Announcement 23 December 2019 

Production commences on all wells at the Wizard Lake Oil Field

  • The new facilities and pipelines have been completed and commissioned. 
  • Oil and gas have commenced flowing through the new facilities from Rex- 1 and 2. 
  • Rex-3 cleanup operations continue through the satellite test facility on site. 
  • Gas is now being shipped along the new pipeline and processed at nearby facilities before entering the ATCO pipeline for sale.

Whitebark Energy Ltd (ASX : WBE) is pleased to advise the completion of the expanded processing facilities as part of the of the Wizard Lake Oilfield development.

Works commenced on 6 November 2019 and were completed on 20 December. Plant commissioning was carried out using Rex-2 production with Rex-1 added over the weekend. Rex-3 is continuing to cleanup through a satellite facility at the well location and will be switched to the main facilities as soon as cleanup operations have been completed.

The wells will continue to clean up over the next few weeks and the company will be updating the market on flow rates as this occurs. 

Figure 1 - New Surface Facilities and Storage at Wizard Lake 

The upgrade in the capacity of processing facilities was precipitated by the excellent production results from Rex-2 which yielded oil and gas at much higher rates than expected during production testing in September 2019. These results have now been superseded by Rex-3, which averaged 1,278 boepd including 1,084 bopd of oil in the final six hours of a continuous 18 hour period (ASX Release 16 December 2019).

The expanded facilities will be capable of handling 5,000 barrels of fluid a day along with 5mmcfd of gas. Oil will continue to be trucked to market while gas will be sent through the recently completed gas pipeline to the nearby Petrus operated gas processing facility and then on to market.

David Messina Managing Director said “Under trying conditions the team have managed to complete the facility and pipeline work on schedule and we are now able to monetise the extremely successful wells we have drilled at our Wizard Lake oilfield. Our objective was to have all wells producing by the end of 2019 and we have now achieved that which is a very rewarding finish to a busy year.” 

Click here to view the full announcement


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Whitebark increases Wizard Lake Land holding

ASX Announcement 11 December 2019 

Additional 560 acres north east of current Rex drilling pad

  • Additional 560 acres acquired over the Wizard Lake pool 
  • 1 km from Wizard Lake Facilities currently undergoing an upgrade and ~400m from toe of Rex -1

Whitebark Energy (ASX : WBE) is pleased to announce that it has expanded its land position at Wizard Lake with the addition of ⅞ of a section with a 100% interest. The new land is located to the north east of the current drilling pad and closes the gap of land held by Whitebark’s subsidiary Salt Bush Energy over the Wizard Lake pool.

The land is within 1 km of the Wizard Lake facilities currently undergoing an upgrade and approximately 400m away from the Rex-1 discovery well.

The new land contains 12 old wells drilled to exploit oil and gas reserves from deeper Devonian Leduc reservoirs. These wells provide invaluable information on the nature and extent of the Rex sands and confirm them to be oil bearing. The application of fracced horizontal completion technology is expected to result in commercial flows from these sands in the new land as has occurred with Rex 1,2 and 3 to the south (Figure 1).

A description of the estimated Contingent Resources in the new land is as follows: 

Click here to view the full announcement


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Wizard Lake Rex-3 Frac Successfully Completed Flow Back to Commence in 48hrs 

ASX Announcement 9 December 2019 

Wizard Lake Rex-3 well completes 46 stage frac

Whitebark Energy Ltd (ASX : WBE) announces that Canadian subsidiary Salt Bush Energy completed a successful fracture stimulation program on the Wizard Lake Rex-3 well (40% WI, 50% on completion of Rex-3 well) on Saturday in an operation lasting just over 30 hours. The 46 stage frac programme placed over 1300 tonnes of proppant into the Rex formation.

Figure 1 - a portion of the Rex-3 pumping schedule 

The next phase of the program, flowback and testing, should start within 48 hours. As is the practice by other operators in the area, a high-volume, submersible pump will be used to assist with the recovery of frac fluids and to optimise the oil recovery rate.

Figure 2 - Rex-3 Site with frac equipment on location 

Click here to view the full announcement


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