US-based consultant DeGolyer and MacNaughton (D&M) has, in a draft report submitted to the petroleum ministry stated that, at least, 9 billion cubic meters of natural gas valued at around Rs 8,600 crore may have flown from ONGC's idle Bay of Bengal fields to adjoining KG-D6 fields of Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Limited (RIL).
Senior officials confirmed that D&M on Friday submitted to the two firms as well as the directorate general of hydrocarbons (DGH) a draft report stating that ONGC's Godavari Block (known as G-4) is contiguous to RILoperated Block KG-DWN-98/3 (KG-D6).
The parties will now get an opportunity to comment on the draft findings before D&M prepares the final report. Officials said that D&M is of the opinion that there exists one big gas resource several meters below sea bed which extends from G-4 to KG-D6.
DGH had erred in drawing the boundaries of the blocks by ignoring the seismic data on presence of the reservoir and drew lines that bifurcated the reservoir rather than making it part of one block.
ONGC had in 2013 claimed that RIL had deliberately drilled wells close to the common boundary of the blocks, which was leading to the also pumping out gas from the adjoining ONGC block. Officials said D&M has stated that since ONGC had not produced any gas since it made the discovery in 2002, some of its share of gas may have flown out of KG-D6 block from where RIL started production in April 2009.
D&M believes, at least, 9 billion cubic meters of gas belonging to ONGC could have migrated to KG-D6 wells. This gas at $4.2 per million British thermal unit price is worth $1.33 billion, or Rs 8,675 crore. Officials said D&M, which was jointly appointed by ONGC and RIL to find if the neighbouring fields are connected, is of the opinion that there is no unconnected area in G-4 . According to D&M, RIL had drawn 58.67 billion cubic metres of gas from the wells up to March 31, 2015, out of which at least 9 bcm may belong to ONGC. It is likely to submit its final report on the issue by next month.