Dow’s Planned Ethylene Facility, InterOil Tests Antelope-3 In Papua: Energy Biz Update

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The biggest American chemical producer by sales, Dow Chemical Co. (NYSE:DOW), has applied for a federal permit to construct its largest ethylene plant, as cheap natural gas currently affords  a cost advantage to manufacturers. A Dow spokeswoman, Nancy Lamb, said Monday that the facility in Freeport, Texas, would possess the output capacity to make 1.5 million tons of ethylene per year, which is the same size as Texas ethylene plants proposed by Chevron Phillips Chemical Co. (NYSE:CVX)(NYSE:PSX) and Exxon Mobil Corporation, while the former would be Dow’s largest in the world, from data compiled by Bloomberg. The company also said that construction of the $1.7 billion facility would begin in January 2014 with operations to commence in January 2017.

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In a Monday release, InterOil Corporation (NYSE:IOC) reported that drill stem test #1 in the Antelope-3 well in Papua New Guinea, tested natural gas and condensate with a maximum gas rate of 44.8 million cubic feet of gas per diem with a flowing tubing pressure of 2,331 pounds per square inch. The Antelope-3 bore was drilled conventionally from 5,321.8 feet with cumulative down hole drilling losses of 647 barrels, to the depth at 5,817 feet where a total loss of circulation occurred. The well was then drilled with managed pressure to 5,905.8 feet, which is the current depth.

On Monday Houston American Energy Corp. (NYSE:HUSA) was notified by SK Innovation, operator on its CPO 4 Block in Colombia that it will to plug and abandon the Zorro Gris #1 well, after which the drilling rig will be released. The operator is currently in the process of buying its second proprietary 3-D seismic shoot on the CPO 4 block, which should be completed in 2013.  Houston American is currently considering its future plans and alternatives in regards to the CPO 4 block.

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