Shares in 88 Energy PLC (LON:88E) dipped on Wednesday morning as the oil explorer said it was still struggling to recover stimulation fluids from the Icewine#2 well in Alaska as fast as it would like.
On Friday, the AIM-quoted firm said the rate of recovery had slowed due to the optimisation of nitrogen lift operations – an intervention method designed to accelerate the rate of recovery.
Despite reducing the nitrogen injection rate, the rate of flowback of fluids previously injected as part of the fracking process has not increased in recent days.
In a statement, 88 Energy said some 6,797 barrels of fluid have been recovered from the well, which represents around 24.4% of the injected fracking fluid (the target is at least 30%).
“The early results from the flowback were within the range of expectations; however, given the reduction in rate of returned fluid, despite the optimised lift settings, the timeline and forward plan to achieve the return of 30% of injected fluid is being re-assessed,” read this morning’s update.
On a more positive note, the flowback fluid that has been recovered is still primarily from the fracking operations, with salinity measurements suggesting 88 is yet to reach the reservoir.
‘Boss still confident’
88E Managing Director, Dave Wall, said: “The HRZ play remains in its infancy and shows great promise; however, we do not know all the answers at this stage.
“The joint venture remains confident that the reservoir quality and geomechanical properties of the HRZ indicate that it has the requisite ingredients to attract a farm-in partner.
“We appreciate that investors want clarity and certainty in relation to the results from the Icewine#2 well and the team is working hard to provide these.”
Shares were down 18% to 1.4p.