Mineral Resources Current Affairs

ONGC discovers oil in Arabian sea near Mumbai High

State-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) has made oil discovery in WO-24-3 well located west of Mumbai High fields in Arabian Sea. The well is estimated to hold in-place reserve of about 20 million tonnes.

The new discovery comes almost 50 years after ONGC began production in Mumbai High, which is India’s biggest oil field. It currently produces 205,000 barrels of oil per day (just over 10 million tonnes per annum).

Key Facts

In all, ONGC had tested nine objects or zones and all of them were found to be hydrocarbon bearing. The last object tested flowed 3,300 barrels of oil. ONGC is also carrying out further appraisal of discovery and has intimated upstream regulator Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH). The new find will add to existing production capacity of Mumbai High in less than two years time.  It will help ONGC to maintain production levels from basin for a longer time than currently estimated.

Mumbai High

Mumbai High is ONGC’s flagship oil producing assets. It along with other small fields along western offshore have produced 16 million tonnes per annum of oil, which is 44% of India’s total crude oil production of 36 million tonnes. ONGC produced 25.5 million tonnes of oil in 2016-17, which will reach 28-29 million tonnes by 2019-20.

Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC)

ONGC is multinational oil and gas company headquartered in Dehradun, Uttarakhand. It is Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) under administrative control of Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas. It is India’s largest oil and gas exploration and production company. It produces around 77% of India’s crude oil (equivalent to around 30% of the country’s total demand) and around 62% of its natural gas.

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Government to launch Deep Ocean Mission

The Union Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) is going to launch Deep Ocean Mission by January 2018 to spur research activities in ocean science and develop technology to harness ocean resources.

The proposed inter-ministerial and interdisciplinary project aims to explore and harness mineral resources beneath the ocean floor.

Need

India has 7,500 km of coastline and 2.4 million square km of exclusive economic zone (EEZ). The oceans along Indian peninsula contain enormous opportunities in energy, food, medicine and a host of other natural resources. China has been working on a deep sea mission for mining mineral deposits in the Indian and Pacific oceans.

Deep Ocean Mission

The mission is intended to harness ocean resources in responsible way and play important transformative role in prosperity and security of the nation. It will also seek to create jobs and business opportunities in ocean science. It will not only involve the MoES, but also departments of other ministries like science and technology and the biotechnology etc.

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