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ExxonMobil – Las Flores Canyon and POPCO


ExxonMobil's Las Flores Canyon Facility
POPCO's Gas Processing Plant at right


What's New

An annual SSRRC safety audit is scheduled in July of 2014.

ExxonMobil has submitted an application for a Coastal Development Permit (13CDP-00000-00062) that involves the replacement of two existing power cables (Cable A (or B) and C1) with two new power cables (Cable A2 (or B2) and F2) from the Las Flores Canyon (LFC) facility, located in Santa Barbara County, to the Santa Yenz Unit (SYU) Platform Harmony, located approximately 7 miles offshore in the Santa Barbara Channel. State Lands Commission is the lead agency and is preparing an environmental document. Construction is not proposed until late 2014.


Description

An ongoing project consisting of three offshore platforms (Hondo, Harmony and Heritage) that produce oil and gas from the Hondo, Pescado and Sacate fields. Pipelines are used to transport oil and gas produced offshore to onshore processing facilities. These facilities use the processed natural gas onsite to generate electricity and steam for use onsite. The processed crude oil is pumped into the All American Pipeline Coastal Line.

Location

ExxonMobil's Las Flores Canyon Facility is located approximately 15 miles west of the City of Santa Barbara on the north side of U.S. 101. POPCO is located adjacent to and operated in conjunction with the Las Flores Canyon SYU Oil & Gas Processing Facility


ExxonMobil Location

Overhead View of ExxonMobil's Las Flores Canyon and POPCO Facilities

Offshore Facilities


Platform Hondo

  • Lease Location: OCS-P0188 (Santa Ynez Unit)
  • Year Installed: 1976 (started operations in 1981)
  • Water Depth: 842 feet
  • Deck Weight: 8,450 tons
  • Total Weight: 27,250 tons
  • Fabricated: Oakland, California
  • Number of Wells Slots: 28
  • Distance from Land: 5.1 miles

Photo provided by the Minerals Management Service


Photo provided by the Minerals Management Service

Platform Harmony

  • Lease Location: OCS-P0190 (Santa Ynez Unit)
  • Year Installed: 1989 (drilling commenced 7-23-93, first production 12-04-93)
  • Water Depth: 1,200 feet
  • Deck Weight: 9,839 tons
  • Total Weight: 69,920 tons
  • Fabricated: Korea
  • Number of Well Slots: 60
  • Distance from Land: 6.4 miles


Platform Heritage

  • Lease Location: OCS-P0182 (Santa Ynez Unit)
  • Year Installed: 1989 (construction was completed in 1993, drilling commenced 9-03-93)
  • Water Depth: 1,075 feet
  • Deck Weight: 9,826 tons
  • Total Weight: 60,556 tons
  • Fabricated: Korea
  • Number of Well Slots: 60
  • Distance from Land: 8.2 miles

Photo provided by the Minerals Management Service


Pipelines

  • 20-inch diameter wet oil from Platform Heritage to Platform Harmony (7 miles long)
  • 12-inch diameter gas from Platform Heritage to Platform Harmony (7 miles long)
  • 20-inch diameter oil from Platform Harmony to Las Flores Canyon SYU Oil & Gas Processing Facility (10 miles long)
  • 12-inch diameter produced water from Las Flores Canyon Oil & Gas Processing Facility to Platform Harmony (10 miles long)
  • 12-inch diameter gas from Platform Harmony to Platform Hondo (3 miles long)
  • 14-inch diameter wet oil from Platform Hondo to Platform Harmony (3 miles long)
  • 12-inch diameter sour gas from Platform Hondo to Las Flores Canyon SYU Gas Processing Facility (8.5 miles long)


Las Flores Onshore Facilities

The Las Flores Canyon facility is one of two county-approved consolidation sites for south county oil & gas facilities. Construction of the onshore components started in April 1988 and finished in May 1993. Production started later in 1993. The onshore facilities produce oil, propane, butane, and sulfur products for sale and fuel quality gas for process needs and power generation.

Las Flores Canyon Oil and Stripping Gas Treating Facility

Project Overview

  • Is located on 113 acres (34 developed acres)

  • Major Systems:
    • Oil-water separation
    • Dry oil storage prior to transfer to the All American Pipeline
    • Three pipeline booster pumps designed to ship crude at various rates up to 300 kbpd
    • Blending of NGLs into the crude oil stream from gas processing at the Las Flores Canyon Oil and Gas Processing Facility and the Stripping Gas Treatment Plant
    • Treatment of produced water prior to offshore disposal
    • Cogeneration
    • Produced gas processing and sulfur removal for use in onsite cogeneration plant
  • Las Flores Canyon Oil and Gas Processing Facility (Oil Treating Plant)

    • Dry oil output:
      • Current design capacity of 100,000 barrels per day (bpd)
      • Permitted capacity with the installation of third tank is 125,000 bpd

    • Receives all wet oil produced in the Santa Ynez Unit and removes water from the wet oil stream in the oil treating plant.

    • Oil Storage - 540,000 barrels (bbl) with additional storage available at the Gaviota Oil Terminal

    • Produced water:
      • 60,000 barrels of water per day (bwpd)
      • Average annual throughput of 35,000 bpd (ExxonMobil) and 360 bpd POPCO
      • NPDES permitted offshore disposal capacity of 92,500 bpd

    • Natural Gas:
      • 21,000 thousand cubic feet per day (MCFD)
      • Limited to 15 MCFPD due to the offshore pipeline capacity constraints

    • Cogenerated Electricity - 49 megawatts (39 megawatts from the gas-fired turbine and 10 megawatts from the steam turbine)

    • Las Flores Canyon Oil and Gas Processing Facility - Permitted Capacities:
      • Dry oil output - 140,000 bpd
      • Oil Storage - 540,000 bbl
      • Produced water - 87,000 bwpd
      • Natural Gas - 21,000 MCFD
      • Cogenerated Electricity - 49 megawatts (39 megawatts from the gas-fired turbine and 10 megawatts from the steam turbine)
      • Provides power to the onshore processing facility, and to the three offshore platforms via subsea cables.

    Offsite Pipelines:

    • 24-inch diameter onshore pipeline from Las Flores Canyon Oil & Gas Processing Facility to the Gaviota Pump Station

    Powercables:

    • Onshore to Platform Heritage - Approximately 17 miles
    • Two onshore to Platform Harmony - Approximately 10 miles
    • Platform Heritage to Platform Harmony - Approximately 7 miles
    • Platform Harmony to Platform Hondo - Approximately 3 miles


    POPCO Onshore Facilities

    Gas Processing Plant

    • Plot Plan

    • Site Description:
      • The facility is owned by Pacific Offshore Pipeline Company (Popco), however, ExxonMobil owns 100% of Popco's stock and is the operator of the facility
      • Located on 17.9 developed acres

    • Major Systems:
      • Produced gas processing and sulfur removal for use in onsite cogeneration plant

    • Design Capacities:
      • Dry oil output NA
      • Oil storage NA
      • Produced water NA
      • Natural gas 75,000 MCSFD

    • Permitted Capacities:
      • Dry oil output NA
      • Oil storage NA
      • Produced water NA
      • Natural gas 75,000 MCSFD

    • Offsite Pipelines:
      • 3-inch diameter pipeline connecting this facility to the Las Flores Canyon Oil & Gas Processing Facility

    Product Distribution

    LFC’s Crude Oil

    • Distributed via pipeline
    • Pumped from the onsite Las Flores Canyon transportation terminal, through the All American Pipeline Coastal Line, northwest to the Gaviota Pump Station; then
    • Placed into the All American Pipeline mainline and routed to various refineries

    LFC’s Natural Gas

    • Used onsite as a fuel for the cogeneration of electricity.

    POPCO’s Natural Gas

    • Distributed via Southern California Gas Company’s pipeline and storage system
    • Product Destination: Southern California retail market

    Both Facilities’ Propane

    • Transported via truck. Destination varies according to season and market demand.

    POPCO’s Heavier NGLs and Butane

    • Transported via pipeline to the Las Flores Canyon SYU Oil & Gas Processing Facility for blending into crude oil

    <empty>


    Fields/Production History

    Santa Ynez Unit

    • Location: OCS Santa Barbara Channel
    • Fields: Hondo, Pescado, and Sacate
    • Formations: Monterey and Sandstone
    • Overall Oil Gravity: 19
    • Oil and Gas Production (Chart)


    Hondo Field

    • Production Began: 1981

    • Oil Information:
      • Source and Gravity:
        • Monterey Formation 12 - 18 API
        • Sandstone Formation 30 36 API

      • Cumulative production through 2000: 224 million barrels (MMBL)
      • Percentage of total Pacific Outer Continental Shelf (POCS) oil/condensate landed in Santa Barbara County: 40%
      • Estimated reserves at end of 2004: 20.8 MMBL

    • Gas Information:

      • Source: Monterey and Sandstone Formations
      • Cumulative production through 2000: 280 billion cubic feet (BCF)
      • Percentage of total POCS gas landed in Santa Barbara County: 40%
      • Estimated reserves at end of 2004: 463 BCF

    Pescado Field

    • Production Began: 1993

    • Oil Information:

      • Source and Gravity:

        Monterey Formation 10 - 18 API

        Sandstone Formation 30 36 API

      • Cumulative production through 2000: 84 million barrels (MMBL)
      • Percentage of total Pacific Outer Continental Shelf (POCS) oil/condensate landed in Santa Barbara County: 15%
      • Estimated reserves at end of 2004: 2.6 MMBL

    • Gas Information:

      • Source: Monterey and Sandstone Formations
      • Cumulative production through 2000: 23 billion cubic feet (BCF)
      • Percentage of total POCS gas landed in Santa Barbara County: 3%
      • Estimated reserves at end of 2004: 179 BCF


    Sacate Field

    • Production Began: 1999

    • Oil Information:
      • Source and Gravity:

        Monterey Formation 9 16 API

        Sandstone Formation 30 36 API

      • Cumulative production through 2000: 2 million barrels (MMBL)
      • Percentage of total Pacific Outer Continental Shelf (POCS) oil/condensate landed in Santa Barbara County: <1%
      • Estimated reserves at end of 2004: 58 MBBL

    • Gas Information:

      • Source: Monterey and Sandstone Formations
      • Cumulative production through 2000: 3 billion cubic feet (BCF)
      • Percentage of total POCS gas landed in Santa Barbara County: <1%
      • Estimated reserves at end of 2004: 199 BCF


    Product Distribution

    • Crude Oil
      • Distributed via pipeline
      • Pumped from the onsite Las Flores Canyon transportation terminal, through the All American Pipeline Coastal Line, northwest to the Gaviota Pump Station; then
      • Placed into the All American Pipeline mainline and routed to various refineries

    • Natural Gas
      • Used onsite as a fuel for the cogeneration of electricity.

    • Propane
      • Distributed via truck.

    Destination varies according to season and market demand.

    <empty>


    Past Activities

    • In 2014, ExxonMobil installed a skid mounted induced gas flotation (IGF) unit to increase the produced water treating system to 92,000 barrels per day (bpd) at its Santa Yenz Unit (SYU) in Las Flores Canyon (LFC) so its produced water better meets its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit requirements.
    • An annual SSRRC safety audit was completed on September 10, 2013.
    • An annual safety audit was completed on September 13, 2011.
    • In fall of 2008, and after a failed attempt in 2007, ExxonMobil successfully drilled a second well, Well 11P2, into the Gaviota aquifer. The existing well, Well 11P, has declined in production capacity over the past several years and produces problematic amounts of fine sand and silt. Well 11P2 is intended to balance extraction from all permitted groundwater sources to meet the requirements of ExxonMobil’s Groundwater Management Plan per Condition XVI-1.
    • In January of 2007, ExxonMobil stabilized an approximate 100-foot section of an existing road along with 6-8 buried pipelines located in Las Flores Canyon. The 6-8 pipelines contain liquefied petroleum gas, vapor, and fire water; they run along the shoulder of the existing road.
    • ExxonMobil made repairs from storm damage to the main access and emergency access roads caused by the heavy rainfall during the 2004/2005 rain year at five sites. Repairs were identified for five separate locations, two in Las Flores Canyon and three in Venadito Canyon. Repair work included the installation of gabion basket walls, rip rap, back-fill soil and minor excavation. All work was reviewed and permitted by County emergency and land use permits, US Army Corps of Engineers Regional General Permit, California Regional Water Quality Control Board 401 Water Quality Certification and a California Department of Fish and Game Streambed Alteration Agreement.
    • ExxonMobil completed the installation of a replacement groundwater well in the Northern Vaqueros formation in December 2005. The well replaced an existing well and allows ExxonMobil to access and utilize groundwater from the Northern Vaqueros formation as permitted under the facility’s Ground Water Management Plan (GWMP). The new well is a component of ExxonMobil’s plan to balance future groundwater extraction from all permitted sources consistent with the facility GWMP.
    • The ExxonMobil Offshore Power Cable Repair and Enhancement Project was completed in March, 2004. The project involved replacing a failed power cable from onshore to Platform Heritage that comprises part of ExxonMobil’s offshore electrical power system, installing a new cable between Platforms Hondo and Harmony and updating the communications system from microwave to a fiber optics system.
    • POPCO sold its gas processing facility to ExxonMobil in 1998.
    • POPCO expanded the facility's processing capacity to 60-75 million cubic feet of natural gas in 1998 following permit approval for the expansion in 1994.
    • Exxon's Development Plan called for development of the Sacate reservoir from Platform Heather. However, as a result of advances in drilling technologies, the Sacate reservoir is being developed from Platform Heritage through extended-reach methods. As such, it appears unlikely that Platform Heather will be constructed.
    • During the first 14 years of production from Platform Hondo (before construction of the onshore oil processing facilities) Exxon sent its oil to a nearby Oil Storage & Treating (OS&T) Vessel for processing and then loaded the oil onto a marine tanker for shipment to refineries. The OS&T was a converted oil tanker that operated from 1981 to 1994 and was moored approximately 3.5 miles from shore. Exxon subsequently obtained approval to process its oil onshore in Las Flores Canyon. Upon activating its new onshore facility, Exxon decommissioned its OS&T and Single Anchor Leg Mooring ( SALM) in 1995.




    ExxonMobil's OS&T moored offshore Santa Barbara County

    • The POPCO facility originally had a capacity for processing 30 million cubic feet of natural gas produced offshore from Exxon's Platform Hondo. The processed natural gas was sold to the Southern California Gas Company, and raw natural gas liquids (NGL) were transported via highway to NGL handling facilities in Kern County for processing into propane, isobutane, butane, and heavier products.
    • The Pacific Offshore Pipeline Company (POPCO) constructed the Las Flores Canyon Gas Processing Facility in 1982 and operations began in 1983.
    • All but three of the current 16 Santa Ynez Unit (SYU) tracts were leased in 1968 as part of lease sale P-4. Tracts 326 and 329 were leased in 1979 (lease sale 48) and tract 461 was leased in 1982 (lease sale 68).

     
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