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A capacity crowd filled the Houston Petroleum Club in late November 2006, to hear a presentation on the trend of oil discoveries in the Lower Tertiary Wilcox Group of the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. Earlier in the year, Chevron had announced flowrates of 6,000 bopd from its Jack 2 appraisal well 200 mi offshore in the Walker Ridge OCS protraction area. At about the same time, Shell announced plans to build a platform to develop Wilcox discoveries in the Perdido Fold Belt region of the Alaminos Canyon OCS area.
To date, at least 19 exploratory wells have penetrated a thick, high-quality, Lower Tertiary sandstone reservoir interval in the Alaminos Canyon, Keathley Canyon and Walker Ridge OCS areas. Twelve of these tests have discovered oil and gas, with reserve estimates for the deepwater Wilcox trend ranging from 3 to 15 billion boe recoverable.
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