In 2007, we acquired 100% of the shares in North American Oil Sands Corporation (NAOSC) and operatorship of the Kai Kos Dehseh (KKD) leases in the Athabasca region of Alberta. In November 2010, we agreed to sell a 40% interest in the oil sands project to PTTEP of Thailand with a valuation date of 1 January 2011. The transaction was closed on 21 January 2011. We will act as Managing Partner and retain 60% ownership of the partnership holding the oil sands project, and will continue to be operator of the project. As of 31 December, we owned a 100% interest in 1,129 square kilometres (279,053 net acres) of oil sands leases located in the Athabasca region of Alberta. On closing, Statoil will hold a 60% interest, amounting to 167,432 net acres of oil sands leases.
Statoil Oil Sands project's first phase is the Leismer Demonstration Project, whose construction and commissioning is substantially complete, having achieved delivery of all key components on or ahead of schedule. In fact, the first steam milestone was completed a full month ahead of schedule. All of the production wells have been drilled and completed. Three of the four well pads were put on circulation, which resulted in early pre-commercial production of approximately 84,000 bbls of bitumen in 2010. Conversion to SAGD production mode will continue to progress at the remaining well pairs through the first quarter 2011. The Cheecham terminal is undergoing commissioning in accordance with plan. The Leismer Demonstration Project is connected to the existing pipeline infrastructure at Cheecham that runs to the Edmonton area. After producing pre-commercial production volumes in late 2010, we announced first commercial oil on 27 January 2011. The project was in full operation by the end of the first quarter of 2011.
Statoil has interests in two crude oil producing fields, Hibernia (Statoil share: 5%) and Terra Nova (Statoil share: 15%), and in two development projects, Hebron (Statoil share: 9.7%) and Hibernia Southern Extension Unit (Statoil share: 10.5%)
Fields in production
Hibernia, which was developed with a gravity-based structure (GBS), is operated by Hibernia Management and Development Company Ltd (HMDC). The Hibernia field is in the initial stages of decline, with 2010 gross production rates averaging 155,000 barrels of oil per day.
Terra Nova produces from an FPSO and is operated by Suncor Energy. The Terra Nova field is also in decline, with 2010 gross production rates averaging 70,000 barrels of oil per day. Development drilling of the field is planned to continue in 2011.
The Hebron field, which is operated by ExxonMobil, will be developed with a gravity-based structure (GBS). The project has entered the front end engineering design (FEED) phase with the award of two large contracts for the GBS and the platform topside facilities.
The Hibernia Southern Extension Unit, which is operated by ExxonMobil, comprises the development of resources in several fault blocks to the south of the existing Hibernia field. The field is planned for development as a satellite to the Hibernia field. The Hibernia South Extension Unit is located across three licence areas. Statoil holds working interests of 22.5% in PL1005, 4.5% in EL1093 and 4.5% of the unit portion of PL1001. Statoil's unitised interest is currently 10.5%. The development plan application (DPA) was approved in October 2010.