American crude oil is heavy and incompatible with today’s stringent environmental requirements. In order to produce cleaner-burning light fuels by 2011, Total decided to equip its Port Arthur refinery in Texas with a coking unit, which will improve the conversion of heavy crudes and increase the production of lighter products.
Capture and geological storage of CO2. Since January 2010, at Lacq in southwest France, we have been testing the first complete industrial-scale CCS chain in Europe.This experimental storage in a depleted gas reservoir is notably intended to validate the methodology and the monitoring tools required for this type of storage, with a view to larger-scale operations in future, and to acquire knowledge to complement that gained from other international projects.
Total is building its biggest refinery in Saudi Arabia, close to the world’s largest oil fields. Thanks to a complex deep conversion process, the Jubail refinery will be able to process the sour, heavy oil from these fields starting in 2012.
The Yemen LNG project led by Total is part of a plan to unlock Yemen’s abundant gas resources, which have not yet been developed due to a lack of sufficient markets. To build this immense industrial complex, since 2006, Total has been implementing a development strategy suited to a local economy where technical skills are scarce and communities are often very poor, to a natural environment that is very sensitive and to a society where sectarian tensions run high.
In June 2010, the Total/Abengoa Solar consortium was selected by the Emirate of Abu Dhabi to build the world’s biggest concentrated solar power plant, baptized Shams 1. Construction is scheduled to begin in the third quarter of 2010 and is expected to take two years. Through the Shams project, Total is broadening its solar energy activities, expanding its portfolio of technologies and cementing its preferred partner relationship with Abu Dhabi.
Begun in the late 1990s, the PetroCedeño project in Venezuela has leveraged Total’s expertise in both production and refining. The fully-integrated development covers the entire chain from the production of extra-heavy oil to its upgrading into a high-quality, marketable light synthetic crude.
The first step in conquering the Congo’s deep offshore, Moho-Bilondo came on stream in April 2008. The development was part of a campaign to offset the natural decline in output from the county’s mature fields. As a long-standing partner of the Republic of the Congo, Total has the technological capabilities necessary to support the county’s ambitious plan to revive its production.
Girassol was Total’s first deepwater development in the Gulf of Guinea. The project took three and a half years to complete and, when it came on stream in 2001, was the largest development ever undertaken at such water depths. Girassol was hailed as a major achievement by the oil industry and confirmed the excellence of Total’s technological expertise.
The Rosa oil field is located in offshore Angola, 15 kilometers from Girassol. Smaller than its neighbor, Rosa’s estimated production was not enough to warrant a stand-alone development, so Total decided to tie it back to the Girassol FPSO. The tie-back strategy was a success and Rosa came on stream in 2007.
One of the world’s largest offshore oil developments, the Dalia field in the Gulf of Guinea came on stream in 2006. Its development presented a number of challenges, including viscous oil, extreme water depths, poorly consolidated reservoirs and complex geological structures. Total once again demonstrated its expertise by developing innovative technologies to overcome these difficulties.
Launched in December 2007, Pazflor in offshore Angola is currently the largest project operated by Total. Intensive R&D programs have resulted in innovative solutions for the subsea separation of gas and liquids. Scheduled to come on stream in the second half of 2011, Pazflor is set to drive development in the country’s oil industry.
Elgin and Franklin are neighboring fields buried more than 5 kilometers below ground in the U.K. North Sea, where the pressure reaches 1,100 bar and temperatures hover around 190°C. The Elgin-Franklin project was the first time in the history of the oil industry that a high-temperature/high-pressure (HT/HP) field was developed on this scale. Its success was confirmed when a 7,300-meter well was drilled in 2006, setting a new record.
Total’s first deepwater development in Nigeria, Akpo came on stream in 2009, leveraging all of the Group’s leading-edge expertise in the deep offshore. The many challenges that had to be met included managing extremely high temperatures and pressures, simultaneously producing oil and gas, and integrating the development into the local economy.