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Exploration and production

Although these energy resources are essential for transportation, lighting and heating, discovering and developing such resources has become increasingly complex.

Therefore, we work on a daily basis to overcome these challenges and we commit ourselves to provide cleaner, safer, more efficient and more accessible energy.

Total Austral, more than 40 years of presence and experience in Argentina

Some of the country’s most significant oil and gas reserves are located under the seabed. Developing such reserves entails facing several challenges, since offshore operations are technically complex and are conducted in remote areas, without infrastructure, and in particularly adverse weather conditions.

However, our exploration and production teams benefit from the experience acquired over more than four decades in the country, as well as the know-how that has made the TotalEnergies company one of the industry’s top offshore operators worldwide.

This allows us to be successful at the time of implementing and leading large projects. Thus, in Tierra del Fuego, we operate onshore field Ara-Cañadon Alfa and offshore fields Hidra, Kaus, Carina, Aries and Vega Pleyade. Offshore production accounts for approximately 51% of Total Austral’s oil and gas operated production.

In the Neuquen Basin, Total Austral holds equity interests in nine blocks, and operates five of such blocks, including Aguada Pichana, San Roque, Rincón La Ceniza y La Escalonada fields. In addition to conventional resources, these concessions include unconventional oil and gas exploration and production in Vaca Muerta shale formation.

Some milestones that mark our experience

  • Major offshore projects. Vega Pleyade field in Tierra del Fuego was a project developed by cross-functional teams made up of specialists from different countries which was completed in two years and a half. It is the world’s southernmost development and involved building and installing a sea platform in 50-meter depth, tied back to onshore facilities via a 77-km offshore pipeline. This field is located in an area lacking any offshore infrastructure, which required mobilizing heavy logistic equipment and conducting operations in extreme weather conditions.
  • Unconventional resources’ development (tight gas and shale gas). Total Austral considers that unconventional resources are key to our future growth strategy. Since 2008 we have been actively working on specific shale gas and oil related projects starting with a multi-fracked horizontal well drilling campaign in Aguada Pichana, intended to develop tight gas reservoirs, which are currently under production.
    We later launched an extensive non-conventional resource development pilot campaign in Aguada Pichana Este, Rincón La Ceniza and La Escalonada, reaching higher than expected production levels and confirming the long term shale feasibility.
    These milestones took non-conventional activities to a higher level through the launching of a new shale development phase in Aguada Pichana Este. This project implies the drilling of 60 wells with an investment of US$1,000 million. At present, with over 40 wells drilled and connected, the shale gas production exceeded 50% of this field's total production, breaking a historical record. When this first development phase is completed, we expect the Aguada Pichana treatment plant to reach its maximum capacity with the shale gas production. 
  • Natural gas production. This resource currently accounts for over 90% of our production. Out of all the fossil fuels, natural gas is the cleanest one. Thus, we adhere locally to the environmental protection premise established by the TotalEnergies company globally.
  • Responsible operator. In all the projects we put into operation, we affirm our commitment to ensure a safe work environment for the people, as well as the facilities and the environment. We believe that responsible energy supply entails adhering to the highest safety standards. For this reason, we exceed local demands and establish our own guidelines to conduct our projects safely.

Total Austral in figures

  • Yearly operated production up to 31.12.21: 209 Kboed.
  • Country’s 2nd gas producer (operated production: more than 30,1 Mm3/d).
  • Over 1000 permanent and contract employees.