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Atlantic petroleum research body funds five new projects


Halifax, NS – Petroleum Research Atlantic Canada (PRAC) has approved funding for five research projects to support Atlantic Canada’s offshore and onshore petroleum industry.

Michael Enachescu of Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) will study basin architecture and the evolution of the Orphan Basin for the purpose of identifying the resource potential in this area of offshore Newfoundland. The Orphan Basin received considerable attention during the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board’s last call for bids. The project will receive $120,000 over three years.

David Keighley of University of New Brunswick (UNB) will receive $56,000 to study the sedimentological and structural geology of the Maritimes Basin to better identify where exploration success might occur in New Brunswick. Recent exploration success and natural gas production in the Sussex have helped to renew interest in New Brunswick’s onshore resources.

Mark Shrimpton of Jacque Whitford has been awarded $10,000 as a contribution towards a research study to examine how strategic environmental assessments (SEA) can be used within the offshore oil and gas planning and regulatory process in Atlantic Canada. In particular the work will look at international experiences that it adopted, which could add value for both regulators and the offshore industry.

Ian Jordaan of MUN will study how ice behaves on and impacts structures for the purpose of reducing uncertainties in design load estimation. This project will receive $150,000 from PRAC and is particularly important in ensuring that structures in the Newfoundland offshore can sustain considerable loads caused by ice.

Tahir Husain of MUN will develop improved modeling tools to monitor and assess risk of the environmental impact of discharged produced water from offshore platforms. This work could have a significant positive effect on environment management in the offshore area. PRAC will provide $149,500 over three years to this project.

These projects represent one, two and three-year studies. PRAC is providing roughly $500,000 which is leveraging an additional $900,000 from other sources.

PRAC is a federally incorporated, not for profit, public-private partnership that began operations in 1999, and is committed to increasing the capacity and scale of petroleum related research and development in Atlantic Canada.